Thursday, February 9, 2012
My new favorite place for brunch and I am definitely not a morning person. I was excited to learn that Chef Jason Quinn opened his own place, The Playground, in downtown Santa Ana. Even though it was Super Bowl Sunday, I still had to try and see if they offered their new innovative Sunday Suppers. Sadly, they were not doing that on Super Bowl Night so I took the opportunity to meet up with a friend and catch brunch. I am glad I did too!
I simply adored the Breakfast Pork Chop. It's definitely not your average pork chop and the cut is simply divine! One honker of meat! ^_~ The pork chop was beautifully cooked. I loved that the top of the pork chop is pan seared while the inside is super juicy and tender. For me, I liked the sweet taste that enhanced the savory components. It's a delicious and succulent piece of pork. I have already gone back a second time for the pork chop and chomped another one down.
The Breakfast Hash was delicious and at a great price! It's only $10 for the skillet. They use very fresh and tasty ingredients. Hidden under the fried egg and hollandaise sauce are benton's and Brussels sprouts. Those tender chunks of fried pork were heaven on earth! Great little treats mixed in with the Brussels sprouts. I have never been that big of a fan of Brussels sprouts but mix it in with fatty pork, Mmmmm. Glad my friend gave me a bite. I'd definitely go for this again if it is on the menu. =D
You think that would be the end of it but my greed is great and my appetite is greater! lol I had to get the 6 oz Wagyu Tri-Tip & Egg. The chimichurri sauce really enhanced the whole palette. I normally don't like eggs but it's kind of what breakfast is all about. Also, the egg was nicely cooked atop the wagyu. The new steak and eggs!
For drinks, I got the Grapefruit & Elderflower that was light for breakfast. I couldn't really taste the elderflower in there but I thought that it was a tasty grapefruit juice.
There has been so much buzz about the Portola Coffee Lab. Here they offered hand-poured Single-Origin Coffee. Both of us decided to get a cup. I was expecting a coffee that would blow me away.... but it blew the wind in the wrong direction. The coffee was severely sour.
Eventually my friend asked for sugar and cream. They served it black with no accompaniments. At first I thought that I can finally add some sugar. They were given in cute little cups but not much of either. The staff told us that the cream was very heavy and only needed a little. I am not sure if this was because of the cream but the coffee became even more sour. Even though we were given sugar and cream but we had no spoon to stir. The cream kind of curdled around in the coffee in a weird way... hmmm...
All in all I thought the staff was super friendly and I love Chef Jason Quinn. On the menu they mention that they will add a 3% gratuity on food, which I think is reasonable to give the staff something extra for all their hard work. You can taste it in the food the time and effort they put into everything. The servers are also super nice and friendly, which makes the whole experience even better. Heck, I have been back a second time within the week and might be back this Sunday in another attempt for a fun Sunday Supper.
220 East 4th Street
Santa Ana, CA 92701