Tuesday 27 April 2021

Maxine's Cafe & Bar is Vancouver's newest brunch obsession

Vancouver was in desperate need of a Europeanesque bistro and Maxine's Cafe & Bar has finally filled that void. Floor-to-ceiling windows fill the space with natural light that bounces off the marble counters, deep walnut-toned wood, and metallic brass accents. What particularly caught my eye is the stunning art-deco arched shelving above the bar that is lined with premium liquor. As soon as I saw the pictures and press releases for Maxine's, I knew I had to visit them. 

Since I am obsessed with brunch, it only made sense that I swung by on a Sunday morning. We were seated out front on Maxine's makeshift patio, as the actual patio undergoes completion. I love the white & red woven bistro chairs because in my head I picture these chairs being used for seating in cute Parisienne cafes! 

Everything on the menu had me salivating. Between my friend and I, we shared the Avocado Breakfast Sandwich, French Toast, and the Bircher Muesli. One of my favourite breakfast dishes is the humble oatmeal and muesli. However, the Bircher Muesli was far from boring at Maxine's. Executive Chef Bobby Milheron and Chef de Cuisine Levi Johnston have elevated overnight soaked oats with fresh apples and pear, almond, chia seeds, apple gel, yogurt and so much more that I cannot even remember. 

It seems no brunch menu in Vancouver is complete without a Breakfast Sandwich. Between a buttery brioche are creamy avocado, alfalfa, pickled onions, tabasco aioli, and egg. But perhaps the most genius move was putting a crispy potato rosti in the sandwich! WHO HAS NOT ORDERED A HASHBROWN FROM MCDONALDS AND PUT IT IN THEIR EGG MCMUFFIN?! Thank you Maxine's for finally recognizing the key to a delicious breakfast sandwich - the crispy fried puck of potato! 

It would be remiss of me to not try the French Toast because I love sweets and Maxine's french toast is aesthetic goals. The thick piece of toast is soft and custardy and pairs perfectly with the whipped mascarpone, candied walnuts, and blackberry preserve. It was a smart move on the chef's part to go with blackberries for the preserve as the tartness balanced out the sweetness from the maple syrup and powdered sugar. 

For me, brunch is not complete unless I pair it with a cocktail, but there were so many to choose from. I asked our lovely waitress to surprise me and she returned with The Beehive - Absolut vodka, lavender honey, lemon juice, soda water. Simply put, the best-spiked lemonade and also leaves you feeling refreshed. For a cocktail, I would say The Beehive is served in a large glass which I appreciate because it is so annoying when cocktails come in tiny glasses that are all of three sips. 

Maxine's Cafe & Bar is Wentworth Hospitality Group's newest addition to their already stellar dining establishments - Homer St. Cafe and Tableau Bar Bistro. For the time being, it seems only Breakfast, Brunch and Lunch are being offered, but once COVID dining restrictions are lifted, Dinner service will be added. If it is not obvious already, I will be returning to Maxine's Cafe & Bar in the near future becasue their food is delicious. 


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