Hey you people—it’s Sunday morning of a long weekend! There's time before the Pride Parade, and in case you forgot (ha), you still have two days to get out and enjoy a nice big hearty breakfast…and if you’re on the Red Mile, Nellie's Cosmic Cafe is the place to do it.
Now, before people start telling me that Nellie’s is part of a chain (there’s a location downtown, one in the southwest and one in Kensington), three additional local spots does not disqualify this well known, long time breakfast stop. Cosmic Café was on 17th before a lot of the other more recent popular spaces popped up where people are willing to stand on line; don’t get me wrong, there are lines at Nellie’s sometimes too (I’ve been on them), but on a recent Sunday morning, Andy, Gab and I had our timing right and we were seated on the side patio right away. The morning was sunny and warm, but not too warm, and perfect, save for a couple of wasps who thought the syrup on the table was for them.
So it’s a breakfast place and rather than give you a blow-by-blow on the fluffiness of the eggs (ok, I didn’t have eggs, but if I had…), I thought a short list would be in order—especially since, in two months and 30+ entries, I haven’t done even one. So, here’s a list of five reasons why you should eat at Nellie’s Cosmic Café:
- The side patio: Beautiful on a weekend morning (and maybe even nicer on a weekday once everyone has gone to work), the patio has a dozen or so tables that sit on the east side of the building, so once the morning sun has headed far enough up into the sky, the patio is quite pleasant (besides which there are umbrellas to shield form the light. Only downside is the occasional wasp.
- The coffee. Good, hot, fresh, and flowing. I got mine in a snowman mug—perfect for a warm, sunny, August morning.
- The food: pancakes, omelettes, cinnamon bun French toast, bacon and sausage and lunch stuff too…not a chance you won’t find something you like;
- The service: friendly and fast—no more needs to be said;
- The location: get there early enough on the weekend and you’ll have no problems finding a parking space; plenty of places to tie up your bike; well-served by transit and in the Car-2-Go zone, and right in the centre of the action on 17th.
|Breakfast sampler: blueberry pancakes, veggie omelette, and cinnamon bun French toast (guess which one I had...?)|
Bottom line: Nellie’s Cosmic Café is a 17th Avenue icon and well worth the (minor) effort to get to to give yourself a break, to stop and have a filling meal, and to watch the world go by.