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Quality PHX Breakfast recs (besides Matts)?

Just Wednesday a friend and I finally got a day off together, so we decided to go to breakfast on our way east and began looking around for a downtown breakfast.

We found Matts Big Breakfast through recommendations, and while we love what we think they're trying to do, we're looking for a place that actually *can* pull off the fresh quality ingredients / consistent preparation thing. Passable service is all we ask - is there such a place anywhere in the Phoenix Metro area? We find that we're still looking after our first (and last) visit to Matts :-(

If you're curious, we tried the pork chop, and my pal had the cheese omelette. Even with the commercial-grade steak knife, no one was able to physically cut through the pork chop (demonstrated for manager who appeared after our meal was over, which was better than the server who never appeared period).

S.O. had the cheese omelette, and I suppose with all the accolades we probably shouldn't have expected a real egg cook like the kind that can make a light & fluffy mini-football sized omelette as opposed to the over-hard trifold wallet type of thing got.

Can say however that the water was cold, coffee hot, potatoes and toast were wonderful! Just sore at the $20 something bill for two.

Curious - if the place is named 'Matts', is that a real person? Thanks!

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  1. The Matt of Matt's Big Breakfast is Matt Pool; he also runs Roosevelt Tavern not too far away.

    A lot of people enjoy Over Easy on 44th Street and Indian School. I think it's very tasty, but somehow they're trying to be a little too precious for my taste. The Over Easy Ice signature drink was a terrific way to start my morning. The chicken fried steak was a gentrified version that just didn't hit the mark.

    Speaking of chicken fried steak, best in town is not far from there: Ranch House Grille on 52nd Street and Thomas. You must get it with the pork green chile on top.

    1. I've never had a problem with my coffee running low at Ranch House Grill. Also very cheap.

      Others:
      Au Petit Four for crepes, quiches or pastries
      Acacia Cafe
      Cafe ZuZu
      Taylor's
      LGO

      1. You HAVE to try Arcadia Farms in Scottsdale. You will not find fresher, higher quality ingredients anywhere! This place doesn't get near enough "press" on this board, IMO.
        .
        http://www.arcadiafarmscafe.com/afs/m...

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        Arcadia Farms Restaurant
        7014 East First Avenue, Scottsdale, AZ 85251

        1 Reply
        1. re: aztami

          Ditto-- this restaurant seems very underrated, but the food was excellent and service was terrific... but it's not the same (nor remotely similar) vibe as Matt's-- the dining experience is much more "ladies who lunch". Maybe its failure to be hip explains the relative unpopularity? But nevertheless, highly recommended.

        2. So is this really an inquiry about good places for breakfast or just a chance to complain about a meal gone wrong at Matt's Big Breakfast? I've been critical of Matt's for an overly eggy, meaty approach to breakfast, but I've never had a problem with the service there.

          If you are looking for other breakfast places, what are your criteria? Do you want the diner atmosphere and hearty menu of Matt's? Are you looking for something with more emphasis on fresh fruit and healthful preparations? Do you like a resort atmosphere with a nice view, or is it all about the food? What's a quality PHX breakfast to you?

          4 Replies
          1. re: silverbear

            Many thanks everyone for the wonderful breakfast recs! For us, it's all about the food (hence my love of Chowhound and the people on it!). Acadia farms has been totally OFF my radar, as well as Ranchhouse Grill which are both going to get a visit shortly!

            Re Silverbear: Thanks! Our criteria for all meals out has always been the same - Quality food (as opposed to linens, black & whites or views), consistent preparation (hate going to a fav spot only to have it crash hard when I return - inevitably with family and/or friends) and passable service defined as: 1) Timely delivery of a fresh preparation at temp ( Matts failed big time on this category via either precooked, overcooked or heat-lamped chop) 2) Bevs refilled (We ran out of water & coffee constantly, although toward the end they figured this out) 3) Server that checks at least once to see how things are (Matts server never checked once after initial delivery. I managed to get a small thin corner off the pork chop, but couldn't cut into the rest of it (which means we couldn't eat it). When a female manager-type appeared after we hadn't paid our bill for a few minutes after presentation (we finally started getting refilled on our coffee & decided to try to at least enjoy that) I told her about the Pork Chop, and showed her how it wouldn't cut (screaming red finger knuckles from exertion & everything :-). She seemed upset enough at her waitstaff, but not upset enough to remove it from the bill, so $24 ish bill for an over-hard tri-fold cheese omelette, 2 orders of potatoes, 2 toasts & 2 coffees is waaay outta line. It's about the food for us. We're all over the valley at different times, so I like to have a nice stable of *consistent* places to choose from. Thanks so much!

            1. re: DeansHouse

              I am guessing it's just a typo but I thought I would mention it just in case. You typed "Acadia". It is Arcadia Farms, not to be confused with Acacia Cafe.

              1. re: DeansHouse

                I like the omelettes at US Egg in Tempe, they are the light & fluffy variety you're looking for. I always get the same thing (avocado w/ swiss) and it's great every time. Service is also promt & friendly. Most of thier omelettes are in the $8 - $9 range (potatoes & bread included), so breakfast for 2 with coffee or juice will be over $20.
                Place link doesn't seem to be working, they are located on the SE corner Mill & Baseline. I think there is also a Scottsdale location.

                1. re: achicken

                  US Egg is a gem--consistently delicious and reasonably priced food, fast and friendly service. This place gets crowded on the weekends, no wonder why.

            2. Now that the morning's are so beautiful give The Morning Glory Cafe up at the Farm a shot.

              http://www.thefarmatsouthmountain.com...

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              Morning Glory Cafe
              6106 S 32nd St, Phoenix, AZ 85042

              1 Reply
              1. re: ziggylu

                I second Overeasy very good food also the Original pancake house on camleback and 70th street is really yummy haven't been in years hope it still as good.

              2. Try the Morning Glory Cafe at South Mountain.

                It beats Matt's by a mile (or two).

                http://www.thefarmatsouthmountain.com...

                1 Reply
                1. re: ipsedixit

                  Another vote for the Morning Glory Cafe and US Egg. Can't go wrong at either.

                2. The price of the bill doesn't seem like a far stretch for what you guys ordered, especially if you got a pork chop, albeit one that couldn't be cut through.

                  My current favorite place for breakfast is Dick's Hideway, at 16th St. and Bethany Home. It's not a "traditional" breakfast place, but their Breakfast Burrito is served with heapings of potatoes, beans, and stuffed w/ so much deliciousness that you overlook the lack of traditional.

                  1. Do not miss Breakfast Club in Scottsdale. I've turned on many a friend who's thanked me.

                    Love the Bar Harbor flapjacks, but their pork huevos rancheros are also a fave. Like crab? Eggs Benedict, "Oscar" style, with a cocktail sauce-like topping is also amazing.

                    Everything here is the freshest of the fresh. Can't recommend it enough. Be prepared to wait; esp. on weekends. Friends went last week on a weekday and got the last 2 seats -- that's saying something, because everywhere I've been lately (and I have been out A LOT) has been pretty dead.

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                    The Breakfast Club
                    4400 N Scottsdale Rd, Scottsdale, AZ 85251

                    1. Loves me some Overeasy in the AM--took my whole family there twice in May. Not toooo precious. Impressed my bro. from LA and didn't freak out my mom from Indiana. The iced coffee drink has cardamom in it--yummy. However, when the family leaves [thank god!] I love jalapeno eggs benedict at Richardsons. Epecially after a night out--it's got it all. Room--nice and dark, eggs--rich and creamy, booth-big and cushy. Too bad you have to drive home to take a nap.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: jezebeljones

                        Some people love overeasy and although I found the food very good the portions seemed small for the price(especially compared to a place like Ranch House Grille which is my favorite). Also, be prepared to wait.

                      2. Crackers & Co. is always good....if you can find the place. It's hidden behind a home depot off the 60 & Country Club
                        http://www.crackersandcompanycafe.com/

                        T.C. Eggington's has been around forever and I've never had a bad meal.
                        www.tcegg.com

                        1. Mike and Rhondas. Nothing fancy, just down to earth good food for breakfast. Huge portions, respectable prices.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: firecracker

                            Holy smokes, what a wonderful recommendation! While they're certainly not Matts, the same could be said for Matts not being 'The Place' aka: 'Mike & Rhonda's' at 51st Ave & Bell. We ordered pretty much the same thing, broke down for your assiduous perusal ;-)

                            THE PLACE // Matts
                            1. Eggs: Perfect! Eggs: Perfect!
                            2. Potatoes: Perfect, Crispy Potaoes; Fresh, Taste of Rosemary!
                            3. Bacon: Perfect, thick-cut - great Bacon: Perfect, thick-cut - peppered
                            4. Coffee: Never ran out Coffee: Ran out, fine when u can get it!
                            5. Water: Never ran out Water: Ran out, great when we could get it!
                            6. Service: PERFECT! Service: Lax
                            7. Price/Value: 2 ate for $12 & leftovers Price/Value: 2 ate for $24 & no leftovers

                            Like Matts potatoes better, but that's about it. If Mike & Rhondas did their potatoes like this, Matts would have a run for their money (%50 percent less) - at least on this dish. Haven't tried omlettes etc yet. Thanks so much for your recommendation!

                            1. re: firecracker

                              place link...

                              -----
                              Mike & Ronda's
                              4925 W Bell Rd Ste D1, Glendale, AZ 85308

                              1. re: hohokam

                                I have taken to a small little place up near us in Carefree called Heart and Soul Cafe...on Carefree Hwy and 7th St in the Tuscani strip mall. Great breakfast burritos and biscuits and gravy....never have been disappointed.

                                We also have been going to Oaks Flapjacks up in Cave Creek. Not great service but the really good pancakes and bacon.

                            2. I second Morning Glory (awesome, and it's on a farm), I love Arcadia Farms, and in the SE valley I love both of Joe Johnston's places- Joe's Farm Grill and the new Liberty Market. I recently went to brunch at Olive and Ivy in Scottsdale expecting to hate every second, but it was good, and the space is so big that we didn't have to wait at all. Between getting seated immediately on a prime Sunday at 11 and numerous breakfast bellinis, they had me at hello.

                              1. You could also try Palette on 4th ave and Filmore. Both amosphere and food are good. We have a love/hate relationship with Orange table in Scottsdale - food is good, service sucks. Both are dog friendly.