At work, I occasionally find that I have time on my hands, between tasks, and since web surfing is discouraged, I utilize my spare time the old fashioned way - I read books, magazines, and the major Sacramento newspaper cover to cover. On Sundays, the newspaper has a section dedicated to restaurants, so I'm always on the lookout for a new restaurant, especially a restaurant that specializes in breakfast. So one Sunday evening in late April, 2010, while reading the paper at work an ad caught my eye for a new restaurant that just opened it's doors in Roseville, a restaurant by the name of Ginger's Restaurant. The ad announced a "GRAND OPENING, American breakfast, lunch and dinner served in a laid-back atmosphere with generous portions at reasonable prices. Join us for a meal at Ginger's, the place to hang loose!" The ad also gave their web address, so of course I had to check it out to see what was on the menu, and the phrase "Breakfast served at anytime" caught my eye. If a restaurant prints a phrase such as that on their menu, you know they're serious about breakfast, so it seemed logical that the Sacramento Breakfast Club should hold a meeting at Ginger's.
Photo: Ginger's Restaurant is located in a small, upscale shopping center, and a banner announces that the restaurant is now open. We noticed that the restaurant still smells new inside, after nearly 3 weeks of serving delicious meals.
The chance to hold a meeting came on Friday, May 14, 2010, when it was my turn to choose, and although I had chosen another restaurant, I couldn't resist choosing Ginger's, as from surfing their web site, it seemed like "our" kind of place, and there were already a few reviews posted on the web. Note: I rarely pay attention to reviews, as everybody has a different opinion, and unless a restaurant makes a string of egregious boo-boos, I'm usually satisfied. But reviews do make interesting reading... The restaurant opened it's doors to the public on Monday, April 19th, so we weren't exactly going to "open up" a new restaurant, but we would be experiencing the place when it was still new, and when they were probably in the stage of ironing out the kinks that inevitably appear in a new operation.
Ginger's Restaurant is located in a small, new, very upscale shopping center near the corner of East Roseville Parkway and Sunrise Avenue, not far off Interstate 80, in beautiful Roseville. The shopping center is very clean, and beautifully landscaped. Ginger's is located at the west end, and offers a beautiful view of Miner's Ravine, where the City of Roseville has constructed miles of bike and hiking trails. Ginger's has the best patio dining that we've ever seen in the Sacramento area, with ample, squeaky-clean, shady seating, with a gorgeous view of Miner's Ravine, and a full-service bar that is open during busy times on balmy, summer evenings.
Photo: Here's the bar... boy does it ever look inviting, even at 0800 on a sunny Friday morning in May.
Photo: The patio, for outdoor dining, is simply beautiful. We love the palapas, the potted plants, and the bar, in the center of the photo.
The decor inside Ginger's is simply stunning. It features a tropical beach motif, and would make any "Parrot Head" feel at home. As you walk in the door, two things grab your attention, a full-service bar on your right, and a large aquarium, filled with colorful tropical fish on your left. The aquarium is beautifully maintained, as the water is crystal clear, and it's probably the cleanest aquarium that I've ever seen. The bar is simply awesome, and all tables, along with the matching chairs, are taller than normal tables and chairs, in the style of "Cheers." If you desire, you can eat a meal in the bar area, which is separated from the main dining area by a partition. On this early Friday morning, the bar wasn't open, which definitely would have tempted me, if wasn't for the fact that I had to drive home, and go to work in the afternoon. But a piña colada certainly would have hit the spot, and would be right at home in the south sea decor of the restaurant...
We were happily seated by Ryan, our friendly waiter, who slid three tables together to accommodate today's club members. Ginger's breakfast menu is extensive, and features something for every taste. The menu features just what you'd expect, including classic breakfast combinations, griddle classics, specialties, omelettes and more. It even has a senior section, for those of us 55 and older, and a section called "Value Breakfasts," which feature smaller portions at very reasonable prices. In keeping with the beach theme, some of the dishes feature cutesy-poo names, such as Beach Blanket Rollups, Hang Loose Skillet or how about this - the Big Kahuna Breakfast, which features 3 eggs, 2 pieces of bacon, 1 sausage patty, ham, 2 pancakes, and your choice of hashbrowns or home-style potatoes. Could you eat all of that?
Photo: Ryan takes Sara's order at out table. We're seated in the main dining room, and the crystal clear aquarium can be seen directly behind Ryan.
Photo: Ryan poses with my order of Country Fried Steak in one hand, and Sydney's and DeAnn's order in his other hand.
From the Breakfast Classics section of the menu, I chose Country Fried Steak and Gravy, which is served with 2 eggs, hashbrowns or home-style potatoes, and a biscuit and butter on the side. We all chose different entreés, but noteworthy choices were Matt's choice of Ginger's Potato Pancake Tower, of 3 stacked potato pancakes, layered with bacon, sausage and cheddar cheese, ymmmmmm, and DeAnn's choice of a Baja Breakfast Burrito, with a flour tortilla with bacon, eggs, cheddar cheese, chilies, salsa, and hashbrowns. Her breakfast looked so good that I almost ripped it from her plate. Little Sydney ordered a pancake, a couple slices of bacon, and an egg from the children's menu.
Ryan kept our coffee cups full while we were waiting for our food to arrive. I had heard that Ginger's served Kona brand coffee, which isn't exactly my favorite blend, and all of us were pleasantly surprised to find that we were being treated to Starbuck's Coffee, which adds to the classy atmosphere found at Ginger's Restaurant.
Photo: The food arrives at our table. David seems to letting the other waiter know that he wants his order quickly!
Photo: My order of country fried steak, home-style potatoes, and eggs over easy. Such a delicious breakfast!
Since there were 10 of us at today's meeting, it took Ryan and a helper multiple trips to set all of the plates on our table. It also took a bit of time for our food to arrive, but when you have a large group, like ours, things in the kitchen can bog down, as it takes a bit of logistics to prepare the varied entreés, so they can be served at the same time. But breakfast was worth waiting for, as the portions were very ample, the presentation was beautiful, and the food was simply delicious. My choice of Country Fried Steak arrived with everything that I expected: 2 perfectly cooked eggs over easy, home-style potatoes, and the perfectly-cooked, battered steak, covered with yummy gravy, that was so tender, that I really didn't need the heavy-duty knife that came with the meal. What I didn't expect was the lettuce leaf that garnished the plate, and the bits of cilantro sprinkled on the gravy. The meal not only looked good, but it was delicious, and filled me up. The other members of our club had similar comments.
On a somewhat sad note, this was Brian's last meeting as a member of the Sacramento Breakfast Club, as he accepted a job transfer to the East Coast. Some of our other members will be leaving as well in the next couple of months, as the company is in the process of making offers that employees can't refuse. We suggested to Brian that he start up a breakfast club at his new location...
Photo: Today's club members, from left to right: Brad Holther, Sydney Harris, DeAnn Harris, your author and webmaster Eric Rench, Matt Donnelly, Sara Donnelly, Bev MacLeod, Dan MacLeod, David DeMario and Brian Gardiner. Sadly, this will be Brian's last meeting as a member of the Sacramento Breakfast Club, due to a job transfer to the East Coast. The photo was graciously taken by our waiter, Ryan Betzler.
Ginger's Restaurant is the new kid in town, but they're a heavy contender in the Sacramento breakfast scene, as the restaurant is really serious about breakfast, and serves an outstanding breakfast, in elegant, laid-back surroundings. The food is delicious, the service is fast and friendly, and the whole experience represents a lot of bang for your bucks. Ginger's is highly recommended by members of the Sacramento Breakfast Club.
Update May 24, 2010: I received a email from Harold Gaubet, who is the President and CEO of Ginger's Restaurant, commenting on this piece that I've written about our club meeting at Ginger's. He liked the piece that we published on this web site, and to read his comments, please click on the highlighed hyperlink. Ginger's is a wonderful restaurant, and a great place to enjoy breakfast!
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