A Friendly Morning at Relish

My close friend Colleen and I decided that we needed to get out and enjoy some breakfast together. We chose Relish in Kings Park, New York because I read a recent article about how wonderful their food is.

Relish

The location looks like it used to house a diner. When we drove up, we were lucky to find a spot in the parking lot. We had to wait a few minutes in the vestibule, but we got there before a rather large crowd walked in. So, we timed it perfectly. We were seated at a large table, which made us feel a little guilty.

I ordered from the menu and Colleen ordered from the specials. I had the Banana Nutella French Toast. It was sweet and fluffy, and completely indulgent. The Nutella was drizzled over the top and also sandwiched between the slices of toast. I loved it. The more Nutella, the better.

Relish 3

Colleen had the Carrot Cake Pancakes with Cream Cheese Frosting and Walnuts. The pile of pillowy softness showed up and they were dusted with powdered sugar and covered in sweet frosting. She let me take a bite, so I thought that they were rich and flavorful, and she agreed. I could taste the sugary frosting and cinnamon, and I could see the pureed carrots in the pancakes. This would be the perfect fall breakfast.

Relish 1

We completely enjoyed our meals and felt totally glutenous after our stomachs were full of sweet and hearty breakfast. The last image pretty much sums up how I felt about Relish’s food. We need to go back for lunch or dinner in the near future.

Relish 5

This pretty much sums it up. 

Relish, 2 Pulaski Road, Kings Park, NY, 631.292.2740

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Flapjacks Revisited

Back in 2010, we paid a visit to Gatlinburg, Tennessee and enjoyed breakfast at Flapjacks. I liked it so much then that I reviewed it. Take a look.

Rustic Chandelier

Rustic Chandelier

This time, we took the whole family and enjoyed breakfast. It is a Flapjacks, so I had to order Flapjacks. Duh. I got the Mixed Berry Pancakes. Four pancakes came with the order and a variety of fresh berries. I spread the butter all over them and poured some syrup on two of the four. I knew I wouldn’t be able to finish all four. I was surprised to find out that the pancakes were actually Blueberry. It was a pleasant surprise because they were delicious and fluffy.

Mixed Berry Flapjacks

The wait staff was so friendly and accommodating, I even overheard a conversation that a waitress had with a customer. It went something like this:

Waitress – “Sir, I will be right with you.”
Patron – “Thank you. I appreciate that.”
Waitress – “I appreciate you.”

I found the conversation so refreshing to overhear because I am from New York and you don’t hear this very often, especially in the hospitality industry, but we really should.

Apple Juice

Apple Juice

There are a number of Flapjacks locations in the Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg area, so it will be pretty simple to wander in and get yourself a hearty and delicious meal.

Flapjacks, 1016 Parkway, Sevierville, TN, 865.774.5374

Much More Than Cows at Maureen’s Kitchen

My husband and I were actually awake during breakfast, so we decided to celebrate the end of a crappy week with a meal at Maureen’s Kitchen in Smithtown, New York. Maureen’s doesn’t have a website or a Facebook page, but they really don’t need it because the place is always packed. Good luck getting in there on a weekend. Oh, and make sure you bring cash because they are kind of old school and don’t take credit cards. When you pull up, you’ll see a large cow out front. You may have a hard time finding a parking spot, but there is an overflow lot across the street, adjacent to CVS, for your convenience.

Maureens Sign

Maureen’s Kitchen Street Sign

If you are lucky enough to get a seat without a wait, like we were because it was a Friday, make sure you check out the specials board. Your waiter or waitress might even take it off of the wall and bring it right over to your table. They want to make sure you see it because there are at least five very interesting specials available every day, like an array of omelets or Cannoli-Stuffed French Toast. And, there are cows everywhere (hence the title of this post)! You will feel like you should take a look around for Maureen and say, “Good morning” because you actually feel like you are sitting in her kitchen.

Maureens

Maureen’s Kitchen

Fortunately, they serve juice in pint glasses, not wimpy little juice glasses, so there was no reason for me to order a refill during my entire meal. TK got the #2 Breakfast which came with two perfect sunny-side-up eggs, two fluffy pancakes, two pieces of salty bacon and one well-done sausage, and he got a hearty dish of home fries on the side. He enjoyed all of it, but forgot to order toast. Oops. I tasted the home fries and they were a little smokey. I wasn’t a fan of that, but TK liked them just fine.

Breakfast #2

Breakfast #2

Home Fries

Home Fries

My meal was a special. I got the Pumpkin Walnut Pancakes with Bananas. They came out piping hot and soft. The pancakes tasted like cinnamon with the extra crunch of the walnuts and sweetness of the bananas. I could only eat half because there were three stacked up and they were rather large. It was a very warm, comforting meal and sometimes you just need to be spoiled in the morning. A few years ago, I visited Maureen’s with my aunt and had the Apple Cinnamon Pancakes. I remember that they were also delicious.

Pumpkin Walnut Pancakes with Bananas

Pumpkin Walnut Pancakes with Bananas

Many have tried Maureen’s Kitchen and everyone I’ve spoken to has enjoyed it. I don’t think I’ve heard anything bad about the food ever, but some people don’t like the crowd or the wait. It is so worth it, though, so be patient. Note: there aren’t any waffles on the menu, so you may want to head over to another breakfast spot if that’s what you are looking for.

Maureen’s Kitchen, 108 Terry Road, Smithtown, NY, 631-360-9227

A real country store with table service: Pine Tree Farm Market & Cafe

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The day we were leaving, we decided to stop at the Pine Tree Farm Market & Cafe, which was right across the street from our motel. When I walked through the door, I was welcomed by homemade baked goods and local treats, like jarred pickles, all-natural peanut butter, kettle corn and cartons of blueberries. It was a true country store with a café attached.

We grabbed menus and sat at the table, but we had to order at the counter and then one of the staff members would bring us our meal. This is great for people who want to sit and eat or just want something yummy to go. I couldn’t leave Maine without having Wild Maine Blueberry Pancakes again, and they were fluffy and good. The butter was melted already, so it was very easy to spread on the pancakes. My mother had the Texas-Style French Toast again (we stuck with what was delicious) and this time they were lightly dusted with powdered sugar. She loved them. Dad, on the other hand, had an omelet with sausage and ham, and hash browns and toast on the side. He was also not disappointed.

This breakfast was a great send-off after a very fun weekend.

Pine Tree Farm Market & Cafe, 411 Post Road, Wells, ME, 207-646-7545

Doughnuts and so much more at Congdon’s

While in Wells, Maine, we decided to get out early for breakfast and stop over at Congdon’s Doughnuts for something hearty and delicious. At first, we thought we would be waiting forever because the parking lot was packed and the drive-through line was long, but we only waited 10-15 minutes for a table; just enough time to see the Chocolate-dipped Bacon and a humongous Whoopie Pie in the bakery case. It was as big as my head, no exaggeration.

Since I was in Maine, I obviously had to have the Wild Maine Blueberry Pancakes and I was so glad that I did. It was the right balance of savory and sweet, especially with butter spread on top and maple syrup drizzled over them. My father had the Congdon Special which included eggs, sausage, toast and home fries, with a doughnut on the side. He chose the Honey Bun and it was fresh and airy. They make the doughnuts fresh everyday and I didn’t wait around to see, but I am sure they run out by 3 p.m. when they close. My mother had the Texas French Toast and it was thick and sweet. There was nothing flimsy about they pancakes, their doughnuts or their French toast.

We didn’t get back to Congdon’s to have more doughnuts or the Chocolate-dipped Bacon, but I will be sure to stop there any time I am traveling through Maine again, and so should you.

Congdon’s Doughnuts , 1090 Post Road, Wells, ME

Flappy J’s, as I Like to Call Them

Driving through Tennessee, you can’t miss seeing a Flapjack’s Pancake Cabin, and you should definitely stop in for breakfast. There are plenty of items on the menu, like waffles, omelets, sandwiches and skillets, but it just makes perfect sense to have their pancakes. They are fluffy and warm and you can get them with chocolate chips, blueberries, mixed berries and a few more options. They even make pancakes with Reese’s Peanut Butter. On this occasion, I had one of the Elkmont Breakfast Platters that came with three Old Fashioned Buttermilk Pancakes and two eggs because I wanted to see what started it all, and I was glad I did. They serve their pancakes with warm butter and hot maple syrup.  It just shows that they pay special attention to detail in order to make your meal as perfect as it can be. The eggs were made to my liking and created a complete breakfast. I washed it all down with juice served in a mason jar. I just love drinking a beverage out of mason jar. It adds a little southern comfort to the meal. This is the perfect place to start your day, any day.

Flapjack’s Pancake Cabin, 1016 Parkway, Sevierville, TN, 865.774.5374