I love eating out for breakfast, especially when I get there nice and early on a week day.
My usual haunt is Nancy's. The price is right and the food is plentiful. The best thing is the atmosphere. Where else can you get up and serve coffee to the rest of the patrons and not get yelled at?
This morning I just happened to be in Grandview. It made me tingly all over because it meant I got to eat at Paul's Fifth Avenue. Paul's has been around for a long time and like a lot of little places here in Columbus, I think it's been forgotten in the rush to find the "shiniest" new place to chow down.
What do I mean by "shiny"? My hubby and I came up with this theory long ago. People are attracted to the newest, most trendy of anything: movies, books, houses, and, of course, restaurants. Just like all primates, we like things that sparkle. Given the choice between a dull pebble and a sparkly one, most creatures will pick the sparkly one. It doesn't matter that the dull one might actually be more useful, or of better quality, or be worth more money - the sparkle is the selling point and the new one will win out. Of course, that is a generalization, but analyze some of the choices you make and you might find that you are fascinated by "shiny" as well.
Paul's has a fairly simple breakfast menu, with some items of note - for which I love them dearly.
The first is the Callahan. What is a Callahan you ask? They define it as a omelet made with home fries instead of eggs. I say its hash. HASH!!! Hash with cheese on it. When was the last time you saw real hash on a menu? I love hash. It's my favorite part of leftover roasts...but I digress...
The second is the Joe Fries. Extra crispy home fries. Not burnt - like when you order them well done at TeeJay's (blech!). These treats have a permanent place on the menu - as well they should.
The food is simple, but prepared properly. Tony ordered 3 eggs over easy, toast, sausage and joe fries. Eggs are a telling point in a busy restaurant. These were perfect - the whites set and the yolks runny. The sausage wasn't dried out and the joe fries were crispy but not burnt.
I ordered the Louisiana Callahan. It had an emphasis on the potatoes, with a nice mixture of add-ins. My only regret is that I didn't ask for joe fries instead of the regular potatoes. My fault - not theirs! Topped with cheese and sprinkled with hot sauce - it was just the thing to get me going.
At 8:30 am,the place was filed with a mixture of older folks, young couples with babies in tow and a bunch of third shifters from OSU hospital. The decor is plain, but clean. The wait staff was friendly and kept the coffee coming. The food came out fast and hot. What more can you ask for?
Paul's also has a reputation for having a killer lunch and dinner service. I've caught lunch only twice in the last few years and it was stellar both times. I have never made it to dinner, but I have been told I need to make the effort, since they run daily specials based on what is fresh, plus they are supposed to have incredible Italian fare. (Can anyone confirm?)