Saturday, August 23, 2008

Amy's Patio Café

Altadenahiker and I scolded Café Observer (in a loving way) when he admitted he'd never been to Amy's Patio Café. We love Amy's: much classier than a diner but just as friendly.

John and I ran an errand in Canyon Country yesterday morning. We were late and had to skip breakfast. By the time we got back we had worked up an APPETITE for Amy's. We missed the breakfast rush and were too early for lunch, but they fixed us up some eggs, stat. I'm sorry I didn't get a picture of the zucchini bread that comes first thing to every table, but it didn't survive long enough for the camera to come out of my purse.

A little review of Amy's:

Food: Classy but not snooty. They serve breakfast and lunch made with fresh ingredients. Although you can get straight-up fare, you can also opt for more adventuresome omelets, sandwiches or salads. They give you enough and the coffee's good.

Service: These people are good-natured. I think owner Lauren requires it. And I don't know if she always does this, but she stopped by our table yesterday and has done so when I've visited previously, too.

Ambiance: Airy. There's no actual patio, but the huge picture window, ceiling fans and greenery make it seem like one. The music is quiet and they don't air-condition the place to freezer proportions. You can go in your hiking clothes or your business suit.

Prices: Mid-range. We paid about $15 each for a big breakfast, including tax and tip.
Location: Southeast corner of Lake Avenue and Altadena Drive in Altadena.
Parking: Teeny lot right there. More on Lake just south.

Yesterday I forgot to ask Lauren who Amy is, but if memory serves, Lauren named the café after her mother. I couldn't find a website. The link above is to their MySpace page. I friended them. That's appropriate.


Lily Hydrangea said...

Pretty inviting shot Petrea.
we need more places like this on Long Island. i love fresh simple food!

Sharon said...

This sounds like a wonderful place for breakfast.

altadenahiker said...

Oh that looks good. Funny, I didn't see my invitation. (And now Miss H will want to grow omelets.)

Bernie K. said...

Tabula Salsa: there are two kinds of people in the world … those who have salsa on their eggs & those who don't.

altadenahiker said...

There are two kinds of people in the world: Those who say there are two kinds of people in the world, and those who don't.

Petrea said...

Lily: they have complicated food, too.

Hi Sharon. Come visit!

Altadenahiker, I thought of you while I was there. After I ate for a while. If you know how to grow omelets, don't tell.

Eeuw, Bernie.

David -- said...

The only place I've eaten in Pasadena is the garden cafe at the Huntington Library and Gardens (which I know is technically in San Marino rather than Pasadena). I'll have to try to drive in earlier some time to try Amy's for breakfast.

By the way, I left a response to your comment today on Sharon's Phoenix Daily Photo site that I wanted to make sure that you saw.

Katie said...

Great looking breakfast! I want to nibble on a bit of everything here (even the unpictured zucchini bread). My eyes are usually bigger than my stomach these days when it comes to breakfast, but next time I'm in Pasadena I think an early morning hike will be in order so I'll have the appetite for a breakfast like this. YUM!

Anonymous said...

P, wait, I thought Karin told me she had yet to go to APC?

One online review describes APC as "one of the few high high-end" places in AltaDena.

Anyway, we gotta go there n de near future 4 lunch.

If I win the lottery, I'll think about you too.

Technical comment: nice colorful indoor pic. Tell me you didn't need to use flash!

PS: Just hearing on the radio right now that we are in "the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression."

Oh P, that was you with the APC bumper sticker on your Porsche??

Timothy Rutt, said...

Yum!! I haven't been there in far too long! Lookin' forward to brunch there with the other Blogkateers on Sept. 3!

Laurie said...

How have I missed this place? I wish I were there right now!!!

Bernie K. said...

You know, Cafe Observer's right: this is a neatly accomplished photo. Unless you have a camera with manual aperture control, getting the exposure to a fine touch, in such a heavily backlit angle, is a chore. And I like the composition.
(I guess the food distracted me from noting this at first.)

Petrea said...

Thanks, David. You've got a long drive! Katie (comment after yours) visited a few weeks ago and we had tea at the Huntington. I love the place.

C.O., I believe Karin's been there. I think of High End as putting on a dress and spending a coupla hundred. You could do that at Amy's, but you'd need a party of more than two (or an obscene appetite). Glad you like the pic. No flash, they have a huge window. (The Porsche's not mine. Haven't eaten "high end" lately, if you catch my drift.)

Tim! I owe you an email.

Check it out next time you're up the hill, Laurie. Altadena's not loaded with great restaurants like South Pas, and Any's is a welcome sweet spot.

Speaking of which: has anybody tried the new wings place across the street? Any good?

Thank you, Bernie. With this camera, I've discovered, I can get different exposure depending on which way I tip it.

Christie said...

Don't you love a great local restaurant where the owners chat with customers!! I do--ours is Roast & Toast, a place you HAVE to check out if you're ever in Northern Michigan!

Glad you had a good time!

Ms M said...

Looks and sounds delicious! I'd love to have breakfast there tomorrow, but it's a bit of a commute from Boise...

Meead S. said...

Good place to stop, eat something and then take a photo for Pasadena Daily Photo! ;)

Petrea said...

Christie, when I show up in Petoskey I'm going to the Roast & Toast. When John and I travel, we like to get off the main road and ask the locals "Where's a good restaurant that's not a chain?"

Hi Ms. M. What's the Boise spot?

Meead, you've got that right. I don't know about restaurants in Mashhad, but Portland has a great variety of good places to eat.

freefalling said...

Non-snooty food - my favourite.

Ms M said...

If we're going to have breakfast/brunch, we like to go to Java, which has a great breakfast croissant sandwich, with steamed scrambled eggs, bacon, cheese, and fresh fruit on the side. Altho there are a lot of places to eat here, there's not a restaurant quite like Amy's.

USelaine said...

I love breakfast food any time of day I can get it. Those eggs look perfectly fluffy and tender, the fruit option (ate the melon cubes before the photo?) is a great choice, and a waffle!

Great entry in the league of food porn, P. I've done it a few times myself.

Petrea said...

Ha! Food porn. Yes, I've seen some of yours. Breakfast, if I remember correctly. Mmmm.

I once did chocolate cake, too. It's sort of like advertising the restaurant, but I can live with that. I don't go to restaurants I don't like, so what else could it be?

long-time altadenan said...

I cannot share your enthusiasm with Amy's.

The food here is lackluster and the prices way too high for a place located in a strip mall along with a storefront church and appliance repair shop.

At the first meal I had here the poached egg was way overcooked and the home fries turned out to be cubed, deep fried french fries.

I gave Amy's a second try, and ordered something without eggs. I was served lox that was seriously dried out at the edges.

I went in another time with a friend and figured "How could they mess up a cup of tea?". The full pot of hot water they brought held only half as much as the teacup they brought.

Each time I paid dearly for poor service and less than satisfactory food.

Petrea said...

Hi long-time altadenan,

Thanks for your welcome input. We don't have to agree in order to share experiences here, all are valid. I'm sorry yours wasn't as good as mine, because I think Altadena deserves to have good restaurants.

Speaking of which, my photos of Bulgarini didn't turn out well, which gives me an excuse to go back.