I’m a breakfast guy. Always have been. It is not just the most important meal of the day, but if you time it right, you can also do it with a sandwich. Win-win. Time it perfectly, and you can do it with mimosa and cantaloupe. Win-win-win.
Wherever I go, I try to root out the best breakfast joint in town (diner if possible). And if you’re in Lexington, Kentucky, heck, if you’re in Kentucky at all, there’s one place I’d recommend above all others…
Doodles: Heartwarming Comfort Food in the Heart of the City
Located at 262 N Limestone, Doodles is a locally owned, locally sourced breakfast and lunch restaurant with some serious game. The best breakfast houses declare themselves so with their hours, and Doodles is no exception. Open at 8, closed by 2. I don’t need to say more, but I will.
Doodles is almost always packed, partly because it only seats a few dozen people, but also because the food is very good.
Coated in a sunny yellow (a personal plus for any breakfast establishment), Doodles dares you to remember your troubles, before it smothers you in a warm bath of homefries. There are worse ways to die. The seating is tight-knit but comfortable, and the coffee is self-serve. The atmosphere immediately conveyed is a sense of companionship and family.
The food is affordable (roughly $8 a plate), and the staff is kind, courteous, and efficient. The kitchen is visible from any seat in the house and yet the restaurant is never crowded or loud.
And then there’s the quality of the meal itself. There are no wrong answers on this menu, and I mean that literally. Whether you’re going for the Pigs & Puffs (delicious bacon atop four beignets), Lillie’s Egg Doodle (biscuits filled with eggs, and cheese grits), or the Kentucky Hot Brown Quesadilla (self-explanatory), there is something for anyone with an appetite. And if you’re feeling a mite peckish, there’s the Oatmeal Brulee or Salad Doodle. A blindfold and dart would be as good a way of choosing as any other. Every option is delicious and every option is sourced right from home (as you can see on their website).
Their breakfast items are so good, it’s almost a pity to choose the lunch.
The Nit Picks or (How to Mess with Perfection)
Lest I come across as a mindless devotee to the house of Doodle, I will look into the face of God and his creation and spit in his eye.
Here it comes.
Are you ready?
I have to insist that you come in the spring or summer when their patio opens. Otherwise, your choices of seating drop by half, and if you’re thinking about coming on a weekend in the winter, you’re going to have to wait your turn.
That’s it. That’s all I’ve got. I’ve been coming to Lexington for five years now and that’s all I have to say in opposition. But you know, you don’t tell DaVinci how to paint.
Last Word On Doodles
Kentucky is not a state without problems. But it’s also a state with good people and a proud heritage. However, their priorities can be out of whack. They have a state-funded recreation of Noah’s Ark, but THIS, this cathedral of taste, this beacon of flavor, this is what they should build monuments to.
Lexington may be the self-declared “horse capital of the world” but to me, it will always be the home of Doodles; the best breakfast in the Bluegrass State.
Get the biscuits & gravy. Oh and a plate of beignets for the table. This is my favorite place to visit in Kentucky, and I have family there.
For more Food Tourism, check out Kata Stevens’ review of Hudson’s Seafood on the Docks.
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