We’re taking a tasty tour of Vancouver’s many brunches to create The Ultimate Vancouver Brunch Guide. This week we’re enjoying maximum brunch indulgence at Sai Woo.
Already popular for their sophisticated meld of Asian and European dinnertime dishes, it’s only logical that Sai Woo would add Sunday brunch to its offerings.
Chef Keev Mah and Sous Chef Brandon Pham debuted Sai Woo’s brunch service on Valentine’s Day 2016, and since then have been dishing up a range of mouthwatering temptations. Some dishes present thoughtful takes on long-established brunch favs, while others boast distinct Asian-inspired flavours.
A concise yet varied brunch menu greets customers as they sit down in Sai Woo’s gorgeous dining room. It features a Veggie Omelette ($13 — seasonal vegetables, tomato emulsion, hash browns and salad), Mix Green Salad ($9 — potato, seasonal fruit, radish, and pumpkin seeds, dressed in Kaffir lime vinaigrette), and a Daily Congee ($10 — a type of rice porridge).
Brunch traditionalists will gravitate towards the Eggs Benedict ($15), and for good reason too. Sai Woo crafts a perfect and original plate of Eggs Benny, which is composed of homemade scallion biscuits, Chinese sausage, wilted greens, a light yet creamy Hollandaise sauce, and the choice of wonderfully seasoned hash browns or salad.
Sai Woo’s wildly popular Fried Rice bowl ($12) also makes an appearance at brunch. While the savory dish contains only a handful of ingredients (rice, greens, scallions, and a fried egg) it is incredibly tasty, and will have diners making “mmm” noises with every bite they take. True to form, this bowl is light yet satisfying, moist but not mushy, and boasts delicious charred flavour tones.
In addition to the larger plates listed, the Chinatown locale also offers an array of sides, including the must-order Sai Woo Bacon ($6). Fabulously smoky, Sai Woo’s bacon is wonderfully crisp and soft all at the same time, and simply dissipates in the mouth.
Those looking to dig into something a tad sweeter should make a point to try the gluten-free Cashew Pancakes ($11). Although the aerated pancakes and cashew cream are both naturally savory, they rely on the Szechuan Peppercorn syrup and strawberries to bring a balanced sweetness to the dish. The sprinkling of cashews on top add an interesting texture, while the mint leaves bring freshness.
Excellent food, a brunch menu with a twist, and a chic yet comfortable setting make Sai Woo a fabulous choice when it comes to picking a place to brunch on the weekend. Remember brunch is only served on Sundays–at least for the time being.
Address: 158 East Pender Street
Hours: Brunch is served Sundays, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m