Just a quick dash

While in Minneapolis last week, we had some really tasty sheep’s milk cheese purchased from a local cheese shoppe (more in a later post).  Attempting to do something nice for my boyfriend, I thought I’d use my lunch to zip over to the Cheese guy at the Lansing City Market to see if they had this stuff (they didn’t but if I knew the actual name, could probably get it).

I would have walked, both to save gas and for the exercise but its 80 degrees with humidity near 90%; I really didn’t want to get that sweaty and the distance is such that I would have needed a pretty brisk pace to make it roundtrip in my hour break.

Ha.

After swinging by the postal boxes by the Capitol building, I planned to continue on to Grand Avenue. Turns out you can’t turn left there, at all, due to the CSO project.  The CSO project will be tearing up city traffic until 2020. Long-term benefits are probably great but in the meantime, it sucks. Especially when the lane closures change from day to day.  I turned around to go down Washington, not an easy drive at lunchtime and even worse when some spacy girl doesn’t know how to drive her stick-shift.

I finally get down to Grand and Shiawassee where I intend to slide over the bridge to the market.  Except its closed! This time, due to Common Ground activities, which started last night.  I thought this was an evening event so I was suprised to see the parking people already looking to collect fees.  After yet another completely out of the way detour, I finally made it to the market.

No cheese but I stopped at the East Lansing Food Co-op mini-store and bought some whipping cream from Calder Dairy (in Lincoln Park) and a packet of sunflower seeds from Country Life Natural Foods of Pullman (near South Haven in Wester Michigan).  As I’m paying, the manager asks if I had an trouble getting there due to the construction and rerouting.  Ha Ha.  She then tells me that a lot of vendors aren’t coming in this week since its too much hassle.  And she was right.  The fish people were gone, the local meat company was off until Friday and there were only a few fresh produce vendors in the East Wing. 

 

Since Shiawassee was still closed, I had to find an alternate route back to the Hall of Justice.  By the time it was all said and done, I should have just walked. 

 

I’m really looking forward to using my cream in tonight’s dinner that will include morel mushroom risotto.

Sawyer’s Gourmet Pancake House

It took me about a week of driving past this little place to figure out the name.  And actually, I didn’t get the name from the front of the building.  Its easy to be distracted by the giant banner proclaiming “World’s Best Blueberry Pancakes.”  I happened to be flipping through City Pulse newsmag and recognized the same claim in an advertisement.

The following Saturday, Chris and I headed down there for brunch, about 12:30.  It was the first warm Saturday of the spring and the restaurant was hopping.  We waited about 40 minutes for a table, thinking this better be worth it.


And it was. Sawyer’s kitchen is stocked with organic and locally grown ingredients.  (Nearly) Everything is made from scratch. Their pancakes are made with organic, stone-ground flours from Michigan’s oldest stone-ground mill.  Eggs are from Eggland’s Best vegetarian-fed chickens.  You can get real Michigan maple syrup for your pancakes. And coffee is free-trade.  Not organic, free-trade or even that good for you but important to us: they carry Coke products.

Since that first visit, I have been back about 4 times. Chris, about 40.  Seems he’s been going there to eat lunch and study several times a week.

My favorite item thus far has been the California Turkey Burger.  You can get the turkey burger a couple of different ways but anything with avocado is going to be towards the top of my list. The restaurant serves breakfast till close and lunch starts at 11 AM. I’m not a huge breakfast eater but I did have a bite of Chris’s omelet this past week and I think I’ll get my own next time.  I’m also constantly tempted by the French Toast.  French Toast is my favorite carb-friendly breakfast but I’m rather particular about the toppings.  French Toast should be topped with powder sugar only.  I’m amazed at the rarity of powder sugared French Toast in restaurants. Maybe its something exclusive to my family or the midwest or???

Sandwiches come with your choice of hashbrowns, home fries, regular fries and sweet potato fries. I’ve had each variety and actually, the hashbrowns were my favorite.  The fries (including sweet potato variety) are good but a little on the softer side.  I like my fries crispy on the outside, soft in the middle. 

Sawyer’s has started barbequeing on the front porch every Friday from 11AM to 3PM.  Even if you don’t make it Friday, you can usually benefit from the leftovers through the weekend. 

The only negative thing I can say about the restaurant is that the kitchen can be very slow sometimes.  For Sunday brunch, I don’t mind waiting but I would be worried about a weekday lunch if my time was tight.

Deets:

Web: http://gourmetpancakehouse.com/
Address: 608 W Saginaw St, Lansing MI 48933
Hours: Monday-Friday 6AM-3PM; Sat & Sun 7AM-3PM

Accepts credit cards, totally non-smoking

Get a half-off gift certificate for Sawyer’s from WLNS here.  As of June 20th at 12pm, there were only 14 left!