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Restaurants & Bars

bye Blueberry Cafe, hello Jack 'n Jills (Santa Monica)

silence9 | Nov 7, 200511:11 AM     1

Hey now... Sunday morning in Santa Monica in search of breakfast, and we quickly notice that Blueberry Cafe is gone and Jack 'n Jills has taken it's place. Not much of a crowd for 11:00 a.m., so into a short line we go.... At this new incarnation (ambiance similar to the old Blueberry, and as well, similar to Real Food Daily just two doors down), its an odd seating process. You stand in line until your turn arrives, then are handed menus and asked to either order on the spot or step aside and mull over your choices. As only one host/cashier handles the entire patron flow while the line of patrons rapidly builds, we mull very briefly and order; you must also pay ahead of time at this point as well, even if dining there (this philosophy seems to imply that its' better to have the consumer - and everyone behind them - wait in line to order and pay, thus keeping tables wide open for the sole purpose of eating; when your food arrives, you eat, and when you are finished, you leave). We then are handed a numbered metal flag stand which we take to any available table upstairs, seat ourselves, and wait for the chow. (A caveat: upstairs, there is an old-school home air conditioner wedged into a window that blows non-stop cold air onto three 2-top tables in its line of chill; a sign affixed asks that you do not mess with the air conditioner, so you better like you hands and your food cold at those tables; it would seem that this lone air conditioner is there to serve the entire cafe, below as well)... Food arrives fairly quickly: mini blueberry muffins (tasty but underdone and cakey); egg/meat/potato combo for me, breakfast burrito for wifey, and we split a full order of multi-grain pancakes. Standard exemplars of the genre, except the 'hash browns' are anything but: really roasted cubed red potates. Wife likes the enormous breakfast burrito (eggs/cheese/bacon/chorizo/cilantro) and takes half home. The multi-grain pancakes are substantial, almost sturdy, but OK... This is good food, but pricey ($30 out the door), and we only drank plain water. It reminded me of the old Blueberry, or perhaps John O'Groats minus the comfy factor, with an odd seating/ordering/paying process appended to it. Oh, and they also carry baked goods, with some nice looking cupcakes (coconut, strawberry, etc.). I wouldn't rush back, except for those cupcakes maybe...

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