Monday, June 25, 2007

Pacific Whey vs Ruby's ~ So Cal chains in Crystal Court

One Camp Pendleton Mud Run and a best friend's wedding later, I'm back. Hungrier than ever. I found myself at South Coast Plaza on multiple Saturday morns recently, and decided to put two of my favorite chains (for breakfast, there aren't really many that rank) to the test. In one corner, the chic eats of Pacific Whey Cafe. In the opposite corner, (with 25 years of service under their belt) - Ruby's Diner. Let the smackdown begin!


I remember trying to find Pacific Whey for the first time. Newport Hills was not easy to locate. Then they expanded to Crystal Cove. Great location, but cramped seating. It took forEVER for SCP Crystal Court to finally open. By the time I finally checked in, it had been running for two months. Here they've got the parking, the table space, the location, and the unforgettable pastry case. What a lovely place to see and be seen. Fantastic people watching, but I digress.

I will tell you right now that I don't care for anything that isn't brekkie or pastry here.


I went for the grilled vegetable omelette. My eggcellent feast of zucchini, yellow squash, and sweet bell peppers co-mingled with a fruit medley, potatoes, and hearty multi-grain toast. Service was spot on. My table was spacious. The servers/bussers were efficient. The food, eggsactly what I expected -- fresh, flavorful, pleasing to the eye...except. Well, I felt the portion sizes were smaller than I remember. Breakfast is supposed to be affordable, right? My $8.95 just seemed sparse. My trainers agreed. I think I just paid for my locale. (sigh)



Next, I shoo-be-do-be-do down to the candystriper. With dark hair and brown eyes, what's not to admire about her? {Going COMPLETELY off topic, they have some rockin' fish tacos here. I don't expect anyone to believe me [cough, Christian Z., cough : ) ], but hey, for me - they are delish} I must've deliberated for a good half hour before placing.


I chose the skinny eggs with Eggbeaters (hey, I'm attempting healthly eating!). It was mixed with housemade salsa, and served alongside low-fat cottage cheese, wheat toast and fresh fruit. Oh yes, and I had to get some smoked bacon. Mmmmmm.....bacon. A reasonable enough comparison to my competitor. Except this time, I order to go.


Things were meticulously packaged and labeled with smiley faces. It was quite a spread, actually. Pricing was almost identical to Pacific Whey, bacon included. Sure, I sat outside NikeStore with my meal in my lap. But this was really nice. Eggs were segreated in their own covered container, and were light with a tiny kick. Bacon kept its distance in a roomy holder. Those four smoked strips were heavenly. Flavors were intact. I have no complaints. I was content... not factoring my leg falling asleep.


Sure, maybe you'll just go to Champagne French Bakery instead (saw an ad for their new breakfast crepe next to the escalator. wonder how it is...) Or you'll be elsewhere. Either way, you've got options.



http://www.pacificwhey.com/menu.html


http://www.rubysdiner.com/food/breakfast.html

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Comments on "Pacific Whey vs Ruby's ~ So Cal chains in Crystal Court"

Blogger ChristianZ said ... (June 27, 2007 at 9:11 PM) : 

Yeah, I've had the fish tacos at Rubio's before. Had them at the Irvine location and can't remember much about the quality.

Blogger brekkie_fan said ... (June 28, 2007 at 6:20 PM) : 

hey Christian,

Rubio's or Ruby's? I was blogging Ruby's :)

Blogger ChristianZ said ... (June 29, 2007 at 12:40 AM) : 

Oops, I meant Ruby's. So, to clarify, yes I have had fish tacos at that place you shoo-be-do-be down to. And I've also had them at Rubio's, which, of course, has no relevance to your current post.

Blogger Chubbypanda said ... (July 17, 2007 at 11:06 PM) : 

Lol. I love your writing style. It's so breezy!

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