MO’S EGG HOUSE

Food: () Extensive menu with eclectic breakfasts and more predictable lunches.

Service: () Friendly, efficient servers offer suggestions and keep coffee cups filled.

Atmosphere: () Stylish “barnyard” ambiance with a floor still under repair.

More Info

Location: 950 SW Veterans Way, Suite 100 (Fred Meyer Shopping Center), Redmond

Hours: 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. every day (weekdays from 6 a.m. in summer)

Cuisine: Eclectic American breakfast and lunch

Price range: Breakfast $6.25 to $13.95, lunch $7.95 to $11.95

Credit cards: American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa

Kids’ menu: Breakfast and lunch selections $6.99 for age 10 and under

Vegetarian and gluten-free menu: Options include the veggie omelet and Elvis French toast (with peanut butter and banana).

Alcoholic beverages: No

Outdoor seating: No

Reservations: No

Contact: mos-egg-house. business.site, 541-527-4314

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Had it not been for last year’s volcanic eruption in Hawaii, Central Oregon would likely not have its newest early-day cafe.

Mo’s Egg House opened in mid-November in Redmond’s Fred Meyer Shopping Center. But a few months earlier, owner Monica (Mo) and Rick Daniells had been casting their eyes toward the Kona Coast after selling their restaurant in Southern California.

“We were going to Hawaii (to) do a food truck,” Mo said. “But then, the volcano hit.

Although the lava outburst from the Kilauea volcano was limited to the southeast of the Big Island, it affected the atmosphere over a broader area. That was enough to convince the Daniellses to consider an offer to assume the Redmond lease — even though they had never before been to Central Oregon.

“We drove out here, liked what we saw, and thought we’d just do it,” Mo said. “I still want to get something in Hawaii, but it may be just a vacation home.”

Mo’s Egg House is a welcome addition to the local dining scene. With Rick in the kitchen and Mo in the front of the house, the Daniellses have a breakfast-and-lunch establishment with excellent food, especially on the morning side of the ledger, and distinct style.

The atmosphere nods at a sort of barnyard ambiance without mud and hay (although a new linoleum floor still had not been installed as of a week ago). A colorful animal mural occupies a back wall, while paintings and curios — as well as a trio of flying pigs — accent other surfaces.

Service is excellent, with a team of friendly and efficient servers attending tables (the cafe seats about 60), offering suggestions and making sure coffee cups are kept filled. They’ll even offer a wedge of complimentary, fresh-baked coffee cake before your start your meal.

Breakfast

My dining companion and I became big fans of breakfast with our first sit-down. Unlike some restaurants, where morning choices are lean, Mo’s Egg House offers no fewer than six dozen choices. There are omelets like the Front Street (with bacon and artichokes), benedicts like Gino’s crab cake, French toast stuffed with peaches and cream, or spread with peanut butter and bananas (the “Elvis”).

I jumped on Rick’s Scramble ($11.95), which replaced ground beef and pork belly with ground turkey and turkey bacon. This “kitchen sink” egg mishmash added Mexican flair (green chiles, tortilla strips and a spicy raspberry-chipotle sauce) to grilled onions, cream cheese and half an avocado. Potatoes O’Brien were sauteed with red and green bell peppers, and a flaky biscuit came with savory country sausage gravy.

My companion, always a fan of bagels and lox, opted for the Nova Lox Plate ($13.95). The sliced, smoked salmon and toasted onion bagel came with capers, cucumber, red onions and sliced tomatoes. And rather than hard-boiled eggs, the plate was served with a generous portion of scrambled eggs.

Lunchtime

Generally speaking, I liked Mo’s breakfasts better than the lunches, although my distinctly nontraditional Yucatan chicken Caesar salad ($11.75) was excellent.

A sliced breast of grilled chicken, seasoned with spicy ground achiote powder, was served on a bed of fresh lettuce that included not only romaine, but also other mixed greens. Avocado, jack cheese, red onions, red beans, kernel corn and tortilla chips completed the salad, which was served with a delicious house ranch dressing on the side.

I would not again get the garlic cheese toast that also came with the salad. Instead of a sprinkle of grated cheese, the bread was practically floating in melted jack cheese that poured off its edges. That was more — far more — than I needed or wanted.

Along with the salad, I chose from among three daily soups (cup $4.50, bowl $6.95) offered. Spanish-style albondigas (meatball) soup and a beef-barley blend were inviting, but I selected a chicken-and-corn chowder. Thickened with potatoes and maybe a little corn starch, it had excellent flavor.

I found a Reuben sandwich ($10.95) to be good but nothing exceptional. A dozen thin slices of lean corned beef and an ample spread of Thousand Island dressing were the best parts. But the sandwich was light on sauerkraut and Swiss cheese (a single slice), and the light rye bread on which it was grilled was decidedly not artisanal.

My friend did enjoy her crispy chicken wrap ($10.95), a generous bundle of breast meat, breaded and deep fried, along with spinach, avocado, tomato, corn, black beans and cheddar cheese, dressed with barbecue and ranch sauces and rolled in a large tortilla. And a side of potato salad, rich in egg but light in mustard, finished the meal.

— John Gottberg Anderson can be reached janderson@bendbulletin.com .

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