May 152011

Brunch Menu at the Whip Eggs Benny at the Whip

I’d been to the Whip over 10 years ago. Back then, it was known as a decent brunch spot with bad service (which is probably the reason I never returned). It had the kind of service that makes you feel like you’re intruding when you interrupt a riveting “inter-server” conversation to ask for a cup of coffee. The servers then greet your friendly, upbeat banter with a blank stare while they unceremoniously dump a plate of food in front of you. On this memorable first visit, I had Eggs Benny and sat outside on a narrow patio hugging the sidewalk.

Fast forward 10 years, I bravely entered the Whip once again but this time with a rambunctious toddler and a grumpy, starving husband. Heaven help us. The first thing I noticed is that people were friendly (shock of all shocks). Still artsy and alternative (with a bit of Goth, some bleached blond, and a plethora of tattoos thrown in for good measure) but “oh, so, friendly”. It felt strange to receive this warm welcome. Let’s face it, when you enter most restaurants with a toddler you get the cold shoulder but not this place….at least, not this time. The girls chatted with Caden. We asked to move to a bigger table (which was no problem). The food came fast and it was really good. My hubby devoured his….and I savoured my Eggs Benny (which definitely tasted better than the last time). It is nice to know that there are funky, little joints out there that make you feel welcome…kids or no kids.  I think I shall return…and this time I won’t wait 10 years!

The Whip Restaurant and Gallery
209 East 6th Avenue (at Main Street)
Phone: 604 874 4687

Apr 062010

For my family, Easter means brunch with a capital “B”. My grandmother started the tradition years ago and we continue it today. Past destinations for the annual “gorge-fest” have included the Bayshore, Hazelmere Golf Course, Newlands Golf and Country Club, the Delta River Inn and Brock House.

Last year with 4 kids under the age of 2, we decided that we’d out grown Brock House. They have a small selection of tasty items but the seats are so tightly packed together that you feel claustrophobic and stressed. It had become too difficult for 16 – 20 people to move around and visit comfortably.

After some online research, we decided to try something brand new. My sister found a good review on another blog and we decided to try the Hilton Vancouver Metrotown.

Upon arrival, we were pleasantly surprised. Even though the room was small, there was lots of space at the tables. The buffet looked great and the room was nicely decorated for Easter. There was a large selection of food including dim sum, smoked fish, shrimp, salmon Wellington, and roast beef in addition to the regular breakfast fare. Buffet food, as you probably know, is a different beast from your typical restaurant food. But hey, what the food lacks in temperature or texture, it easily makes up for through the variety and sheer volume. Let’s face it, I could have eaten 10 lbs of bacon had I been inclined (and had a death wish).

Finally, there was lots of room to socialize and walk with the kids. You could walk around the room or head out onto the small patio. The price was $33.95 per person which is very reasonable considering buffet brunches in Downtown Vancouver seem to range from $45-56 per person. Children under 5 are free.

The only negatives were the room temperature and the sausages. The sun was beating down through the windows and our group of 17 people roasted. The sausages were a little on the gristly side (bleeck…the very reason I never touch the stuff).

Highlights include the:

  • service – extremely attentive and happy staff
  • mimosas – our glasses were filled many times
  • variety of food – lots to choose from
  • chocolates- 2 towers of Purdy’s chocolates on the dessert buffet (next time I bring a bigger purse)
  • traditional Easter eggs – hard boiled decorated eggs
  • candy eggs for kiddies – children received a plastic egg filled with smarties presented in a mini bucket wrapped in cellophane
  • parking – free in the blue stalls
  • coffee – it was really good even though I kept losing my mug, too chatty I guess
  • room to move

It looks like we’ll be heading there again next year.
Easter Brunch Menu April 2010

Hilton Vancouver Metrotown
6083 McKay Avenue
Burnaby, BC V5H2W7

Mar 272010

I’ve never been to a Café Crepe and was unlikely to do so (paying top dollar for a flour, egg and milk pancake is not my idea of a good time).

Today, as I walked by the restaurant with Caden in his stroller, I was craving a normal, non-baby experience. The restaurant was spacious and empty so I made a B-line for the door.

An Americano and a crepe enjoyed while sitting in a booth surrounded by a black and white tiled floor seemed sophisticated and very adult (well, with the exception of the high chair and munchkin beside me).

So there we sat, in our spacious booth, looking at each other and chilling out. I didn’t have to worry about “my date” disturbing our neighbours and grabbing my water, coffee or cutlery. It was great.

The highlight of our restaurant experience was our waitress. I just wanted to hug her. She was sweet and “smiley” (not a scowl in sight). Pretty amazing considering Caden was throwing his 5th animal cracker on the floor as he scooped yogurt into the palm of his hand to smoosh on the table top. All that and our server didn’t desert me . She actually returned many times to see if I needed anything. (What a superstar!) Being a high maintenance Mommy (that’s anyone with a toddler); I thought she would have “hit the hills”. Instead, she suggested a custom crepe for Caden to try, microwaved my Americano when it got cold, and brought me hot water to warm a bottle.

As for the food, my Americano was good, (I think…I’m more of a latte person) and the applesauce, cinnamon and banana crepe ($6.85) was pretty good too. Caden had a few bites (more than I expected Mister Fussypants to eat) and I happily ate the rest. Not bad at all. I enjoyed my date thoroughly. This place would be fabulous for a Mommy group to meet. Me and “My guy” may have to hit this joint again for some Nutella…I hear that’s pretty good too.

Cafe Crepe
2861 Granville St.
Vancouver, BC
(604) 488-1326

Sun-Thurs    8 am – 11 pm
Fri & Sat    8 am – 1 am