British Columbia Get In Line

An hour for an egg: Brunch lovers justify long lines for the perfect morning meal

‘Get in Line’ weekly series explores what people are waiting for in Vancouver

July 22, 2018

People wait for more than an hour for brunch at restaurants like Jam Cafe and, for some, the eggs are worth the wait. (Jam Cafe)

Boiling the perfect egg takes a mere seven to eight minutes but landing an egg dish at a trendy brunch restaurant can also involve more than an hour's wait in line, just to get a table.

And yet so many people queue up anyway, convinced the wait is worth it.

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"It's good food, you wait for good food," said Megan Beyer, standing in line outside one of Vancouver's popular brunch spots.

"We've waited a couple of hours before — I've waited three hours for my favourite taco place before."

Megan Beyer says the lines at Medina don't bother her — she's happy to wait for good food. (Jake Costello/CBC)

Beyer works as a hostess at a different venue and knows the tricks of the trade.

She and her three friends put their names down at the eatery, go for a wander and return for what she estimates is another 20-minute-wait — just in case the table clears up early.

"They usually actually give you a time that is longer so that you don't feel disappointed," Beyer said. "You usually say five minutes longer than it actually will be."

Rina Rae, who works at Jam, says long lines in front of the restaurant are typical, and the wait can be up to an hour-and-a-half for a table. (Jake Costello/CBC)

Passing the time

Caylie Feschuk and Adam Yeske have been waiting for an hour already, playing rhyming word games to pass the time.

"We're on vacation, we've got nothing better to do anyways," Feschuk said. "We're just bumming around for the day, walking around, so thought we'd get a good breakfast first."

Sugar-cured bacon is worth an hour of time, they agreed.

Rina Rae, who works at the popular breakfast restaurant Jam, isn't convinced.

"The food is really good here but I wouldn't wait more than an hour for any food no matter how good it is," Rae said.

Many of the people in line at restaurants like Medina Cafe say the wait is worth it for something special they couldn't cook at home. (Medina Cafe)

Pilar Valenzuela, who is visiting Vancouver from abroad, waited nearly an hour for her scrambled eggs and bacon, but has no regrets

"I wouldn't mind doing it again because it's really good," she said. "I can cook those things but I'm from Mexico and they have a special taste [here]."

Pilar Valenzuela is visiting Vancouver from Mexico and says she had no regrets about standing in a long queue. (Jake Costello/CBC)

For Felipe Bombonato, an actor appearing in the play Les Miserables, brunch is the best meal of the day.

Like many in the theatre industry, he works late nights and has rehearsals that begin in the early afternoon.

"We are all about that brunch life," Bombonato said.

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Boiling the perfect egg takes a mere seven to eight minutes but ordering that same egg at a trendy brunch restaurant can be more than an hour's wait in line, just to get a table.  6:07

With files from Jake Costello and The Early Edition.

This story is part of a series called "Get in Line" which airs on CBC's The Early Edition on Wednesdays throughout the summer.

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