- MUSIC BOX: Freedom of sound
- KEEPIN IT CLASSICAL: Sounds of rapture
- GUEST OPINION: Let the animals roam
- THE FOODIE FILES: Kitchen scrap mojo
- CREATIVE PEAKS: Inanimate actors
- Craft beer cowboys
- COSMIC CAFE: Outlook = prosperity
- THE BUZZ: Dem there were three
- START Bus director hired
- Death at Van Vleck believed to be suicide
FEED ME!: Vill has new best breakfast
No longer do I, when I find myself hungry in Teton Village, bemoan the forced relocation of the Village Cafe and necessary menu changes.
The breakfasts served up at Terra Cafe, inside the swanky green-doesn’t-equal-mean Hotel Terra, are delicious. Granted, the prices and vibe of Terra Cafe couldn’t be more different than those of the VC, which I believe used to serve the best breakfasts in Teton Village.
The old VC was a wonderfully tiny and somewhat grungy space that sold breakfast burritos and sammies the size of small children for not much more than a fancy coffee drink. Unless the fancy coffee drink in question was one from Terra Cafe. In that case, the VC’s burritos were about half the price of a fancy coffee drink.
Terra Cafe is open and airy with designer lighting fixtures and floors of natural stone tile that sells gourmet bites like crepes, wild sockeye salmon, tempeh hash, and eggs Benedict with a twist. Diners also find pedestrian stuff like bagel sandwiches and burritos made precious with organic this and house-made that. Prices are about as high as the ceilings.
Because everything I’ve tried has been so good, I’ve decided to get over the prices and to bring my own double espresso.
My current favorite is Terra Eggs Blackstone ($13), the cafe’s own take on eggs Bennie. I’m going to go out on a limb and call it the best current riff on eggs Benedict in the valley.
Eggs Blackstone includes two poached eggs. And that’s about all it has in common with classic eggs Bennie. Eggs Blackstone’s two poached eggs sit atop a bed of roasted tomatoes, which are curiously very similar to sun-dried tomatoes. The tomatoes themselves are atop two slices of toasted potato bread. This whole shebang is liberally – but not so much as to be gauche, because that’s just not Terra’s style – smothered in smoked paprika Hollandaise. A nice portion of crumbled bacon bits – Applewood smoked, naturally – is the final flourish.
Eggs Blackstone is a delicious example of the sum being greater than its individual parts, although I do think smoked paprika Hollandaise might be one of the greatest parts ever. With Eggs Blackstone, it’s not just the sum of tastes, but also of textures.
Imagine the magic that would come from Giuseppe Verdi, the Beatles, Michael Jackson, and Nirvana collaborating. That’s nothing compared to the spell cast upon your taste buds by the heft of the potato bread alongside the silkiness of the Hollandaise and substance of the roasted tomatoes.
Terra Cafe’s Fuel Me Up Bagel Sandwich ($9.50) is probably the most filling thing on the menu. You get an organic fried egg and then your choice of cheese, protein, and, of course, bagel.
No self-respecting eatery in this valley can serve breakfast without doing a breakfast burrito. Terra Cafe calls theirs the Powder Hound. Price is $8. If you want your flour tortilla stuffed with bacon, sausage, ham, or veggie sausage in addition to the standard chorizo, organic eggs, potatoes, and Monterey jack, it’s $11.
“You can tell the ingredients here are better than the average burrito, especially the chorizo,” said valley breakfast burrito connoisseur Derek Stal, whom I got to watch devour a Powder Hound. “The chorizo noticeably stands out. Overall the burrito isn’t as greasy as most others. If you’re looking for a big breakfast this probably isn’t it though. But [the Powder Hound] makes up for its size with quality. Besides not everyone wants to eat a burrito the size of a baby leg. The chorizo is really good. It’s the standout ingredient.”
Hi, I’m Geraldine and my boyfriend is in love with Terra Cafe’s chorizo.
There is one thing at Terra Cafe not worth its inflated price. Not full from his Powder Hound, Derek got a cinnamon roll to go. Meeting me at the cafe’s exit, he was dazed. “It was $6,” he said. “A $6 cinnamon roll,” we both kept repeating, agreeing that it had better be the best cinnamon roll in the universe. And also perhaps be stuffed with flecks of gold.
It was neither the best nor stuffed with any precious metal. It wasn’t even stuffed with any gooey cinnamon. It was insubstantial in a non-good way, the driest cinnamon roll either of us had ever had. Pay me $6 and maybe I’ll eat one again … and then I’ll head to Jackson Whole Grocer and buy one of their $2.50 cinnamon rolls.
Terra Café serves breakfast until 11 a.m. daily. Mountain Resort pass holders receive a 10 percent discount.