Trip Report: Savannah, GA (June, 2013) Day 3: 8:30 a.m. b.Matthew’s Eatery

This morning we had plans to have breakfast at another popular spot in Savannah. An hour before leaving the hotel, I was browsing the internet for “unique breakfasts” in Savannah, and kept coming across a place called b.Matthew’s Eatery. We finally decided to change our plans and give this new place a try. This #44 rated restaurant on TripAdvisor is located on busy Bay Street, which runs parallel to the river. From what I saw it looked like parking was limited, and had to be found on the metered streets, or possibly if it’s the right time of the day, across the street near River Street. The corner building appears to be apartments on top, with the small eatery below.

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b.Matthew’s Eatery

Inside, the tone is dark, with a centralized bar dominating the main seating area. Seating is ample with a few bench seats and mostly chairs.

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Inside

The room has two sides, but there is little division between both, and the bar stretches across the entire back wall. The aged brick walls give the building the feel that it belongs in this historic district.

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Bar

The menu doesn’t show any items that seem unique, but the pricing and atmosphere indicate a finer dining experience, which I hoped would bring a higher quality meal. I did ask about the Maple Cakes, which as I suspected were just regular pancakes made with some maple syrup in the batter, giving them a maple flavor.

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Menu

My first choice was the $8.50 Quiche of the Day, which today was an egg, sausage, and cheese quiche with sun dried tomatoes. It was served with fresh melon, pineapple, and a strawberry.

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Egg, Sausage, & Cheese Quiche with Sun Dried Tomatoes

There was a substantial amount of both sausage and cheese compared to egg, really giving this a lot of varied flavors. Many breakfast quiches taste mostly of egg, since it’s the primary ingredient that holds everything together. In this one, the sausage was actually the most distinguished flavor, but I could also taste cheese in almost every bite.

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Quiche Ingredients

As with most quiches, I expected a fairly small piece. When I asked the server how big it was he showed me a triangle made with his hands. His representation was accurate, but I wasn’t expecting the height this quiche had.

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Thick Slice

It was thick, and included a reasonable amount of food. I also enjoyed having a thick enough crust that I could almost notice its texture with each mouthful. The edge crust was a proper pie crust. Crispy and flaky, it rounded out what ended up being one of the best quiches I’ve had in my life.

Rating: 8/10

My next order was the Eggs Benedict. It has the identical side of fresh seasonal fruit that came with my quiche. Presentation was great, and there appeared to be plenty of ham included, hopefully making this $8.50 meal a bit more filling. I’ve only had eggs Benedict twice before. One time in a fine dining restaurant, the other on a cruise ship. The difference between the two would be as you expect… I was hoping this would not be the cruise version, which was good, but nothing spectacular.

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Eggs Benedict

Instead of the usual Hollandaise, b.Matthew’s dressed this $8.50 breakfast with Mornay sauce. Talk about a change of taste. Wow, what a difference! The flavor of this cheesy sauce was incredible by itself, and only improved when mixed with the egg and ham. Surprisingly, this egg, ham, sausage, and cheese sauce combo was nowhere near too salty.

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Mornay Sauce

This dish also differs from the usual by being served over their made-from-scratch biscuit rather than on an English muffin. Essentially, the chef took an eggs Benedict meal and substituted some of the ingredients for others, while still keeping the integrity of the original in overall form. More on the biscuits later.

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Biscuit Base

The egg was cooked well. I usually prefer my yolks runny, but with eggs Benedict in particular, I actually prefer it a little less so. Since it’s one of the few dishes where I eat my eggs with other ingredients, I hate to lose a lot of the yolk when it’s cut. This still had liquid yolks, but they flowed slowly, allowing me to keep most of it contained within the poached whites.

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Perfect Egg Yolk

This was an excellent meal, with wonderful flavors that aren’t usually found in a breakfast. These were dinner flavors that normally come with a dinner price. I was positively surprised and now have a new favorite in my limited eggs Benedict experience.

Rating: 9/10

My last treat this morning was the French Toast. Two thick cut slices of bread are each cut in half and dressed in a strawberry compote. A fresh strawberry and warm maple syrup are also provided. Price is $7.00.

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French Toast

This was another common dish that was changed to create something special and unique to this restaurant. The bread used was a Portuguese sweet bread. The bread definitely had a different taste. I noticed a sweet flavor, but it was very subtle so that it didn’t taste like a dessert. I love when I get to try a meal I’ve had so many times in my life, but get to try a variation that makes it feel like I’m trying something new for the first time.

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Portuguese Sweet Bread

On top of the sweet bread, the strawberry compote did something unexpected. It almost had a slightly sour taste. Most of the time strawberries and their associated sauces are sweetened, but in this case I have a feeling that little or no sugar was added to the compote. I had my wife try it and she confirmed that there was a contrasting twang from the compote compared to the sweet bread and added maple syrup. I thought it was nice to not find the common approach of a sweet bread, topped with sweet syrup, and an additional sweet compote. As much as I usually like that, as I said, I enjoy having some old time favorites changed so that they appear new to me.

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Not So Sweet Strawberry Compote

You can see here that the bread couldn’t have been cooked any better.

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Bread Cross Section

The crispy crust and almost soggy inside are obvious. It was one well cooked piece of bread. Even though this toast is not served with anything else on the side, it is a decent quantity of food. These two pieces (each cut in half) of bread almost covered the whole plate. These were not the normal sized pieces you’d let overlap as you’re cutting off a bite. I was more than satisfied when I was done eating my breakfast.

Rating: 8.5/10

Since the biscuit that came with my eggs Benedict was either a slightly different version, or maybe just one of their standard biscuits flattened way down, I wanted to try one on its own. My wife was staying gluten-free for this meal, so she offered me the one that came with her meal.

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Biscuit

They were a little smaller than standard, but had the taste I liked best, the taste of butter. I finally remembered to snap this photo before demolishing the last piece. You can see it has a thickness that’s more common. Again, very well cooked, it was moist inside and had a nice firm texture on the outside.

Rating: 7/10

After getting rid of any evidence of the biscuit, I finished off my fresh fruit sides (minus the pineapple which I don’t like, so my wife took care of that problem). They really did seem like they were fresh and went well with the dishes that included them. My wife and I agreed that b.Matthew’s Eatery turned out to be the highlight meal of the trip. It was the most unexpectedly fantastic taste, and a happy ending to our last meal in Savannah. The food here was fresh and unique, while still offering the comforting meals we hope to find for breakfast. I’m glad we made the last minute decision to come here, and now I feel I need to return to sample their lunch or dinner menu.

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