ADMIT it: Sometimes, during lunchtime, you wish you could have freshly made waffles with your fried chicken. At other times, you get a sudden craving for Eggs Benedict or Bacon and Eggs on Toast in the middle of the afternoon. Everyone gets such cravings for breakfast food every now and then. I do, too. I suddenly think of pancakes with caramelized bananas or a mushroom-and-tomato omelet just when it’s time for dinner. Well, the good news is that you don’t have to shove off that craving and postpone it for the next morning. You can give in to your craving and have the breakfast fare you’re craving for at any time of the day with Mr. Jones’ All-Day Diner Breakfast menu, which my husband Raff and I got to try last week with a group of writer-blogger friends.
Mr. Jones is a 1960s-inspired up-market and contemporary diner located at the ground floor of Greenbelt 5, Ayala Center, Makati City. Being a diner, its interiors feature seafoam diner seats, fire engine red sharkskin booths and ‘60s chic accents. The look is so 1960s that it gives you the feeling of being transported back to the time of jukeboxes, roller skates and delicious milkshakes.
Well, Mr. Jones does serve delicious milkshakes (plus frozen flavored iced teas and lemonades), and its extensive menu includes lots of burgers and dogs, big sandwiches, Fish N’ Chips and platters upon platters of authentic American dishes like steaks, Mac n’ Cheese, pot roasts, baby back ribs, meatloaf, pastas and beef brisket. Raff and I have made several visits to Mr. Jones before, and we’ve feasted on its Blue Plate Specials that are good to share, but last week was the first time that we centered in on its breakfast fares. Mr. Jones’ All-Day Diner Breakfast menu was put together by Chef de Partie Neils Manzon, who we got to talk to last week.
Bonding over milkshakes and frozen flavored iced teas with friends, we had a breakfast degustation like no other.
We tried Eggs “Benny” 2 Ways (Php450), a platter of Canadian style double smoked bacon and Norwegian smoked salmon, two poached eggs, wilted spinach, Hollandaise sauce, roasted rosemary breakfast potatoes on top of Texas toasts. It’s actually two Texas toasts topped with all the works, one being with double smoked bacon and the other having Norwegian smoked salmon sandwiched in between layers of all the other ingredients. Raff and I shared the Norwegian Smoked Salmon Eggs Benedict with good friend Earl Bracamonte and left the Double Smoked Bacon Eggs Benedict for the others, the meat eaters among us, to try.
The Challah French Toast (Php395) was also heavenly. It had two pieces of French toasts, cut into halves and stacked on top of one another, and stuffed with Nutella and raspberry preserves and caramelized bananas topped with crispy bacon, powdered sugar and whipped cream, with maple syrup and whipped butter on the side. Tasting as good as it looked, the Challah French Toast offered a myriad of flavors and textures – salty, sweet, savory with a tangy bite, crispy, soft, creamy and powdery – that married beautifully on the palate.
We all feasted on the Banana Walnut Pancake Stack (Php325) served with whipped butter, whipped cream and maple syrup. The caramelized bananas on top gave a sharp contrast to the walnuts drizzled on top of the stack of pancakes, and it was a match made in heaven. Between Earl, another good friend Marlon Aldenese, Raff and me, the pancakes were gone in no time at all. Diners ordering pancakes at Mr. Jones also have the option of having Blueberry, Lemon Ricotta, Mango Caramel or Peaches & Cream aside from the Banana Walnut that we had – and have the waffles instead of pancakes, as well.
I also had a portion of the “Big Boy” Fried Chicken & Waffles (Php350), which was a generous platter of two pieces Fried Chicken served with chicken stock gravy and two pieces of waffles served with whipped butter and maple syrup.
Then there was the Super “Texas” Taco (Php295) from the Big Sandwiches menu that we ordered. It’s a huge tortilla taco that comes with a choice of grilled “Gaucho” beef tenderloin or grilled “Tequila-Lime” white fish served with Mexican Rice & Beans, sour cream, salsa fresco and shredded Cheddar. Since quite a few of us were non-meat eaters, we were served the fish version. The only problem with the Super “Texas” Taco is that when you cut it up for sharing, the tortilla taco that’s so crisp and crunchy breaks into pieces. So it’s ideal for just one person to feast on it, and it’s quite filling and satisfying, taste and portion wise.
Also served was Bacon N’ Eggs, another huge platter of char-grilled bacon, two sunny side up eggs, potatoes and orange wedges.
Diners can also order the following items from Mr. Jones’ All-Day Diner Breakfast menu: A Healthy Fresh Herb & Cherry Tomato Egg White Omelet (Php320), Grilled Double Smoked Bacon & Corned Beef “Hash” (Php350), Jones’ Huevos Rancheros (Php450), and any of the five variants under Mr. Jones Best Selling “Overloads” (Php320). The latter is a choice of Jones’ Famous U.S. Ribcap Tapa, Chicken Tocino, Corned Beef & Fried Potatoes, Skinless Longganisa or Glazed Pineapple Spam, all served with two eggs “any style,” garlic rice, atchara and spicy vinegar.
As for our breakfast degustation last week, we capped it with a sweet dessert with a savory twist, Maple Bacon Sundae (Php295), a sundae glass filled with waffle croutons, two scoops of Mantecado ice cream, maple caramel syrup, whipped cream, cherries, toasted almonds and – surprise! – crispy bacon bits sprinkled on top.
(Mr. Jones is located at the G/F of Greenbelt 5, Ayala Center, Makati City, with telephone number 501-3111. It is open from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.)