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What I Ate: September 26, 2009 (South Congress Cafe)

Posted 26 September, 2009 at 9:12pm by Michael Chu
(Filed under: Food, What I Ate)

Lunch: We ate at South Congress Cafe (1600 S Congress Ave, Austin, TX‎ - (512) 447-3905) for the first time today and really enjoyed the entire experienced. We arrived quite late to avoid the huge crowds that we faced last week - around 2:45pm - and got seated immediately. We knew we had to try the Carrot Cake French Toast, so we ordered a single slice of that (a normal order has three slices, I think). It was incredibly good and not overly sweet (when you don't apply the delicious but decadent cream cheese pecan sauce that it comes with).
South Congress Cafe - Carrot Cake French Toast

Tina ordered the special which was a brisket hash served with eggs over easy. The eggs were perfectly cooked - a lot of places have runny whites as well as yolks when you over the eggs over easy, but South Congress Cafe got it right. The brisket in the hash was outstanding and much of it simply melted in our mouths.
South Congress Cafe - Brisket Hash

I had the Eggs Benedict South Congress Style with Crab Cakes (it's crab cakes with quiche and crisped prosciutto with hollandaise sauce). This was also very well executed from the crispy salty prosciutto to the fluffy quiche to the flavorful crab cakes. Even the hollandaise was well executed (without the dreaded over lemony taste that many restaurants end up making). The smoked gouda potato pancake that comes with it was also delicious.
South Congress Cafe - Eggs Benedict with Crab Cakes

Since we had so much food already, I didn't order a cup of the duck and oyster gumbo, but Johanna, our server, brought us a taste of it and it was delicious. Rich, spicy, thick, and unctuous with a good balance of okra, sausage, duck, and oyster flavors.
South Congress Cafe - Duck and Oyster Gumbo

I can't wait to go back and try some more of their menu.
South Congress Cafe - Fruit Cup

Dinner: I pan fried a fillet of wild sockeye salmon and served it on orecchiette with sugar snap peas (blanched in water and sauteed briefly with a few drops of sesame oil).
Salmon, sugar snap peas, orechiette

5 comments to What I Ate: September 26, 2009 (South Congress Cafe)

Scott, September 26th, 2009 at 9:57 pm:

  • Out of curiosity, can you actually tell the difference between salmon varieties?

    I've never actually given it any thought. I mean, I've never kept track of which salmon I was eating when, and tried to notice differences.

    But you seem to make a point of saying what type of salmon you ate. (sockeye, king, etc)

Michael Chu, September 27th, 2009 at 7:29 am:

  • If you eat them side-by-side, there is a clear difference - but I'm not good enough to identify them (yet) when I eat just one fillet.

Scott, September 27th, 2009 at 8:40 pm:

  • Carrot cake french toast? I can't even imagine..sound like it could end up dangerously rich…but I suppose that would only be if it had cream cheese frosting. :-p French toast made with croissants is about as far as I'd go.

Michael Chu, September 27th, 2009 at 9:23 pm:

  • It seemed to me that they purposely made the carrot cake lighter than usual, so when they dipped it in the egg & milk mixture and cooked it on the flat top it ended up with just the right amount of richness. The cream cheese frosting was a bit too much for me, but I did enjoy the frosting with every few bites (one bite with frosting, three without…) :)

What I Ate: September 28, 2009 (Railroad Bar-B-Que, South Congress Cafe) | Orthogonal Thought, September 28th, 2009 at 11:21 pm:

  • […] any more food, Tina and I decided to go to South Congress Cafe to try dinner there. We had just had an excellent brunch there, so were eager to see how they would perform at […]