Earlier this year, charter breakfast club member Dan MacLeod retired from AT&T, after working for the company for nearly 15 years. When you retire from AT&T, among other gifts given to you by the company, is the opportunity to have a retirement dinner, and the company will pick up the cost of the meal, up to $500.00, and there are no strings attached, except you're on your own if you desire booze. Most people opt for dinner, but since Dan is a true lover of breakfast, he opted to hold a breakfast retirement meal, rather than dinner, and he chose Brookfield's Restaurant on Madison Ave.
Photo: Dan chose a beautiful, early spring morning, to enjoy his retirement breakfast at Brookfield's Restaurant.
Photo: The kitchen is in the rear of the photo, as I look from the entrance to our private dining room out into the attractive, main dining room.
Friday, March 26, 2010 was the date, and although most members of the Sacramento Breakfast Club were in attendance, this wasn't a regular club meeting, especially since Dan's last boss, Mike Dolinshek, was representing the company, and paying for the meal. You can purchase a lot of breakfast for $500.00, especially at Brookfield's Restaurant, as the restaurant offers delicious food at very reasonable prices.
The decor of Brookfield's main dining is both comfortable modern, and extremely attractive, as it features a very high ceiling with exposed wooden beams, for a rustic, yet very contemporary look. The room is very open, and gives a feeling of spaciousness. Seating is a mixture of tables and booths; the aisles are wide, and there's plenty of room to move about. Since today was a special occasion, and we were expecting a very large group, Mike had reserved a private room for our group, which probably a good thing, as our group can get very loud.
Photo: Our retirement boy, Dan MacLeod, and his charming wife Bev, enjoying his special day.
Photo: Jessica takes an order. Left to right, Amber Spence, Dan's middle daughter, little Katie O'Brien, Erin O'Brien, Dan's youngest daughter, and Keith Spence, Amber's husband. Bev is blurred in the lower right corner of the photo.
Photo: Sitting at a separate table in our dining room, from left to right: Mary Rupp, Steve Fusick, John Sweeney, and charter breakfast club member David DeMario.
By 0830 in the morning, the entire group had assembled, and it list of guests read like a "who's who" from AT&T's night shift, as with the exception two of Dan's daughters, his grand daughter, son-in-law, my wife and I, everybody else was either an inmate on the night shift, or a spouse of a night shift worker. We were expecting around 16 to 18 people, but by the time the complete cast was assembled, I counted 26 of us, with is a huge showing for a retirement meal. Dan was always a team-player and very well-liked by his co-workers, and we were happy to see such a large showing. I kidded around to Dan that it seemed that there were a lot of night shift workers who were looking for a free meal!
Photo: I attempted to get a photo of everybody, but with such a large group, in a small room, it was difficult, if not impossible. Jessica take's DeAnn's order... From left to right: Sharlene Rench, Danielle Patterson, DeAnn Harris, Latasha Banks, Gary Werderman, Ken Hudson, Mike Dolinshek, Rocky Merrill, Matt Donnelly, Brad Holther, Sergio Gaona, and Amber Spence. Mark and Lisa McIntire and Sarah Donnelly are hidden in the picture.
Photo: Mike Dolinshek, the night shift supervisor and Dan's ex-boss, chats with Keith, as Dan and Bev look on. Mike represented the company, and picked up the breakfast tab for all 26 of us.
Brookfield's web site clearly states the mission of the restaurant, as it reads "Real Food for Real People. We make food from scratch using trusted family recipes. That's Real Food!" How true that statement is, as it sums up the delicious breakfast that Brookfield's is famous for serving. The restaurant is open for all meals, but their menu seems to place heavy emphasis on breakfast, as the menu offers a wide array of choices. Brookfield's is famous for their in-house made corned beef hash, and trust me it's delicious, but I elected for my de facto standard breakfast of chicken fried steak.
Our waitress for the occasion was Jessica, and it must have taken her nearly 15 minutes to take down everybody's order. As we were waiting for our orders to arrive, we were treated to endless refills of Brookfield's delicious coffee, and lots of pleasant conversation.
Photo: Jessica brings another armload of food, including another order of chicken fried steak.
Photo: Sergio, Amber, Katie, Erin and Keith look on, while Ken Hudson stands, and tells another of the tall tales that he's famous for telling.
Jessica and a co-worker delivered our meals to our large group without any mistakes. How they kept the many orders straight is beyond me, but the girls worked in tandem, making multiple trips to the kitchen, and bring our meals to us. I noticed that before placing them on our table, they set the meals down on a vacant table, and appeared to match the meal with a written down order. What I can't figure out is how they knew what meal went to which diner, as they didn't know any of us. I didn't see any mistakes, and I didn't hear any comments from our group about the waitresses mixing up the orders.
Photo: Eric Rench, your web master, editor and photographer, and his lovely wife, Sharlene, pose for the camera.
Photo: My delicious breakfast of chicken fried steak, eggs, country style potatoes, and a large biscuit. The meal tasted even better than it looked!
In the case of my chicken fried steak, the batter was golden brown, crispy and seasoned perfectly. The batter was really thick, but it was light and crispy, and not at all heavy. You really didn't need a knife to cut the steak, as it was very tender, and seemed to melt in my mouth. The eggs were cooked to order, and the potatoes were crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside, and not greasy. The biscuit was large, and made from scratch, and the gravy was creamy, with lots of chunks of sausage.
Dan's retirement breakfast turned out to be a lot of fun, thanks to a great group of co-workers, the delicious food served at Brookfield's Restaurant, the comfortable dining atmosphere, and the friendly and efficient staff who work at Brookfield's.
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