Monday, May 28, 2012

Weekend Twenty-Six: Rocky Mountain Flatbread Company

Today was a lazy morning. We strolled down the street, idly wondering what brunch we should enjoy, when we came upon the Rocky Mountain Flatbread Company. We've passed it before, and never really gone in. Today, however, we did go in.

You might wonder why we chose a restaurant that has 'Pizza' in the name for brunch, and, to be honest, I was a bit worried. Brunch pizza? Doesn't sound delicious. It brings up images of culinary horrors like combinations of poached eggs, hollandaise, pizza bread, and anchovies. Fortunately, though, the brunch menu was filled with traditional breakfast choices. Catie ordered her latte ($3.50) and I my orange juice ($3.25), and we settled in.

Today's choice was simple. I chose the double smoked maple bacon omelette for $9.95, and Catie the traditional breakfast, with double smoked maple bacon on the side, for $11.70. We were both very pleased with the home fries, and I liked the omelette. It could have been a bit larger - 3 eggs is ideal, but this was made with only 2 - and the mixed greens were somewhat wilty. That being said, I shouldn't complain too much. The ingredients of the omelette were totally tasty, and I do like eggs from happy (free range and organic) chickens.

Catie was a bit apprehensive about the extra cost of the bacon. Would it be worth the extra $3.75? Yes, yes it was! She also was a bit worried about the portion size, as it looked a bit small, but it was certainly enough for her. The eggs were done the way she liked them, but I did notice that the toasts were a bit too small to put the fried eggs on top of comfortably.

This brunch was quite nice. The restaurant was warm and comfy inside, and there's a play place for kids. I do, however, take issue with the number of adjectives in the menu descriptions. There are more than a dozen in the description of my omelette alone, which makes it look more like a word list than a description of something tasty. Give me some details, but leave me some mystery, please!

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Weekend Twenty-Five: Hyde and Seek

After working two night shifts in a row I wasn't really feeling like brunch. Dave was. We walked down Main Street, after I pulled myself out of bed, seeking Hyde.

It was a warm sunny day perfectly suited to Hyde's small but cute patio. The brunch menu isn't vast. They serve a Benny Bar on the weekends but also offer their regular lunch/dinner bar menu. We chose the Benny Bar.

I love Bennys but I don't order them very often. Hollandaise sauce as described on Wikipedia, "is an emulsion of egg yolk and butter... Note that in all methods the temperature must be closely controlled. Once the yolks are prepared, the sauce should be not much warmer than required to maintain the butter in a liquid state, that is, a little warmer than body temperature." It's really the egg yolk held at body temperate part that I take issue with. I'm always a little concerned that the Hollandaise won't agree with me, or more likely the bacteria that was growing in the Hollandaise won't agree with me. However, life is full of risks and some times a Benny can be great enough to be worth the risk. Today, at Hyde, it was.

I ordered the Montreal Style Benny while Dave ordered the Lox Benny. Both Bennys were $9. Dave decided to try his taste buds with orange juice and I stuck with water. Apparently the orange juice is not freshly squeezed but seemingly from a box and possibly watered down and was not up to Dave's standards.

My Montreal Style Benny featured dijon mustard hollandaise, smoked meat, poached eggs (perfectly hard, like I had requested), and foccacia bread. Dave's Lox Benny showed off lox, capers, poached eggs (medium because Dave didn't think to ask for hard), regular hollandaise, and foccacia bread. Both plates came with super delicious hash browns and a selection of fruit.

After sampling both Bennys we decided that mine was the best. It balanced rich, salty, and sour perfectly. Dave thought his would have been the best had it not had capers, wish he normally loves but didn't mix well on this particular plate.

We left happy and full.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Weekend Twenty-Four: Cinco de Mayo at Las Margaritas

Today was special. Not only was it the day after Cinco de Mayo, but it was also a much later brunch than we are accustomed to! We left our aforementioned secret location and ventured off to Las Margaritas, way off in the heart of Kits. It's on 4th Ave at Maple, two blocks west of Burrard.

We were quite famished after our long voyage. Luckily, they had just opened up for the day, and there were seats available both inside and out. We chose to sit inside, and were promptly provided with menus, drinks list, and chips and salsa. First things first - the menu is huge!

Looking at all of the possibilities, we took our time making up our minds. In the meantime, however, we polished off the chips and salsa. Catie ordered a raspberry daiquiri, and I ordered my orange juice. We ordered another side of chips and salsa - the salsa is so good, and the chips are warmed... The server warned us that the second order will cost is, and it did - a grand total of $2.45. Money well spent, I say. In the end, I ordered the L.A. Burrito with shredded chicken for $13.95, and Catie chose the Chicken Flautas for $8.35.

Both our dishes came with Mexican rice, which seems to be regular rice dyed red. I didn't notice much 'Mexican' flavour to it. That's not really an issue, though, as the L.A. Burrito is *huge!* Tasty chicken, black beans, cheese, salsa, sour cream, and guacamole all combined in a tortilla makes the whole thing about the size of one's forearm. So much food! Catie's flautas were more delicate in size, and she commented favourably on the freshness of the guacamole and the crispiness of the tortillas.

After eating, we both felt like we had gotten our money's worth. It was a sunny day, and as we walked along, we thought "You know, this isn't really brunch food, but it's damn good!"

Oh, and the salsa is available for takeout...

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Weekend Twenty-Three: Into the Fray

This is the weekend, LindyBout! (This post will come out a week after LindyBout VI. Keep a look out for LindyBout VII next April.) To go along with our fabulous time at the fabulous dance weekend, we needed to find a fabulous brunch spot.

The Fray had been put into our consciousness by Dave's co-worker Sam. After checking out their website and realizing it is just a short walk from our secret location, we dressed and scrambled to join the fray.

The Fray won me over as soon as I moved through the doors to see a Pac Man console in the waiting area. The decor is up to par with the nerdy awesomeness of Pac Man. The restaurant is decorated with lime green cushions and painted in a sky blue. It's hip and clean.

There are board games around, not sure if they are available for play. I kept eyeing the Family Guy Trivia Game... Luckily every table is supplied with Grown-Up Activities. My favourite was the Henry Rollins tattoo game. Dave favoured the Arcade Fire hair colouring. Hipster Bingo was also incredibly entertaining. Though I was surprised that Dave had a higher hipster score than I did, who would have thought.

The food is simple and fresh. The Fray advertises that all their food is locally sourced, which makes my hippy-yoga-loving self feel happy inside.

Dave ordered an orange juice ($2.90), almost goes without saying, and the Farmers' Omelette ($11.95). I chose a coffee ($2.00) and the Traditional Breakfast ($7.95). The food was tasty and well cooked. The only hitch was that the focaccia bread slices where sliced from pole to pole, not equatorially. The thin slices made it very difficult to eat my eggs on top of my toast. It was possible but not elegant or easy. Also, the hash browns were excellent but I wouldn't describe them as cajun.

All in all, I enjoyed my time in the fray. It filled my nerdy heart with glee, allowed my geeky artistic spirit to soar, and filled my pop-culture enthusiast stomach. Good times...

ps. I really can't wait to try out their Quiz night on Wednesday and their Variety show on Tuesday!