Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Three Weekend Brunches Here in Ottawa-Gatineau

As a couple, our weekend mornings are often lazy and slow to get moving.

The first button pushed as our feet hit the warmth of our kitchen's oak floor, is to rev up Silvia The Espresso Machine. That girl is almost vintage now at 11 1/2 years. She's bullet-proof reliable  We have fun getting all science-y - frothing our milky micro-bubbles, measuring our grinds and weighing the espresso output, all in an effort to pull the perfect shot.

Eventually the curtains are drawn on our full wall of windows, letting the light flood in. No matter how grey and snowy, it brightens our morning nest.

Sometimes there is music. Sometimes CBC. More often than not we just sit quietly together and read. No one more hurried than the other. It is relaxing and easy. Truth be told, it is me who is slowing down for this togetherness feeling.

As time passes, the growling starts and the stomachs call out. That morning feast can be anything from steel cut oats to crêpes and fruit salad. We let the fridge and pantry decide.

But when the mister is not home, my 'type-A, morning girl' personality usurps the agenda. Over the past month I have happily been accepting brunch dates and even venturing on my own.

Here is some of what I have been tasting as I brunched around town.

Domus Cafe [87 Murray Street, Ottawa]: Crispy East Coast Fish Cake with wilted greens, crème fraîche, soft boiled egg and citrus-caper marmalade. $24

gezellig [337 Richmond Road, Ottawa]: Fritatta with chorizo, fresh herbs, chèvre, cherry tomatoes and fingerling home fries. $13

Odile [47 rue Montclair, Hull]: Smoked salmon, poached eggs, capers, Brussels sprouts, fennel and fingerling potatoes. $14

What have I learned? I do like eggs but I like them best soft and jiggly.  Go easy on the carbs. Hold the bread and toast. Load me up on veggies, if you can. They are full flavour and the colour makes for pretty. If you can make a killer coffee, my head will turn. Price and location do matter.

Big bright windows, cozy seats and a relaxing atmosphere will have me feeling like I am right at home.

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