Every time I'm back in Winnipeg, I try to make it to the Original Pancake House on Pembina Highway for a Baby German pancake. It's my favourite kind of pancake and I can't (*sob*) get one anywhere in Edmonton.
A Baby German pancake is baked in the oven. Brown, with slightly upturned edges, it has a denser texture than a griddle cake. And you don't eat it with syrup, oh no. You squeeze fresh, juicy lemon wedges all over it and then shake icing sugar on top. The thick sugar dissolves in the lemon juice and makes a creamy, delicious sauce. Mmmmm, heavenly!
The Original Pancake House was one of my old stomping grounds when I was a university student. It was a little shabby and rundown in those days. The owner obviously did not want to put a lot of money into upgrading or refreshing the decor. A skinny old geezer, he always sat on a hard wooden chair near the cash register at the entrance so he could keep his rheumy gimlet eyes on the waitresses and kitchen staff at the same time. He just sat there hour after hour, the undoubted king of his castle, barking out an occasional command.
After his death, the family extensively renovated the restaurant and added a beautiful solarium wing. No wonder it's one of Winnipeg's most enduringly popular brunch spots. I think they have a couple more locations now too. But I always return to the original Original.
And you know what? Even with all the changes, they still use the same brown coffee mugs they used in the 1970s! I suspect the old geezer's ghost likes that.