German Breakfast @ Jägerhaus

// Visited: 1.28.12 //

When I think of Anaheim, I think of three things, in roughly this order: (1) Disneyland, (2) Vietnamese sandwiches, and (3) Emilio Estevez (you know, because of that Disney movie The Mighty Ducks, which then weirdly led to an Anaheim ice hockey team).

The point is, I don’t normally think of German breakfasts when I think of Anaheim.  And when I think of sauerkraut, I don’t think of delicious breakfasts.  Yet all those things — Emilio Estevez-land, Germans and their sauerkraut, and tasty breakfast come together in one glorious restaurant–Jägerhaus in Anaheim.

Jägerhaus is really a community gathering place.  Apparently, all sorts of groups have meetings here–like ubiquitous public-speaking group Toastmasters–but fortunately, Jägerhaus is not just a banquet room where food is an afterthought.  The breakfast had was so delicious and clearly prepared with expertise and care.  This is no small feat, as it’s harder to find a good pancake than you might think.  I feel like most restaurants just skate by on mediocre recipes, but that was certainly not the case at Jägerhaus–a pleasant surprise, to be sure.

 

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A special page of the menu--devoted to "Breakfast Meetings"! I want to attend Breakfast Meetings at Jägerhaus...

 

One friend ordered the corned beef hash.  Oh, by the way–this was probably one of the rare times that I was jealous of pretty much everything that everyone else at the table ordered.  My order (the bacon and eggs) was fantastic and expertly-made, but my eyes were bigger than my stomach and I felt greedy for everything on the menu…

 

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Corned Beef Hash

 

My other friend K. was the one who introduced us to the wonder of Jägerhaus, having lived in Orange County and enjoyed the bounty of Jägerhaus for years.  She rattled off her order as if it were engraved on her brain.  One of the items was the plain German Pancake with Lemon and Powdered Sugar.  I was tempted by all the other kinds of German Pancakes on the menu–namely, the Bavarian Cherry Pancake, which made me salivate with thoughts of French cherry clafoutis.  K. shrugged at my indecision and said, “Order the Cherry!  But trust me–you’ll like the plain pancake a lot more.”

Was she ever right.  The Cherry Pancake was certainly more visually stunning, but somehow the cherries got in the way.  The plain German Pancake was absolutely perfect, just the way that it was–like dead-ripe summer tomatoes that need nothing more than to be washed and eaten out of hand.  Anything more would just be gilding the lily.  As big as a dinner plate and as thick as a pizza, the German Pancake was simultaneously light, custardy, crispy, and slightly sweet from the dusting of powdered sugar.  The lemon added the perfect tart contrast, cutting through the rich egginess of the pancake.

 

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Bavarian Cherry Pancake

 

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Bavarian Cherry Pancake and plain German Pancake with Lemon and Powdered Sugar

 

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German Pancake with Lemon and Powdered Sugar

 

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Bavarian Cherry Pancake

 

K.’s other order surprised me, too.  Omelet with sauerkraut and onions?  Yet Jägerhaus once again exceeded my expectations: the warm sauerkraut provided a tart, crisp-soft vegetal foil to the omelet and bratwurst, which would have been too heavy in the absence of the pickled cabbage.  Oh, those Germans and Koreans–always so savvy about their pickled cabbage.

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German Omelet with Bratwurst, Sauerkraut, and Onions

 

After sampling everyone else’s food, I devoured my own dish.  As a self-styled bacon connoisseur, I try not to order it unless I can be sure that I’m not going to get some limp, microwaved piece of sadness stewing in its own grease.   Fortunately, Jägerhaus’s owner, a delightfully friendly and knowledgable white-haired lady, came by just as I was contemplating this dilemma.   She explained that Jägerhaus goes through a two-step cooking process–something about starting in the oven and finishing under a brick on the stovetop (or maybe vice versa?)–that ensures crispness.  Those were the magic words I needed to hear.  (Any time I hear “crisp,” “bacon,” and “cooked under a brick,” I get very excited.)

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Eggs with Bacon and Home Fries

 

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Eggs with Bacon and Home Fries

 

I love Disneyland and its outstanding corn dogs, and Emilio Estevez is cute and all, but Jägerhaus is the most compelling reason I can think of to move closer to Anaheim.

Jägerhaus
East Ball Road at 57 Fwy
Anaheim, CA 92806
http://www.jagerhaus.net/

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