Thanks to the COVID-19 virus, and the orders of the state, I haven't been able to able to enjoy any restaurant dining for over a month, as the state only has been allowing take-out, delivery or curbside pickup, and those methods aren't in my dining "book." Thank goodness last Thursday, the state lifted on-site-dining restrictions for restaurants in the greater Sacramento area! At last, I was able to enjoy dining again! Sunrise Cafe, located outside of Auburn had been on my "bucket list" for a couple months, so today, this fine diner received the honor of being my first restaurant to visit in the year 2021.
As with all restaurant reviews I publish, I have no affiliation with the restaurant reviewed, and there is no monetary gain on my part, as I am simply a person who likes to eat, and I love to write-up, and publish my dining experiences.
Photo: It's a little past the 07:30 morning opening time on Sunday, January 17, 2021, and I've arrived at Sunrise Cafe to enjoy a delicious breakfast.
Restaurants in the greater Sacramento were allowed to resume on-site dining just last Thursday, so I didn't waste much time making my way to Sunrise Cafe to enjoy a superior breakfast.
Sunrise Cafe is actually located a few miles north of Auburn, in the "Lake (shopping) Center," located near the unincorporated community of Lake of the Pines, but it's listed as an Auburn address.
Photo: As you enter the restaurant, you'll be greater at the cashier's station, which does "meet and greet" duty as well, and you'll be greeted by a friendly staff member who will greet you with a smile. I was greeted by friendly Mari, who was also my server.
Photo: The main dining room is quite large, and separated from the bar by a wall. Dining room furniture is widely spaced, during these virus times. It's clean, comfortable and features a "country" decor, in keeping with the rural location of the restaurant.
Photo: The back end of the restaurant includes a small bar, which includes two stools, but effectively can only seat a couple of diners, if they're together. It's mostly a coffee bar, but under the current ownership, the restaurant serves beer and mimosas. The door to the kitchen is to the right of the photo.
Photo: I almost missed the third page of the menu, which includes "Breakfast Specials," and when I saw the listing for "Chicken Fried Steak and Eggs," I knew that was for me, even though I was tempted by the "Stacked Breakfast Tostada." Much of the menu is devoted to breakfast, so you know Sunrise Cafe is serious about breakfast. Also, any item on the menu can be ordered any time the restaurant is open.
The menu at Sunrise Cafe is three pages, and you can check them out in this review by following this link.
Photo: If you like condiments, you're in the right place, as I noticed a table that is stocked with a wide array of popular condiments. Note the bottles of Cholula hot sauce, which is one of my favorites that I use on practically everything.
Photo: Meet Mari, my amazingly friendly server, who brings my delicious breakfast to me with a smile. I not only enjoyed her great service, and charming company, but we also had a great conversation about some of my "foodie" adventures I've posted on my web site. I hear she's a talented tamale maker, as Sunrise Cafe makes tamales for sale in season.
My breakfast arrived FAST... about 10 minutes after I placed my order. This isn't "fast food," as it's delicious diner cuisine, cooked to order, but the service is quicker than most "fast food" restaurants.
Photo; Thanks, Mari, for taking my photo, as I prepare to enjoy an amazing breakfast of "Chicken Fried Stead and Two Eggs" at Sunrise Cafe, located in Auburn.
Photo: From the "Breakfast Specials" section of the menu, I ordered "Chicken Fried Steak and Eggs," which happens to be one of my favorite breakfast entrees The menu describes this fine breakfast as "Served with home style potatoes, hash browns or fresh fruit, with toast or biscuit." It's a simple description for an elegant breakfast!
The "main attraction" was the chicken fried steak. The flattened piece of steak was on the large side - probably about 6 ounces - and it arrived batter and fried to a beautiful golden brown. The meat-to-batter ratio was spot-on, as the batter enhanced and complimented the steak, but didn't overpower the taste of the perfectly cooked meat. The batter was crispy, the meat was tender, and the meat/batter combination made for a simply amazing chicken fried steak.
But... a chicken fried steak isn't complete without gravy, and the gravy that I enjoyed with my breakfast was as good as gravy gets. The gravy was creamy, flavorful and topped with lots of small cube of cut-up sausage, diced green onion, and a sprinkle or two of seasoned salt. Sunrise Cafe didn't skimp on the gravy, as a generous portion of it topped my steak. Like the steak, the gravy was amazing!
The side of hash brown potatoes were partially topped by the steak, which made for a nice presentation. The hash browns were perfectly tender on the inside, and cooked crispy golden brown on the outside, the way hash brown potatoes should be fried.
The mark of a chef with talent is when you order your eggs fried over easy, and they arrive as ordered. The chef at Sunrise Cafe has talent, as my eggs arrived perfectly as ordered, fried over easy.
The side of sourdough toast was perfectly toasted, sliced and coated with lots of real butter. Simply delicious! The slice of orange and parsley added a nice garnish to this fine breakfast.
Dear readers, Sunrise Cafe serves a delicious breakfast! With the breakfast of "Chicken Fried Steal and Two Eggs, when you add everything together, you have a breakfast to enjoy!
My long-awaited visit to Sunrise Cafe was truly worth the wait, as the food was absolutely delicious, the price was right, the atmosphere was quaint, and the service was super fast and friendly. As the motto of the restaurant states, "Rise and shine, breakfast is ready," and that's a true statement at Sunrise Cafe, located in Auburn, CA.
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