On Friday night my wife wanted to show me the cool breakfast place she goes sometimes with coworkers for lunch sometimes. We were unsure if they would be open in the evening as most breakfast places close at 3 P.M. on average. Surprisingly Eggspectation (171 Bank Street, Ottawa) had just extended their hours to 9 P.M. Thus, we were in luck!
We visited the restaurant at 4:30 P.M. to find it empty except for one table, a waiter and someone working in the kitchen. The kitchen is open to the sitting area for better or worse. Normally I would have my doubts of an empty restaurant, but because the restaurant had just announced it's extended hours and my wife's insistance that the food was good, we went in.
We were sitted immediately by the waiter on the ground floor of the two floor restauraunt. The second floor has a seating and bar area with windows surrounding it as well as two washrooms. The only reason I was up there were the washrooms on the ground floor, for some unexplained reason, were out of order.
The ground floor has the kitchen on one side with tables along one side next to the windows. Not a bad spot if the restaurant is not too busy like it was when we visited on Friday.
The waiter handed us the two menues and the revisited the other table who I presume were his friends. We reviewed the multitude of items on them menu to figure out what we wanted. Previously, I had reviewed the Eggspectation menu online to narrow down what I wanted to choose. I knew I wanted the some Waffles but wasn't sure what combination to choose or if there were specials. I narrowed down my choice and my wife contemplated which breakfast to have: The All-American or The Classic. She eventaully chose the one with the more food as I promised to help.
The Order: The All-American Breakfast (Two Scrambled Eggs, Lyonnaise-style potatoes, bacon, sausages, ham, baked beans and toast) and the Belgian Wafles Page (Waffles served with fresh fruit mix, pure Canadian maple syrup and creme anglaise) with a glass of Coke and Water.
The orders came within ten minutes of us placing the order. Pretty good service, but not unexpected considering the restaurant was really slow. In fact the waiter was pretty attentive throughout and I could not fault a single thing service wise.
The Waffles were interesting. They come out on a rectangular platter stacked sideways like magazines spread on a coffee table with fresh fruit on top. Two small stainless steel ketchup sized containers have the anglaise sauce and the Canadian Maple Syrup. The waffles themselves were solid and better than the ones I had recently at Denny's. The fresh fruit did taste fresh and added to the value of the dish. The anglais sauce though was missing the compliment of whipped cream. I didn't mind adding my own sauce but I felt Cora's provided better value by adding whipped cream, fruit and anglaise sauce to their version of this waffle dish. Add to that the maple syrup to have an enjoyable rendition of waffles with lots of variety.
The All American breakfast was good as well. My wife noted it was better than a lot of other places including Mello's which we recently visited. There were a couple of interesting renditions to this breakfast meal compared to others. The toast was the first thing I noticed, instead of the mere white or brown pieces of bread toasted and buttered, Eggspectation provides a small loaf of an artesian small sliced bread to enjoy. This was a little different but still quite tastey. Instead of the usual salted greasy home fries served elsewhere, these were potato slices that were fried and seasoned to present a positively interesting potato taste. A good take on the usual All-American greasy breakfast with a little bit of a gourmet touch mixed in.
Overall, we enjoyed Eggspectation for the good service, better than average food (but not outstanding) at respectable but not overwhelming prices. A couple of more trips will be required to decide if this place will become a favourite.