Bitter January Brings Oh So Sweet #52Breakfasts

The bitter cold of this January has not deterred Mike and me from beginning our 2014 #52breakfasts quest!

We started off the year with a pleasant experience at the Hi Life! Diner in Mechanicsburg.  I was in a “sweet mood” and the specials board had “Cranberry Banana Pancakes” So I looked no further.Cranberry & Banana Pancakes w/ Two Eggs & Bacon They were really good! Mike opted for a Turkey & Pastrami w/Asparagus Omelette which may have actually been “turkey pastrami” because there was no actual pastrami to be found in it. He enjoyed it otherwise. Hi Life! does breakfast 24 hours a day.  It’s a safe bet with nice service.


Week Two we joined our friend Sue at The Gas Station in Hummelstown.  They do a Sunday Brunch from 11-3 each week. It’s $10.95 for each dish and INCLUDES your choice of Bloody Mary, Mimosa, Screwdriver or Non-Alcoholic beverage.  Great prices and clever menu.  I had the Petrol, which was  sort of a bennie done with Shortrib on Fried Potato Skins w/ a truffled Mornay Sauce.  It was pretty yummy, and I was super pleased with the bloody!"Petrol" at The Gas Station  Sue had a crab cake benedict w/ roasted tomato hollandaise, which was one of the specials. Freakin’ delicious! Crab Cake Benedict  Mike had already scoped out the “Full Service” which was a crocque Madame reuben-style!

Full Service-Crocque Madame reuben-style

All in all, The Gas Station was a deliciously sound value, although the food could have been warmer!

Now week 3 brings our winner of the month:

Last winter, Shakedown BBQ began a Sunday Breakfast Series for about 8 or 9 weeks.  We missed it, but this year we were right on time!  They post that weeks breakfast menu around noon on Wed via twitter &  facebook and then reservations for their 3 seatings opens. Seating is at 8, 9:15 and 10:30.  BOOK on a Wednesday ASAP (but not for Super-the Big Game-Sunday) They only have about 16 seats indoors.

We met our friends Ryan and Stefan for Shakedown’s opening breakfast week on Jan 19th.  UNBELIEVABLE!  Because we love to eat and our friends are always happy to share we could pretty much taste the full menu. 

We started by sharing the Tomato Pie w/ Bacon Jam…yes. BACON.JAM.

Shakedown's Tomato Pie w/ Bacon Jam


The big breakfast item was Chicken & Waffles.  We weren’t sure what to expect because that means different things to different people, but this was the best of all worlds! Chicken & WafflesA waffle beautfully friend boneless chicken breast, smothered in a creamy chicken & bacon gravy.

Mike went with the Shakedown SunRise & Shine which is two eggs, breakfast meat, sunrise spuds and grilled bread.Sunrise & Shine   We’re not sure if it automagically comes with bacon and sausage, but what a good solid way to start the day!

Stefan and I both went with the Creme Brulee French toast w/ berries and Creme Anglaise. Creme Brulee French Toast It had a delightful crunch from the burnt sugar but was not overly sweet, so it was PERFECT!  I love that they serve their sweet dishes with breakfast meat as well, because I adore sweet, smoky, savory combinations and this fits the bill!

The fact that Shakedown is a barbecue joint and is BYOB makes it one of our favorite nice weather spots.  We brought Mimosas to begin our Sunday! How to find it? Make a right by the Hollywood Casino and Race Track in Grantville…and follow the smoke!

Mike’s and my last spot this month was a traditional greasy spoon, The West Shore Diner by the West Shore Farmer’s Market. This place is in one of those old metal diners and it’s right out of the 50’s, complete with old album covers decorating the inside. West Shore Diner Not for the claustrophic or someone who likes everything spic & span!  Sausage Gravy over allThis is a working man’s joint! Good food and a lot of character!  Mike had a Philly Cheesesteak Omelet,  and I had sausage gravy over biscuits and homefries (with onions!)


Our list of places to go within 30 miles of Harrisburg is growing!  Don’t forget to tweet , facebook, or otherwise contact me with your suggestions, and perhaps join us!


2013 Mike and I started out on a mission to try a different breakfast restaurant for each week.  Mike quickly hashtagged #52breakfasts and the rest is (Harrisburg local) history.


Dodge City - Crab Benedict
Dodge City – Crab Benedict



What started out as a break from our normal Sunday Morning Breakfast routine at “CPD” became an adventure in our own back yard!   Although it started as a Sunday thing, we had a lot of “makeup” dates due to travel and holidays etc.

We documented our visits through twitter and foursquare posts and came up with our Favorites using Excellent (ZOMG), Very Good (Super Pleased), Good (As expected), Fair (meh), and Poor (bleh)

Topping both our lists for 2013 is Dodge City Steakhouse in Harrisburg. The Crab Benedict and the DC Smoked Jalapeno Bloody Mary was fabulous. You can bet if there is bloody on the menu, I’m going to get it! Mike’s Breakfast Flatbread was his top pick for the year. Both were served with bacon and a small cinnamon roll.

Dodge City - Breakfast Flat Bread
Dodge City – Breakfast Flat Bread

We also agreed on two others.

Yellow Bird Cafe in Midtown Harrisburg, with their tasty breakfast sandwiches on huge housemade english muffins is a new Midtown Favorite. It’s super cute space serving light fare featuring their housemade baked goods.

Timeless Cafe in Lebanon is an adorable place with clocks galore! They offer a huge array of teas and coffees, breakfast sandwiches and baked oatmeal to die for! (oh…and the scary green “Swamp Water” tea you must TASTE to believe how crazy delicious it is!)

Our other favorites were:

Sturges Speakeasy on Forster Street where I had a spectacular BBQ Pork Belly Benedict and fantastic bloody mary (another contender for best damn bloody in the burg!)

Sturges Speakeasy -BBQ Pork Belly Benedict w/ Corned Beef Hash
Sturges Speakeasy -BBQ Pork Belly Benedict w/ Corned Beef Hash

At the Hershey Pantry, you simply cannot go wrong!  This visit I had the raspberry baked oatmeal and Mike tackled a cinnamon roll the size of his dinner plate!

Hershey Pantry - Baked Oatmeal and HUGE Cinnamon Roll
Hershey Pantry – Baked Oatmeal and HUGE Cinnamon Roll

Cinco de Mayo brunch, we hit up El Sol on 3rd St. We both had Huevos Rancheros and build your own Bloody Marys.  Actually, we chose tequila for Bloody Marias. Ay yi yi, delicious!




St Patrick’s Day took us to the Federal Taphouse on 2nd St, where I had a Smoked Burger Benedict and Mike had the Irish Soda Bread French Toast.

Federal Tap House - Smoked Burger Benedict
Federal Tap House – Smoked Burger Benedict

The Peachtree Restaurant & Lounge on Progress had a breakfast sandwich on sun dried tomato focaccia that blew our socks off!

Click Here for our full list for 2013 and our personal favorites!

Follow us using #52breakfasts for 2014!

*A personal favorite, Mangia Qui I had been to independently over the year, but not together, so we did not count it.  We will be doing Mangia Qui soon!

Ever since coercing Mike into joining twitter, he has become obsessed.  You can follow @MDGuzy for quips and food pics, cat humor and to keep tabs on his other obsession: foursquare, in which he currently holds 31 mayorships and has earned 56 badges.