Latest Marigold Kitchen news and reviewsJM ate the French toast and a blondie with a lemonade.
Nichole ate the chile poached eggs with a cappuccino.
The bill was $22, or $11/person, plus tip.
JM gave Marigold Kitchen an A-; Nichole gave Marigold Kitchen an A (see our grading rubric).
Marigold Kitchen is celebrating its seventh anniversary in 2008. The place's staying power is no accident, as they serve up a quintessentially Madison menu of comfort breakfast foods with a few upscale twists. On this Friday morning the place was not too terribly busy, as it is wont to be on weekends. Light alt-country played over the radio. We chose a tall table near the windows, but could have also opted for a low table, a tall stool at the counter, or the coveted cushioned benches that line the room. The lack of coat racks is probably an issue in colder weather (even a purse hook under the tall tables would help). Perhaps because it was such a slow morning, a few tables around us remained un-bussed, but that's just a nit to pick.
It was easy to forget about winter and dishes while we sniffed at the zinnias and sipped our beverages. We could have opted for mimosas, Bloody Marys, greyhounds, or even Capital Brewery beers, but stuck to our script. JM's fresh squeezed lemonade was sweet and strong and tickled the roof of his mouth. The cappuccino was also strong and hot, with flavorful, tight foam - right or wrong, it was closest to the way Nichole makes it at home, and so won a place in her heart. JM's blondie was quite good. He got an end piece that held together on the plate but crumbled (in a good way) in the mouth. Not enough to send him into rapture but, one way or another, he liked it.
JM's French toast was made from slices of brioche that were almost too thick. Most bites were good and chewy but some were hard and dry. The profusion of garnishes and toppings - fresh berries, real maple syrup, pastry cream, and powdered sugar - went so far as to make it seem the dish had gotten into Mom's Estee Lauder and gone a little overboard. All the elements were good but all together they were too much.
The chili poached eggs that Nichole got were an example of a simple twist that works. Two New Century Farm eggs came poached to perfection, buttery on the edges and topped with red pepper flakes and grated manchego (Spanish sheep's milk) cheese, which added a tangy edge. The salty prosciutto was a must on every forkful, and the understated rosemary bread was perfect for alternating bites.
Marigold might not suit everyone's tastes; for instance, it is quite light on the diner sort of grub you could get at, say, Cottage Cafe. But for those who are looking for a well-made, thoughtful breakfast or lunch with the familiar and the exotic in equal parts, Marigold does its job and does it right.