Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Capital View Cafe

Visited on Saturday, May 23rd

Outside Capital View Cafe

Ben's Review
My co-worker Erik told me about Capital View Cafe and their fantastic breakfasts so we added them to the list. We went there on Saturday morning after checking out the St. Paul Farmers Market.

As the same suggests, you have a perfect view of the capitol building if you stand in the middle of Smith Ave. outside of the restaurant. It's pretty cool actually, considering how far away you are, and the building is nicely framed between the trees on the sides of the road.

The Capital view

Capital View Cafe is larger than I would have guessed and it looks like they may have expanded by purchasing their neighbors location and tearing down some walls. (Something that I hope Blue Door Pub will do soon!) You seat yourself and I chose a table by the window which lasted for about five minutes after Erin decided that the sun in her eyes wasn't going to work. Fine. So we moved to the booth she wanted in the first place :)

Inside Capital View cafe

Erik had raved about the Cajun eggs Benedict so I knew what I wanted and Erin always gets regular eggs Benedict anyways, so ordering didn't take long this morning. The food also came out very quickly, which surprised me since they had a decent number of people in the place. The Cajun Benedict didn't disappoint. It's like regular eggs Benedict with Andouille sausage instead of ham and the hollandaise sauce is spiced up a bit. I'm not a huge breakfast fan, but this was damn good. The spicy sausage was a great substitute for the ham, I think I might work this into my breakfasts at home in the future.

Cajun Benedict

Another thing that I liked was that I had a choice of potato. I don't care for hash browns, so I always feel like it's a waste when I have to get them. I substituted American fries instead and they were pretty good, but I didn't come close to finished them anyways after the eggs.

The service was very good as well, they were cool with us switching tables after getting our coffee and making them clean off the table we had used for only five minutes. One oddity is that you can't pay with a credit card unless the check is over $50. I've seen that restriction elsewhere, but I feel like the limit is usually $5 at convenience stores. At the very least they have an ATM inside so it's not a huge deal (although the ATM isn't from any MN bank, so no matter who you are you're going to get dinged with a charge to get your money).

All in all it was a great way to start our gorgeous Saturday morning.
  • Service: Good, prompt service and they filled up the coffee quickly.
  • Food: Great Cajun Benedict and good choices for sides.
  • Drinks: Not for breakfast, we aren't savages.
  • Ambiance: The restaurant is very well lit which is great on sunny mornings.
  • Price: Prices were on par for a breakfast place, $9 for the Cajun Benedict and $8 for the regular Benedict.
  • Convenience: Plenty of on-street parking, they are located in a neighborhood area. Great view of the capitol.
Erin's Review
It's been almost a month since we last went out for the blog, largely due to our 2 week trip to Europe in the middle of this month! After eating out for 10 days straight, we weren't really in the mood to jump right back in. Since we had already decided to go to the Farmer's Market on Saturday morning, we decided to find a breakfast place in St. Paul to hit up after we got our veggies. Ben suggested Capital View, which sounded just fine by me.

When we got there, the place wasn't very full at all - it is actually pretty large as Ben mentions above. I don't think the reason it wasn't full is their fault at all - it was just a beautiful holiday weekend and most people were probably out of town!

Inside Capital View cafe

We both got coffee - Capital View has HUGE mugs which is very nice. They don't have jars of cream and sugar though, which always kind of annoys me because then you have a little pile of trash at the table constantly with the individual creamers and sugar packets, especially with the amount I put in :)

huge coffee cups

As usual, I ordered the eggs benedict. Our meals came out fairly quickly and looked delicious. The eggs benedict were pretty good, the one weird thing was that the english muffins had a very strong cinnamon taste to them, to the point that after a bit, I just stopped eating the muffins and had the eggs and ham with my hash browns instead. It was still good, but I'm not sure who thought cinnamon was a good idea. It's not.

Eggs Benedict

I really enjoyed Capital View Cafe - the service was great and it was a cute place in a neighborhood I don't often get to. I'm not sure I'd go back because it isn't exactly close to our house, but I'd certainly recommend it - just make sure to ask for your eggs benedict without the cinnamon, unless you're into that kind of thing :)

Capital View Cafe
637 Smith Ave.
St. Paul