Medina Café. This brunch/lunch spot has a guaranteed line-up on weekends with at least a 40 minute wait. But that doesn’t stop you from waiting for over an hour when you’re already starving or going back every other weekend, if you can afford it
What is it about this place? Could it be their smooth and rich lattes, americanos and espresso? Or maybe it’s their cute Belgium waffles, dusted with icing sugar and served with your choice of assorted gourmet dips, like white chocolate-pistachio-rosewater, raspberry caramel, fig-orange marmalade, berry compote, dark chocolate and so on.
If that’s not enough goodness to sway you, go ahead and order one of their absolutely finger-licking main dishes like le Cassoulet, la Tagine (pictured), or my personal favorite La Santé — a soft boiled egg (I usually ask for over-easy instead), vine ripened tomatoes, olive tapenade, avocado, prosciutto, a pot of extra virgin olive oil, and grilled ciabatta for dipping! Excuse me while I wipe the drool off my keyboard. Santé, translated from the French meaning “good health” or “cheers to your good health”. I would cheers to that, oui!
556 Beatty Street
This morning I had the pleasure of dining at Seb’s Market Cafe on Broadway. This is a popular place for the Broadway/Main st. crowd so as soon as we entered, we had to put our name on ‘the waiting list‘.
Seb’s serves only organic food, and fair trade coffee. But the fruit smoothies are really what you’re after. Made with juice, milk, or soy and a medley of different fruits these $3-$5 smoothies are homemade delicious. I can’t vouch for all the flavours but the blueberry and banana soy was full of flavor, and whipped to perfection.
The menu serves everything from eggs & bacon, benny’s, banana french toast. They have inventive omlettes like duck and cranberry, bacon and caramelized apple, asparagus and mango, spinach and chevre to several light lunch specialties (but we don’t discuss lunch here). I ordered Seb’s benny, which comes on a savory biscuit, with your choice of topping. I must say the variations were quite surprising: elk medallion, thick-cut black forest ham, grilled portobello mushroom, etc. As a classic eggs benedict lover — I ordered black forest ham.
The thing that I wasn’t too thrilled about was the fact that Seb’s doesn’t serve regular hollandaise sauce with their benny’s. Instead you get a choice of coconut curry, chipotle, or havarti sauce. Don’t get me wrong I’m all about experimenting and trying new things — but please — if you want to be inventive with a classic dish at least offer the original sauce for those of us who just want to eat something they know is going to be good. Nonetheless, I went for the havarti sauce, which sounded the mildest out of all the sauces, and when our food arrived it was pretty underwhelming. Maybe I had it coming since I went for the safest sounding sauce which was just cheese sauce.
Aside from the food, the atmosphere was friendly and relaxed. The cafe was decorated in lots of rich fall colors, wood furniture, and eclectic paintings. The all female staff was friendly and helpful. And even though it was a full house, our food came within 10 minutes.
Egg Benny w/ Havarti sauce and homecut fried potatoes $9.5
I think I will have to give Seb’s another try, and be a little more adventurous next time. I definitely think there is something unique here, a new spin on some classics with a little bit of french flare.
Seb’s Market Café
592 East Broadway
Reviewer’s Rating: 6 out of 10