2 Fleur
Average check per person $5-$15
BreakfastBreakfast SundayBreakfast MondayBreakfast TuesdayBreakfast WednesdayBreakfast ThursdayBreakfast FridayBreakfast Saturday
LunchLunch SundayLunch MondayLunch TuesdayLunch WednesdayLunch ThursdayLunch FridayLunch Saturday
DinnerNo Dinner SundayNo Dinner MondayNo Dinner TuesdayNo Breakfast WednesdayNo Dinner ThursdayNo Dinner FridayNo Dinner Saturday

Broken Egg Cafe

Mandeville: 200 Girod. 985-624-3388. Map.
Casual
AE DC DS MC V
Website

WHY IT’S NOTEWORTHY
A cute cottage in Old Mandeville was renovated by a skillful architect, who installed a menu like one he saw in a breakfast restaurant in Southern California. Within days the place was packed every weekend and most other days too. The country-style quaintness of the surroundings place and the cutesy menu appeal to a lot of customers. Their attitudes heightened, they enjoy the Broken Egg enough that they keep coming back, even knowing a fifteen-minute or longer wait is possible. They also prepare a variety of sandwiches and salads for the lunch crowd, but breakfast is the anchor.

WHAT’S GOOD
You’ll probably be happy with the egg dishes. The cooking is usually decent, but rarely polished. I can’t seem to get a fluffy, unscorched omelette, and in many, many samplings have never found the much-liked country potato cooked or seasoned enough. The plates are decorated with colorful garnishes and sauces. Over the years the heavy Southwestern tilt of the original menu has faded in favor of more local ingredients like shrimp, crabmeat, and andouille.

BACKSTORY
This Broken Egg Cafe is the original, opened in 1996. It has since spread (mostly through franchising) to eight other locations on the Gulf Coast and in Texas.

DINING ROOM
The residential origins of the restaurant are still clear, and most of the tables are in small rooms. The walls are covered with black iron skillets, rural-style art, and collections of mugs and such that you are offered for purchase. A porch in front is used as a pleasant waiting area with free coffee. It’s not uncommon for the porch to fill up, in which case people stand around on the sidewalk. The service staff is cheerful and helpful.

ONLINE MENU LOCATION

ESSENTIAL DISHES
starters
Baked Brie, apples, raisins, pecans, Grand Marnier butter
Beignets, honey marmalade dipping sauce
Fresh fruit sampler
Blackberry grits
»Muffins
Cinnamon roll
Omelettes
Floridian (cream cheese, crabmeat, garlic butter, jack cheese
»Stan ’s #1 (crawfish, shrimp, mushrooms, ham, cheeses)
Bacquezo (bacon, cream cheese, Monterey jack, chorizo)
Mardi Gras (andouille, red peppers, crawfish, tomato hollandaise) Farm Fresh (broccoli, mushrooms, onions, tomatoes, cheeses)
Fountainbleau (ham, peppers, onions, cheeses)
The Works (sausage, bacon, onion, mushrooms, cheeses A
Chez B’s (onions, peppers, portobello mushrooms, feta, basil
Shrimp florentine (shrimp, tomatoes, onions, spinach, mushrooms)
»Smoked salmon
Garden Delight (spinach, mushrooms, tomatoes, Swiss)
Bacado (bacon, avocado, jack cheese, salsa)
»Hey Ricky! (chorizo, avocado, chilies, onions, cheeses, salsa sour cream)
Lobster et fromáge (cream cheese, Brie, lobster, tomatoes, champagne cream sauce)
Scrambled Eggs
Popeye’s favorite (bacon, spinach, onions, jack cheese)
Southern(ham, onions, bell peppers, tomatoes, melted cheeses)
Lakeshore (bacon, onions, mushrooms, ham, cheeses)
»Southwest (chorizo, onions, green chilies, tomatoes, cheeses, guacamole, salsa, flour tortilla)
Huevos rancheros
The Madison (croissant, ham, onions, peppers, tomatoes, cheese)
The Castine (eggs, ham, asparagus, mushrooms, hollandaise)
Plantation quesadilla (chicken, green chilies, onions, tomatoes, cheeses, potatoes, sour cream, guacamole, salsa)
Benedict-style eggs
Crabcakes cavallo (hollandaise sauce, andouille)
Smoked salmon benny (bagel, cream cheese, salmon, red onions, capers, green onions)
»Eggs Benedict
Eggs Blackstone (tomatoes, hollandaise, bacon, chives)
»Veggie Benedict (spinach, mushrooms, tomatoes, broccoli, hollandaise sauce)
»Eggs sardou (spinach, artichokes, hollandaise)
»Benedict Oscar (sirloin steak, English muffin, poached eggs, crabmeat, asparagus, bearnaise sauce)
Other Breakfast Entrees
Pancakes
Belgian waffle
»French toast
Bananas Foster waffle
»Cinnamon roll french toast
Southern crab stack (grits cake, crab cake, shrimp, andouille)
Lafitte’s tortilla (scrambled eggs, chorizo, green chilies, onions, cheeses, salsa, sour cream)
Quiches
Biscuit, country gravy, eggs, sausage
Dr Maley’s brunch (fruit plate, coffee, juice, muffin)
Oatmeal or granola (brown sugar, berry compote or fresh berries)
Yogurt, fruit and granola
Sandwiches
Hamburger (several variations)
Patty melt on rye
Veggie wrap
Crabcake crostinis
Greek isle wrap
Nellie‘s delight (ham, bacon, Swiss, lettuce, tomato, sourdough)
Smoked salmon BLT wrap
Chicken salad on whole wheat toast
King of clubs (turkey, avocado, bacon, tomato, ham, cheese, alfalfa sprouts, sourdough)
»The BLAST!
BLT with avocado, Swiss, tomatoes
Turkey, avocado, tomatoes, jack cheese, bacon, sourdough
Big rooster (grilled chicken breast, bacon, Swiss cheese, lettuce, tomato, on kaiser bun)
Reuben
»Cajun tuna sandwich
Soup and salads
Soup of the day
Caesar salad
Chef’s salad
Southern shrimp salad
Chicken salad
»Cobb salad
Oriental chicken salad
Spinach salad
»Grilled tuna wasabi salad

FOR BEST RESULTS
Ignore the menu and order whatever breakfast combo you feel like eating. Unless it’s something really exotic, they probably have all the ingredients you might think of. Without affecting the value, the platters here are a touch smaller than has become common in local breakfast spots. This is a good thing, I think.

OPPORTUNITIES FOR IMPROVEMENT
Biscuits, corned beef hash, juices, and the famous country potatoes are decidedly substandard. They need a lighter touch on the eggs.

FACTORS OTHER THAN FOOD
Up to three points, positive or negative, for these characteristics. Absence of points denotes average performance in the matter.

  • Dining Environment +1
  • Consistency
  • Service+1
  • Value +1
  • Attitude +2
  • Wine & Bar
  • Hipness
  • Local Color +2

 

SPECIAL ATTRIBUTES

  • Outdoor tables, drinks only
  • Good for business meetings
  • 8-25
  • Open Sunday lunch
  • Open Monday lunch
  • Quick, good meal
  • Good for children
  • Easy, nearby parking
  • No reservations

ANECDOTES AND ANALYSIS
The sprightly menu is the unique selling point of the Broken Egg, and no doubt grabs a lot of customers. But it’s not as innovative as it seems. Here are the same ingredients you find in any decent local breakfast cafe, combined in more than the usual number of ways, each dish bearing a kicky name. (Some of them are trademarked, which always makes my antennae go up.) Many of the dishes sound a lot like two or three other dishes. Ordinary techniques (like cooking bacon in the oven and using Hormel products) are put forth as special.

In compiling the menu for this review, I replaced phrases like “our creamy hollandaise sauce” and “fresh leaf spinach” with “hollandaise” and “spinach.” It reduced the number of characters from about 11,000 to 3,300.


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