The Southwest Bennie, Flying Star’s model of eggs benedict, consists of poached eggs and inexperienced chile turkey sausage over English muffin halves. (Richard S. Dargan/For the Journal)

Flying Star’s longevity in Nob Hill is a minor miracle. Think about that throughout the road stand the empty husks of Zacatecas and Tio David’s, two eating places that opened with appreciable promise after which closed within the relative blink of a watch.

Often called Double Rainbow when it opened in 1987, the Nob Hill spot kicked off town’s espresso store growth. Its mixture of funky décor, inhouse-roasted espresso, baked items and hearty diner meals proved to be each fashionable and influential. Inside a few many years, house owners Jean and Mark Bernstein added eight places and a by-product operation known as Satellite tv for pc Espresso.

The growth was fast; too fast, it seems, because the enterprise fell behind on its payments and collectors got here calling. In 2015, the Bernsteins needed to shut the Santa Fe and Bernalillo places as a part of a Chapter 11 chapter submitting.

Six years later, Flying Star is again from the brink, a restoration symbolized by the Nob Hill location’s reopening after a number of months of renovations.

I visited on a latest weekday morning to take a look at the brand new look.

Flying Star’s brioche-based French toast. (Richard S. Dargan/For the Journal)

At first look, it’s nothing too dramatic. Brick partitions have been uncovered, there are new seating preparations and the cubicles have charging ports. The menu of burgers, sandwiches, salads and bowls, concise sufficient to suit on a placard that stands by the doorway, stays a lot the identical.

I used to be there for the all-day breakfast. The bar for breakfast/brunch eating in Nob Hill is about excessive by two close by institutions, The Farmacy and The Store. Flying Star’s spaciousness provides it a major benefit over these locations, even with costs which are just a few ticks greater. It’s a spot that welcomes hanging out, and that’s what the gang of old-timers and faculty college students was doing once I was there. Nobody appeared in any specific hurry to depart.

The drinks menu is highlighted by two previous standbys: the Pink Stuff ($3.95/$4.95), a mixture of cranberry juice and natural teas over ice, and an Iced Java ($4.95/$5.75) that tastes a bit like a espresso shake.

Occupying the place of honor atop the menu, the Mexican Latte ($5.45/$5.85) was served in an enormous glass mug, permitting views of three distinct layers: the froth on prime, the physique of the drink and a silty layer of cinnamon and cocoa on the backside. Spicy and candy, it’s a terrific drink for a chilly morning.

Huevos Rancheros served to-go with purple chile on the facet. (Richard S. Dargan/For the Journal)

The breakfast menu affords an excellent break up of the candy and the savory. On the savory facet are breakfast sandwiches, burritos, and the Southwest Bennie ($14.95), Flying Star’s excellent model of eggs Benedict. Whereas the everyday eggs Benedict is a quite tidy affair, in Flying Star’s model the English muffin halves are buried below a jagged pile of shaved Parmesan and queso sauce dusted with blood-red cayenne pepper. Every chunk bursts with taste and warmth and the sauce and runny egg yolks make a form of gravy for the inexperienced chile turkey sausage. It’s expensive, however price it.

On the candy facet, French toast is out there in two variations: the Fabulous ($13.95), served with bananas, strawberries and a caramelized brown sugar sauce, and a minimalist model known as, fittingly, Simply French Toast ($10.95). The latter comes as two large slabs of brioche, stacked and lower into quarters. The toast was properly caramelized, however the dish was slightly one-dimensional and would have benefitted from a sprinkle of nuts and dried fruit.

Flying Star has integrated extra gluten-free and vegan choices into its menu through the years. I picked up two of these gluten-free dishes to go: Huevos Rancheros with corn tortillas ($12.95) and Gluten-Not Flapjacks ($11.50).

The huevos rancheros offered a fairly customary assemblage of two eggs over papitas, pinto beans and shredded cheese, with a purple chile on the facet that was extra smoky than scorching. As with the Southwest Bennie, the eggs have been properly ready, and the yolks stayed runny even after heating within the microwave.

The gluten-free flapjacks have been a pleasant shock. Somewhat than merely swapping out the wheat flour for rice flour, Flying Star fortifies the batter with millet, flax, sunflower and pumpkin seeds after which tosses slivered almonds and dried cranberries over every thing. In addition to making the dish more healthy, the add-ins give it textural distinction. The 5 pancakes within the takeout container stood as much as the syrup properly whereas remaining mild and fluffy.

Service was strong. The eat-in order got here out in about 5 minutes, the to-go order took 15.

My go to to Flying Star’s authentic location jogged my memory of its virtues. It’s affords a welcoming setting for each giant events having a meal and lone espresso drinkers hunkering all the way down to do some work. We’re lucky to have such a spot in our metropolis.

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