We’re taking a tasty tour of Vancouver’s many brunches to create The Ultimate Vancouver Brunch Guide. This week we’re in Kits, tucking into some tasty brunch-time essentials at AnnaLena.
In a neighbourhood full of cafés and restaurants, AnnaLena stands out from the rest with its inventive menu and contemporary gallery-inspired interior (think polished concrete floors, Lego art, and Game Boy installations).
While AnnaLena has made quite a reputation for itself since opening earlier this year, in regards to its top-notch dinner service and creative fare, the casual dining restaurant, also dishes up a delicious brunch come the weekend.
Located on West 1st, and open from 10 a.m. on both Saturday and Sunday, AnnaLena boasts a stripped down and uncomplicated brunch time menu, which is great for the indecisive brunch eater.
A handful of options also an indicates that Executive Chef Mike Robbins (previously at The Oakwood Canadian Bistro) and his team have chosen to focus their attention on a few items, and do them exceptionally well.
Indeed, there are only five main meals to choose between, four of which are from the Eggs Benedict family. Using local ingredients and served on English muffins, AnnaLena offers a beef brisket, tuna belly, bacon, and veggie Eggs Benny, all of which are priced at $10.
Each Eggs Benny plate is topped with their own unique Hollandaise sauce, take for instance the beef brisket, which has been thoughtfully paired with a grainy Dijon Hollandaise, while the tuna belly has been matched with a complementary dill Hollandaise.
The fifth brekkie choice is AnnaLena’s Breakfast Sandwich, which consists of a fluffy scrambled egg, a pork sausage patty, and melty aged Canadian Cheddar, gently pressed between two lightly toasted slices of of English muffin. Gluten-free diners will be pleased to note that gluten-free muffins are also available for an additional $2.
Brunch at AnnaLena is not complete without an order from the ‘sides’ list. Topped with Asiago cheese, AnnaLena’s fries are a must-try, as is a slice of the home-baked banana bread with maple butter. Fantastically dense, moist and brimming with walnuts, this fruit loaf of sorts is a satisfying treat that can be enjoyed at either the beginning or end of the meal.
For a little greenery dig into the side salad, which is comprised of baby lettuces and seasonal veggies doused in a buttermilk dressing. More options include a fruit bowl, yoghurt and granola, and a slice of lemon cake with crunchy cashew butter.
For a little brunch-time buzz, AnnaLena’s bar manager and mixology master Kevin Brownlee (recently named the champion of Grey Goose vodka’s 2015 Canadian Pour Masters competition), offers patrons a range of suitably boozy brunch concoctions, including the “Ah, the Caesar”. Comprised of charred onion gin, roasted vegetables, rosemary, sriracha, black pepper, and sea salt, Brownlee’s Caesar is a sure fire way to guarantee a great day.
Those looking for an alcohol-free beverage, Brownlee also mixes a couple of fruity mocktails, which include the Mint Condition (a refreshingly light libation comprised of blood orange, cold pressed apple juice, fresh lemon, cinnamon and mint), and the XO Punch (cranberry juice, fresh grapefruit, ginger, lime and soda).
With a simple yet generous menu, an enticing cocktail list, smiley service and a positively clean, modern space, AnnaLena is a great nook to enjoy a spot of weekend brunch, especially for those who are constantly on the hunt for more Eggs Benny options.
Address: 1809 West 1st Avenue, Vancouver
Hours: Brunch served Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 1:45 p.m.
UPDATE 05/04/16: AnnaLena has announced that their brunch service will end on Sunday, May 8.