I’ve been aiming to go to Hugo’s Restaurant for awhile now. You see, my husband recently had to go gluten-free, and restaurant menus have been tough for him to navigate. We heard that Hugo’s offers a lot of GF options, so, of course, a Sunday drive to Studio City was in order.
And then we got on the 5 freeway—the rain was torrential, visibility was nil and our Southern California hearts just weren’t in it. Urgings of “let’s just go to Atwater” began to gnaw at us as we neared the Glendale Blvd. exit. Suddenly, with one quick jerk of the steering wheel, we were Atwater bound.
Sometimes the obvious choice is the best one, and if you’re near Atwater Village at brunch time on a weekend, Canelé is the way to go. The often-packed but cozy neighborhood restaurant gets high marks for Chef Corina Weibel’s “unfussy Mediterranean cooking”. It’s also not uncommon for food reviewers to gush over Canelé’s brunch—drool-worthy photos of gargantuan Thick French Toast (sometimes adorned with marscapone and figs) generally accompany such write-ups.
I was in a savory sort of mood, so I didn’t go for the french toast. Instead, I chose the Braised Leeks, Bacon and Fried Egg Sandwich. The first layer on the crusty baguette was a smoky romesco, which managed to come through despite formidable competition from three very thick slabs of bacon and leeks. Once cracked, the yolky egg that topped the stacked open-faced sandwich flooded the plate and got sopped up by the bread. Brunch perfection!
After cleaning my plate, I didn’t have any room for Canelé’s famous sticky buns, but just looking at these pecan-adorned babies was pretty satisfying. I snapped this picture on the way out–one of the chefs was nice enough to do some food styling, making sure that only the best looking buns were in the frame.
Look for my review of Hugo’s. We’ll get there soon!