322 Main Street
Seal Beach, CA 90740
Well it took me almost a full twelve months, but I can finally cross one of my new year's resolutions off my list. With this visit to the wonderful city of Seal Beach, we have now officially eaten in every city in Orange County. Yes, that's all 34 of them, which does not seem like a lot, but because we are deep in south OC, it is kind of hard to make a trip to La Palma or Seal Beach. With traffic being what it is most of the time, an hour and a half drive does not really work so well for dinner. We were not to be deterred though.
Both Katie and I woke up earlier than normal on a recent Sunday morning and made the forty minute trip up the 405 Freeway. There was no traffic on this colder than average December morning, as there was plenty of room to race up to our destination. We parked at the pier and decided to walk the downtown strip towards Crema Cafe. Yes, there were other options, but Crema had been on my list for so long I almost felt a duty to them that they would be the first restaurant we ate at in this coastal city.
Walking up Main, I noticed a lot of near empty places serving breakfast, and there was only one spot that seemed to rival the wait at Crema, and that was Old Town Cafe. I felt pretty good about my choice, especially since I have read so many good things about this place in the OC Weekly. Of course since this was a Sunday morning at just after 10, I was prepared for a wait, and yes, there was one of about 45 minutes. We left our phone number with the hostess, and were able to walk around the shops until our table was ready.
I was already hungry, so our first stop was to their walk in bakery next door to get something to tide me over. I went with their Chocolate Croissant ($3) as the thing that would keep my hunger pains at bay while we waited for a table. This was probably one of the better croissants that I have ever had. Very flaky and buttery on the outside, soft near the center, and good quality chocolate in the middle. I was very impressed, and excited that Katie only wanted one bite of this.
We finally got a text that our table was ready, so we scurried back as quickly as we could. When seated, we were placed on the larger than I expected patio. I was not done trying their baked goods, so I made sure to order this Cinnamon Pull Apart ($2.75). I'd describe this as a miniature monkey bread, which was a little more dense. It had plenty of cinnamon inside, and the icing did not intrude too much with this. A very solid pastry.
Katie looked at the menu long and hard before making her decision to have this Seal Beach Omelet ($10.88). It came with bacon, tomato, avocado, cilantro, and cheddar jack cheese inside of it, and was served with their breakfast potatoes and choice of toast, which Katie went with their marbled rye. She really enjoyed this breakfast, which she called fresh, well seasoned, and delicious. The potatoes, and the rye bread, which was made on the premises, were standouts in her mind.
I also had a tough choice to make when choosing a breakfast selection here at Crema Cafe. I eventually went with the Breakfast Crepe ($11.49). This crepe was filled with chorizo, scrambled eggs, potato, cheese, and then topped with avocado slices and sour cream. With all this going on here, I'm still surprised that the thing that sticks out to me the most with this plate is the sour cream. This was not your grocery store kind of sour cream. It was well made, and was one of the creamiest I have ever had. The crepe itself was well done, and was a great vessel for the guts of this breakfast. The chorizo had an odd texture to it, but I still enjoyed it. There could have been a little more cheese, but in the end, this filled me up nicely. I'd probably try something else on my next visit here, but this was a good choice for my first time at Crema Cafe.
Crema Cafe did well to introduce us to the cuisine of Seal Beach. Both Katie and I really enjoyed our stay here, and could easily see why this restaurant gets such high praise from locals, and the restaurant blogs that we read. Service was cordial, and the food made its way out of kitchen in a timely manner. Not the best breakfast that we have ever had, but definitely better than average, and the bread items are what to key in on at Crema Cafe. With other Seal Beach favorites, Walt's Wharf, 320 Main, Spaghettini, Beachwood BBQ, and Nick's Deli yet to try, the city of Seal Beach will soon be tired of having us around.
Out of five wooden piers, (because Seal Beach is home to the second longest wooden pier in the state, with only Oceanside's pier being longer), five being best to zero being worst, Crema Cafe gets 3 wooden piers.
For more information about Crema Cafe, go to their website here: http://cremacafe.com/