Orphan's located at 3440 C Street, which is just a quick jaunt from McKinley Park, as opposed the bass-ackwards way I tried to ge there this morning (down C Street, which does not go under the freeway, by the way!). It's open 365, 7am - 2pm, is strictly vegetarian, and serves breakfast all day, which is perfect, since I slept in a little later than usual today. It's been on my list for any and all of those reasons for a while, but after coming across their menu at the H&11 Naked Lounge yesterday, I decided I should kick off the New Year, and the debut of the Morning Constitution Rating System (Patent Pending) here.
I kipped by the ATM (Orphan only accepts cash or checks, but they do have one of those ATMs that charges you roughly $45 to access your own money), and then kipped home for a jacket, because it's been f***ing freezing in Sacramento recently, and then meandered over to Orphan via my previously mentioned, accidentally-Byzantine route.
As I said before, I walked into a mad crush of people waiting for tables. This led to some generally-amusing people watching, and I was overcome by the odd sensation of seeming to recognize basically everyone there. I don't think I actually had met more than maybe three people before (and only tangentially, at that), but it was a little odd. Their menu is fantastic, with a lot of variety; especially exciting for a vegetarian place. They have cool windows and a spacious seating area wrapped around a strange little register/serving station. One wall was entirely rolldown garage doors they can open in more temperate times. Although I felt a little pressured to order something stranger off the menu (the Zen Breakfast or Breakfast Tamales looked especially intriguing), I ended up playing fairly safe and getting the Orphan French Toast. I feel that when it doubt, order something the establishment is willing to emblazon their name on, right?
I received my Caffe Con Pana (defined here as Brazilian coffee with whipped cream) almost immediately, and my enormous order of French Toast soon after.
The syrup is served in a repurposed Mexican Coke bottle. The water comes from an awesome glass bottle. The plate decorations are fresh jam. I'm in love. After snapping this picture (sort of over my own shoulder) I was sked by the people across from me at the community table whether I'd like a picture of myself. We had a nice little breakfast-themed chat. They seemed to be enjoying their pancakes and breakfast tamale greatly (if you managed to find this blog, how were they?). They also seemed to belong to the "Just Got Finished Running" half of the clientele, versus the "Just Got Finished Making My Hair Look Casually Mussed" clientele. The toast itself was delightfully cinnamonlicious, and the fruit was fresh and fantastic. I could have used a little more fruit to share my mouth with each bite of toast, however. Overall, it was a really fun experience and delicious food. I'm excited to go back, bring friends, and try something a little crazier! I assume it's less busy earlier, and I hear they may offer a weekday breakfast deal? More on that if I find out.
One complaint; why the hell do they not have bike racks? They're obviously appealing to a crunchy/artsy midtown crowd (from the clever name, referring to an "orphan" or unsponsored business, to the cute "Remember; These Came From Trees" sticker on the paper towel dispenser), and yet any cyclists had to resort to locking their bikes up to the No Parking signs around.
Ordered: Orphan French Toast, $8.95, Caffe Con Pana
And now, the debut of the Morning Constitution Rating System:
Here's the break down:
Category: Points Recieved/Points Possible
Subcategory: Points Recieved/Points Possible
A more detailed breakdown of the categories and subcategories will be posted at a later date, along with the criteria. Let me just say right now that a 1/3 in the "Cleanliness" category is not actually bad, it's just not phenomenal.
Overall Score: 27/35