Make us your home page
Instagram

An ode to one of St. Petersburg's best brunch deals: Engine Rose's $8.50 eggs Benedict

The brunch sun over St. Petersburg shines dimmer. On Aug. 9, Engine Rose announced its shocking closure, and my life will never be the same.

It was a special day when I first stumbled upon the former best brunch in Tampa Bay. I was floored — almost a dozen different eggs Benedict? $3 mimosas and draft beers all day? For four glorious hours on Sundays, the Grand Central District restaurant, sister spot to burger joint Engine No. 9, had the best-kept brunch secret in St. Pete.

There was a classic Benny on perfectly toasted English muffins. A smoked salmon Benedict sat over crispy hash browns. Portobello mushrooms were the base for a vegetarian delight. Crab cakes floated over Canadian bacon with a chipotle hollandaise. Chicken and waffles with a poached egg became the ultimate sweet-and-savory pairing. Fried plantains were the base for two boys: a veg-friendly huevos rancheros, and the perfect dance of shrimp and chorizo.

The king of them all was, without a doubt, the fried green tomato Benedict, complete with a chunk of seared pork belly and a chipotle hollandaise.

But the Benedicts were only as good as the poached eggs on top, and Engine Rose's were perfect. There was never an overcooked yolk; they sat atop these dozen indulgences impeccably cooked, the golden egg oozing over the rest of the dish.

It became my mission to eat every one of these varied Benny styles. Now, that mission will forever be a distant dream. I will never be able to stake my claim in completing this legendary list of brunch delights, never be able to overcome my denial of red meat to see how the aged shaved sirloin, American cheese and peppercorn hollandaise came together.

There was fervor. There were days I arrived at Engine Rose, eyes bright and stomach grumbling, yet brunch would be over.

"There was a huuuuge party, it was packed from noon until now," the bartenders would tell me as I slyly rolled in around 2 p.m. "Who told!?" I'd demand, ignorant of the fact I had literally been talking about the brunch to anyone who would listen in the past months.

 

Today, I only have the photos. I only have the memories of $3 Crank Cycle on tap. I only have the videos of my yolks breaking, squirting gleefully over home fries. I only have the unbelievable story of brunch for under $20 with a full stomach and a soft buzz.

For now, all I can do is pour out some mimosa, choke back my tears and look for the next yolk to break.

An ode to one of St. Petersburg's best brunch deals: Engine Rose's $8.50 eggs Benedict 08/11/17 [Last modified: Friday, August 11, 2017 2:11pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Channing Tatum drops out of Weinstein Co. movie about sex abuse

    Movies

    LOS ANGELES — Channing Tatum is no longer developing a film with the Weinstein Co. that dealt with a boy dealing with the aftermath of sexual abuse.

    Channing Tatum at the premiere of "Comrade Detective" in Los Angeles. Tatum is no longer developing a film with the Weinstein Company about a boy dealing with the aftermath of sexual abuse. (Associated Press)
  2. Plan your weekend: Clearwater Jazz Holiday, Faith Hill and Tim McGraw, MarineQuest, Florida Orchestra pops in the park, rodeo

    Events

    Plan your weekend

    Concerts

    Music weekend: Clearwater Jazz Holiday, Faith Hill and Tim McGraw and Bruno Mars all in one weekend? We have a playlist of a weekend coming up. Thursday brings Bruno's sold-out 24K Magic World Tour to Amalie Arena. The next day brings the country power …

    Bill Clark and Danelle Dasouqi admire the chalk art on the side walk during the final day of the three day Chalk Art Festival in Clearwater Beach. JIM REED/STAFF
  3. Ticket window: Harry Potter movie concert, Andrea Bocelli, Ed Sheeran, Iliza Shlesinger, Alan Parsons Project on sale this week

    Music & Concerts

    Tickets for the following events go on sale this week:

    British singer Ed Sheeran performs during the Italian State RAI TV program "Che Tempo che Fa", in Milan, Italy on March 12, 2017, 
AP Photo/Antonio Calanni
  4. 13 things to do in Tampa Bay on Oct. 19

    Events

    Bruno Mars: Get your Uptown Funk on at the Grammy-winning pop star's 24K Magic World Tour. 8 p.m., Amalie Arena, 401 Channelside Drive, Tampa. $41.25-$131.25. (813) 301-2500.

    LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 25:  Bruno Mars performs onstage at 2017 BET Awards at Microsoft Theater on June 25, 2017 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images for BET)
  5. In a world of pop queens, Bruno Mars is the king. He plays Tampa on Thursday

    Music & Concerts

    For a few years now, pop music has been completely and utterly dominated by women. Taylor! Beyoncé! Adele! Katy! Gaga! They're everywhere! And they're all goddesses, each and every one!

    NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 22:  (Editorial Use Only) Bruno Mars performs onstage during Bruno Mars: 24K Magic World Tour at Madison Square Garden on September 22, 2017 in New York City.  (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for Atlantic Records)