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Day 2: Crepe Bretagne, Zin, and Hapa


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Day 2: Crepe Bretagne, Zin, and Hapa

cvhound | May 25, 2009 11:31 PM

After traveling most of the previous day, we slept in and got a late start on Day 2. We stopped by the Dutch pancake place on Robson to review their menu, but decided to continue up the street to Crepe Bretagne for brunch. We arrived just before the 11:30am deadline for weekday breakfast crepes. Various combinations of breakfast fillings served in a white flour crepe with regular drip coffee/tea for $8.50. Hubby chose the egg, Swiss cheese and sausage combo with coffee. I felt like a latte, so I chose the Chef’s Complete on the non-breakfast menu - a buckwheat crepe with egg, Swiss cheese and ham. Total after tax and tip was $24.

Maybe we’re just not savory crepe people, but we weren’t blown away by our meal. Hubby’s sausages weren’t mixed in with his filling. They were served separately on the side. Three links of light-colored (almost blond) sausages instead of the dark brown links typically served in the States. The texture and flavor were good (almost reminded me of veal), but he wanted them mixed in with his eggs.

I thought the eggs in both crepes were overcooked. I like French-style scrambled eggs because they’re barely cooked and super light/fluffy. I found these to be fully set and dry, so I asked for jam which seemed to throw the French owner (?) for a loop. But I figured since I enjoy raspberry jam with my Monte Cristo sandwiches, I might like it with my crepe which had similar fillings and I was right! Hubby’s coffee was served super hot which was to his liking. My latte was just ho hum. Nothing special.

To be fair, the small restaurant was packed and there was a large party of 10 which included several French-speaking guests who appeared to be enjoying their food. So maybe it’s just us. Anyway, I’m glad we tried it and can cross it off our list. Hubby would like us to find a good dessert crepe to try one day this week.

After brunch, we headed back down Denman to check out bike rentals. After inspecting the bike selection at four different shops on Denman, I selected Giant Sedona comfort bikes at Bayshore which are the same bikes we have at home. Lucky for us, our concierge at the Westin had given us a 5% discount coupon for Bayshore. Their website says discount coupons are also available at Tourism Vancouver at Canada Place. And just FYI, tandem bikes are not for everyone and not the easiest things to ride!

We spent the next 2.5 hours biking in Stanley Park. We started at Lost Lagoon, cut across Third Beach to the Tea House, continued on Lover’s Trail to Beaver Lake and exited near the Rose Garden. We like to bike San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park and have visited Central Park in NYC, but Stanley Park is our new favorite. What a terrific way to spend the day! And we couldn’t have asked for better weather.

After returning our bikes, we headed back up Robson for Zin’s $2 lounge menu served 4 to 7pm Monday to Saturday. We arrived at 4pm and were the only guests inside (there were other guests on the patio). We had the whole place to ourselves and hubby enjoyed sitting in their super comfortable chairs while enjoying the great people watching on Robson.

Their website lists all items for $2 which we found out is incorrect. Only some of the items are $2, the others are actually $5. We ordered the truffled popcorn, honey-lime glazed chicken wings (6 wings total), poutine and mac & cheese ($5). We were famished after our bike ride and pretty much polished off everything on the table.

Hubby had the small Whistler lager on draft and I had an orange blossom martini with maraschino cherry liquor on the bottom which our waiter said was their most popular martini. Unlike the previous night’s mojito, this one had plenty of booze and was absolutely delicious! I wanted to order a second one, but then hubby would have had to carry me home on his back, so I exercised restraint and just stopped at one. Highly recommend!!! We also loved the refreshing cucumber infused water. Total after tax and tip was $35.

I thought Zin's special $2/$5 lounge menu was great value, especially given the environment. It’s a great place to stop for drink and nibbles if you’re in the neighborhood (it’s about a 5 minute walk from our condo), but I don’t think it merits a special stop.

For dinner tonight, we headed to Hapa around 9pm and were seated at the corner “shoes off” table which was the only table available in that area. We ordered the ebi mayo, gyoza and miso glazed sablefish. Hubby had a single tamkezake.

We loved the interesting tempura gyoza with thinly sliced lotus root in lieu of traditional wrappers. The spicy sauce on the ebi was interesting, but the shrimp tempura was lukewarm and didn’t taste piping hot like the gyoza which almost burned my mouth when I bit into one. The sablefish was wonderfully silky and cooked perfectly, but we didn’t care for the miso sauce which tasted strangely of peanut butter. We also wished the skin was crisp instead of flabby. Total after tax and tip was a very reasonable $42.

We spotted a Bon Crepe on our way to dinner tonight, but by the time we stopped by around 10:15, they were closed for the evening. We’d yet to venture past Bute on Robson, so we decided to continue on Robson instead of going straight home. We were thrilled when we spotted a Café Crepe that was still open.

Hubby got the nutella and banana crepe, I got the banana, hazelnut and sugar crepe. The crepes weren’t cheap (almost $7 per crepe), but they were absolutely delicious and both got devoured fairly quickly. We continued on Robson to Burrad to Pender and walked back to our condo on Melville feeling proud of the ground we covered today. We were scheduled to travel to Whistler for the day tomorrow, but decided to delay the trip to Saturday because of the rain forecasted for Tuesday.

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