Who: Napha and Noel
Where: Bell + Whete
What: Bottomless mimosas, Archbishop Bloody Mary, Housemade Caramel Crepe Cake, Belgian Fries with Ham Aioli, and Dungeness Crab Eggs Benedict for days.
It has been a hot minute since I last wrote a Nommin’ Around post. You’re probably thinking to yourself, “does this girl ever leave her house?” Yes, yes I do. And yes, a blog-worthy, eating/socializing occasion has been long overdue!
Napha and Noel are my good friends that I’ve known since college that I adore spending time with, though it’s been infrequent lately. But the beauty of our visits is I feel like we can pick up where we last left off in an instant. I know I’m going to laugh myself silly with these two, and count on being my full, weird self. These guys are my people.
So I was ecstatic when we finally made a plan to reconnect in my favorite fashion: over brunch.
I was also excited that we chose a place that was soon to be crossed off my very long Seattle Restaurant bucket list, Bell + Whete. Bell + Whete calls itself a “European Kitchen + Lounge” with tempting menu items like housemade German-style sausages, Moules Frites, Caramelized Pork Belly and carved meat sandwiches (so basically a whole lot of delicious meats). And, from what I keep hearing, they also have a killer brunch menu. Plus, nestled in the heart of Belltown, it was a perfect, in-the-middle meeting point for the three of us.
It was a rainy Saturday. Classic December in Seattle. So starting the day off with a breakfast cocktail and a breakfast feast seemed fitting. I saw immediately on the menu a variety of housemade Bloody Mary’s. Check. Once Napha and Noel arrived it wasn’t long before a bottomless mimosa and some OJ (Noel was sick!) were ordered.
I had my sights set on a savory breakfast no doubt, but when I brunch I like to have just a taste of something sweet to share. So our server tempted me with another housemade item: a caramel crepe cake with fresh berries. I haven’t eaten many crepes in my life, let alone a crepe cake, but this was mighty tasty. Not too sweet, and a nice little appetizer for the rest of our decadent meal.
Next, Napha had to order herself some french fries. Reason #5434 why I love this woman: she loves herself a french fry, and she orders them just about every place we go. No matter what. It’s a real commitment that I admire.
Finally, the grande finale. Three beautiful Dungeness crab eggs Benedicts. Because we’re super original. Or maybe we all just know how to order probably the best brunch item off the menu. Eggs Benedict is my favorite breakfast food of all time. So, I’m kind of an eggs Benedict snob. Far too often do I go out for brunch and have a sub-par eggs Benedict – too little hollandaise, English muffin isn’t toasted, ham or other meat isn’t exciting, the hollandaise isn’t lemony enough – these are some real life problems I face, you guys.
But this Benedict scored some serious points in my book. A perfectly griddled, buttery and crispy, homemade English muffin. A bed of soft, bitter, wilted spinach. A healthy handful of hand-picked, sweet, flaky Dungeness crab. A perfectly poached egg with rich, runny egg yolk. And, my real deciding factor, the perfect hollandaise – rich, buttery, lemony, and a whole lot of it. There was moaning after every bite, so you know it was good.
Paired with delicious breakfast potatoes with caramelized onions and washed down with my spicy, swift Bloody Mary, it was just the brunch experience I needed.