Colorado Springs breakfast battles: New restaurants compete with old favorites

It has been said that breakfast is the most important meal of the day.

That’s certainly true for the wealth of breakfast-focused restaurants and daytime eateries — both new and old — in the Colorado Springs area.

The fast-food sector has been seen as driving increased restaurant breakfast business in recent years. McDonald’s introduction a few years ago of all-day breakfast gave a hefty boost to the chain’s sales.

But if you think people in this frenetic, on-the-go society only have time to grab an Egg McMuffin or other quick breakfast snack, think again. Sit-down restaurants are getting their share of the morning crowd.

“We have a lot of regular customers who eat with us three or four times a week,” says Randy Price, who owns three Urban Egg, a Daytime Eatery (formerly Over Easy) restaurants in the Springs as part of his Rocky Mountain Restaurant Group. “They go to the office, drop their briefcase, then might grab a colleague and come down for a business meeting. Instead of in a conference room, they like to do it over breakfast and a cup of coffee.”

Snooze, an A.M. Eatery touts “fresh twists on America’s favorite classics.” Courtesy of Snooze

The National Restaurant Association says breakfast “offers huge potential for repeat business, because many people get entrenched in morning routines.” Becky Fairchild, the marketing “storyteller” for Snooze, an A.M. Eatery, says the Denver-based chain is finding that more and more people who didn’t used to make breakfast a priority are doing so now.

“People are really starting to focus on how they start their day,” she says. Snooze, which plans to open a location on the north side of Colorado Springs in the spring, “is a place where they can gather their thoughts in the morning and really connect with other humans before they start their day.”

The morning crowd gathers at Sandy’s Restaurant in Colorado Springs on Saturday, Nov. 17, 2018. (Photo by Kelsey Brunner/The Gazette)

Crippen was just 13 when she started working at Sandy’s in the early 1980s; she bought the business in 2001. The secret to her success? “Basically trying to keep prices as low as possible,” she says. “And everything is made in-house, including the bread and the cinnamon rolls and the biscuits and the chilies and soups and gravy.”

First Watch’s Power Breakfast Quinoa Bowl. Courtesy of First Watch

Snooze, meanwhile, touts “fresh twists on America’s favorite classics.”

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