Chorizo Latin Fare
It’s amazing that in a town with so many incredible breakfast options, SLG had yet to write a post about breakfast food. Fellow vegetarians, your wait has ended! I am pleased to announce that, on the recommendation of several people, I decided to ignore the decidedly meaty-sounding restaurant title of Chorizo Latin Fare (a Chef Hector Diaz venture and sister restaurant to popular restaurants Salsa’s and Modesto Trattoria) and give them a try for breakfast. I’m so glad we did! Don’t let the spicy-latin-sausage appellation fool you–Chorizo has vegetarian options a-plenty, including many meals with tofu and their own version of “veggie sausage.”
Is any breakfast meal complete without coffee, I ask you? For me at least, definitely not. The coffee at Chorizo is rich and dark and seems to have chicory in it. It’s actually locally sourced from the Dynamite Coffee Roasting company in Black Mountain, and it was so strong that I had to add sugar and cream to mine. (Normally I drink black coffee, but often I’ll splurge with breakfast on the weekends.) Actually, many of the items on the menu are locally sourced, including the produce and the eggs–always a plus in my opinion.
Our server was delightful, with a lilting accent that we later found out was Jamaican. As there was a steady stream of chill-out-inducing reggae on their stereo system, it became apparent that this was going to be a relaxing and nicely paced breakfast. The outdoor seating is slightly reminiscent of something you would see in New Orleans, and the addition of the chicory-tasting coffee only added to that illusion. (Actually, I took a peek inside, and the interior decor reminded me of the Crescent City as well.)
Difficult decisions are rare when you’re a vegetarian, because usually there are so few of them, but it took us both a good long time to puzzle out which combination of yummy-looking items we wanted to commit to for breakfast. I finally landed on the Sano, which was two perfectly cooked poached eggs, veggie sausage, goat cheese, spicy guacamole, pico de gallo, an organic, wood-fired tortilla, black beans, apple chutney and some of the most delicious grits I’ve had since we left Charleston, SC. It was one of those meals that I was enjoying so much that I ate slowly on purpose, hoping the meal would never end. Here’s what it looked like:
The veggie sausage is in the middle–it’s kind of a deep-fried homemade vegetable stick which, as long as you’re not too hung up on the whole veggie-sausage-tasting-and-looking-like-meat-sausage thing, is really quite delicious in its own right. I thoroughly enjoyed every bit of my meal, and continued to try to eat long after I was full because I couldn’t bear the idea of leaving any of it. The combination of foods reminds me a lot of Tomato Cocina Latina, but overall the dish was spicier, richer, and more breakfast-y somehow.
Sean had the House Scramble called the Perico, which was cheese, onion, tomato, cilantro, and peppers scrambled together with eggs and served with a pupusa (traditional Latin corn patty made on site), guacamole, pico de gallo and fruit chutney. Here’s his:
Some of the other veg breakfast options included the Cheesy Pancakes, which looked really intriguing but which we both decided we could hold off on until next time. You can get them with various meats or veggie sausage, or by themselves, which they charmingly referred to as “Just Cheesies.” We found that super-amusing. You can also get the House Scrambles with Tofu and Grilled Vegetables, three different kinds of veggie omelets, a Burrito Roll which is vegetarian but which you can add veggie sausage to, a Tortilla Dish with Tofu and Sauteed Vegetables, etc. Really, there were just lots and lots of choices, and that was just for breakfast. For lunch, they offered Spanish Crepes with BBQ Portabella; Cheese Relleno; your choice of Tofu or Portabella Chile Rellenos; a Tofu and Portabella Fajita; Tofu and Vegetable Tacos; a Simple Burrito (with spinach, rice, beans, manchego cheese, and sour cream); or a Seared Tofu and Roasted Vegetable Burrito.
I’m dumbfounded that I had not stumbled upon this restaurant sooner, as much as we’ve enjoyed Salsa’s, but I’m glad I finally did. We really can’t wait to return.