San Francisco: Mama's on Washington Square

Since our weekend plans were delayed due to AF's canceled flight, we had to squeeze as much as we could into what time we had left.  This was critical considering how AF wasn't sure at the time if she could make it back to the Bay Area during the remaining weekends of July.  We had to make that weekend count.

So we started off Sunday with brunch at Mama's on Washington Square.  Mama's had been at the top of our list from the very beginning, but we kept putting it off as other things came up.  Finally, it was time.

I knew that there would be a ridiculous wait - all the reviews online warned of it.  I also knew that the Monte Cristo (which I was DYING to try) was on the lunch menu and thus wouldn't be served until 11:00am.  Calculating in the expected 1+ hour wait, AF and I decided to meet at Mama's at 10:00am.

I arrived a bit early at 9:45 and the line was already terrifying:

Good thing I got there early.  Even so, we still didn't make it inside until 11:20am.

Once you're inside you aren't immediately seated.  Instead, you line up at the counter to place your order and then wait for a table to open up:

There aren't that many tables.

Standing at the counter is doubly painful because not only can you see everyone around you eating, but you can also see what's going on in the kitchen and everything they're churning out looks GOOD.  Suddenly you aren't sure what you want anymore.  In fact, you want everything.

Luckily, the guy who took our order was really friendly and apparently Mama's grandson.  Who better to ask for recommendations than the actual grandson?  We also asked him if Mama's was always that busy and he said basically, yes.  The only time it slows down a bit is around 1:00pm on weekdays.  Noted.

The food came pretty quickly once we were seated.  Here's the long awaited Monte Cristo:

That's turkey and ham sandwiched in cheddar and havarti cheese bread that's dipped in egg and grilled and served with homemade blackberry jam.  Uh.  Talk about a really happy party in your mouth.  I wanted to weep, it was that good.

The jam was also amazing, though I still think the raspberry preserves at La Note may be the best.  (I haven't been to La Note in Berkeley for so long that I'm starting to fear that I'm just hyping it up in my own mind...)

Mama's grandson suggested the french toast sampler over the smoked salmon omelette we were contemplating:

The sampler comes with three different kinds of french toast: Banana nut, Swedish cinnamon, and chocolate cinnamon.  Definitely all delicious, but it kind of paled in comparison to the Monte Cristo.

I am such a fan of Mama's.  I would come back all the time if only the wait wasn't so long.  If I ever do return, I'm definitely getting an omelette.  The omelettes we spotted on other tables looked DELICIOUS.

Mama's on Washington Square
1701 Stockton St
San Francisco, CA 94133
(415) 362-6421


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