A seemingly quaint restaurant serving casual, Southern-inspired fare in a modern fashion, The Nest has become Bellflower’s finest breakfast joint.
The Nest always has a crowd of hungry customers waiting to be seated and ready to enjoy a scratch-made meal. Even at 11 a.m. on a Monday, the line is out the door and the wait, a painstakingly long 30 minutes. However, The Nest is quite aware of their long wait times and has equipped the front door with coloring sheets, pencils, and sidewalk chalk for “the kids” (yes, more adults than children are eagerly coloring away waiting for a table on any given day.)
Once seated, the ambience of The Nest hits in full force: the restaurant radiates an industrial feel, but, the large windows at the entrance make the experience bright and inviting.
In addition, the loud music and noisy door are made up for with the welcoming wait staff: orders are taken with great care and a smile. Although the food may take longer than expected, much like the wait, it is well worth it.
One of The Nest’s specialties is the grilled strip steak served with two eggs and a side of chimichurri home fries. The steak, cooked to medium, is juicy and has a deep, dry-aged flavor, which compliments the zesty chimichurri home fries. Chimichurri sauce, traditionally made from parsley, garlic, oil, and vinegar, among other spices, adds a touch of much-needed brightness to what would be a heavy meat and potatoes dish.
Although I wholeheartedly enjoy this dish, the one disappointment is the sloppy plating. Why serve a dish on a plate that has a raised rim when all of the food cannot sit nicely in the middle? As a result, the food appears cluttered, and potatoes fall on the rim of the plate. Regardless, the steak and home fries as a whole is a successfully dish.
On the flip side of a meat and potatoes dish, the unassuming Veggie Scramble is a menu highlight: tender mushrooms, bright tomatoes, and vibrant kale pop in this dish. I opted to order the tomatoes on the side to ensure that they did not make the eggs soggy, however, this concern was unnecessary as the eggs were cooked well. I believe that the mark of a good restaurant is how well scrambled eggs are prepared and, by this test, The Nest passes with flying colors.
But, my favorite item on the menu is the good old-fashioned pancakes, reminiscent of one’s childhood. Fresh off the griddle, as the fluffy, golden brown pancakes arrive at the table, you can almost hear Saturday morning cartoons in the background as the aroma of butter and maple syrup strikes. One cannot leave The Nest without trying their pancakes!
Although The Nest lacks convenient parking and wait times can be long, the hearty breakfast and welcoming service results in regular customers week in and week out. I had to park half a block away since their small parking lot was full, but after my large breakfast, the walk back did me good. Just remember to set your alarm clocks early because the early bird gets the worm at The Nest.