The answer to, "Should I get a cinnamon roll?" at any of Matt Gordon's restaurants, including Urban Solace in North Park, Solace and the Moonlight Lounge in Encinitas, and Sea & Smoke in Del Mar is an emphatic, "Yes!" every time, caloric implications be damned. Skip it and not only does brunch feel incomplete, but you might also be forced to watch someone at a neighboring table enjoying their cinnamon roll. That level of raw, emotional pain is best avoided.
At Sea & Smoke, you've got two options: deck out a roll with toppings like buttery pecan sauce, house-made granola, toasted coconut, and cream cheese icing at the cinnamon roll bar ($5), or dig into a Cinnamon Roll Sammie ($12), ham, brown sugar and black pepper bacon, aged white cheddar, a fried egg, and a drizzle of maple syrup sandwiched between a cinnamon roll that's been sliced in half.
At first glance, the cinnamon roll sandwich might seem like an attention-grabbing stunt, but that's not Matt Gordon's game. His food has finesse, and this sandwich is just another example.
The ham and bacon are both slightly sweet, so the flavors mesh with the roll, while introducing some warm smokiness. The melted white cheddar cheese, meanwhile, brings a touch of salt and some tang, which helps the sandwich achieve a more even balance and the egg, with its molten, runny yolk, ties it all together. All told, the craziest thing about this sandwich isn't that it's made with a cinnamon roll, but how well it all works.
Cinnamon rolls are a weekend-only affair at Gordon's other restaurants, but at Sea & Smoke, the cinnamon roll sandwich is available from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. all week long.
About the author: Erin Jackson is a food writer and photographer who is obsessed with discovering the best eats in San Diego. You can find all of her discoveries on her San Diego food blog EJeats.com. On Twitter, she's @ErinJax