Which omelet is king?

Clark Kerr
Wayne Hsieh /File

No one likes doing anything on a Saturday morning, including making breakfast. That means a Cal Dining brunch is in order, and the best part about any dining hall’s brunch is the omelet bar. Made to order and covered in cheese, it’s no secret that omelets are the star of the show. But which dining hall’s omelets rise above the rest? The quality of an omelet is determined not only by taste, but also by the line and the person making it. Crossroads, Foothill and Clark Kerr all make compelling cases, but only one can be crowned the omelet king.

The Taste

Crossroads: Here you’ll find your typical omelet with a thin blanket of eggs folded over a fair helping of cheese and toppings. Nothing stands out, nor is there much to complain about aside from the poorly melted cheese. A typical omelet is still a fantastic brunch, although Crossroads does have a tendency to run out of bacon.

Foothill: Similar to Crossroad’s omelet, Foothill’s is nothing to marvel at. It’s about the same in every way except people aren’t denied bacon as much. If you’re a bacon lover, you should consider a trip up the stairs to Foothill. The certainty of bacon is well worth the trek.

Clark Kerr: Clark Kerr’s open faced omelets look like egg pizzas, and they are as delicious as that sounds. No one melts cheese quite like the omelet masters at Clark Kerr, and the omelets are thicker than at either of the other dining halls. It’s unconventional, but Clark Kerr, you do it right.

The Wait

Crossroads: It’s safe to assume that unless you get to Crossroads early, there’s going to be a disappointingly long line. Luckily, there are two omelet stations, and if the omelet prodigy is manning the one in the back, you can expect him to make a blistering six omelets at a time. The other station can usually handle a respectable four omelets, but even all that firepower won’t save you from a lengthy wait during peak hours.

Foothill: Foothill’s line is usually better than at Crossroads, and their usual pace of four-omelets-at-a-time isn’t bad at all. However, omelet efficiency has been known to drop to three or even two omelets depending on who’s working the station. Foothill may not be a gamble on the bacon, but it is on the wait.

Clark Kerr: Only two omelets are made at at time at Clark Kerr, and at the most crowded hours, it’s simply not fast enough. There’s a man at Crossroads who’s three times as efficient. If you go early, the line is almost never long, but even an average-sized line at Clark Kerr can take as long as a line that goes around the corner at Crossroads.

The Omelet Makers

Crossroads: The Crossroads omeleteers are a real class-act. They’re polite, sociable and patient even when it’s the 100th time they’ve had to tell someone they’re out of bacon. You may even get the occasional joke. Anyone that makes that many omelets and can still pleasantly interact with the general public deserves to be omelet royalty.

Foothill: The omelet makers here are equally courteous to the ones at Crossroads with less of a penchant for jokes. That could be a good thing if you don’t think the people at Crossroads are very funny, or if you’re just not in the mood for a laugh so early in the morning.

Clark Kerr: Here lies the greatest omelet maker in all of Cal Dining. No one else has ever been spotted making omelets during brunch because the outcry would be enormous. The man brings his own radio and always has it tuned to classic hip-hop. If you’re lucky, you’ll catch him spit some bars or drop some moves. The best part comes if you ask him for extra cheese. With a knowing look in his eye, he’ll smother your omelet with more cheese than egg with a smile that says, “I got you, man.”

Let’s be clear — all dining hall omelets, no matter what shape, size or cheesiness, are winners. The fact that we don’t have to do anything to get one except show up and wait in line is equally incredible. But one omelet reigns supreme, and it’s the one from Clark Kerr. Despite the relatively slow omelet output, anything with that much cheese has to be No. 1. Plus, how could we not choose the omelet that was made by a man rapping along to Ice Cube?

Contact Ryan Melvin at [email protected].