Soggy Times

The ability to get breakfast delivered all night is awesome; now, if only breakfast traveled well ...

When I heard about breakfast-delivery service Bacon and Craeggs, I was pumped: Breakfast is my favorite meal, and the thought of being able to get a hot, fresh breakfast delivered to me anytime in the a.m. hours was awesome.

But the more I thought about it, the more I had doubts, because breakfast is not a meal that travels well. After all, eggs are easy to break. Toast and pancakes get soggy. Bacon and sausage congeals.

I was curious what I'd find delivered to my door when I gave Bacon and Craeggs a try a few weeks ago. It was a weekend morning, around 10:30 or so, and Garrett and I were hungry. We went to the Bacon and Craeggs website to look at the menu, and Garrett decided to order the "pancakes hmm ... French toast" ($7.99), which comes with an egg; bacon or sausage; homefries; and two pancakes, two slices of French toast, or one of each. (Garrett went with one of each, with the eggs sunny-side up.) I decided on the "to be or not to be ... stuffed" ($9.50), which comes with three eggs, bacon, sausage, homefries, toast and either a slice of French toast or a pancake. (I chose the French toast, with the eggs over-easy.) Finally, we decided to split a sausage "sangwich" ($2.50), which consists of an egg, sausage and cheese on an English muffin. Since this was breakfast, I decided some coffee ($2) was necessary, too.

Then began the confusion.

I called Bacon and Craeggs ... and got a voicemail message, which suggested that I send a text message if I was calling during business hours (which, of course, I was). But I wasn't sure whether I was supposed to text just my number, or my whole order, so I called back—and this time, someone picked up. After a somewhat arduous process (the dude at Bacon and Craeggs had trouble hearing me; he apologized for the loudness on his end), I was told my order would arrive in about a half-hour.

About 37 minutes later, there was a knock at my door. I opened it to a young man uttering a minor expletive. He'd just realized that he'd forgotten my coffee; no big deal, I assured him, as he unpacked the foam boxes that contained our rather large breakfast.

In fact, the breakfast was even larger than anticipated: It turns out the online menu has two items called a "sangwich." There's the miniature value-menu version I thought I was ordering, and there's the full-fledged version I received, containing three eggs; bacon or sausage; and cheese, on two slices of bread—plus more homefries ($7.99).

Undaunted by the mountain of food we had on our table, Garrett and I dug in.

Remember my concerns about breakfast not traveling well? Well, those concerns were merited: All of our eggs had broken, and all of the breads had become soggy to varying degrees. However, I did enjoy my bacon and sausage, and the homefries, while mushy, were tasty enough. Also, the sangwich held up surprisingly well—yes, the bread was a bit soggy, but that would have probably been the case in a restaurant, as the bread would have been instantly steamed by the hot eggs, sausage and cheese.

Overall, the meal was decidedly OK. But I'll say two things in defense of Bacon and Craeggs: First, we ordered menu items that were the least likely to travel well; the wrapper ($7.99), with all of the sangwich ingredients in a tortilla instead, probably would have fared better; same goes for the gold burger ($8.99), the sirloin and eggs ($10.99), the four-egg omelet ($7.99 with three toppings) and the yogurt parfait ($5). Also in Bacon and Craeggs' defense: My house is outside of the main, free delivery area, which is bounded by Grant Road, the Starr Pass area, 22nd Street and Campbell Avenue. Instead, I am located in the expanded $3 delivery area, which extends to River Road to the north, and Craycroft Road to the east.

I decided to try the Bacon and Craeggs experience up close—specifically, at the Fourth Avenue headquarters. Bacon and Craeggs occupies a kitchen in the south end of the building that houses Magpies Gourmet Pizza; there's no indoor seating, just a half-door where one can order to-go (but one can dine on the patio).

Unfortunately, my experience didn't go so well.

I had to wait a couple of minutes before someone finally came to the door to take my order for the crab Benedict ($12; steak Benedict is $11, while Benedicts with ham, bacon, sausage, bratwurst or vegetables are $10). After ordering and being told my food would be ready in 10 minutes, I sat down at one of the tables, and took in the deadness of a Saturday morning on the avenue.

Some 17 minutes later, with my food nowhere in sight, a man and a woman walked up to order. They waited to get someone's attention for a good five minutes before asking me if I'd already ordered. "Yeah, about 20 minutes ago," I replied. "They said it'd take about 10 minutes."

They looked at each other and decided to search elsewhere for breakfast. "Good luck, dude," the man told me.

A couple of minutes later, my order was finally delivered by a profusely apologetic woman. She gave me a $2 discount for the 25-minute wait; I thought it was a nice, appropriate gesture.

What was not nice: the hollandaise sauce on the three Benedicts, which was runny and overly salty. The eggs, poached medium-hard, where fine, as were the English-muffin slices and the pieces of lump crab—but the salty sauce ruined the meal.

I'm not saying I won't order from Bacon and Craeggs again. If, say, I find myself craving breakfast or a burger at home in the middle of the night, I'll go for it. But that scenario aside ... there are numerous better breakfast options out there.

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