As frustrating and as stressful as the week may be, all of those worries melt away — if only for an hour or two — when you get to enjoy a terrific weekend brunch. This place has been on our “we’ve got to eat here” list for far too long, so it was about time we went to see what all the hub-bub was all about.
Fraser Park Restaurant is located at 103-4663 Byrne Road, south of Marine Way in Burnaby, tucked away in the middle of an industrial area. You really wouldn’t know such a treasured local gem was here unless someone told you about it.
Seriously. You really wouldn’t know it was here unless someone told you. It’s not even right on the street, instead sharing an old brick building with what appear to be manufacturing and landscaping type companies. We saw sparks flying a couple of units over. Fraser Park is about the third or fourth door in.
In stark contrast to the hip and modern approach that we saw at The Gray Olive Cafeteria, Fraser Park Restaurant is all about keeping it old school. Run by a German husband and his Indonesian wife, this is where to go to find honest, humble, homestyle food with giant portions to match. The cooking is best described as diner style with a dash of German inspiration.
Inside, seating is pretty limited, though there are some tables outside when the weather is a little nicer. The menu can be found on the chalkboards above the counter, as well as through the single sheet takeout menu. You order and pay in advance.
You’re provided a number on a well-worn metal stand and this is how the server knows where to deliver your food. You help yourself to the coffee and tea — remember to pay for them, of course — at $1.50 each. The coffee was decidedly bland, but you can get as many refills as you’d like.
The German Breakfast Deluxe ($12.75) consists of three eggs scrambled with sauteed peppers, onions and cheese, served with hash browns, sausage, bacon, ham, a potato pancake and choice of toast. They just pile on the mountain of meat. Oh, and this is just half of it.
The thin-sliced cured ham isn’t all that different from the wider strips of bacon. The sausage isn’t like your ordinary breakfast sausage either; it’s a slice from what appears to be a German sausage patty. I really enjoyed the potato pancake. Cooked with scallions and some other ingredients, it had a slight chew to it and almost reminded me of a Chinese green onion pancake.
The second half of the German Deluxe is the schnitzel and gravy, along with a slice of cantaloupe. Sadly, the schnitzel was a little disappointing. It was too chewy and didn’t really have much flavor to it. If you want to do without the schnitzel, you can order the regular German Breakfast for $9.75.
If you have more of a sweet tooth and crave indulgent carbohydrates for your weekend brunch, Al’s Breakfast ($9.50) could be the better choice. It comes with two pancakes, bacon and scrambled eggs. We upgraded to “mix fruit” pancakes for $1.50 more. For the same, you can alternatively fancy up your pancakes with blueberry, banana or chocolate chips.
As far as I can tell, the “mix fruit” pancakes are really just blueberry pancakes with a couple slices of banana, topped with a generous coating of powdered sugar. These pancakes are large, fluffy and full of blueberry goodness.
And here are the bacon and scrambled eggs that accompany Al’s Breakfast. Look at how much bacon you get! The eggs were overcooked and ultimately forgettable.
If you’re a fan of wholesome and hearty brunches like those found at Jethro’s Fine Grub or The Red Wagon Cafe, the kind that will have your cardiologist questioning your life choices, Fraser Park Restaurant will not disappoint.
They’re open Monday to Friday from 6:30am to 2:00pm and on Saturdays from 7:00am to 2:00pm. Don’t come on Sunday, because they’d be closed.