My gorgeous, smart, skinny blonde friend who is super funny and single btw, suggested we check out a new restaurant on 124th, called Canteen. We’d ogled the menu for weeks with ‘oooh’s and ‘ahhh’s like a bunch of tween-age girls checkin’ out Justin Bieber in the latest Teen Mag. (Yes, I went there, I know. But you get the idea, right?) Anyway, we were downtown today and found ourselves in the area in time for a late brunch.
Decor? Not bad. Clean lines, dark colors mixed with chrome, and bench seating against the wall. A modern feel, not cozy, but pleasant to look at and be in. Cute touches like unique napkin holders – think pony tail holder with a christmas name tag, and funky wooden bill holders were cool. Our server seemed PAINFULLY awkward, but she was really sweet. Maybe she was new or maybe she was just incredibly stunned by our beauty, I don’t know, but we found ourselves reminding/asking her for things she should just do as a server. No big deal though, we were ok with it. Cuz you know.. we’re gorgeous like that.
As all smart diners should do, we decided to order our dishes, and ask for extra plates to be able to eat/share family style type fashion. Our server happily complied and said that a lot of people do that now. She made me feel not so weird about being a smart diner. I liked that. Check mark for her.
We decided on the special and began discussing our second dish from the menu. Speaking of menu, here’s the photo of it. I was using my phone so I apologize now for the photo quality that I’m sure you will inwardly complain about. Go ahead, it’s ok, I would too.
The special was a savory pumpkin waffle with strands of duck confit inside, poached egg and buttermilk fried chicken with a sour cherry sauce and smoky maple syrup. I know I don’t make it sound as special as they did when she had described it to us, but it sounded DELECTABLE so we ordered that along with the Poached Eggs On Cheddar Chive Biscuit With Sausage Gravy, Chicken Apple Sausage, Hash Browns…. (Yes, I copied that from the menu. How did you know, smartypants??).
We started with the Poached Eggs. Take a look:
So lets chat about the “hashbrowns”. Yes, I know they look like crispy pucks, but do not be deceived my friends. They were in fact, super crispy on the outside but soft, pillowy and full of divine on the inside. Mixed with green onion and other spices, they were probably the best tasting things on the plate. I could have eaten a hockey helmet full of them.
The sausage patty was not bad, but we didn’t detect any apple flavor, and it was a bit dry. The cheddar chive biscuit was IN-CRED-IBLE (up there with the hash browns) – seemingly made from a puff pastry I think. Flaky and yummy. The sausage gravy was a bit scarce, and just ok.
Now… the eggs.
Siiiiiiiiiiiiigh. The eggs. You know how when you break into a poached egg, and the foodie freak inside you wants to see that yolk all creamy and runny, to watch it ooze all over the ‘whatever’ it’s sitting on? Oh yeah baby. You know what I’m talkin’ about right? It’s the moment akin to opening that present that was so wonderfully wrapped, full of promise of holding some great shit, and you’re JUUUUST about to see what’s inside.
Well… the eggs were like getting socks. Nice, but not quite what you wanted.
The eggs were like that in both dishes. So it brings me to believe they were purposely made that way. Somewhat overcooked yolk and a runny, snotty white. The kind that are still a bit translucent, and REALLY jiggle when moved on the plate. Go figure. How does one cook it that way? Hard-ish type yolk, and watery undercooked white? I don’t know.. but they were disappointing. I wanted to apologize to the chickens who laid them.
The second dish was the pumpkin waffle with fried chicken.
The waffle was nice and crisp but again, couldn’t really detect the pumpkin. The duck confit that was mixed in the waffle was a complete miss for both me and my friend because the flavor was lost in the waffle. Sadly, there was the other snotty egg that was placed between the waffle and the chicken.
Scraping the egg white aside, the chicken however, was quite nice. The coating was crispy and well seasoned and the chicken itself was well cooked and moist. The sour cherry sauce was a really nice sweet/sour contrast to the chicken and the smoky maple syrup ROCKED. It just wasn’t plentiful enough.
We asked for a small side of the syrup and when drizzled on top of the chicken, the dish went from ‘meh, that was ok’ to ‘wow, that’s damn good’.
All in all the food was decent but didn’t quite live up the hopes of the yummy sounding menu. The eggs here were a huge gelatinous turn-off, but not enough that I wouldn’t try the place again.
And I plan to, because you know.. I’m gorgeous like that.
P.S. – If you’re like my friend and I, and hate snotty eggs, click the button and “follow” me!
Join our club!
You know, because your gorgeous like that.