I know I’ve done a review on Yew previously but I had never been for brunch. If you recall, there was a group buy deal for brunch at Yew quite a few months back but it doesn’t expire until November. I had bought a coupon with the intention of using it up with Snoopy, who had also bought one. After some wrangling around dates, we were finally able to meet up for brunch one afternoon with Jenkins and Grick in tow.
If you are unfamiliar with brunch at Yew, for $27, you get a three-course brunch by choosing from their menu. You also have the option of ordering a la carte but these three-course option seems to be pretty popular with most people. With our coupon, we actually got two three-course menus for $27 so as you can imagine, this was quite a fabulous deal.
After determining our orders, we were presented with a small dish of freshly fried cinnamon sugar doughnuts. The doughnuts were warm and crispy on the outside and not too cakey, which I liked. There was some accompanying jam that you could dip the doughnuts in but I really didn’t find this necessary since the doughnuts tasted great on their own.
For my first course, I decided on the waffles, which came with a drak chocolate and orange flower cream spread. The waffles were perfectly made, being very light yet crispy. The cream spread had a ton of chocolate flavour and although the orange was also quite strong, I didn’t find it to be overbearing.
Jenkins ordered the rum raisin French toast, which came with caramelized apples and pecans. Although this sounded interesting on paper, Jenkins found that it actually tasted quite plain and said he liked my waffles more.
Snoopy decided on the lemon ricotta pancakes, which came with raspberries and white chocolate mascarpone. We are both huge lemon fans and I really liked the bright lemon flavour exhibited in these pancakes. The raspberries added some additional tanginess, which I liked but I couldn’t taste too much white chocolate in the mascarpone. That didn’t bother me though since I thought the lemon and raspberries already tasted great.
Value-wise, Grick probably got the best deal for his first course, since he went with the calamari, which was one of the more expensive appetizer options. However, us other three were trying to be (relatively) healthy that day and didn’t want to eat too much deep fried food. I have to say that the calamari was delicious though. It was nicely fried and the calamari itself was cooked just right and didn’t have the chewy texture that can sometimes come with overcooking. The chili lime aioli for dipping could have been more spicy but was still a nice accompaniment.
For my main course, I decided on the steak and eggs. My flat iron steak came rare, which I had ordered but in hindsight medium rare may have been better because my steak was a little tough and chewy. I don’t think ordering it medium rare would have helped too much since the problem seemed to be with the cut of the steak but who knows. The poached egg came with hollandaise sauce and I would have liked for the hollandaise sauce to be slightly creamier. My favourite part of this dish was actually my grilled tomato and the potatoes, which I dipped liberally into my hollandaise and poached egg yolks.
For the mains, I think Snoopy ordered the winner at our table. The burger came with a BC blueberry and balsamic ketchup, aged white cheddar, bacon, mushrooms, tomatoes, onions, and lettuce. It was a massive burger and Snoopy was only able to finish half…which was fine because that meant Grick and I each got a quarter. The burger was very juicy and the meat was very moist. The blueberry and balsamic ketchup provided an interesting tanginess to the burger and adding bacon and mushrooms to a burger just makes good sense.
Jenkins chose the daily special for his main, which was a pan-seared halibut which peas, corn, and fingerling potatoes. He noted that his fish was pretty boring and was slightly overcooked. In hindsight, he probably should have ordered something else but he was trying quite hard to be healthy that day.
For dessert, we all opted for the tapa trio, which allowed us to each choose three small desserts. Since there were four of us, we were able to order basically the whole menu. I’m not going to go through all the desserts but my overall impression was that the tapas desserts we tried were mostly on the “too sweet” spectrum of my desserts preference. That being said, there were a few that we did like, which included the chocolate hazelnut candybar (bottom left). This was actually the favourite dessert item for all four of us. Dark chocolate and hazelnuts always make a good pairing and the chocolate was very light with a mousse-like texture. I also liked the pineapple shooter (bottom centre) which was very refreshing and a nice light way to end your meal. I wasn’t a huge fan of the trifle (bottom right) though but then again, I’m not a trifle fan in general.
I had the cake sticks (bottom centre) before and similar to the last time, I found them to be too candy sweet so it wasn’t my cup of tea. I had thought I would like the dessert on the right, which I believe was a pot de creme with caramel on top but I also found that dish to be too sweet.
Despite some misses, the brunch at Yew is a pretty good deal, especially if you’re considering the fact that you’re eating in a nice hotel and the service is quite impeccable. I noticed that it seemed to be a very popular dining destination for many families that Sunday afternoon and I think it’s something my parents would enjoy for a birthday or Mother’s Day-type occasion. Hopefully, this post will at least help you weed out what not to order.
791 West Georgia Street, Vancouver