Escape to Mud Street Cafe | Rock Candy

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Escape to Mud Street Cafe

Posted By on Thu, Aug 19, 2010 at 8:34 AM

ITS GOOD FOR YOU:  And tasty, too
  • Kat Robinson
  • IT'S GOOD FOR YOU: And tasty, too
I have been remiss! We’ve been so wrapped up in Eureka Springs that I’ve completely forgotten to keep you abreast of what we’ve been up to!

Considering where we’re at, that’s not surprising. There’s something about Eureka Springs that saps the will to work. Er, maybe that’s not completely it. Maybe it has something more to do with the idea that the town is a haven, a respite from the real world. Trying to get about and get things done is difficult.

But indeed, we have been doing stuff. And Tuesday morning we needed to make sure we were fortified for a very busy day ahead. I had a bridge to hunt down, a spring to find, and an unusual place to stay to discover. So Mud Street Café it was.

  • Kat Robinson
Now, there’s a small admission I have to make. Readers have told me over and over again I have to go to Mud Street. And I have tried to oblige. But two things kept standing in the way — one, it closes at 3 p.m. and two, it’s closed on Wednesday. I’ve tried to go three successive trips in a row, and darn my timing.

Not this time around. We got up at a decent hour, rolled that direction around 9ish, found a parking spot (a dollar an hour? Yeah, that’s the truth) and went in. First thing you should know about Mud Street Café is that it’s in a basement. You enter from Main Street right next to Romancing the Stone and head straight down. Probably not the best thing if you’re nursing a sore head… no, I wouldn’t know anything about that.

Our kind hostess directed us to the coffee at our own leisure. It’s self serve and includes three options — the Mud Street Blend, which is strong; Mexican Organic, which is smooth and mild, and a decaf option. There’s half-and-half and a half dozen ways to doctor up your beverage available.

VEGGIE DELIGHT:  Veggie Hash Browns at Mud Street Cafe
  • Kat Robinson
  • VEGGIE DELIGHT: Veggie Hash Browns at Mud Street Cafe
We already knew we were going to order the Veggie Hash browns, potato cottage fries topped with veggies and such — as it was, our waitress wouldn’t have it any other way. While we were perusing the rest of the menu she had an order made up for us. We were quite surprised at the vast variety of vegetables that arrived: broccoli and cauliflower, green and red bell peppers, orange and yellow carrots, zucchini and squash, tomatoes and black olives, all well steamed and soft under a light layer of Cheddar cheese, a little spicy salsa and a crown of bean sprouts. I instantly wished I had brought my daughter, who loves vegetables and who I could mentally hear squeal in delight over this dish. The best part was the fact that it was delicious. Really, truly delicious. I mean, the hubster didn’t care too much for the salsa, but he’s not a salsa guy. I thought it added a nice spicy kick to everything.

I already knew what I wanted to order before I arrived (because the menu’s online, hint hint restauranteurs!) but it took Paul a bit to figure out what he was going to have. Our waitress offered suggestions — and the first thing she suggested was pancakes. Now, mind you, I have about had my fill of pancakes lately. I’ve had corn pancakes and corn muffin style pancakes. I’ve had them with pecans and strawberries and blackberries. I’ve had thick ones and thin ones and silver dollar ones and some so big they didn’t fit on the plate. I was not looking for another pancake.

But I ordered one anyway to share with the hubster — because the idea of sour cream pancakes sounded interesting. And blueberries? Well, yeah.

MUD STREET BREAKFAST:  With awesome home fries
  • Kat Robinson
  • MUD STREET BREAKFAST: With awesome home fries
He ordered the Mud Street Breakfast, and a few minutes later received a big plate with scrambled eggs, wheat toast, a couple of sausage patties and home fries. And the home fries were fantastic. Especially worthy of mention. Everything else was good, but these were just really good home fries. That being said, Paul kept going back to the veggie hash browns, too. I know he won’t admit it, but he really liked all those veggies in the morning.

MUD MUFFIN:  No mud included
  • Kat Robinson
  • MUD MUFFIN: No mud included
I had the Mud Muffin. No, it’s not as bad as it sounds. It’s actually quite pleasing. It starts off with a Wolferman’s English Muffin, which is pretty awesome in itself, a big thick English muffin with real give to it. The Mud Muffin’s served unassembled so you can add on what you want. On one side of the muffin: scrambled eggs, done omelet style for ease of staying on the muffin, topped with Cheddar cheese. Provided with the muffin: fresh slices of tomato, slices of red onion, a handful of bean sprouts and a handful of black olives. I assembled most of these together (I left out some of the raw onions, just because I was being nice to Paul) and took a photo. Mind you, I posted my pics on my Facebook fan page shortly after breakfast, and the response I got from my friend Zhara: “Mr. Mud Street Muffin is frowning at me. But I love his hair.” I about fell out of my chair when I read that.

But the folks at Mud Street Café know what they’re doing. It’s an excellent blend of ingredients. It’s healthy, it’s hearty, and you don’t miss the meat. It’s also one of the best breakfasts I’ve had — and considering what I’m leading up to (you’ll find out soon enough) that’s saying a whole lot.

But back to that pancake. I got it to share with Paul, and he’d raised his eyebrows at me. He wasn’t looking for a pancake. I wasn’t looking for a pancake. But it was there on the table with us, delivered with a warmed bottle of real maple syrup, and it smelled fabulous. And I planned to just taste it, just to see if it was all that.

It was.

YES, ANOTHER PANCAKE:  But a good one
  • Kat Robinson
  • YES, ANOTHER PANCAKE: But a good one
The sour cream in the batter is barely detectable, but it gives the pancake a very light texture with just a touch of tang. The blueberries, though… oh boy. They were fresh blueberries, still just a tiny bit tart but rather sweet. The balance between blueberries and pancake batter and the real maple syrup… well, darnit, we ate the whole thing. It was excellent. I woulda ordered more, but between the veggie hash browns and the Mud Muffin I was already pushing it.

MISSED:  Housemade muffins
  • Kat Robinson
  • MISSED: Housemade muffins
Which was a shame, because that’s about the time I spotted the housemade muffins on the bar. Banana Walnut and Cherry Pecan muffins, all made that morning, all perfectly crumbly and calling out for the friendly companionship of hot, rich coffee. The desire was there; the room in my belly was not. I had to pass.

We coulda spent all day there. It would have been easy. It’s like having breakfast in someone’s den, with books and artwork and comfy chairs and couches all around. But work was calling, and I had a bungalow to go research, so we plied ourselves out of our chairs and went back up the staircase.

We’d eaten so well, we forgot to get lunch. That’s saying something.

You’ll find the Mud Street Café on Main Street in Eureka Springs — I think I already explained the rest of the directions. It’s open 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. every day except Wednesday. More information on the restaurant website or you can call (479) 253-6372.

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