Tuesday, February 20, 2007

C&O Trattoria
31 Washington Boulevard
Marina Del Rey, CA 90292
Say what? C&O's for breakfast?!

Yes! It's true! They serve breakfast! I found out about half a year ago myself...I couldn't believe it when the words "breakfast" and "C&O's" were put together in the same sentence. Luckily, I was shown the error of my assumption. I finally went back, during breakfast time, to do a proper rundown.

First off, C&O's Trattoria is extremely crowded during dinnertime, and forces you to valet park your car, which is the worst, because valet parking near the beach is 6 bucks, that's not including tip. During the earlier morning hours, there's a chance you can grab one of the metered parking spots in front of the restaurant and spend about a dollar in change to park your car. Also, during breakfast at C&O's, you can sit in the coveted open air patio spots, although it might be a little chilly on a cold morning (remedied by heat lamps, which you can request for someone to turn on.)

Breakfast at C&O's is not like dinner at C&O's...where they have the regular servings and "gargantuan" servings. Breakfast is a lot more normal, with manageable servings. Garlic rolls, which are one of my favorite things here, are only served after noon. Blast. But, there are plenty of other things to fill the void...
Owen got the special: Apple Crepes with nuts and marscapone cheese. It came with 2 eggs (over easy) and choice of meat (2 slices of bacon was his choice.) I have to say, the apple crepes were some of the best I've had- thin delicate crispy on the edges but softer near the middle crepes, filled with fresh, thick apple pie-like filling, topped off with that delicate slightly sweet and creamy marscapone cheese and a few crunches of crumbled nuts. So good. This combo was a great "sweet and salty" combination, as eggs and bacon aren't usually included in sweet dishes. (i.e. ever wanted some french toast, but not like, ONLY french toast? Once they set a huge plate of french toast and nothing else in front of you, and you go, oh crap, now I have to eat all this french toast. Kinda like a burger without fries....well I digress. Back to the food.)
Here's my monstrous plate of C&O's version of an egg benedict. Now, I don't usually order eggs benedict, (actually, almost never) but this time, I felt adventurous. And hungry. First off, I loved the potatoes. Good solid crunch all around each piece, and seasoned as well. Now to the benedict itself... A perfectly poached egg on top of prosciutto (their version of Canadian bacon), on top of focaccia, douse the whole thing with hollandaise. Yep. This is not for wimps. This is going ALL OUT for maximum deliciousness.
Wow. Just check out that runny innards of the yolk - not TOO runny where it just splats all over your plate, but firm enough to the point where the yolk consistency is thick, and sticks to itself. There's just something about a delicious poached egg in the morning. The focaccia was surprisingly good with this combination, (correct me if I'm wrong, but the carbs in this are supposed to be english muffins...right?) because it withstood all the punishment from the hollandaise and the yolk runoff, and was still nice and bready, even till the last bite. The prosciutto was very salty, which at first was great, but as I attacked the meal, it became almost TOO salty. I mean, there's nothing to offset all the saltiness going on, on the plate. I think next time, as much as I liked the potatoes, I'll get fresh fruit, as a counterpoint to all of the savory.

I really liked C&O's breakfast - it's definitely not a place that one would think of for that greasy spoon diner breakfast experience, so that's what makes it more special when you roll into the restaurant on these morning off hours. I say give it a chance and perhaps try to get there during the later morning hours...so you can fulfill your fix of those sinfully good "killer" garlic rolls. What a way to start the day...

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