Mother’s Day may be just one more Hallmark holiday, but damn, it’s one you’d better not mess up. Give Mom a break and treat her to brunch on Sunday (May 10). Whether she’s into craft beer or crab legs, there’s no end of options for Vancouver kids who know how to treat Mama right.
The new and slick Big Rock Urban Eatery (310 West 4th Avenue, 604-708-8311) has an open dining room and lounge with floor-to-ceiling windows that look into the brewery itself. Beer-loving moms may want to try one of the small-batch brews made by the company that got its start in 1985 in Calgary, such as Chocolate Malt Stout, Rauchbier (made with flame-roasted malts), or the Mosaic lager, with its hints of grapefruit. The eatery’s standard brunch menu will be available from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; its regular lunch menu is also available. (Plus, moms receive a complimentary flower that day.) Dishes to accompany brews and other bevvies include Korean salmon candy, which is made with wild fish; beer-battered fried olives; and charcuterie and cheese plates. If Mom would rather not share and wants a dish all to herself, she should consider the BRU Stout Mac ’n’ Cheese ($15), which has a stout béchamel sauce as well as fire-roasted jalapeños and a balsamic reduction. There’s also the BRU Cassoulet (with stout baked beans, pulled pork, chicken, beer kielbasa, and local bacon), or a lighter choice like niçoise salad dressed with an IPA vinaigrette. (Brunch items range from $8 to $14.)
If she’s looking for something a little more refined, head over to Blue Eyed Marys in West Vancouver (1735 Marine Drive, 604-921-2583). This lovely little restaurant, which originated on Bowen Island, is usually closed on Sundays, but it’s opening for brunch on May 10 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. On the special menu are crab cake with lemon aioli and spinach spaetzle, pan-fried trout with warm quinoa-spinach salad, seared-albacore tostadas with avocado vinaigrette, and a bison burger, among other dishes that range from $9 to $15.
Maybe it’s a view Mom wants most with her mimosa. Check out the brunch at Ten Ten Tapas, which is on the seawall at 1010 Beach Avenue and looks out onto the boats and little ferries of False Creek. The family-run bistro, which takes its interior inspiration from jazz clubs of Montreal, will feature a cold spread with fruit, house-made granola, artisan breads, and other goodies and a hot buffet with pancakes, Bennies, made-to-order omelettes, and more. The restaurant serves strong Salt Spring Island coffee as well as craft beer. (The Mother’s Day buffet costs $35.95 per adult and $15 for kids under 12, and goes from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.)
Across the water on Granville Island, with spectacular views of the city and mountains, Bridges Restaurant (1696 Duranleau Street) is serving a four-course prix fixe brunch ($38 per person) from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Main-course selections include Grand Marnier French toast; sun-dried tomato, kale, and goat cheese frittata; corned-beef hash; and a wild-mushroom-and-Brie omelette with truffle essence.
Hotel restaurants are standard go-to spots for Mother’s Day brunches. They’re typically lavish events, and this year is no different, with two in particular that stand out. Consider strolling around the market before or after hitting Dockside Restaurant adjacent to the Granville Island Hotel (1253 Johnston Street, 604-685-7070), for its Chef’s Grand Mother’s Day Brunch Buffet. The waterfront spot will have the full spread with all the usual offerings—muffins, croissants, gluten-free breads, Belgian waffles, chocolate-chip pancakes, plus eggs Benedict and omelettes made to order—as well as slow-roasted prime rib, herb-roasted chicken, grilled sockeye salmon, and the restaurant’s signature chili squid. There’s a ton of desserts, too. (It costs $69.95 for adults and $29.95 for kids aged six to 12; those 5 and under are free.)
E.b.o. restaurant and lounge in the Delta Burnaby Hotel and Conference Centre just off Highway 1 (4331 Dominion Street, 604-453-0788) is an underrated spot. Executive chef Keith Pears, who followed in the footsteps of his chef parents, took over from Daniel Craig about a year ago, and he’s maintained e.b.o.’s focus on satisfying, approachable cuisine featuring local ingredients. He’s putting an Asian spin on the Mother’s Day brunch buffet. Aside from the usual brunch offerings of Bennies and omelettes, there will be sushi and maki rolls, marinated snow crab claws, assorted dim sum items, coconut-curry drumsticks, and chicken satay with spicy peanut sauce, among other dishes. As with the restaurant’s regular brunch, a highlight will be chef John Chang’s “handmade roti action station”. You’ll see Chang put on a full-on show as he makes traditional Malaysian roti, all soft and flaky and served with a curry dipping sauce. (Brunch costs $55 per adult and $25 for kids six to 12; those under six eat for free.)
Regardless of which restaurant you decide on, be sure to inquire about reservations ASAP.