The White Coyote Café is one of T or C’s real treasures.
First visit: February 12, 2012
Walking into the White Coyote is like walking into your dear grandma’s living room with a few more tables than she has. Unless she runs a restaurant, that is. There was a fine classical guitar softly filling the space from some speakers. Two sweet grandmotherly ladies inhabit these rooms: Eunice Hundseth, the owner and primary cook, and her assistant Mo, who also does some baking (she made my bread pudding).
White Coyote is open from 8:00 – 2:00 four days a week, and closes down during the summer months. Eunice, no fool she, told me that it gets quite hot in T or C and a hot kitchen is no place to be in. Plan your visits accordingly. But don’t you dare miss it, especially for Mo’s bread pudding.
The menu here is small, but each item is among best of breed. Mostly breakfast and brunch stuff with some amazing baked goods. I had their carrot cake the day before at Black Cat Books & Coffee, and it was superb. The Black Cat plays fine classical jazz (jazz24.org streams 24 hours each day) in the background. Read, sip, nosh, and listen here. Hang out.
Lemon custard French toast served with real maple syrup.
Everybody makes french toast. Nobody else makes it like this. Really tasty lemon custard and real maple syrup. Very smooth texture, not overly eggy. This may be the best french toast I have tasted anyplace i n New Mexico, and that includes the Grove Café & Market.
Frittata: marinated artichokes, mushrooms, onions, zucchini, cheddar cheese and otatoesserved with romaine salad and house dressing.
The Italian word frittata derives from fritto, the past participle of “to fry” (friggere), and was originally a general term for cooking eggs in a skillet, anywhere on the spectrum from fried egg, through conventional omelette, to an Italian version of the Spanish tortilla de patatas, made with pasta instead of fried potato. Outside Italy, frittata was seen as equivalent to “omelette” until at least the mid-1950s.
In the last fifty years, “frittata” has become a term for a distinct variation that Delia Smith describes as “Italy’s version of an open-face omelette.”
Eunice’s frittata is loaded with very fresh and tasty ingredients. Nicely eggy and the potatos do not dominate, as they tend to do in less capable hands. This is crazy good.
Apple bread pudding with caramel sauce and whipped cream.
I share an affliction with my friend Gil Garduño, New Mexico’s Sesquipedalian Sybarite: We are both bread pudding junkies. He once, in a moment of fantasy, suggested that we start a New Mexico Bread Pudding Trail modeled after the famous New Mexico Green Chile Cheeseburger Trail. Nah, Gil. But I do maintain an informal Hall of Fame on this blog, and there is a section for bread puddings. Mo’s bread pudding made it to the number four slot on that list.
This apple bread pudding is one of the best desserts of any kind that I have had in New Mexico. Soft apples, but not too soft. Silky smooth bread texture without even a hint of sogginess. Sweet caramel, without a hint of bitterness. And the whipped cream — OMG. Mo is a genius.
There is simple beauty served up in this place. I can’t wait to go back to T or C for a chance to try everything else on the small menu. I expect everything else to be crazy good, too.