Lunch = Holiday Shopping. Opt for Breakfast, Instead

By Chuck Sudo in Food on Dec 17, 2007 8:30PM

2007_12_breakfast_west_Loop.jpgThere are precious few days left for your last-minute holiday shopping. If you're out to get a jump on the crowds, consider catching an early breakfast and shopping through the lunch rush by hitting one of these Near West Side joints.

  • Le Peep: Somewhat Le Dull but at last visit, they did serve Lavazza coffee made in a French press. That is always a good thing.
  • Wishbone: Tagged as "Southern reconstruction cooking," which sounds as if it is meant to transport you to work being done in New Orleans. Free WiFi, so bring your laptop ... if you don't have friends. Nice outdoor seating in the summer, and you can watch the Oprah audience members leaving with their free goodies.
  • Sweet Maple Café: This popular Little Italy breakfast spot offers good food in a small, rustic and charming space. Great banana pancakes. If the line is too long, stop in next door to the Scafuri Bakery and get a fresh apple turnover to tide you over. Bring your dollar bills to the bakery because it's cheap, they may not have change, and you'll want to leave a tip (if you announce that the dollar is for a lottery ticket, you may get cheers).
  • Meli Café and Juice Bar: The penultimate breakfast stop, located in Greektown. You'll find Lavazza coffee here, as well as Phil's cage-free eggs. Coupled with homemade jams and jellies, fresh fruit and vegetable juices and smoothies, this place can't be beat. Get a shot of wheat grass and taste freshly mowed lawn all day long. The food is fantastic and the service is consistently great.

With these great options, you'll be primed to spend the last of your nickels along with the rest of the last-minute buyers.

Let us know about your favorite haunt for breakfast.

- Thanks Laura!