Edible flowers over fried egg and avocado on toast
There’s a sense of romance to the very concept of a pop-up restaurant. It’s got something to do with the special place the underdog holds in the American imagination. The term “small business” fills us with pride, and what’s smaller than a restaurant that can’t even afford its own lease?
Jake & Eggs pops up Saturday and Sunday mornings in Ocean Beach inside the Indian restaurant Sundara, itself a former pop-up. The Jake in question cooks up an assortment of ten mostly egg-centric dishes ranging from comfort food (breakfast burritos, biscuits and gravy) to health-conscious fare (avocado toast, granola bowl) and the out-of-the-ordinary (kimchi fried rice).
You’ll know Sundara has become Jake & Eggs when you see this sign out front.
Sundara’s décor is minimalist enough that you don’t walk in weekend mornings and think, Someone’s serving diner fare in an Indian joint. Particularly if, as I did, you go to the back patio for a open-air dining.
As I sipped a tasty cup of organic brew courtesy of local roaster James Coffee, I struggled to decide between the biscuits and gravy and the shop’s intriguing take on avocado toast. The waitress came up with the idea to try a made-from-scratch biscuit with a housemade jam and dive into the toast later.
A terrific biscuit and tasty jam, served with an adorable small wooden spoon
Within moments I was digging in to a hot, buttered, and flaky biscuit so good that I momentarily forgot the jam. The strawberry and chile de árbol jam was barely viscous. Rather than slather it on with a knife, I ladled it onto the biscuit like a sauce with the tiny, cute wooden spoon provided. Call it jam, jelly, preserves, or whatever you like — the spicy strawberry went over well with this breakfast lover. I could have eaten three of them and called it a day.
But the $10 avocado toast awaited. When it was placed before me, I could hardly believe they had the order correct. Edible flowers topped a lightly dressed herb salad laid gently over a pair of medium-fried eggs. Beneath the eggs, a thick swath of avocado was smothered in caramelized onions, all stacked atop a well-toasted piece of Bread and Cie-baked multigrain.
Toast doesn’t look like this, not in San Diego. Yet here I was, eating it with a knife and fork. Between the eggs, sweet onions, and lemony herbaceous greens, I didn’t taste a lot of the avocado. I did, however, notice the bread, little chunks of whole grains gnashing between my teeth in a most-pleasing manner. It’s an unusual blend of breakfast flavors, and I were to do it again I would add bacon crumbles for $3 to anchor the experience.
However, the dish didn’t fail to fill me up, and I left happy and curious about the other items, especially sausage gravy soaking into those terrific biscuits. I dig Jake & Eggs as a pop-up, and gotta think it’s only a matter of time before these guys make the leap to daily restaurant. Hopefully they keep the tiny spoons.