Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Bread Winners Café & Bakery

Coffee was very good, and most importantly kept coming
I’ve been to my fair share of Greek diners up and down the East Coast.  The great thing about Greek Diners is their menus are 80% the same no matter where you go.  There was a Greek Diner near my house back home where my friends and I would go very often.  It wasn’t exactly the height of culinary excellence, but as far a comfort food and a laid back place to go, it was all one could ask for.  It was especially good for breakfast after a night of beverages.  I haven’t been able to find any Greek Diners around, although there are plenty of diners. 
Southwest Migas

This past weekend I was looking for a good breakfast.  I had read and heard good things about Bread Winners Café & Bakery (www.breadwinnerscafe.com) so decided to try there (it was rated as one of the best breakfasts in Dallas according to D Magazine, click here for the review.  Just to be clear: this is definitely not a diner; as you may guess from the name.  They have fresh baked pastries and bread, all along with full lunch and dinner menus.  The first and most important thing I need for a good breakfast (especially after a night of going out) is coffee.  The coffee was very good, and thanks to our server who was on point, my cup was never empty.  When we sat down there were a few free pieces of pastries, it was a decent sampling.  It was enough to get my appetite going, but not enough for me to order muffins or pastries for breakfast.  I decided to go with the Southwest Migas which included: eggs, tortilla strips, chorizo, onions, peppers, cheddar cheese, jalapeños along with salsa with potatoes, toast (I opted for an English muffin), and tortillas.  The eggs came with the tortilla strips, chorizo, onions, peppers, and cheese mixed in; the salsa and jalapeños came in separate cups.  The flavors mixed together very well, the chorizo was well seasoned without being overpowering.   The tortillas were okay, not the best I’ve had here (which is saying something considering I’ve lived in Dallas for about 20 minutes).  Overall, not only was the breakfast really good but very filling.  It was the kind of meal that just sits in your stomach.   If it sounded like just the thing to cure to hangover it was!  The crowd seemed to be a mix of younger people hanging out, families there after the kids’ morning game, and older folks.  We sat on the patio at the location in Plano; I assume the uptown location has a greater percentage of younger people.  As far as breakfast goes, Bread Winners was absolutely a winner in my book….regardless of what you do the night before. 
Breakfast taco

Monday, November 7, 2011

Friday Night Lights

Friday night I attended another Texas institution, a high school football game.  I went to the game with my wife; her friend's husband is a coach for one for the teams.  I am a big football fan and also played in high school.  Although, I was 5'9" and 165 lbs. and I started at center and defensive end, so my experience doesn't quite compare to a lot of the teams here.  Heck, the Friday nights at our school took place Saturday morning since our stadium didn't have lights.  Like most things, high school football is most certainly bigger in Texas.  First of all the stadium we went to held over 14,000 people and is shared by three schools; the stadium at my high school held about a tenth of that.  The stadium at my high school also didn't 
have: bleachers on the other side for the opposing team's fans, a scoreboard with a video screen and instant replay, or a tower that seems to have room for coaches, scorekeepers and even a few luxury suites.  With high school stadiums like this, it's no wonder that Jerry Jones felt the need to build such a gargantuan stadium for the Cowboys.  The stature of the players was also on a different level, there were only five or so players on either team that were smaller than I was when I played.  The support of the community was also very impressive.  Parents were there not only to support their kids who were playing, but also to support their kids on the drill team and band, complete with buttons with pictures of their children.  Beyond the students and parents, there were also fans there to support the same high school football team they have been supporting for decades.  I can only imagine what it would be like to play on a team with so much enthusiastic backing behind it.     Despite the bigger stadium, bigger players, etc. it was still a group of 16, 17, and 18 year-old kids playing the same game I played years ago.  I hope the fact that it is a group of kids playing a game is not lost on them and they are actually having fun in midst of the "bigness" of everything else, or on the coaches, parents and fans around them.  My wife's friend said that maybe 5-10 of the players will play in college, for the rest of the team this was their last game.  Here's hoping no matter what they go on to do that they've had some memorable Friday nights under the lights.  I was certainly thankful to experience and get a better understanding of life in the big D.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

There are sporting goods.......then there are sporting goods

I was going through the ads in Sunday's newspaper and noticed the ad for Dick's Sporting Goods, it was very different than what I was used to.  I thought I would compare the ad in Dallas and the one from DC. There is quite a contrast between the two ads.

The Dick's Sporting Goods Sunday ad in Gaithersburg, MD (just outside of Washington, DC); Yoga pants, soccer balls, Redskins t-shirts, and tennis rackets.....

The Dick's Sporting Goods Sunday ad in Frisco, TX (just outside of Dallas, TX); guns, ammo, and guns (surprisingly no Cowboy's t-shirts).

Living here is going to take some getting used to.