There are many Champaign institutions for which we’ve found acceptable substitutes. OK, maybe not many. A few. Having Buzz down the street made up for the lack of Cafe Miels from Kopi. The fried stuff and beer at the Galaxy Hut more than made up for the loss of fried stuff and beer at the Esquire, though they’re totally different animals. But there’s no replacing this:
Sam’s French toast is the stuff of dreams. It’s basically the perfect diner breakfast. I know that by saying this, I’m risking losing some of my local food cred. But Sam’s French toast is amazing. And there’s no replacement.
You’d think that some other diner would be able to figure this stuff out. I mean, take a couple of slices of white bread – the more commercial and generic, the better. Dip them in pancake batter – probably batter made from a box mix that can be bought in bulk at GFS. Slap it on the griddle until it’s toasted golden, then top with cinnamon sugar and a small lake of imitation maple syrup.
You wouldn’t think it’d be that hard to duplicate. You probably also wouldn’t think it’d be so damned good that this weekend I tried to write a song about it to the tune of Julia. But seriously, guys, this is the best French toast on the planet.