October 2, 2008
Caffé Barney Weekend-brunch types are hyping laid-back Caffè Barney too much—please take yourselves off to Sophie’s Cosmic Café or Slickety Jim’s Chat ’n’ Chew instead. Weekdays, Barney’s all-day breakfasts (identical at both locations) belong to us regulars, in all their Benny, omelette (the spinach-feta is a winner), and frittata splendour. Bottomless coffee and a decent span of brews are on tap. Energy levels are decent midweek, though the music can be loud. Weekends? Forget it.
2975 Granville St., South Granville, 604-731-6446; 2526 Main St., South Main, 604-568-0426.
Deacon's Corner This new spot has pedigree—owner Tyson Reimer pays tribute to the Trans Canada highway truckstop his grandfather build in the '50s just outside of Winnipeg. The scrambles and omelettes are top-notch but prove your worth and order the Hungry Man—three eggs, hashbrowns, toast, and a five-ounce strip steak for just $13.50. P.S. It's located across from the Main Street cop shop, so expect plenty of hot fuzzes downing joe—best behaviour, please.
101 Main St., Gastown, 604-684-1555
The Diner This Point Grey staple has been doling out gravy-dressed shepherd’s pie and endless cups of sugary Joe for half a century. Décor is the real deal: the window displays a massive model of London’s Tower Bridge; a vintage photo of Princess Elizabeth is nailed to the wall alongside commemorative plates and informative tea towels from the mother country. Launch your day the Coronation Street way with the full British Breakfast fry-up ($7.85): bacon, sausage, egg, beans, tomato, and bread—all fried (okay, the beans are baked) and served on one long-suffering plate. Breakfast is cheerfully offered until closing, around 6 or 7 p.m.
4556 W. 10th Ave., West Point Grey, 604-224-1912
Medina Café There are only so many hash browns, orange slivers, and parsley bunches any late-riser can face in life. Open your world to the all-day brekkie at Café Medina, the Belgian/North African café around the corner from parent resto Chambar. The accent is on savoury, with plates of eggs mixed with smoked black cod (oeufs cocottes), duck sausage (cassoulet), or braised short ribs (fricassé) snugged up to arugula, sun-dried tomatoes, fennel-onion salad, and other creatures of the night. For a lighter start, settle in to the Libanais: two poached eggs, zesty tomato/cucumber salad, satiny tahini, tabouleh, and fried pita crisps. Perch an Americano alongside and—why not?—one of the specialty waffles: fig-orange marmalade and milk chocolate-lavender come highly recommended.
556 Beatty St., Crosstown, 604-879-3114
The Templeton The classic diner gets an organic update at this Granville Strip staple. Eggs are free-run, turkey sausage is biodynamic, and bacon is preservative-free (or meat-free, courtesy Yves). Portions, thanks to the ubiquitous rosemary potatoes and thick-cut toast, require a serious commitment and/or killer hangover. Bring your lappy; the view out the window won’t lift the morning gloom, no matter the hour.
1087 Granville St., Downtown, 604-685-4612
Tomahawk Restaurant If it’s protein and carbs you’re after, go straight to the source: the mighty, mighty Tomahawk, frying eggs and whipping butter since 1926. Fritter away the day over for-real camp classics like the Chuck Wagon (buttermilk pancakes, egg, and bacon) and the Mixed Grill (organic hamburger, wiener, and nine slices of bacon alongside cheese, onions, toast, and eggs), but traditional types will stick to the chief: two fried eggs, five slices of bacon, two slices of thick-cut toast, and a North Shore mountain of hash browns. Apply coffee every 15 minutes and call us in the morning.
1550 Philip Ave., North Van, 604-988-2612