Sammy’s Restaurant March 4, 2006

Bake here. Today we went to Sammy’s Cafe on NW 23rd, between Everett and Flanders. At least I think it is Sammy’s; they recently had a makeover and the old sign is gone replaced by one that says “Cafe @ 23rd”. Nevertheless, the awning still says “Sammy’s” (actually you have to read it), so we’ll call it Sammy’s.

I was a little trepiditious about our meal for a number of reasons. Recent postings on say the food is “so so” but the service is great. I’ve also heard that if you stray away from standard “American” fare, you may be disappointed. Plus it is in NORTHWEST and, being from the suburbs I was worried about being able to find parking.

But, Jeff from my work raves about the breakfasts here. I wish I could render in print how he says he likes the crab cakes benedict. Basically, he says “I like it ” then lowers his chin to his chest and says in a deep drawl, “a LOT, … A LOT”. He’s from Alabama and still has a twinge of accent, so I guess that helps. So, of course I had the crab benedict, and I liked it A LOT! There were BIG hunks of crab on a perfectly toasted English muffin topped by a poached egg. The egg was just a tad on the hard side and didn’t run all over when I cut into it – so that took a bit away from the experience. The coffee was good and the potatoes (home fries?) were seasoned with onion and bell pepper (green and red).

The service was not up to my expectations. We had to wait quite a while to get our menus and water and order coffee. Rick finally got up to pick up our menus herself. Then we didn’t see too much of our waitress until after she brought the bill; at which point she showed up a number of times to take our money (but we weren’t ready). She was very pleasant, just not a professional waitress, so no big deal.

Parking was fine; they have a nice little lot behind the building.

And we had a celebrity sighting – John Kitzhaber (Oregon’s past Governor) came in and had breakfast. I discovered the difference between the movers and shakers and the rest of us. While we had breakfast and chatted about inane things like names that “old fashioned” (Lois or Herb for example), John wrote an essay or something, read part of a book and took notes and talked (discretely) on his cell phone.

All in all, I give it 4 stars – definitely worth a return visit.

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