Posts Tagged ‘Breakfast’
When Jesse and I first purchased the B&B, I often got aggravated with Jesse because the breakfasts were being cooked and served slowly to the guests. We were new to the job and there was definitely a learning curve. Jesse was an attorney in Staten Island before we moved to Maine. He had a successful practice that saw a lot of different civil cases. Jesse dealt with divorces, personal injury, estate planning, worker’s compensation and many other truly stressful situations that clients would bring to him day and night. When I started stressing about the breakfast coming out late, he would say “Kristi – please – it is only breakfast!” I would answer, “when you own a Bed and Breakfast – you can not get the breakfast wrong”. We both appreciated each other’s point. Since then, move ahead 9 years, we are doing a pretty good job on getting breakfast out on a timely basis. Once we got over that hurdle, I was able to truly appreciate the service that we provide. Breakfast is considered the most important meal of the day. Jesse and I try our best not only to get it out on time, but to provide a breakfast with wholesome ingredients that will power our guests for their Maine vacation day. In addition to those wonderful characteristics of breakfast, a warm meal makes our guests comfortable and welcome in our Inn.
This past weekend, we had a man from Dubai stay at the B&B. He was not originally from Dubai, but has lived in Dubai for the past 20 years. He was born and raised in England and very much had an English accent. The reason I mention this gentleman is because he opened my eyes a little more to my everyday task of serving breakfast. When I brought the food to the table, he said – “Yes, please give my girlfriend the traditional American breakfast” – she had ordered the blueberry pancakes. When he made this observation, I felt obligated to mention that the breakfast that he ordered was a traditional English breakfast – poached eggs over toast with bacon and ketchup. I did note that I was surprised that he did not order a bowl of cereal before his meal, as many of our overseas English guests do. He agreed that the bowl of cereal is an English tradition. I continued this dialogue of traditional breakfasts by sharing the orders I have taken in the breakfast room that have sometimes confused me. I know some orders are just personal taste, such as the peanut butter omelet that someone once ordered, but most of the time when a guest orders, they are looking for a familiar dish that perhaps they have not had in a couple of weeks because of traveling. If we could provide this familiar breakfast morsel, they would be so grateful. One truly confusing order for me was when a lovely couple from Israel ordered eggs and asked if we had any tomatoes and cucumbers to have on the side. I said yes and asked if they wanted to tomatoes and cucumbers cooked, because in my world salad is not for breakfast and everything is hot and cooked. They were polite and said, “no – just raw please”. We were able to accommodate them. I told the English Dubai man about this transaction and he noted that environment truly influences your eating patterns. He said “imagine living in the dessert and having a hot bowl of cereal or pancakes – doesn’t make sense right?” He said “here in New England you need a lot of calories and warm food just to get through your day”. I agreed and felt I better understood my service a little better. Breakfast is a important part of the day, it is influenced by our environments and to many it provides a memory that helps them get the warm feeling of home.
We hope when our guests come to Windward and see our complimentary breakfast menu, they will feel comfortable asking us for that breakfast they truly want that day. I love learning new recipes and traditions. Our menu now has many options including vegan, vegetarian and gluten free meals. If you love breakfast as much as we do, we hope you will join us between 7:30 – 10:00am every morning in the breakfast room. We promise to try to get the food out on time.
The Camden Windward House is the only menu option B&B in Camden. Because of that, Gluten-Free is always an option. You never have to call ahead or explain your diet or condition. Your diet is your business, don’t let it become a long discussion with Innkeepers. At Windward we take every diet seriously and have made accommodations to be mindful of issue of cross contamination.
Our Gluten-Free commitment is part of a larger commitment to our guests. My husband and I sometimes wonder, when we see what other free breakfast options are being offered if we do too much. Our breakfast, after all, is complimentary. And yet we offer an entire made to order menu that starts every day with fresh, typically organic, fruit. A couple years back when guests began to ask about gluten free we investigated it. In the beginning we were skeptical of the value and validity of the claims. After all, fad diets come and go – is this really something we should invest in? Was there really a health issue? Were people really sick? It turns out that there is a lot of proof that gluten is not healthy for you. Aside and apart from the sufferers of Celiac disease, apparently there is a link to mental function and other possible problems. The stuff I read indicates that Celiac disease makes it difficult for the body to absorb certain necessary nutrients. This can lead to other problems like affective disorders, mental fog and depression. We were the first B&B in Camden to have a gluten free breakfast. And as far as I know, we are still the only B&B or lodging in Camden that offers such a breakfast – serving gluten free breakfasts every day, and not as a special request.Gluten-Free Breakfast at the Windward House, You Are What You Eat
The old adage “You are what you eat” has a lot of truth in it. We at the Windward House have long been advocates of certain principles when it comes to eating. We believe that positive change is going to come from people voluntarily changing the way they spend their money. That’s part of the motto on the front page of our website – “Small Local Organic.” Just imagine how many of the problems of our society would disappear if people only bought from small local businesses? Small local businesses are the backbone of this country, and their independence and sometimes their downright eccentricity is what is going to make our country great again. For us that means changing what we eat. That first step is about eating healthy non-toxic humanely, locally grown food. It is that belief that underlies the breakfast we serve. While we serve naturally raised local bacon and sausage, we also have a great deal of respect for people whose commitment goes further. People who won’t eat any meat not purely for health reasons, but ethical reasons. People who won’t eat fish, also for ethical reasons. The same holds true for gluten-free foods. And for many people it is a real health problem. The sufferers of Celiac disease literally suffer when they eat gluten. That’s why we are committed to providing a menu that includes gluten-free menu items and specials daily. Every day. And we take great pride when a guest asks to speak to Jesse to get his gluten-free recipe because, as they say, “we just haven’t been able to make it that good at home!”Commitment to Gluten-Free Because We Eat it Too!
Yeah – we know it’s only breakfast but if you can’t do that right, well…. The truth is anything we cook for our guests we regularly cook for our children. Jesse and I both agree that multi-grains are better than a monolithic diet of high gluten bleached white flour. So our kids love our gluten-free pancakes and waffles and all their Maine permutations of blueberries and maple, and warm sticky rice with coconut and maple. Also the eggs benedict, the green smoothies, the gluten free cereals and all the other stuff that we serve, what people choose to order for breakfast at the Windward House. We believe in it so much that we started another company called AcadiaGreenProducts.com. At AcadiaGreenProducts.com you can find gluten-free, wheat-free, dairy-free, organic, fair trade, vegetarian and vegan products.A Commitment to Choice
Another one of our commitments that subsumes our gluten-free commitment is our belief that a fundamental core characteristic of what it means to be American is having a choice. I know it isn’t fashionable to speak about what’s American, but if choice ain’t it I don’t know what is! That’s another reason why we serve a menu breakfast, an organic, local ingredient, with Vegan, Vegetarian and Gluten-free options breakfast. And yes, you can get both bacon and sausage with your order! And yes, for us, it is more expensive, but it’s about choice. This may sound silly, or a little bit high blown for the topic of breakfast, but the fact is, if you believe in something, it should be translated into each and every decision you make from the smallest to the largest. Good stuff comes from the ground up – from what you believe, from who you are. That’s what the Windward House is all about.
Link to one of our gluten-free breakfast options
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