This is the first of four reviews of some of the best breakfast spots in Sacramento. Bacon & Butter offers takeout, which is allowed as an “essential service” during Gov. Gavin Newsom’s stay-at-home order in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
Sometimes, breakfast seems like the one thing worth getting up for – and if you have plans to eat at Bacon & Butter (3839 J St.), wake up!
Former Country Day student Andrej Stojakovic and I had high expectations before dining at the Michelin-star restaurant – and they were far surpassed.
When we arrived at the restaurant in the heart of East Sacramento at 8:30 a.m., we made our way inside, passing the vintage sign on the door labeled “ouvert” – “open” in French.
“You Are My Sunshine” played through the speakers over the chatter of hungry customers, which made us conclude that Bacon & Butter could be summed up in one word: family.
After deep thought, Andrej and I decided to step out of our comfort zone and sit at the communal table.
I’ll admit it – it was awkward sitting next to strangers, but it improved after we started to make conversation with them.
The children’s paintings of cows on the walls gave us a comforting feeling, as well as emphasizing the family orientation of the restaurant.
B&B serves breakfast and lunch, using seasonal flavors as much as possible, so the menu changes constantly. To drink, we ordered grapefruit juice ($4), which tasted as if the grapefruit had just been picked from the tree.
All the drinks come in Mason jars, giving the restaurant a rustic feeling, which I enjoyed.
The waiter was lighthearted and accommodating, making great food recommendations.
We started with the smashed fries with bacon gravy ($9) and a biscuit ($3.50).
The firm-outside, fluffy-inside smashed fries – fingerlings the chef poaches and smashes before frying – were seasoned to perfection.
On the other hand, we found the bacon gravy too sweet and a little thick. The odd yellow color of the gravy didn’t help, either.
The biscuit was crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. It paired well with the seasonal jelly and homemade honey butter. In short, we loved it.
Ordering a side of bacon ($6) was a great decision. It was crispy yet pliable and made me feel as if I was at grandma’s house eating Sunday brunch.
After chowing down on our appetizers, we were ready for the main dishes.
We ordered chicken & waffle ($18), flapjacks ($12) and the signature avocado toast ($16).
The chicken & waffle made us feel as if we were in a diner in Harlem, New York.
The waffle was light, complemented by the unique, tangy kumquat syrup.
The chicken, which could have been a tad crispier, was flavor-packed with the housemade spicy dry rub, which consisted of dried local peppers.
The spicy chicken skin rounded off the dish, the best we had.
While ordering the flapjacks, we thought they would be small, but they were the opposite, overwhelming us.
The pancakes were our least favorite dish due to the batter-like texture in the middle, which Andrej and I assumed was because of the thickness.
However, the apple and pineapple chunks drizzled in warm maple syrup on top of the flapjacks were a plus.
Then came the big close: the avocado toast.
The structure of the dish was a work of art, layered with different components. The mashed avocado spread flat on the thick slice of challah brought great texture to the dish, while the chopped portobello mushrooms and sliced bacon brought a savory component.
The toast was extremely light and fluffy, reflecting the advantages of Bacon & Butter baking bread daily.
I especially enjoyed the peppercorn and Himalayan salt-crusted mushrooms, which raised the dish to another level.
The avocado toast also came with a side of fruit.
Many breakfast places throw together chunks of under-ripe melon and dusty apple and call it a fruit plate, but Bacon & Butter’s contains fruit such as nectarines and blood oranges.
For the cherry on top, Bacon & Butter gives customers the bill inside a vintage book.
Without a doubt, Bacon & Butter has some of the best food before 1 p.m. in Sacramento.
—By Rod Azghadi