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Aphrodite Cafe – return visit – March 2012

23 Mar

3594 W 4th Ave
Vancouver, BC
V6R 1N8

T: 604 733 8308
www.organiccafe.ca

It really pains me to write negative reviews but considering that I had written such a positive post on this establishment a few years ago, I feel I need to give an updated review to reflect the changes that I experienced. I do recognize that this might have been a one-off bad day for them but that doesn’t change the fact that our overall experience was incredibly disappointing.

B and I are generally at a loss on weekends when we try to think of a reliable place for brunch. Our usual spot used to be DB Bistro. And then it closed. Now, we frequent Refuel for brunch. And now they are closing (on March 24). And we love Nelson the Seagull. But they aren’t open on Sundays. So what to do? We try new places until somewhere knocks our socks off enough that we return and become regulars. Well, that ain’t gonna happen with Aphrodite Café. We had a few good experiences a few years ago but we haven’t been back recently due to the constant line-up there but we gave it a try this past weekend and I was excited – I wanted pie!

Well, we stood in the doorway (yes, hard to believe that there was no queue) and we waited to be seated as instructed by the sign at the entrance. And we waited. Servers passed us by with no acknowledgement. And we waited. I don’t know about you but I feel that if I’m going to go into an establishment and pay money for food, I would hope to be greeted within a reasonable time frame, even if it is just a “We’ll be with you in a moment”. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case at Aphrodite. We were finally seated and ignored. Again. It took us about 10 minutes to place our order. We discovered dirty cups at our table and after finally getting our order, the food was disappointing. My hash browns were cold and stale as if they had been sitting out for a long time, my benny was cool, and the coffee was awful. The pie? Well, the pie was good actually.

Back Bacon, Baby Arugula & Grilled Tomato Benny

Biscuits and sausage

I feel that the most disappointing part of the experience was the value for money. Aphrodite is not cheap – my benny was $18 – and from what I was served, the price wasn’t justified. I really hope that they were just having a bad day.

Aphrodite Cafe and Pie Shop

28 Apr

3594 W 4th Ave
Vancouver, BC
V6R 1N8

T: 604 733 8308
www.organiccafe.ca

Brief Description: A Kitsilano based cafe with a relaxed vibe and a social conscious. Aphrodite prides itself on offering seasonal, locally-sourced organic produce. What a refreshing attitude! Oh, and they make delicious freshly baked home-style pies.

**Please see updated post as of March 2012**

Just what is the allure about the Kitsilano food scene that gets this Greedy Guts trotting over the bridge with her nose desperately sniffing the air for tantalizing scents? For the most part, it is all of the unbelievable restaurants that line the streets. And the foodies out there know that this list is long. But the other reason why I’m so impressed with Kitsilano is the amount of establishments that make a conscious effort to support local farmers and the organic movement. Some that spring to mind are Bishop’s, Pair, Fuel and Aphrodite’s Cafe.

I’ve been to Aphrodite’s twice now for brunch and both times I’ve walked away with a belly full of delicious, yet nutritional food. The prices are slightly higher than what you would pay for brunch elsewhere but personally I don’t mind paying a slightly higher price if I know that they are using quality, locally-sourced organic ingredients. You are what you eat, after all.

The country-style cafe is located on the corner of West 4th and Dunbar. It is quite a large cafe with 2 dining rooms yet it still manages to feel welcoming and homey. Aphrodite is well known for their home-style freshly baked pies and so one of the dining rooms also acts as the Pie Shop. They bake about 14 different pies; all of them full of fruity goodness. Of course, I’ve had a slice both times I’ve been there; the apple was a bit lacking in flavour but their raspberry and rhubarb was bowl scrapping-ly delicious!

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Aphrodite has quite a loyal following and so there is generally a line-up, although it moves reasonably fast. The staff are friendly and seem pretty relaxed. In fact, the whole place oozes a “chilled-out” kinda vibe. You aren’t rushed through and children are happily welcomed.

The menu is full of tempting items that were all calling out to me to order them; frittata’s, omelette’s, drool-inducing waffles, house-made mushroom quiches and numerous breakfasts. There is also a fantastic offering of drinks, including shakes and fresh juices. I tried a very refreshing blueberry lemonade.

Avocado and bacon benny

Due to too many yummy choices, it took me awhile to make my decision but I finally decided on the Avocado and Bacon benny, served with a fresh salad. Although not innovative, the benny was absolutely delicious and I think this was mainly due to the combination of the fresh avocado and the crispy bacon. Like almost every benny that I’ve had they could have gone lighter with the Hollandaise sauce. It was very rich and therefore, a little would have gone a long way.

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B really won out when he ordered the Breakfast Burger served with potatoes and green salad. I tried some of this and instantly went green with envy even though I was thoroughly enjoying my own breakfast! He sat there like a Cheshire Cat devouring every last morsel. And with good reason. I would definitely order this on another visit.

Even though I thought I couldn’t fit anything else in, miraculously (hee hee!) I found room for the Ricotta Cheesecake with Raspberry Coulis and yes, it tasted as amazing as it looks. Once I got over how beautiful it looked I was able to taste how perfectly creamy and dense the cheesecake was and noted that the raspberry coulis was its perfect companion. It was well worth the $7.95.

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Final Thoughts: If you are still searching for a casual cafe that places emphasis on quality, locally-sourced ingredients rather than profit, then look no further. Even if eating organic produce isn’t at the top of your priority list, you can still grab a great tasty and nutritional breakfast at Aphrodite. Keep in mind that prices are slightly higher than average but that you get what you pay for. Quality.

Aphrodite Organic Café and Pie Shop on Urbanspoon

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