Breakfast observations | Rock Candy

Monday, June 7, 2010

Breakfast observations

Posted By on Mon, Jun 7, 2010 at 9:27 AM

BREAKFAST FARE:  Chicken and Waffles at B-Side
  • BREAKFAST FARE: Chicken and Waffles at B-Side
While our state has a whole lot of restaurants, we’re lacking on locally owned places that serve breakfast, which leaves us with the IHOPs and Waffle Houses of the world. I was surprised just how hard it was to come up with places to start the day. If breakfast really is the most important meal of the day, why don’t more restaurants offer it?

It took a good deal of effort to come up with the seven breakfast joints I visited last week. I looked specifically this time for places that weren’t well-known for their morning meal (Community Bakery excluded) and that weren’t connected to a national chain operation. The search took me all the way down the interstate to Gurdon and up to Cabot. Not all THAT far, but a good deal of traveling distance between the two.

So have the fast food and national chains won this battle here? And if so, why? Is it a time factor (ie, rushing to get to work on time)? Location? Or is it just easy and comfortable to grab a meal in a place you already know about?

GRITS:  The cheesy kind, at Satellite Cafe
  • GRITS: The cheesy kind, at Satellite Cafe
What did each place have in common? Well, except for Community Bakery (the odd man out in this case) all of the eateries mentioned offered grits. Every one of them offered eggs in some manner or another, sausage and toast. The gravies varied from cream gravy (Dave and Ray’s) to sausage gravy and even chocolate gravy (Argenta Market). Most offered a version of pancakes. Every last one of them offered some mighty fine coffee.

I’m well over the 200 restaurant mark on Eat Arkansas… but breakfast is still my weak suit. Of the breakfasts I’ve had the chance to enjoy, I’ve covered:

Argenta Market (Little Rock)
B-Side (Little Rock)
Casa Manana (Little Rock)
Community Bakery (Little Rock)
Dave and Ray’s Downtown Diner (Little Rock)
Delicious Temptations (Little Rock)
Ed and Kay’s (Benton)
Hayestack Café (Ferndale)
Kierre’s Kountry Kitchen (North Little Rock/Maumelle)
Pancake Shop (Hot Springs)
Satellite Café (Little Rock - currently being remodeled)
South Fork Restaurant (Gurdon)
Stoby’s (Russellville)
The Diner (Cabot)
The Purple Cow (Little Rock)

HOT AND BLACK:  Coffee at South Fork Restaurant
  • HOT AND BLACK: Coffee at South Fork Restaurant
I’m planning another week of breakfast reviews in July, and have had many recommendations, including:
Ashley's at the Capital (Little Rock)
Bean Palace (Rogers/War Eagle)
Frontier Grill (Little Rock)
Hankins Country Store (Pelsor)
Meacham Grill (Ash Flat)
Mimi’s Café (Little Rock)
Ozark Family Restaurant (Little Rock)
Paradise Donuts (Russellville)
65th Street Diner (Little Rock)
Wagon Wheel Restaurant (Greenbrier)

So I’d like to hear your thoughts. Where’s your favorite place to have breakfast? What have I missed? Where should I go for my breakfast-time research? What do you want to see served up at Arkansas breakfast joints? Here’s your chance to use our new fabulous bells-and-whistles website and voice your opinion. All interaction much appreciated.

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