There are two types of brunches: the cheap and greasy, and the sweet and colourful. Fardella’s and Morrison’s fall into the first category (eggs, bacon, a full “fry up”, as the English would say), while Pan Chancho and Cora’s have long been my go-tos for “sweet and colourful” breakfasts like French Toast, or anything piled with berries. When Cora’s left the West End, I finally decided to try Eggsquis, and boy, am I happy that I did!
Eggsquis, like Cora’s, is a Quebec export. Pronounced “Egg-ski,” Kingston is its only Ontario location so far! Located at Princess and Bayridge, it’s a bit of a drive from my downtown home but the major pay-off is the abundant and free parking of the suburbs. Without a reservation during the school year, downtown favourites can be a bit of a war zone, amounting to even a 45-minute wait. Eggsquis usually has a small line, but it tends to move quickly as the bright, airy space features enough tables to have constant turnover.
Visiting Eggsquis for a ladies’ brunch just before the New Year, it began to get busy just moments after we took our seats. Despite the mid-morning busy-ness, our server was patient and didn’t act rushed. Above all, I value that she wrote our orders down; as I’ve mentioned in the past, when dining, there’s nothing quite as frustrating as a server getting your order wrong after not writing it down.
The one hold-up of our visit was that, after the increased brunch demands of the Christmas season, the restaurant was out of raspberries and waiting on a shipment. What I appreciated, however, was our server’s honesty about the restaurant’s back-up plan: they could serve me frozen raspberries, but recognizing that this was an inferior option, they were also happy to just give extra everything else. More blueberries and bananas? Yes please! I know that some people might be miffed by this, but let’s face it: you can’t go outside and pick more raspberries in late December. If I wanted to eat somewhere that focused on keeping things seasonal and local, I’d stay downtown.
Eggsquis is an excellent breakfast choice for a number of reasons. Small pluses include the ample parking and the fact that it’s open as early as 7 am for early risers who believe that any food eaten at noon is lunch, not brunch! The restaurant is family friendly, and the menu is filled with cheesy wordplay that kids and kids-at-heart would appreciate.
Seriously, though, it’s quite the “eggsperience” to see how many options the menu contains. I’d love to see the assembly line system in the Eggsquis kitchen. The menu has so many items that are similar with the smallest variations: white bread, brown bread, over easy, scrambled, with English cream, or maybe even with Nutella? – it’s a lot to keep track of, but they do it seven days a week!
So far, my favourite is the Duchess Crepe: three plain crepes with blueberries, bananas, strawberries, raspberries and English cream. I like it because the cream is served on the side, avoiding a whole “soggy crepe” situation, which tends to happen when fruit and cream are folded in. If I ever get adventurous, I’d love to try to savoury crepes, like asparagus and cheese. It sounds amazing, but whenever I read the Eggsquis menu, it just activates my sweet tooth! But fear not: the menu has an exceptional balance of the sweet and savoury: waffles with fruit, crepes with meat, bagels that are French Toasted (a gift from the heavens?!), and breakfast potatoes that are salty, crisp, and impossible to stop munching on. I highly recommend them.
For those of us who really can’t make the choice between sweet and savoury, Eggsquis has the perfect solution: the “BoB” or bit of both, meal! Egg and crepe? Breakfast meat? Berries? Eggsquis has unlimited options to ensure above all that everyone can brunch happy.