• brunch at cafe flora

    May 29th, 2008quarrygirlmore restaurants (not LA), seattle

    there’s nothing like a really great breakfast scramble, and seattle seems to do it best. cafe flora, in particular, offers up some amazing vegetable scrambles that can be veganized by changing out the eggs for tofu. they even come with a delectable piece of vegan coffee cake!

    spinach scramble: scrambled tofu with organic baby spinach, leeks and caramelized onions with roasted potatoes and coffee cake $11

    grilled asparagus scramble: scrambled tofu with fresh basil pesto and sundried tomatoes with roasted potatoes and coffee cake $11

    cafe flora isn’t the typical kind of scrappy vegan-friendly restaurant i gravitate towards. it’s expensive, has a long list of complicated opening hours, and several different menus depending on the time of day. it’s actually only open for breakfast (or “brunch” as they call it) on saturday and sunday.

    but when they serve the food you see pictured above, that tastes way better than it looks, it’s no surprise that cafe flora was completely full on sunday morning, within ten minutes of opening its doors.

    the spinach scramble was sooooo tasty—i have no idea what they do to the tofu to make it so flavorful, so much better than the stuff i make at home. why anyone on earth would rather eat this with eggs is completely beyond me.

    even better was the grilled asparagus scramble. this had the same savory tofu, but was covered in an incredible basily flavored pesto sauce, and the sundried tomatoes added a sweet-sour punch to the whole thing. the asparagus was crunchy and delicious as well—i definitely need to start adding some to my tired homemade scrambles.

    this dish was perfectly greasy and pretty heavy, but in a really good way. i ate the entire thing, and didn’t have room to even touch my coffee cake! that’s saying a lot, considering i have an uncontrollable sweet tooth.

    in addition to the quality food, cafe flora has a lovely atmosphere and very attentive service. half of the restaurant feels like it’s outdoors, with a fountain babbling away in the middle of the room, potted trees and windows that stretch nearly from floor to ceiling.

    the staff to customer ratio is also pretty high, with some servers ostensibly employed JUST to walk around and fill up diners’ water glasses. unlike most seattle waiters and waitresses, who are provocatively dressed and covered head to toe in tattoos & piercings, cafe flora employees are clean-cut and neatly dressed with their natural hair color and no visible ink or holes littering their bodies. i guess cafe flora is trying to cater to rich peeps who want a more traditional, classy dining experience. whatever, i am just glad my water glass was never empty for a second.

    overall, i highly recommend cafe flora if you are looking for really great vegan breakfast. it’s a shame they aren’t open every morning to serve their wonderful scrambles. next time i go to seattle, i will definitely check in with them for lunch and dinner as well…i imagine their afternoon food is just as delicious.

    even though i can’t take cafe flora home with me, and their scramble recipes aren’t in their cookbook, they have inspired me to try out some new stuff in the kitchen—the basil pesto sauce in a breakfast dish is something i’ve gotta start messing around with. i will get back to you later with a cafe flora-inspired scramble of my own.

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