Breakfast Brackets Round 2: Barksdale Restaurant vs. Blue Plate Cafe
Round two of the search to find the best breakfast in Memphis is underway. If this were March Madness, Round Two would be the Elite 8. This week, downtown’s Blue Plate Cafe faces off against Midtown’s own Barksdale Restaurant. The competition was fair – each restaurant was graded by the round two criteria (orange juice, service, atmosphere, meal, bathrooms, and price). And in the interest of total fairness, I even went a step further this week and made sure my dining companions had the same name.
Let’s get it on!
Blue Plate Cafe
Order: Orange juice, coffee, strawberry pancakes
Orange Juice: The orange juice at Barksdale was so thick and pulpy it felt like straight-up drinking an orange. I wanted to run it through a strainer. The flavor was a little sweet and very, very orange-y. (5 points)
Food: I ordered the Greek omelet, which was filled with feta cheese, mushrooms, green peppers, onions and tomatoes. All of the vegetables were fresh and not over-cooked (the peppers had a noticeable crunch). The eggs were thick and fluffy, and the slightly seasoned feta added a nice kick.
The omelet came with two salty, light biscuits. Barksdale’s biscuits are kind of a crapshoot – today, they were almost perfect, but sometimes, they’re dense, too doughy, and a bit overcooked.
This morning’s Kristin had a Western omelet, which came covered in cheddar cheese. Yum. (8.5 points)
Bathroom: The bathroom at Barksdale was decently clean, but it’s not really a place where you’d want to spend a lot of time. It’s a get in and get it done kind of bathroom. And, it’s tiny. Really, really tiny. (4.5 points)
Service: The service at the Barksdale restaurant was great. When I beat Kristin to the restaurant by 15 minutes, my waitress was totally relaxed – she brought my drinks and a second menu and then disappeared until we were ready to order. The food came out quickly, and we got coffee refills with it. (8 points)
Atmosphere: Though the Barksdale Restaurant is packed on the weekends with families and Midtown hipsters that stayed out too late the night before, during the week, it’s a fairly relaxed place. There were a few older men, a big, well-behaved group of friends, and a couple or two.
No matter where you sit at the Barksdale, there’s something to look at on the walls. Usually, that something is autographed glossies of famous Memphians or political signs, and you’ll have to forgive Bob (the owner) for being a UT fan. Today, we were watched over by Elvis’s Humes High School class photo. (7 points)
Price: Breakfast for two was $18 before tip, which is totally fair. (7 points).
Total Score: 40 points
It looks like Blue Plate has just barely edged the Barksdale out of the competition. Blue Plate will face off against the winner of the Bardog / Miss Polly’s match up.