To me, it seems that Orange County lacks great breakfast places. Or at least it is true in Irvine where the Irvine Company pushes away everything but boring chain restaurants.
I always venture outside of Irvine for breakfast. It’s just not good here. My go to place for the last few months has been The Snooty Fox (also in Laguna Hills, strangely no review yet). Lately, I haven’t been impressed with it, the quality has gone downhill. But where would I find a new breakfast place?
My friend happened to send me a picture of a great looking Mac and Cheese at at place I have never heard of called Break of Dawn. A couple days later I had to try it myself.
Hidden in a corner near Laguna Hills Mall is Break of Dawn.
The Mac and Cheese ($14) was definitely unique and complicated. Bacon fried eggs, Sicilian sausage, short rib, and tomato-Parmesan cream. Not like any Mac and Cheese you have ever had before.
Was it good? Yes. Was it worth the price? Maybe. The bacon was great and plentiful. You can never go wrong with thick, smoky bacon. The sausage was more hidden, so much I can’t even describe it. The egg on top was a great touch also. The one fault with the dish was the tomato-Parmesan cream sauce. It was rich but over done. For a few moments I thought I was eating lasagna and not breakfast.
If you are a Mac and Cheese lover, give it a try. You most likely will be impressed.
The Green Eggs and Ham ($12) on the other hand was a more basic yet colorful play on eggs benedict. The poached eggs were cooked perfectly. The Asian pesto-hollandaise was light and delightful unlike most hollandaise sauces where all you taste is hollandaise sauce and nothing else. The potatoes were seasoned well and what you would expect.
Lastly, keep an eye out for this small bottle filled with amazing hot sauce. The flavor is great with a little bit of heat. I added it every bite and tried to keep myself from taking the bottle home.
As for service, it was friendly. The food arrived quickly but it would have been nice to have my drink refilled more than once.
Break of Dawn makes great food and is highly recommend for breakfast, especially in an area such as Orange County that seems to lack great breakfast spots. Chef Dee Nguyen, 2008 Riviera Chef of the Year, knows how to use ingredients to make unique and tasty food. The prices may be a little on the high side, but is worth it for the ingredients used.
Break Of Dawn
24351 Avenida De La Carlota
Laguna Hills, CA 92653