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Best pancakes / french toast?

I'm having a craving for a big old breakfast this weekend. Can anyone suggest a great place for pancakes or french toast? Prefer no chains, but am open to anything. If they have whole grain or unusual flavors, that'd be a plus.

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  1. For very good, "traditional" pancakes, my weekly haunt is the Dutch Eating Place in Reading Terminal Market. Just very good pancakes and they do have blueberry ones too. They also have traditional french toast done with either raisin or apple cinnamon bread that seems decent enough, but admittedly that's not my area of expertise.

    There are other places like Sabrina's, Cafe Lift, Carmen's, Morning Glory, and Cafe Estelle that are worth looking at that serve much fancier versions of french toast (such as the cannoli ones at Cafe Lift, cream cheese stuffed ones at Sabrina's, or the pecan, brown sugar and cinnamon cream cheese stuffed ones at Cafe Estelle) and pancakes (like date and sweet potato ones at Cafe Estelle).

    3 Replies
    1. re: bluehensfan

      Of that list, I would recommend Cafe Estelle above Sabrina's (long wait) and Morning Glory (crazy wait and overrated). I had some french toast there a couple of Sundays that was fantastic. Cream cheese and ginger snap-stuffed, I believe. I may be missing another ingredient. But it was really out of this world.

      I also love the Dutch Eating Place, good breakfast standards, but during the weekend, I feel like I have to eat and run given how busy they are. For lingering, I prefer Cafe Estelle.

      1. re: urbanfabric

        Cafe Estelle's french toast is great. The bread is a brioche, and there is typically a "plain" and special version of it. Just as an FYI, on the menu it is frequently listed as being stuffed with ice cream. While this sounds grand and all, don't be shy about asking for it plain as the ice cream might be a bit much depending on the time of day and your appetite. Pancakes at Cafe Estelle are great too...just like the french toast there is typically a plain and special version that changes regularly. And, I believe I heard a waiter say that despite it not being on the menu there are short stacks of both of these items are available. Enjoy!

        1. re: Laura D.

          If you like the stuffed french toast at Sabrina's, you will love the stuffed french toast at Green Eggs Cafe...I normally don't like french toast, but theirs is to die for!

    2. I checked out the new brunch at Distrito last weekend. The Tres Leches French Toast was outstanding--the best I've ever had, probably, but I don't order FT very much. They flash fry it for a few seconds after cooking and the crust gets really crispy but the inside stays moist. Highly recommended, but they don't have pancakes.

      The whole brunch was really good and the prices are reasonable (dishes are entree sized, for the most part).

      1. I loved the French toast at Honey's Sit'n'Eat.

        Heard very good things about Cafe Estelle.

        1. The pancakes at Figs are amazing. Really big and fluffy.

          1. Fitzwater Cafe, seriously really great french toast.

            5 Replies
            1. re: brianaface

              Seconded. You don't even need to use syrup it's so sweet. Can't wait to get back there.

              1. re: Rondo

                Cafe Estelle wins the gold.

                1. re: gakski

                  Sigh. Where is the old Blue In Green when we need it? Had the best pancakes.

                  1. re: Hansel

                    do you mean the place on jeweler's row?
                    i never understood that place.... it served good breakfast, but didn't open till 9, and had a full bar.

                    1. re: Bob Loblaw

                      That was the second location, but my favorite (original) was an Old City storefront on Third Street a little above Market. Though both locations had the good pancakes, the original one had the better vibe, and was truly just a brunch, lunch place. In my opinion, the Jeweler's Row location never quite worked, for some reason.