America's Best Breakfasts

America's Best Breakfasts

Lee Brian Schrager & Adeena Sussman

Rise and dine! If there’s one meal of the day to get passionate about—no matter where you’re from in this great land—it’s breakfast with all the fixings. Featuring down-home diners, iconic establishments, and the newest local hot spots, America’s Best Breakfasts is a celebration of two of this nation’s honored traditions: hitting the open road and enjoying an endless variety of breakfasts. Even without a road trip, you can re-create favorites that will satisfy any time of day:
Shrimp and Grits, Hominy Grill, Charleston
Croque Monsieur Sandwiches, Tartine, San Francisco
Kimchi Pancakes, Sunshine Tavern, Portland
Filipino Steak with Garlic Fried Rice, Uncle Mike’s, Chicago
Cannoli French Toast, Café Lift, Philadelphia
Brioche Cinnamon Buns, Honey Bee, Oxford
Morning Glory Muffins, Panther Coffee, Miami


Chapter One

The West Coast and Pacific Northwest

Best of the West

Touching down on the West Coast, we knew to expect one thing: the freshest ingredients, put to use in ways that would surprise, satisfy, and inspire. Our expectations were met—and exceeded—every stop along the way, beginning in Los Angeles, where a cool—but never cooler-than-thou—vibe ruled. From the hippie-chic offerings at Café Gratitude in Venice, where the blissed-out clientele served as the restaurant’s most ringing endorsement, to the creamy avocado toast at Plow, we couldn’t help but feel more relaxed after just a couple of sun-filled mornings.

Chef friends like Suzanne Goin, an expert practitioner of LA goodness, treated us to dish after dish that reminded us just how fresh and fulfilling breakfast can be. Up north, San Francisco lived up to its reputation as a dining destination equally influenced by its passion for hyper-locavorism and its exceedingly international citizenry. Produce sorcerer Amaryll Schwertner’s colorful, thoughtful creations set the tone for a trip filled with great meals that included a visit to Vietnamese chef Charles Phan’s home, where he taught us how to make authentic breakfast porridge that blew us away (see page 38). And Portland welcomed us with open arms, with breakfasts that were as comforting as they were thought-provoking. A chocolate doughnut whose main ingredient is mashed potatoes (see page 49)? A pancake packed with fiery kimchi (see page 54)? A broiled grapefruit gilded with emerald-green, basil-infused sugar (see page 53)? Yes, yes, and yes again.