24 must-try brunch dishes in Vancouver

Oct 25 2016, 11:27 pm

It’s time to wake up and smell the coffee. And the bacon, the Eggs Benny, the bao buns stuffed with tater tots, the banana bread French Toast, and the egg-topped pasta. Oh, yes. We’re talking brunch in Vancouver.

Weekend warriors are devoted to the ritual of brunching. There are Mimosas and Caesars, sunglasses for those who went a bit too hard the night before, and lots and lots of Instagramming. From ice cream topped waffles to soulful sausage hash, Vancouver has brunch on lock.

Need help picking your next brunch destination? Consider this your bucket list. Here are 24 must-try brunch dishes in Vancouver.

1. Pulled Pork Pancakes at Red Wagon

Jess Fleming/Daily HIve

Jess Fleming/Daily HIve

Featured on both the all-day breakfast and weekend brunch menu, Red Wagon’s Pulled Pork Pancakes are one of their most-ordered dishes. Three buttermilk pancakes are layered with pulled pork and are served in a pool of Jack Daniels-spiked maple syrup. The pancakes are thick and fluffy, and the pulled pork is deliciously juicy and packed with flavour.

Address: 2296 East Hastings Street, Vancouver
Instagram: @redwagoncafe

2. Eggs Benny from Yolk’s Breakfast

The sweet little Yolk’s Breakfast cart has grown into a local brunch institution. Their flow-chart menu will help you assemble the ultimate eggy breakfast feast, and we’ll steer you their Eggs Benny, because it is pretty much the best in town.

Address: 1298 East Hastings Street, Vancouver

Address: 546 West Broadway, Vancouver
Instagram: @YolksBreakfast

3. Poutine Breakfast at Linh Cafe

Linh Café melds together the culinary traditions of France and Vietnam, but when it comes to their Poutine Breakfast dish, things get all sorts of Canadian. Hand cut fries are topped with Swiss cheese, black forest ham, peppercorn gravy, and a poached egg. Not enough for you? Add half a butter poached lobster. Whoa!

Address: 2836 West 4th Avenue, Vancouver
Instagram: @linhcafe_yvr

4. The Checkmate Caesar at Score on Davie

Score on Davie is all about wild and wacky Caesar cocktails, but none is as wild or wacky as the Checkmate. It’s an epic meal on a glass, meant for sharing. It’s garnished with a full roast chicken, Score burger, slider, chicken wings, pulled pork mac and cheese hot dog, roasted vegetables, and a brownie for dessert.

Address: 1262 Davie Street, Vancouver
Instagram: @scoreondavie

5. Grandma’s Pancakes at Jethro’s Fine Grub

Grandma's Pancakes (Jess Fleming/Daily Hive)

Grandma’s Pancakes (Jess Fleming/Daily Hive)

With cinnamon apples baked into the buttermilk batter and a topping of streusel and whipped butter, Grandma’s pancakes (which come in a low stack of two) are at times bigger than the plate they’re brought out on.

Address: 3455 Fraser Street, Vancouver

Address: 3420 Dunbar Street, Vancouver
Instagram: @jethrosfinegrub

6. Tajine at Chambar

Head to Vancouver’s venerable Chambar for a unique North African (by way of Beligum) brunch. Their Tajine is a savoury delight, featuring spicy merguez sausage, saffron tomato stew, fried pita, raita, poached egg, and fresh herbs.

Address: 568 Beatty Street, Vancouver
Instagram: @chambar_restaurant

7. The Charlie Bowl at Jam Cafe

Photo courtesy Jam Cafe

Photo courtesy Jam Cafe

Think you can eat a big brunch? Give The Charlie Bowl at Jam Cafe a go. The Victoria import on Beatty Street is dishing up this epic breakfast and brunch feast daily, which marries a good ol’ sausage, biscuit, and gravy with a hash, and comes topped with a cheery duo of sunny-side up eggs. (Of course, Jam’s over the top dishes from all over the menu are worth a try, like their Fried Chicken Benny or their Pulled Pork Pancakes. Be bold!)

Address: 556 Beatty Street, Vancouver
Instagram: @jamcafeyvr

8. Chicken & Waffles from Tuc Craft Kitchen

The best Chicken & Waffles in Vancouver? Try Tuc Craft Kitchen’s and you decide.

Address: 60 West Cordova Street, Vancouver
Instagram: @tuccraftkitchen

9. Avocado toast from Nelson the Seagull

Avo toast has become a real obsession for Vancouverites, and there’s no finer place to try it than at Nelson the Seagull, where it comes served on a wooden plank, and the avocado is sliced perfectly atop two thick-cut slices of house-made bread.

Address: 315 Carrall Street, Vancouver
Instagram: @nelsontheseagull

10. Fricassée & Lavender Latte from Cafe Medina

Cafe Medina draws lines on the daily for their breakfast and brunch foods with a Mediterranean twist. They may be known for their Liege waffles, but you’d be sorely missing out if you didn’t order one of their skillets, like the Fricassée, along with a lavender latte.

Address: 780 Richards Street, Vancouver
Instagram: @medinacafe

11. Belgian waffles from Nero Belgian Waffle Bar

Bruleed Banana Liege Waffle (Lindsay William-Ross/Daily Hive)

Bruleed Banana Liege Waffle (Lindsay William-Ross/Daily Hive)

For a waffle fix, head to one of Nero Belgian Waffle Bar’s two downtown locations. Purists will want to keep it simple, but sweet tooths will love their sugary concoctions.

Address: 1703 Robson Street, Vancouver

Address: 1002 Seymour Street, Vancouver

12. Brunch Burger at L’Abattoir

Make no mistake, this isn’t just a burger you eat at brunch time. It’s a pretty impressive vertical study in proportions thanks to its components: Quarter pound patty, hashbrown patty, fried egg. It’s quite the stack, and quite the epic brunch dish.

Address: 217 Carrall Street, Vancouver

13. Brisket Benny at Dixies BBQ

Lindsay William-Ross/Daily Hive

Lindsay William-Ross/Daily Hive

Crazy-tender morsels of brisket heaped onto biscuit halves, topped with sweet corn and poached eggs, and smothered in a smoky chipotle Hollandaise sauce  deliver this dish’s unapologetic big, badass flavours. Heaped on the side are crunchy, crispy tater tots. Brunch is top-notch at this DTES BBQ joint.

Address: 337 East Hastings Street, Vancouver

14. Croque Madame at Tableau

One of Vancouver’s loveliest spots for French bistro fare, Tableau in the Loden Hotel has a tempting plate of Croque Monsieur with frites available on their brunch menu, with the always tantalizing option to add on a free range egg.

Address: 1181 Melville Street, Vancouver

15. Breakfast Baos at Bao Down Gastropub

Jess Fleming/Daily Hive

Jess Fleming/Daily Hive

Not only does Bao Down bring to the table a wide range of innovative brunch plates, it also offers an inviting and relaxed space to kick back and enjoy a late-morning meal with friends. It shouldn’t surprise anyone that a place named Bao Down serves bao with breakfast-y fillings. Try the one with Korean glazed bacon, egg, and cheese.

Address: 115 West 2nd Avenue, Vancouver
Instagram: @baodowngastrobar

16. Chilaquiles at La Mezcaleria

La Mezcaleria’s menu of Mexican fare is adventurous, refined, and features dishes inspired by traditional recipes. Brunch is no exception to this. Get a taste via their Chilaquiles (house tortilla chips smothered in salsa verde with refried black beans and a sunny side up egg).

Address: 1622 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
Phone: 604-559-8226

Address: 68 East Cordova Street, Vancouver
Instagram: @lamezcaleriayvr

17. The Fat Charlie at Charlie’s Little Italian

The Fat Charlie (Jess Fleming/Daily Hive)

The Fat Charlie (Jess Fleming/Daily Hive)

The classic “big breakfast” plate is alluring and huge. Consisting of two scrambled eggs, fennel sausage, smoked bacon, meatballs, white bean cassoulet, toast, and hash browns, The Fat Charlie is a seriously substantial meal.

Address: 2610 Main Street, Vancouver

16. Brunch at Farmer’s Apprentice

Featuring an ever-changing menu (the produce at hand is dependent on the farmer’s delivery), patrons can never be too sure what brunch items will appear at Farmer’s Apprentice, however, stellar dishes are most certainly guaranteed

Address: 1535 West 6th Street, Vancouver

17. Brunch Pizzas at The Parlour

Braised short rib and easy eggs (Jess Fleming/Daily Hive)

Braised short rib and easy eggs (Jess Fleming/Daily Hive)

Topped with fresh, high quality ingredients, The Parlour’s brunch inspired pizzas include a variety of temptations like the wildly popular Smoked Benjamin (the restaurant’s take on salmon benny),  Huevos Benedictinos (eggs, salsa, chorizo, Hollandaise, avocado, tomato sauce and mozzarella), and a braised short rib pizza  (aramelized onion, Gruyere cheese, tomato sauce, red potatoes, and over-easy eggs).

Address: 1011 Hamilton Street

18. Hash at Forage

Forage’s committment to sustainable dining means that their menus are always getting tweaks based on availability. You’ll likely always find a brunch dish that satisfies like their Turkey Sausage Hash, made with Two Rivers Turkey Sausage (with roasted vegetables, free-range eggs, watercress pesto, and a side of toast), but often you’ll land on something like their Bison Hash, for a taste of what Chef Whittaker can so deliciously do with true Canadian ingredients.

Address: 1300 Robson Street, Vancouver

19. Pappardelle alla Bolognese at Ask For Luigi

Pappardelle alla bolognese (Jess Fleming/Daily Hive)

Pappardelle alla bolognese (Jess Fleming/Daily Hive)

Pasta for breakfast? Yes, indeed. Railtown’s enduringly popular Ask For Luigi serves up a Pappardelle alla Bolognese with a glorious egg on top, perfect for brunching.

Address: 305 Alexander Street, Vancouver

20. Banana Stuffed French Toast at Twisted Fork Bistro

Known for its casual vibe and reasonably priced daily brunch service, Twisted Fork Bistro is one of those Vancouver fixtures that every Vancouverite, as well as out-of-towner, has got to try at least once. Dusted with cinnamon icing sugar, topped with a huge dollop of vanilla whipped cream, and served with a shot of maple syrup, their incredibly decadent Banana Stuffed French Toast is sure to hit the spot for any sweet tooth.

Address: 1147 Granville Street

21.The Gastown Classic at Catch 22

Jess Fleming/Daily Hive

Jess Fleming/Daily Hive

An all-time favourite dish at the all-day brunch spot Catch 122 is the The Gastown Classic, which has two eggs any style, choice of house-made maple pork sausage, house-cured smoked bacon, or ham, house-made maple beans, toast and Yukon nugget potato hash.

Address: 122 West Hastings, Vancouver

22. Ninja Bowl at  Heirloom

Veggie lovers, your brunch destination is Heirloom, where their Ninja Bowl is a must-try. A brown rice base is topped with  bell pepper, bok choy, sui choy, red onion, and spicy Thai chilli ginger sauce, crowned with two sunny side up free range eggs, spicy Sriracha, green onion, black sesame seeds and lotus chips. Vegan? No worries. Flip to the vegan section of the brunch menu and get the Tofu Ninja Bowl. Boom.

Address: 1509 West 12th Ave, Vancouver

Banana Bread French Toast (Jess Fleming/Daily Hive)

Banana Bread French Toast (Jess Fleming/Daily Hive)

Brunchers who like things sweet will need to try the Banana Bread French Toast at The Oakwood. Made with banana bread, instead of the usual thick cut bread or brioche, The Oakwood’s French toast is outrageously good. This warm, cakey treat is topped off with a salted caramel drizzle, raspberry coulis and candied walnuts.

24. Lobster Benedict at Joe Fortes

Photo courtesy Joe Fortes

Photo courtesy Joe Fortes

A testament to longevity–a rarity in the restaurant game–Joe Fortes is still a sharp destination in downtown Vancouver, and there’s no better time than at brunch, when you can enjoy their seafood-infused take on the weekend ritual. The Lobster Benedict is a prime example: With a generous serving of Atlantic lobster, a creamy mushroom and leek white wine sauce, two perfectly runny poached eggs, and a buttery Hollandaise, it’s no wonder the dish is a Joe Fortes classic.

Address: 777 Thurlow Street, Vancouver
Instagram: @joefortesvan

With files from Jess Fleming

Lindsay William-RossLindsay William-Ross

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