Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Rockridge Rocks For Brunch

My pal Sari and I often meet for brunch late on a Saturday or Sunday morning - she's a working girl (no, not that kind!) so she relishes a chance to sleep in on the weekends. I go wherever she suggests - she's an expert at brunch.

This past weekend, we tried the Rockridge Cafe on College Avenue in the trendy, youthful Rockridge section of Oakland - Sari is youthful and trendy - but it was full and had a long waiting list so we stopped next door at Citron and the menu read deliciously, so we went in.

Citron is a lovely restaurant. Quietly comfortable, white tablecloths, soothing decor with interesting photographs on the walls, it gave us a peaceful hour to catch up while we enjoyed our brunch. The wait staff was attentive and alert to two coffee-starved girlfriends, and they even brought two complimentary bite-sized beignets to enjoy with our coffee while we studied the menu.

Mexican food for breakfast is new to me but I've been in an adventurous mood lately so I ordered Chilaquiles, not because I had tied one on the night before but just to try something different. The tortillas within the eggs were still crispy, a nice contrast to the unctuous scramble. There were some fiery chilis in there, too, but not too many, just enough to give flavor and an eye-opening surprise from time to time. This version came with pulled pork instead of the more traditional chicken, an innovation to which I can only shout "Ole!" and the fresh fruit garnish made for a pretty plate with the eggs, guacamole and crema.

Citron is a little more expensive than other places might be but it suited our mood and our palates perfectly. It's worth a minor splurge every now and then to catch up in such nice surroundings with a special pal. After brunch, we strolled along College Avenue in the sunshine enjoying the shops and ending at the gorgeous Market Hall where I bought lovely dinner makings. All in all, just about as perfect a brunch adventure as we could have asked for!

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