BRUNCH BONANZA ON LA BREA
Walk by or into Café Midi on La Brea Avenue, a street on the rise in Los Angeles now booming with wonderful eateries, cafes and bakeries, and you might simply mistake it for a sidewalk café at Maison Midi—an eclectic furniture and household items store. Well, think again. Take a gander at its impressive and endless menu, and you’ll be pleased to find a bevy of brunch items, from fine French fare to hearty comfort food to mouthwatering Mexican cuisine.
Café Midi is more than just a lovely outdoor café; the indoor eatery area is a comfortable and cozy counter setting inside a fun and funky environment—although I’m particularly fond of sitting outside at the French Parisian sidewalk café. From Chef Edouard Moyal comes a menu stock full of nearly 80 wonderful and oversized items, from sandwiches, soups, salads, quiche and pasta (ranging from $12 to $15). Sandwiches include Blackened Mahi Mahi, Grilled Steak Sandwich with caramelized onion, tomato and lettuce on a toasted baguette, to Albacore Tuna with celery, apple and tomato on toasted sourdough bread.
During our recent lunchtime visit, we sat outside at the dog-friendly sidewalk café and started with the Garden and Red Beet Salad with arugula, roasted pecans, tomato, goat cheese and blackened chicken. Although I’m normally a Caesar Salad guy, this salad peaked my interest and it didn’t disappoint. It’s big and tasty and served as a nice starter for our runaway lunch.
Seeing as we were at a French café, we felt we had to get the signature Café Midi Croque Monsieur with brie cheese, tomato, avocado, and melted Swiss cheese on top. This flavorful and satisfying sandwich also comes with a nice, simple organic salad.
If you’re looking for something bigger and more filling, go with Edouard’s Ground Sirloin Burger topped with bacon, caramelized onions and brie cheese. This hearty bad boy is served with fries and is one satisfying and savory burger.
To my surprise, the French café really does a great job serving Mexican food. The Mexican portion of the menu includes a slew of exciting tacos and quesadillas, both of which come with three side sauces (spicy mango, tomatillo, and Harissa—a Tunisian hot chili sauce) and an organic salad. The Blackened Chicken Quesadilla comes with caramelized onions, tomato, avocado, cilantro and Havarti cheese. This is a great item to share, especially as an appetizer, or it can serve as a satisfying whole entrée.
The Steak Cilantro Tacos, served with roasted potatoes and Pico de Gallo, is a big and bold dish—delicious! There is definitely enough meat to go around if you want to share. These are definitely not three simple little street tacos.
Choose from organic coffee, espresso, hot or iced tea, blended drinks, smoothies, sodas to fresh squeezed juices as beverages. And desserts are all made in-house.
While I found the Pecan Pie a little too sweet for my liking (I didn’t even know that was possible), the Nutella Crepe was fantastic.
If you’re looking to stroll down La Brea Avenue, shop or just window gaze at all the new and exciting shops from vintage clothes to amazing antique furniture to the local tattoo parlor, or the crazy and kooky knickknacks, Café Midi is a great place to stop, relax, nosh and people watch.
Café Midi is located at 148 S. La Brea Ave. Open daily: Mon-Sat: 10am-7pm; Sun: noon-7pm. Call (323) 939-9860.
By: Jose Martinez