words and photos by Holly Brown
As my personal idol Ron Swanson (of hit sitcom Parks and Rec) says: “You may have thought you heard me say I wanted a lot of bacon and eggs, but what I said was: Give me all the bacon and eggs you have.”
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I love breakfast food. Particularly savory breakfast and particularly dishes of the egg variety. It had felt like some time since I had let myself indulge in a breakfast issue, so I flipped at the opportunity and scrambled to narrow down which fabulous Akron breakfast I would use this time.
Basically I have been hearing sweet nothings about The Blue Door since moving to Akron, let alone starting my culinary endeavors as your most humble narrator/wanderer. Here’s the tragedy of this story: I just never seemed to get there though it was always on the top of my list. Finally, one uncharacteristically beautiful day in early March, the sun was out and the blue sky pointed me to one place and one place only: The Blue Door. I donned my sunhat, spring dress, and my Ryan and to breakfast we all went.
The Blue Door is exactly how I always imagined it being; behind its adorable and inviting blue door is a clean, open, crisp interior. It is decked in whites and neutrals, the pops of accent color literally come from the food: the star of the show. I walked by tables, my eyes reveling in the color and my stomach rolling with food-induced desire. The beautiful colors of the fresh, local ingredients as well as the perfect plating of each and every dish was impossible to ignore even as we were merely shown to our seats.
Ordering eggs off of the menu was no problem, it was exactly what kind of eggs that were going to be an issue, especially knowing that the menu changes every week to incorporate seasonal ingredients. This could be a one-time-offer!! After much deliberation I finally settled on a classic: the Croque Madam (though I made sure that Ryan ordered the limited-time egg white frittata with mushrooms, potatoes, and a balsamic reduction…also stellar)
When the food arrived, I was blown away. The brioche just about melted in my mouth. The ham was just thick enough, hearty but never greasy. If, like me, you get choked up by cutting into a perfectly poached egg pillow, by seeing that beautiful, delicious yellow yolk cascade over ham and bread, then you would
have enjoyed that first bite of Croque Madam as much as I did. For good measure, I got a side of greens dressed in the *perfect* amount of balsamic and a broiled grapefruit (had to get all of my food groups represented!). The color of the grapefruit alone almost sent me reeling.
One week later and again I was lucky enough to have to go out and eat eggs for breakfast. After a long weekend of shenanigans, on Sunday it was time to recharge, refresh, and fuel up; The Sweet Pea Cafe is just the place to do that. With an extensive menu offering everything in the egg world from frittata to omelette to quiche to benedict, this is where you can get eggs any way.
Sweet Pea is innocuous from first glance. The inside of the cafe is simple but upon further inspection, one notices the hilarious chalkboard signs that hang on the wall with phrases such as: “Good looking people sit here,” “‘Ham and Eggs’ – a day’s work for a chicken, a lifetime commitment for a pig,” and my personal favorite “I love life but life only likes me as a friend.” As I’ve said before the menu is seriously extensive. I’ve been here a few times but I always, always, always have trouble picking out what to eat. My advice is to come here with friends, because the menu is so extensive and almost everything is made from scratch, you’re going to wait but the wait is going to be worth it. Also, bringing friends means that they order something different than you and you get to try it. Win, win, win.
Even more than eggs, I love smoked salmon. LOVE. I have it with my family every Christmas morning and I find it impossible to not order something with smoked salmon in it when I see it on a menu. I’ve talked about my favorite foods before, and next to cheese smoked salmon is my absolute top favorite. Sweet Pea features smoked salmon on multiple dishes, including an eggs bennie which I sampled for this first time for this very issue! Ryan got the special: a crabmeat benny with a bed of spinach.
Out came by beloved benedict: an english muffin topped with avocado, smoked salmon, a poached egg, and dripping in hollandaise. The Northern Benedict was everything I wanted: salty, earthy, eggy. The hollandaise is house-made and great, not too thick as to overpower the rest of the flavors working together but there and just decadent enough.
And there you have it, a most eggcellent adventure. Catch y’all on the sunny side.
Holly Brown loves adventures and food. Especially adventures in breakfast.
1970 State Rd, Cuyahoga Falls
Breakfast & Lunch: Wed – Sun: 7:00 am – 3:00 pm
Dinner: Fri & Sat: 5:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Sweet Pea Cafe
117 Merz Blvd #116, Fairlawn
Everyday 7:00 am – 2:30 pm
Dinner: Fri & Sat 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm