Breakfast Battle: Early Bird vs. Purple Cow

I love brunch. I unashamedly, whole-heartedly, absolutely love brunch. I am that girl. Lucky for me, the Waterville area has a lot of cafes and breakfast spots that I tend to frequent. Now that I live downtown, Selah Tea and Joregensen’s Cafe are just two minutes from my door. But today I want to talk about my two OG favorites: Early Bird and Purple Cow. Both just a short drive away from campus and well worth the extra few minutes, both restaurants are Colby staples. But the real question is, which one is better? After some extensive research (consisting of many, many visits to both) and interviewing other Colby students, here are my thoughts. 


Early Bird

My go-to order: the #4 (two eggs over easy, bacon, white toast) and coffee

True to its name, this place opens at 4:45 every morning. The food comes out quickly, the staff is always friendly (who knows how because they’re up before the sun, but they always serve you with a smile), and every bite is delicious. I’d say this place is a more bare bones, classic American diner type spot. No frills, just straight up good food. Beware that Early Bird is cash only, but with super reasonable prices, you can get a full meal and more for under ten bucks.   


Purple Cow House of Pancakes

My go-to order: three chocolate chip pancakes, bacon, and iced coffee

I have to admit my biases here: Purple Cow holds a special place in my heart because it was the first breakfast place near Colby I ever went to. My COOT mom took me and a couple of my “siblings” here during the first week of school, and it has become my friend group’s go-to brunch spot.  

With that out of the way, let’s crack into it. As the name suggests, this is the place for pancakes, and they come out the size of a dinner plate, so be prepared for leftovers. The walls are covered in quirky vintage signs and posters, and there’s a drive-thru (chocolate chip pancakes to-go, anyone?). This place will make a bigger dent in your wallet than Early Bird, but they take card. Mornings tend to be very busy, and you may need to wait for a table, but the large space guarantees that it won’t be long. 


In conclusion: both places are great but have very different vibes. If I want quick and greasy eggs and toast, I head to Early Bird. If I’m in for a longer brunch experience and want something sweet, I go to Purple Cow. When I asked my roommates which they would claim is best, the votes were split evenly. In other words, no matter which animal themed restaurant you choose, you can’t go wrong.