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Restaurants Reviews and Such

OEB Breakfast Co 300 Main

OEB Breakfast Co is a Canadian chain of breakfast/brunch restaurants. Originating in Calgary they have spread mainly across Western Canada. With a Toronto location and a couple south of the border.

OEB Grapefruit Juice
A good sized glass of grapefruit juice to help start off the morning.

When I first heard that OEB was going to be part of 300 Main, I was somewhat skeptical. I figured we might be getting something along the lines of Mercatino, which I felt was more about style than substance.

Fortunately, OEB really delivers the goods. I’ve made several visits over the past few weeks, and have been satisfied with my meals, and the service every time.

The restaurant is divided into two parts. One part is located along the hallway, and depending on your seating will give you a view of Goodlife Fitness(almost always empty). On the other side, there are lots of windows, with a view out over Main Street traffic. This side is also very sunny.

When you arrive you are greeted by a front end host, who seats you. You can also go to the front counter if you wish to simply order a coffee, or latté for takeout.

OEB Breakfast Co for Early Morning Breakfast

One of the things I like about this place is that they are open at 7 am, seven days a week. I really appreciate this on weekends. It means that I can go and enjoy an early breakfast, at a time when the restaurant is fairly empty and quiet.

If you plan on going to OEB try for the early morning slot. This is turning out to be a popular place, and it gets crowded pretty quickly. I’ve gone by a little later in the morning and there are already some people waiting to get in.

Omelet
An omelet with herbed potatoes and fresh fruit.

I like the fact that there are a wide variety of beverage options available. If you order the coffee, you receive a good sized mugful(they also come around to top it up). They have grapefruit juice(my favourite), and you get a 14oz glass of it. They also make a good latté.

I’ve always been heading off to work when I’ve visited, so I haven’t indulged in any of the mimosas, etc. that OEB offers. However, scanning the menu, there are a good variety to choose from.

Another little thing I like about OEB is that when you ask for jam for your toast, blueberry is one of the jams brought to the table.

When it comes to breakfast, I prefer mine on the savoury side. So, on most of my visits, I have chose a combination of egg, meat, and potatoes.

My first visit I went with the Farmer John’s Delight Scramblette. This dish, pictured above, contains bacon, ham, onions, along with wild and cultivated mushrooms. I really enjoyed this. Everything was well prepared. I particularly like that there is an assortment of fruit offered, not simply a mix of cantaloupe and honeydew melon.

The OEB classic breakfast
The OEB Breakfast Co Classic breakfast.

I figured I would give the classic breakfast a try. I went with the scrambled eggs, bacon, and herbed potatoes. Trying the bacon on it’s own, I like that it is not greasy, and crisps up so that it can be eaten with fingers.

OEB Korean Bulgogi Benny
The Korean Bulgogi Benny from OEB Breakfast Co.

I also gave a try to the Korean Bulgogi Benny. Bulgogi is one of my favourite Korean dishes, and they have managed to capture it fairly well. I also want to try the Florentine one, some day when I don’t have to worry about being caught with spinach between my teeth.

breakfast trifle
I wasn’t expecting a de-constructed trifle, but it was very enjoyable all the same.
Trifling with Breakfast

Having tried a couple of the savoury breakfast items, I decided I should give one of the sweet dishes a try. One of my reasons for trying the French Toast Trifle is that it has a lot of my favourite ingredients in it. I’m a big fan of lemon curd, mixed berries, pistachios, and pavlovas.

I was a little surprised when it reached the table. I was expecting the pieces to be broken up and in a bowl. However, once I bit into it I was very happy. The lemon curd is good and tart. The berries are fresh, and the pistachios add a nice touch of crunch to the dish.

OEB Service

I really appreciate the service at OEB. One thing I always look for in a restaurant, is whether or not the servers keep an eye out to make sure people’s water and coffee is kept full. This is the case here, as when servers come out to a table to bring coffee refills, they check around at other tables to see if people need refills.

I’ve found the service in general to be both friendly and prompt. Whoever is in a supervisory role seems to keep an eye out to make sure no one is overlooked.

Odds and Ends

There are a couple of quibbles I have with the place. The non-herbed potatoes on the menu are advertised as gluten-free. All potatoes are gluten-free. Let’s not make that some kind of marketing tactic.

Also, can restaurants just drop concepts such as artisan toast. It’s just toast. Home-made? sure. Fresh-Baked? Why not. Artisanal? Just a wee bit pretentious.

However, don’t let any of these things stop you from visiting OEB Breakfast Co. The food is top notch. The service is equal to the food, and you’ll leave feeling satisfied as you start your day, or go for a post brunch nap.

I expect that I will be visiting here on a semi-regular basis. There are several items that I haven’t tried, including the breakfast poutines. I also haven’t tried any of their blue plate specials. These seem to be OEB takes on classic recipes, and I look forward to being able to give them a try.

By Donald McKenzie

Anglican priest, and food blogger. This blog is focused on Food. It will feature reviews of places to eat books, and the odd recipe. I also write about what it means to gather together around food.