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Runner-Up: Ovo Frito Cafe
January 27, 2023
Located just a few blocks north of downtown Evanston on Maple Avenue, Ovo Frito Cafe’s bright atmosphere, five-star service and extensive menu make it the perfect spot to enjoy an early or mid-morning meal.
Ovo Frito “started as a dream for an American dream,” as co-founders Roberto Flores and Zinnia Iglesias put it on the website. The husband and wife team worked a combined three jobs for over 13 years before finally opening their cafe in July of 2017—it immediately took off.
The menu is, no doubt, the main factor in Ovo Frito’s success. The sheer size of it is sure to have you struggling between a “delicious craving” (something sweet), a classic omelet (perhaps what they’re most known for) or maybe something from the “breakfast eggsquisities” section. The many unique American and Mexican-influenced dishes range from cinnamon pancakes to chorizo to equally delicious vegetarian and vegan options.
“One of my favorite things to order at Ovo Frito is the Zarzamora French Toast,” freshman Chloe Von Hoff says. “It’s french toast filled with pastry cream and has blackberries on the top.” She also recommends washing it down with a steaming cup of hot cocoa topped with whipped cream and chocolate syrup.
I took Chloe’s advice and tried the Zarzamora French Toast for myself. If you have a sweet tooth, this dish is made for you. A river of sweet cream and fresh blackberries sit sandwiched between two pieces of brioche french toast. Topped with powdered sugar and whipped cream, every flavor present in the Zarzamora French Toast perfectly compliment each other to create a great experience for your taste buds.
From what I’ve heard, you really can’t go wrong with anything on the menu. Freshman Ethan Martin agrees.“Everyone’s meal at the table was delicious and paired well together.”
Aside from the menu, the bright, welcoming environment contributes to the restaurant’s success as well. Translating to “fried egg” in Portuguese, Ovo Frito takes inspiration directly from their name for their decorations. Stepping into Ovo Frito is like stepping into the yolk of a fried egg. From the sharp yellow of the walls to the eggshell hanging lights to the egg-inspired art all around the restaurant, the whole atmosphere is one that is sure to have you smiling all through your meal.
Ovo Frito has never disappointed, so next time you’re in the mood for a morning meal, head down Maple to the perfect little brunch spot—Ovo Frito.