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How to get eighteen people aged 5 months to 75 years well-dressed and smiling for a family photo?

Feed them first.

My dad raved about the new restaurant Four Sisters Café in Roseville, CA for months, telling my sisters and I, “Just wait until you taste their food. You’re gonna love it.”

Despite the praise, which my father tends to give generously when he’s fond of someone or something, I went in with my own set of expectations (and a set of jackets to cover the nice clothes I knew my kids would probably spill syrup all over).

I judge (yes, judge) restaurants by three standards: cleanliness, service, and food quality. Here’s how Four Sisters measured up:

Cleanliness: Four Sisters was immaculately clean (and cute), which was a relief to my hungry stomach. I’ll swallow gum and count myself fed before I’ll eat in a dirty restaurant.

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Service: The service was excellent and the smiles large by everyone who visited our table. Most impressive was the camaraderie a couple of the owners had with my parents, who dine there often. It showed they really care about the people they serve.

Food: I ordered a Belgian waffle with strawberries and whipped cream. Here’s where it gets a little tricky. I’m sort of indifferent when it comes to waffles. So why did I order one? Because I like whipped cream and strawberries, and the way the little squares soak up syrup. Other than that, waffles are like glorified bread to me.

Whenever I order waffles I eat until the toppings are gone and move on to the potatoes and bacon. I expected to do the same at Four Sisters, and would have been a satisfied customer had I needed to. But this waffle was GOOD.

Aesthetically it looked like your typical Belgian waffle.

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But the execution produced a light, fluffy bite topped with home-made whipped cream (one bite and you knew it was the real deal), fresh strawberries, real maple syrup, and a blackberry hoisted like a star on top. I ate breakfast like I was truly breaking a fast…whole waffle, bacon, and potatoes, with orange juice and coffee to drink.

I left better than satisfied, with my only regret being to sit through thirty minutes of a photo shoot sucking in my cantaloupe of a breakfast stomach.

The sisters at Four Sisters Café are an example of great teamwork between siblings who become business partners. They’ve gotten off to a great start with exceptional quality and service and should be in this business for the long haul if they continue down the path they’re headed.

If ever in the Sacramento area, try them out for yourself. Just make sure you exercise some portion control if you need to take pictures afterwards :-).