Fusion and favorites are on the menu at LIT Café. Bowls piled high with fresh, colorful ingredients make a mouthwatering meal engaging to the eye. And, petite pastry artworks like delicate meringue peaks and chocolate with berries desserts look too delicious to eat. But, eat you must because this beautiful fare is a tasty and remarkable dining experience.
Location: 1701 N. Tustin Avenue, Suite 100, Anaheim, California
Menu: Breakfast Plates, served all day, including scrambled eggs, onions, applewood smoked bacon, and cheese. Add other ingredients and wrap in a flour tortilla to make traditional burritos. You can also select a sandwich on brick toast, chilaquiles, and a garden omelet from the other choices. Or, you can create your combination of the staples.
Breakfast Toast is a stand-alone section on the menu. A simple Morning Toast with cheese and citrus aioli, LIT Brick Toast with eggs, bacon, onions, and citrus aioli, and the Open-Faced Turkey Croque Monsieur complete this section.
The lunch menu offers four salads – house, Caesar, spinach, and Quinoa CHOP!. Two beef burgers come with fries, and you can add avocado, an egg, or applewood smoked bacon. Unique sandwiches come on brick toast, sourdough bread, or a hoagie bun.
Out of the Ordinary dishes are two of the house specialties. The Lit Loco is a Japanese-style hamburger steak with a jus, egg, potato salad, and house-made pickles. Blackened salmon is served teriyaki style over rice with crisp daikon sprouts, shiso, sesame seeds, wonton crisps, and pickled red onions.
Beverages include house blends of ice coffee, house-made chocolate ganache with milk, hot chocolate, tea, sodas, and fruit juice. Of particular interest, however, LIT Café also serves two caffeine-free probiotic cold-pressed juice along with a kombucha.
Thoughts: Culture and training influence the flavors at LIT Café where two successful careers bring French, Mexican, Indonesian, and Japanese traditions to the dining table.
The owners, David Fujimura and Erica Tjangnaka, a husband and wife team, produce extraordinary meals and desserts that appeal to many tastes. Both of them trained at Le Cordon Bleu Pasadena, and they have worked with top chefs in Southern California.
The thoughtfully designed menu is for meat-eaters as well as vegan and vegetarians. The fusion-style makes terrific flavor combinations. You can also get favorites with an updated taste.
Take the Brick Toast, for example. Morning Toast is brick-cut shoku pan lightly grilled gratinè with cheddar and parmesan crust and citrus aioli. The bread is from Cream Pan, a renowned local bakery.
This favorite, Morning Toast, was the result of breakfasts that David enjoyed as a child. His mother made toast with mayonnaise and love. Brick Toast is simple but so tasty.
The moist, warm blackened salmon served over rice was a rich, savory, and sweet dish. I expected a harsh “blackened” smack when I ordered the Blackened Salmon Teriyaki Bowl. On the contrary, the combination of the fish, and other ingredients was very smooth.
Crunchy fresh grilled corn, ruby red cherry tomato halves, purple onion slices, black beans, cucumbers quinoa, feta cheese are piled high in the Quinoa CHOP! salad. The ingredients, so obviously ripe, could be the subject of a still-life painting. The Quinoa CHOP! is perfect for a vegetarian dinner or hold the cheese and you’ve got vegan artwork. A yuzu (Japanese citrus fruit) vinaigrette dressing is served on the side.
A visit to the exquisitely designed pastry display is always a must. Erica arrives very early in the morning to prepare her artistic creations. Her mother, an accomplished baker, was also a significant influence in Erica’s career. The attention to detail in the pastries is remarkable.
All meals are available to go. And, you can order the pastries ahead for special occasions.
The light and airy atmosphere at LIT Café has a casual yet stylish vibe. The hours are designed to serve the large workforce in the area as they serve breakfast and lunch during the week. However, they also serve brunch on Saturdays with adult beverages like mimosas and bloody marys. They just created a grapefruit popsicle served in a champagne glass with sparkling wine. I can’t wait to try it.
Price Range: Breakfast Plates are $9-12; Breakfast Toasts are $5.50-8; salads range from $8-11; sandwiches and burgers are $7.75-15, and Out of the Ordinary dishes are $12. Ask about the pastries prices in the display.
Disclosure: LIT Café very generously hosted my lunch and provided two entrees for this review.
Julie is a member of PPA and ITWPA and can also be found at www.jdptravels.com.
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