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Photo by Morgan Ione

 

17 Top Spots to Get Your Morning Fix

By Lauren Naru • Featuring Photography by Kenneth Gabrielsen

 


Heavenly Huevos: Cafe Mio in Gardiner elevates eggs to a new level of lusciousness with its huevos rancheros. Photo by Jennifer May.

 

Cafe Mio

2356 US-44, Gardiner; 845.255.4949; www.miogardiner.com

There’s a homey vibe at Cafe Mio, in both the aesthetic and the way the customers interact with each other and the staff. “We have an open kitchen, so I know many of my guests,” explains owner and chef Michael Bernardo. “I can see them, and they can see me. Our regulars come in and I’m already making their meal.”

Opened in 2010, Cafe Mio’s breakfast menu features original takes on classics, like the popular banana-bacon French toast topped with fresh whipped cream. Bernardo’s personal favorite is the huevos rancheros with two eggs served over corn tortillas, with black beans, avocado, pickled jalapeños, sour cream, and a bed of greens.

“People have gotten more conscious about what they are eating and how it’s prepared,” explains Bernardo. “I made relationships with the farms surrounding the restaurant and source my ingredients from them as often as possible.”

 


Sticky Sweet: In addition to egg sandwiches, Pine Plains Platter serves tantalizing baked goods.

 

Pine Plains Platter

2987 Church St., Pine Plains; 518.398.0500; www.pineplainsplatter.com

As a native of this northern Dutchess County town, Amy Benack-Baden was eager to step into the role of chef and manager of Pine Plains Platter nearly four years ago. “We wanted to make the restaurant more approachable for locals and weekenders alike, so we revamped the menu to feature comfort foods made with local ingredients.”

This family-friendly café off Route 199, about four miles off the Taconic, serves breakfast all day. Egg sandwiches are popular with to-go customers, while The Vermonter, made with two eggs, cheddar cheese, and a local Black Sheep Hill sausage patty served on multi-grain toast with maple butter, is a staple for those dining in. Our personal favorite is Alive and Kicking: two eggs, cream cheese, jalapeños, hot sauce, and bacon on a toasted ciabatta roll.

Off the menu, there are daily breakfast and homemade bakery specials, including cinnamon buns, coffee cakes, and donuts.

 

Quick Bites

Our Favorite Menu Items

The Holy Cannoli Pancake and Other Sweet Starts at Countryside Kitchen

493 Route 6, Mahopac; 845.803.8420; www.thecountrysidekitchen.com

People come from all over New York to try this decadent dish, which starts with a giant fluffy pancake. Cannoli filling is added and the pancake is rolled to resemble the Italian dessert favorite. It’s then topped with dollops of additional cannoli filling, powdered sugar, and whipped cream. Bellissimo.


Cinnamon Buns at Cousin’s Cafe   

1726 Route 22, Wingdale; 845.832.3600

These giant buns of gooey sugar goodness are soft and fluffy, and topped with generous amounts of icing. The bakery also has other homemade treats like crumb cakes and donuts.


Pancakes at Sweet Sue’s Restaurant

49 Main St., Phoenicia; 845.688.7852; www.sweetsue1984.wixsite.com/sweetsuesrestaurant

This Catskills’ breakfast hot-spot is best known for its variety of creative pancakes served in generous portions — buttermilk, mixed berry, cottage cheese, gluten-free, whole wheat, buckwheat, four-grain, and cornmeal, just to name a few. Complement your pancakes with a side of homemade turkey sausage.


Baked Goods at Haven Coffee & Espresso Bar

5462 US-9W, Newburgh; 845.561.9685

If you don’t know to look for it, you might drive past this hidden gem. Inside, you’ll find a friendly staff serving up coffee rolls, scones, and breads that are made fresh daily on-site and are perfect to grab and go. They also have a wide array of coffees and teas.

 

Photos by Jennifer May

 


Lou’s Legacy: Gary Guerrazzi took over the restaurant from his father and cooks fan favorites — like Eggs Louie — in his honor.

 

Lou’s Restaurant & Diner

1344 NY-52, Carmel; 845.878.4749

Located less than a mile off I-84’s exit 17, Lou’s has been a Hudson Valley staple for nearly 40 years. In 1981, at age 19, Gary Guerrazzi took over the restaurant from his father, Lou, who suddenly passed away only a year after opening.

What’s remarkable about this spot is not only the number of years that it’s been in business, but the friendly service that accompanies your food. It’s the restaurant version of Cheers. “You’re going to be treated like family and get good food at a good price,” says Guerrazzi.

Breakfast is served all day to a revolving door of regulars and first-time guests driving through town. Eggs Louie — two poached eggs, Canadian bacon, and melted cheddar on a toasted English muffin and served with a side of home fries — is a staple. The menu features other classic options like eggs, pancakes, French toast, breakfast sandwiches, omelettes, and savory sides.

“I’m proud that we’ve been able to keep my father’s legacy going for this many years,” says Guerrazzi.

 


Moms’ Influence: Dottie Audrey’s serves quality food make from scratch.

 

Dottie Audrey’s Bakery & Kitchen

549 NY-17, Tuxedo Park; 845.915.3088; www.dottieaudreys.com

Two years ago, husband and wife culinary duo Patrick and Jennifer Jenkins opened Dottie Audrey’s in Tuxedo Park, to fill “a desert” along Route 17 in Orange County. “We had seen this vacant space for six years. We thought if we could build something with the right caliber of quality and carefully curated ingredients, that people would stop — and thankfully, they have,” Patrick says.

This friendly spot features an open kitchen, with a window wall that overlooks the bakery. Breakfast includes everything from pancakes served with cured Irish bacon and caramel butter, to a three-egg scramble made with flavorful Shishito peppers, scallions, and Gruyère cheese. The open-faced sausage gravy toast on a semolina baguette is not to be missed. Dottie Audrey’s serves food made from scratch, beginning with that bread.

Instead of potatoes, meals come with a green salad and homemade champagne vinaigrette. “We want you to leave feeling energized, not lethargic,” explains Patrick.

And the name? Dottie and Audrey are Patrick’s and Jennifer’s mothers, two women who inspired their culinary journeys.

 

 

Quick Bites

Our Favorite Menu Items

The Juice and Smoothie Bar at The Daily Beet

118 Liberty St., Newburgh; 845.563.0924; www.thedailybeetnewburgh.com

Enjoy freshly pressed juices, smoothies, and acaí bowls made from scratch with no added sugars or processed ingredients. We like the Caribbean Green juice with celery, cucumber, kale, pineapple, lemon, and jalapeño. While you’re there, shop from an assortment of vegetarian and vegan-friendly snacks, gourmet groceries, and locally raised eggs.


Sweet & Savory Crêpes at Dolce

27 Broadway, Kingston; 845.339.0921

You’ll find a selection of homemade bakery items at this cozy cafe, but it’s the wide variety of crêpes that keeps customers coming back for more. Feeling sweet? Try the S’more crêpe made with Nutella, homemade marshmallows, and banana. Or try a savory crêpe with ham, avocado, and Swiss.


The Upstate Breakfast Sandwich at Shindig

1 Tinker St., Woodstock; 845.684.7091; www.woodstockshindig.com

Shindig‘s classic breakfast choices include eggs, granola, oatmeal, and pancakes, but what really gets us going in the a.m. is The Upstate breakfast sandwich made with a fried egg, cheddar cheese, and ham on a large, flaky, homemade buttermilk biscuit. We can’t think of a better sandwich to represent our area.

Photo by Lukus Hasenstab


Healthy Alternatives at The Granola Bar

575 Main St., Armonk; 914.861.3070
96 Purchase St., Rye; 914.709.4229; www.thegranolabarct.com

Take your pick from a variety of delicious parfaits, egg dishes, avocado toast, granola, and smoothies including The Good Date — a blended bunch of goodness including dates, banana, cinnamon, house almond butter, and almond milk. The savory scratch-made sweet potato buttermilk pancakes topped with honey cardamom butter are another favorite.


Photo by Morgan Ione

 

 


Family-Friendly: Radday is filling a void in the local restaurant scene.

 

Betty’s Country Kitchen

32 W Main St., Washingtonville; 845.614.5422; www.bettyscountrykitchen.com​

Before Kevin Radday retired from the NYPD after more than 25 years of service, he always expressed his desire to open a restaurant in Washingtonville, a 2.5-square-mile village in Orange County. “Everyone laughed me off, but I opened Betty’s when I retired,” Radday explains. Living in the area for more than 20 years, he noticed that “there were pizza shops and Chinese restaurants, but no family-friendly spots serving American comfort food.”

“We do breakfast really well,” says Radday. The Truck 4 Omelette, made with generous portions of bacon, sausage, ham, and American cheese, was named after Radday’s former coworkers from the NYPD Emergency Service Unit. Other breakfast dishes that will make you want to get up early on a weekend are the buttermilk pancakes with “cinnabun” filling, and the corned beef hash.

Betty’s, which is named in memory of Radday’s mother, is located in an early 1800s historic home and offers both indoor and outdoor seating.

 

Hash Food NY

3928 Main St., Stone Ridge; 845.687.9794; www.hashfoodny.com

Scratch. It’s the food philosophy at Hash Food NY. “We consider ourselves a modern take on a traditional delicatessen,” says chef Page Moll, who owns Hash with his wife, Shala. Everything at the restaurant is house-made using local, organic ingredients. “The better the ingredients, the better the food will be.”

Located in Stone Ridge (that’s between New Paltz and Woodstock), Hash serves breakfast, brunch, and lunch seven days a week. For breakfast, local Feather Ridge Farm eggs are used in the majority of the dishes, including the Hash 209, made with bacon, potatoes, mushrooms, dried tomato, and sausage. There are also vegan options like the coconut curry hash, and blackboard specials that rotate to highlight seasonal ingredients.

Dine inside or enjoy the open-air patio, which is also dog-friendly, in summer months.

 

 

Quick Bites

Our Favorite Menu Items

Any Breakfast Sandwich at Rhinebeck Bagels

31 W Market St., Rhinebeck; 845.876.8025; www.rhinebeckbagels.com

We’ve been salivating for months over the sandwiches posted on Rhinebeck Bagels’ Instagram page, and they did not disappoint when we finally tried them for ourselves. The weekend specials are particularly exciting, like the recent Croissandwich made with thick-cut applewood smoked bacon, dill Havarti cheese, and scrambled eggs on a warm croissant.

Photo by Jeremy Monaco

 


Breakfast 24 Hours A Day at Red Line Diner

588 Route 9, Fishkill; 845.765.8401; www.dineatredline.com

This is the go-to spot for those who enjoy a good breakfast meal at any hour and for those looking for a convenient spot just off I-84. All of Red Line Diner’s breakfast dishes are made using farm-fresh products. The menu offers all the classics (eggs, pancakes, waffles, omelets) and some tasty surprises like Chicken ’n Waffles.

Photo courtesy of Drake Creative


Elvis’ Memphis Scramble at Iron Gate Cafe

182A Washington Ave., Albany; 518.445.3555; www.irongatecafe.com

Made with three eggs scrambled with bacon, maple sausage, peppers, onions, and melted pepperjack on top, with a side of grilled cornbread and home fries, if this isn’t heart-stopping goodness, we don’t know what is. Daily specials include dishes like the Green Eggs and Crab (sautéed lump crab, avocado, and poached eggs topped with green goddess hollandaise).