"This has to be the most lowbrow, stoner-amazing, guilty pleasure thing we've ever put on this menu," said owner Dave Massoni when he brought a bowl of Dale Talde's Sausage, Egg, and Cheese Fried Rice ($9) to our table. And that's about right. I've been to Talde for brunch quite a bit, and this is the bowl I can't leave without ordering.
There are other dishes on the brunch menu that are technically more impressive, like incredible crisp-edged corn pancakes with Edwards ham (and I'm picky about pancakes). But the fried rice awakens some sort of carnal must-eat-it-all instinct that's impossible to suppress. Chunks of sausage and egg speckle the rice, in just the right proportion—big enough that you feel like you're actually eating sausage and egg, not just getting little stray scraps, but small enough that you get both in every bite. What actually accounts for its salty, satisfying, what-makes-this-so-expletiving-awesome factor, though? Kraft American singles, melted right in. You might not notice if you didn't know it was in there, but there's a particular so-processed-and-so-good quality that could only come from a bright orange cheese product.
Pro tip: If you order anything that comes with their coconut brown butter syrup (those corn pancakes, or Korean chicken wings & waffles), pour the syrup right over the top. You will know things you didn't know before.
The only time I didn't finish a bowl was when I massively over-ordered on a recent Saturday (okay, maybe 7 dishes was a bit much for two people) and got to take the rest home. Then when I overdid it at the bar on Saturday, and woke up miserable on Sunday morning? Sausage, egg, and cheese fried rice waiting in my fridge, ready to be microwaved, and I didn't even have to leave the apartment. THAT was a true hangover helper.