Brunch 7 days a week
On this rainy wet Sunday we traveled to Water St. Cafe for some indoor people watching. We were seated at my favourite table, and were able to enjoy Gastown without the downpour, specifically the iconic gasclock. Not only were we able to take in the smoke show at its 30 minute intervals, but to do so accompanied by a glass of sparkling, courtesy of bar.
We were here on the weekend, but their brunch is now available 7 days a week, with earlier start hours. And if you reserve a table upstairs on a Sunday, it is accompanied by live jazz music.
Their entire menu is available during brunch, but we decided to focus on their more breakfast-esque options on this visit.
The Dungeness crab Benny immediately caught my eye. BC Dungeness crab, eggs, and hollandaise sauce over a house made foccacia; served with a side of lemon herb potatoes. First and foremost you could taste the quality of the eggs being used, in this and all the other dishes to come, these free-range, organic eggs that didn’t need salt or pepper. They do not compare to the ones you get from the grocery store. They were clearly the star of the dish, smothered in the creamy goodness of the hollandaise and highlighted by the generous amount of sweet crab meat. While the herb in the potatoes and the foccacia base added some depth to the meal. Overall a wonderfully done, refined Benny.
For something a little more fulsome and more dense look to the Water St. Cafe’s Breakfast sandwich. Fennel sausage patty, fried egg, aged cheddar, lettuce, tomato, crispy shoestring potatoes, maple onion jam, and more lemon herb potatoes. The sweetness of the caramelized onion works with the saltiness of the mild sausage. Although I personally could use some more spice in the patty, a Cajun note would have been nice with the thick tomatoes acting as the perfect fresh maker. This is definitely one of those sandwiches you reach for when you have had a long night before.
Known for their pastas, by adding an egg to it, they have made their Morning carbonara more brunch appropriate. Fresh spaghetti, egg yolk, guanciale, pecorino Romano, a poached egg, and cracked black pepper. Just add an egg to anything and viola: breakfast. This is a very light pasta, easy eating for an earlier morning. The extra egg yolk gives things an additional silkiness. I could have used more salty chunks of bacon for more flavour, and so that there was is enough to have some in each bite; otherwise you are just eating pasta.
If you like your breakfast on the sweeter side I suggest the Crispy French toast. This is a Nutella stuffed vanilla infused brioche, with maple syrup and whipped cream. Eat fast or slow, we actually packed up our leftovers and enjoyed it even more the next day, when the flavours soaked in. Crispy edges, a spongy centre and plenty of filling. Simply comforting, and not too sweet.
In short, we enjoyed meal and our Gas Clock view, but will definitely have to return to try the live jazz experience upstairs.
Water St. Café
300 Water St, Vancouver, BC V6B 1B6