Best Things I Ate This Month: March 2016
Belgian Waffle at Little Lion, Brisket Sandwich at Westgate Hotel, and Cocoa Krispy Toast at Waypoint Public
Belgian Waffle @ Little Lion
Next issue, I review a little upstart that’s taken Ocean Beach by storm. The Little Lion—about six square feet of restaurant goodness—is the product of three sisters. Their grandparents once owned the beloved Belgian Lion, which was a stalwart in San Diego dining for decades. Mostly focusing on breakfast and lunch, their riff on the fermented beauty of Belgian waffles is a thing to behold. It’s indelibly light and crispy, a result of the batter fermented overnight. Served with housemade whipped cream, a dusting of powdered sugar and fresh berries, it’ll make a morning person out of you. Or at least a brunch person.
1424 Sunset Cliffs Blvd, Ocean Beach, thelittlelioncafe.com
Brisket Sandwich @ Westgate Hotel
Fabrice Hardel is one of my favorites for “best sleeper chef” in San Diego. At San Diego Magazine’s recent Brunch Bash party, he reminded me why I need to get back into the Westgate Hotel and eat my way through his menu again. His sous vide beef brisket sandwich (available on the restaurant’s menu) has the sort of sublimely tender meat, which falls apart if you look at it too hard, that I remember from the famed beef brisket joints in Lockhart, Texas. It’s served with Napa cabbage, provolone, and onion marmalade. But the meat is the star.
1055 2nd Ave., Downtown, westgatehotel.com
Cocoa Krispy Toast @ Waypoint Public
If chef Richard Sweeney suffers from any personality disorder, it’s an abundance of it. It shows in his cooking at Waypoint Public. Never one to shy away from pop culture phenomena, Sweeney uses Cocoa Krispy cereal—an icon of the 1970s sugar-cereal generation—for his breakfast treat. He starts with Bread & Cie brioche, adds vanilla custard, crushed Cocoa Krispies, then tops it with a spiced maple reduction, vanilla bean whipped cream and fresh berries. The tart from the custard cuts through the crunchy layer of chocolate rice shrapnel on the exterior of the brioche. It’s your childhood, only better.
3794 30th St., North Park, waypointpublic.com