First Taste

New Breakfast and Lunch Spot Comes to Old Town By Way of San Francisco

When a new spot opens in town, we can't wait to check it out -- and let you know our initial impressions, share a few photos, and dish about some menu items. First Taste, as the name implies, is not a full-blown review, but instead a peek inside restaurants that have just opened, sampling a few items, and satisfying curiosities (yours and ours).

Restaurant: Dottie's True Blue Cafe Location: 4151 North Marshall Way, Scottsdale Open: Almost three months Eats: American breakfast and lunch items. Price Point: Around $11 to $30 a person

There's a line out the door and the wait times can be maddening, but this isn't The Breakfast Club or Dottie's True Blue Cafe in San Francisco -- in fact, it's the second location of Dottie's True Blue Cafe in Old Town. And before word starts getting out, it might be a good idea to drop by for breakfast.

I'm glad I did.

Owned by Brent Abney, the brother of the original Dottie's chef-owner Kurt Abney, the Old Town location stays true to sister restaurant's casual, all-American breakfast and lunch fare served up in generous portions and made with quality ingredients. The Old Town location also mimics the original's offering of fresh-squeezed juices and an in-house bakery where, on my visit, I had a tasty brown sugar muffin packed with fresh, sweet strawberries.

My friendly server knew a lot about Dottie's and directed me to two a.m. dishes that did not disappoint. The first, a substantial scramble of whiskey-fennel sausage, mushroom, and baby spinach ($11.50) was a clear standout -- its luscious bits of smokey, salty sausage easily the star of the show. Its accompanying home fries, too heavy on the rosemary, were dismissed in lieu of a spicy slice of grilled chili-cheddar corn bread.

And for those who prefer their pancakes on the heartier side, Dottie's whole wheat buttermilk version (two for $7.95) should do nicely. Wonderfully spiced with hints of ginger and cinnamon, they pack a healthy dose of whole wheat, which may promote covering them with more real maple syrup than usual (not such a bad thing.) Ask for them with a side of Dottie's stellar bacon ($4.35) -- killer strips of crispy, peppery, and salty goodness -- and you've got yourself a morning meal that might hold you over until dinner.

In the former home of the Bada Boom Pasta Room, Dottie's interior is hardly diner-like save for an array of whimsical salt 'n' pepper shakers, tea pot and cup chandeliers, and a few posters of '50s-era movie starlets, but it is warm and welcoming nonetheless. Wooden tables and chairs on a polished wooden floor are surrounded by walls swathed in tan and lots of natural light courtesy of the restaurant's many windows. There is a main dining space, patio, and a small coffee and baked goods area for breakfast biters on the go.

I'm excited to go back to Dottie's to try more breakfast eats as well as to find out what she's cooking up for lunch.

Here's the menu.

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