I had a few errands to run this morning in Cameron Village which finally led me to The Flying Biscuit. I arrived around 9:30 am. The tables outside were full and there was a short wait. Luckily there were a few seats empty at the bar. I was greeted very quickly by a bartender. I ordered an iced chai with soy and perused the menu. The menu was huge. I was specifically interested in biscuits with sausage gravy, so I settled on the Country Eggs Benedict. While I was looking over the menu, I noticed just how many things they offered that are vegetarian. Next time I think I'll try the Eggceptional Eggs, two eggs on black bean cakes with tomatillo salsa and sour cream. I also noticed that the offerings seem to be on the healthier side of breakfast. For example, the sausage served on many dishes is not a traditional fatty pork sausage, but rather a chicken sausage, and the bacon is actually a turkey bacon. It's really easy for the fat content in a traditional breakfast to get out of hand, so it's nice to have such an alternative.
My breakfast came with a side of either potatoes, grits or fruit. I'm current in the midst of a moratorium on fried potatoes, I don't eat grits and I guessed correctly that the fruit was mostly melon (I hate melon), so I opted to skip the side, much to the bewilderment of my bartender. The couple next to me at the bar did get a side of fruit and I spied a giant blackberry in the bowl. If you're more open minded about fruit than I am, give it a try. I had a book with me, so I wasn't paying attention to the time, but my bartender came back at one point to tell me that it would be right out and it was taking so long because they were working on more biscuits. I guess I didn't notice because I wasn't ravenously hungry. I'm not sure it really took all that long.
The Country Eggs Benedict was outstanding. It was a biscuit split open, each side had a chicken sausage patty and an egg over easy. The whole thing was slathered in a sausage cream gravy. There was just the right amount of sausage gravy, the eggs were cooked perfectly, the biscuit was great and the chicken sausage was fantastic. This was so good. It was exactly what I was craving and exactly how I wanted it to taste. It was just the right amount of food too! I really did not miss the side item. As I was eating this, I was thinking how great it would be as hangover food. The portion was perfect. I was full when I was done, but didn't feel like I ate too much.
The service was pretty good. I find that service from a bartender is never as good as service from an actual waiter, generally because their attention is divided between customers and other duties. The bar staff was attentive and friendly. This leads me to believe that the waitstaff is well trained.
The Flying Biscuit is a small Atlanta-based chain. Outside the Atlanta metro area, there's one here and one in Charlotte. From the moment I arrived to the moment I left, I felt like I was in a local neighborhood joint. There's a wacky purple and orangey gold color scheme inside that is well done. The front face of the restaurant opens, which was very inviting. Today was beautiful, warm and sunny, so even if you were inside, it still felt like you were outside. The dishes look like Fiestaware, rather than corporate issue plain white plates. I know that sounds silly, but I think it adds to the neighborhood feel. So many corporate restaurants feel like corporate restaurants, rather than some labor of love belonging to your neighbors.
I had a great experience this morning. The Flying Biscuit is a great addition to Raleigh and in a perfect location. Even if you live a little further outside the Cameron Village area, it is worth the drive. Plan to either arrive early or sit back and relax either in the parlor (they have this cute little room with wicker chairs) or relax in Cameron Village. I highly recommend this place. I will definitely be back as often as possible.