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“Superb!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Cafe Medina

Cafe Medina
556 Beatty Street, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada (Downtown)
604-879-3114
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Ranked #30 of 2,801 restaurants in Vancouver
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch
Neighborhood: Downtown
London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
20 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“Superb!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2013

We loved the delicious coffee, the excellent food, and the thought that has obviously been put into giving menu items a unique twist. All of the dishes we sampled were generously portioned, imaginitive and fresh.
The wait staff were a mixed bunch with the majority being friendly and helpful, but one or two who were a little on the surly side.
We disliked the giant skip outside the door (clearly not their fault), the size of the seating area (its a little cramped), and the lack of tables. We also disliked that the kitchen does not open until 9am, resulting in a huge queue outside which was up to 45 minutes long. The building is shared with the sister business which is a resturant. Why not open that side of the building for breakfast too, employ a few more wait staff, and get the kitchen open prior to 9am! I am confident it would still be packed, but without asking customers to queue next to a gigantic skip for the most part of an hour!
A magnificent breakfast venue with superb food at acceptable prices, slightly let down by almost bordering on arrogance in relation to the points raised above.

Visited May 2013
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233 reviews from our community

91% Recommend
    140
    73
    11
    7
    2
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Dorset,UK
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Excellent brunch”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 24, 2013 via mobile

Visited the Cafe Medina for brunch during a recent stay in Vancouver. Excellent menu, great atmosphere, lovely service

Visited May 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sooke, Canada
Top Contributor
140 reviews 140 reviews
39 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
44 helpful votes 44 helpful votes
“Oh my, waffles!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 22, 2013

My daughter wanted waffles for breakfast which was fine wih me because she was paying for our trip to Vancouver. We chose Cafe Medina when she read they served a lavendar infused topping. This place is hopping busy - fortunately we were seated fairly quickly, along with three other groups, in a back room that seems to serve as an overflow area for Medina and another eatery operated by the same people - I believe the room is called the Chamber.
Despite how busy they were we received our menus promptly and everything was served quickly. We both ordered the lavender latte, me because it just sounded so good despite my not being a huge latte fan, it was delicious but could have been a bit hotter. Then it was onto waffles. We ordered two, deciding against the lavender for the white chocolate with pistachio and rosewater. I understand the need for the white chocolate as a binder although I am sure something else could be used (maybe) to further enhance the pistachio and rose water - mouthwatering! Just the right amount for our shared, delicious waffles. My only concern was the assumption we would be eating off one plate - we had to ask for serving plates. Otherwise the presentation was simple and inviting. We also shared one of the egg dishes - the name completely escapes me now! I do not enjoy eggs that art not completely cooked through so it was wonderful they got it right. Included was a serving of baked beans, definitely home cooked, that brought back memories of beans my mother would bake - just a little tinge of burnt (is it just me who likes that) mixed with a perfect sauce and bacon.
As the back room filled up quickly I can only assume the place is a favourite for locals and visitors - make it one of yours!

  • Visited May 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Palma de Mallorca, Islas Baleares, Spain
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“best brunch ever”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 20, 2013

We managed to visit Cafe medina when visiting vancouver to see family last year. I waned something hearty, warmy and cosy. Cafe Medina is just that and the food is executed perfectly. Plus, I the coffee is delish! Visited here for lunch and had the Tagine breakfast plate. Served in a terracotta bowl with two soft poached eggs and the scrumiest merguez sausage, it was a highlight of our trip. Wasn't too busy on a winter weekday, though I think we were lucky to get there before the lunch rush..... and the line-up Every table was full. And the decor was funky and interesting.

Not to mention my husband's dish of smoked salmon and caper creme fraiche. B.C smoked salmon is unbeatable. It is obvious that the chef, Nico, is trained. And to have such an eclectic choice for a menu is refreshing and exciting. A little expensive, though the ingredients were top-notch. And the service could be a tad faster. But, hey, I was chilled by the end of it.

  • Visited December 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Toronto, Canada
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
“A 2-hour wait which was totally worth it!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 8, 2013

I came here with my boyfriend a while back for brunch because it was so highly raved about. We went around 12pm and as expected, there was a line. No biggie - we put down our name and walked around... we came back an hour later and the line was STILL long and our names were still very far down the list. We asked the guy at the front how much longer and all he responded with was "we'll have you in before we close"... what does that mean? When will that be? We ended up going DT Vancouver for an hour before going back and by this time it was already 2:30pm... we still had a good 4-5 tables in front. I was starving at this time and then the waiter offered us a table at the bar and we jumped on it because we couldn't wait anymore! Talk about a long wait for brunch... this was more like an afternoon tea.

Anyway, we ordered off the bunch menu and a few drinks as well. The green tea latte wasn't bad but a bit bland. When our orders came, I got the Fricasse which was divine! I was also super hungry but everything was so rich in flavor and tasted better than I expected. I loved the presentation as well and it's a good portion size. My bf ordered Les Boulettes and although I don't like poached eggs much, the meatballs were good. You can really taste all the ingredients that they're putting into the food and I love that distinction - makes it worthwhile. The portion sizes are also just enough to make you full but not over the top to make you sick. The service was also exceptional and everyone was very friendly.

Besides my long rant, the food is SO worth it! There aren't many places that I would say is "worth a 2-hour wait" but Cafe Medina passes that test. The offerings aren't huge but everything we tried was unique and flavorful. The price is average for brunch in my opinion so I would definitely go again. Although next time we'll probably head down when it opens... I highly recommend it as one of the best places I've eaten at in Vancouver!

  • Visited February 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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