“I’d like my eggs slime-free,” my Dad tells the waitress.
“Huh?” she says.
“He means he’d like them poached more solidly,” I explain.
“Huh?” she says again.
“He’d like his poached eggs more solid than usual,” I repeat.
Another Morris family brunch, another exercise in proper egg etiquette. Later, the table runner would return with two plates of Eggs Benedict, trying to explain that one plate had “the hard eggs” in a very soft voice, much to the confusion of the table.
On this particular occasion, I had set out to entertain my parents and my father’s Moroccan business partners for the weekend, which was a task sprung on me last minute on Friday afternoon. The immediate evening plans? Drinks at POV at the W and dinner at D.C. Coast. All went off without a hitch (you can consider hiring me for all your planning needs). So, I had hoped brunch would be equally successful, as Cafe Saint-Ex serves the standard comfort brunch fare.
We arrived at the 14th Street hot spot at 11:05 a.m., five minutes after it opened, and the upstairs was already full. We headed downstairs, which was first-come-first-serve, and snagged the last table. The waitress was slow, and they were low on menus. Not a great start.
The drinks, which took a good while to arrive, were agreeable. Our table ran the gamut—coffee, tea, Bloody Mary ($7), and orange juice—all of which were satisfying. The tea came in a precious little tea pot. My orange juice was fresh-squeezed and refreshing. The coffee was good. Dad, a Bloody Mary expert, said his was good, but nothing to write home about.
We started off with the house-made doughnuts with powdered sugar (five for $7). Definitely not worth $7, there were five minuscule doughnut bites not much larger than the size of my thumb. They were snatched up within seconds, leaving me with the smallest piece, which was more the size of my pinky. Saint-Ex, please refer to them as doughnut holes, doughnut bites, doughnut nuggets, or something other than doughnuts in the future. (false advertising).
Mother had the Smith Meadows Farm Sausage Breakfast ($10) with two eggs any style and breakfast potatoes. She was very pleased with her order—the eggs were slime-free, the sausage was burnt—just how she likes it, and the breakfast potatoes were good. Mommy says A.
Dad and one of our brunch guests had the Classic Ham Benedict ($10). Their verdict on the dish: a solid B. The English muffin was too thin, and there wasn’t enough Hollandaise. Dad takes issue with mother’s stance on the breakfast potatoes—he says they weren’t crispy and lacked flavor. However, his eggs were appropriately poached.
Our second brunch guest went for the Brioche French Toast, topped with seasonal fruit: in this instance, apples and raisins. He became a member of the Morris Clean Plate Club, and gave the French Toast a B+.
I had the egg white omelet, made with feta, spinach, kalamata olives, and fresh, juicy tomato chunks, and served with a light-yet-flavorful side of mixed greens. This was by far the best dish on the table—everyone wanted a bite. Though I usually pick a Benedict over an omelet, I was happy and satisfied with my choice. It was delicious while still being healthy. My dish gets an A.
The Bitches say: B. Smallest doughnuts I’ve ever seen (sigh!) Normal, run-of-the-mill breakfast food, but definitely well-prepared. Omelet was top-notch, Benedicts were not.
1847 14th St. N.W.
P.S. Daisy was at the hotel, so she was unable to review the Steak & Eggs, but it is on the menu.