Epic Sandwich: loving Café Levain's eggs over brioche
Ever fallen in love? I bet that if you have you could identify precisely where it happened. I can recall exactly where I fell in love with food - Café Levain. Steven Brown (It was Restaurant Levain back then) was at the helm and watching him command the ship was inspiring. He labored over every detail and laid out these amazing, flavorful creations. I was hooked and have loved food ever since.
Although Levain has since closed and reopened, I still love the place and was jazzed when I found out that they were expanding their service to brunch.
I'm a sucker for a sandwich at any time, so I immediately gravitated to the creamy eggs over brioche. I used to make a pathetically downscale version of this open-faced breakfast sandwich all the time and the contrast between what I used to prepare and what was placed in front of me was humbling to say the least.
The eggs were obsessively good. I have suffered through many mass-produced brunches with cruddy, dry eggs, but these were delicately prepared, benefiting from a kiss of fresh cream, a spark of finely chopped chives and a peppering of frustratingly delicious truffles. Huge hunks of perfectly tender Fisher Farms smoked ham were piled on top of the eggs and arranged over toasted brioche with a dense butter-egg crumb creating a perfectly hearty, yet surprisingly light dish.
Sandwich Rating: Killer. To me, execution and depth of flavor is what sets Café Levain apart. The perfectly creamy eggs, hearty ham and dense bread made for a totally satisfying sandwich. I'll return Café Levain for brunch and beyond and hope they save some of their craveable pear jam for the next visit.
Epic Sandwich Copyright 2009 by Teddy Hobbins