Sunday, September 20, 2009
Apres Coucher: Lady Marmalade
It's filled with the prescriptive super-hipster East end crowd (although I live in the neighbourhood, I am not quite as cool for school). Its decor has got that kitschy retro flare, coupled with an arty mash-up. The servers are mostly wholesome-looking beauties who, despite the seemingly constant stream of waiting customers, maintain their pleasant demeanour with a smile.
The prices are just right for a brunch/lunch spot; not much is more than $12 or so. It's cash-only (boo), except there's a TD bank 2 doors down for those feeling terribly inconvenienced. The only other let-down I could discern was that they don't make good-morning poutine (or good-afternoon poutine, for that matter) on the weekends. Being a Northern Ontario girl and somewhat of a poutine connoisseur, I was excited to try it. Then, sadly shut down. *Sigh* - I'll have to go back for that one.
I ordered the baked crepe croque monsieur and was delighted. Wrapped in a light crepe was ham and cheddar, topped with a miso-scallion cream, perfectly poached eggs and wilted spinach. I was a tad intrigued by the miso-scallion cream (also an option for the poutine: miso gravy), but found it to be light, balanced, and a perfect complement to the dish without being overpowering. The side of hashbrowns were some of the best I've had: crispy on the outside, fluffy inside, not greasy and properly seasoned.
The eggs benny options are plentiful with many flavour-pairing favourites to choose from. One friend ordered the huevos rancheritos which, despite tasting good, looked a bit like dressed-up cafeteria food (I suppose it's hard to make a mound of beans look pretty). One other plus: fresh-squeezed orange juice. One would think it's a staple for every good brunch spot but I'm surprised at how many rely on good 'ol Old South. Lady Marmalade offers both options but don't skimp - fresh juice all the way.
I'm excited the good restaurant options are continuing to grow in Queen's East end. Better still that there's another yummy brunch option for the 'I'm-so-hungover-all-I-want-is-fucking-tasty-food' crowd. Check it out ... I know I'll be going back. http://www.ladymarmalade.ca/