Sherman's Food Adventures: The Hard Bean Brunch Co. (Port Moody)

The Hard Bean Brunch Co. (Port Moody)

Back in January of this year, I was at Earl of Sandwich in Willoughby and noticed a new brunch spot a few stores down.  The Hard Bean Brunch Co. looked like a place I would definitely want to try sometime.  I filed that away in my mind for the next time I would be out in Langley.  Coincidentally, Nikita message me shortly after suggesting we meet up at Hard Bean for brunch.  I guess she read my mind!  However, the place is so popular, I wasn't able to get a reservation.  Then I turned my attention to the Port Moody location and we ended up going there instead.

We ended up with a wide range of dishes including the Nacho Breakfast with black beans, pickled onions, corn salsa, scrambled eggs, cheddar, jack + feta cheese, pomegranate seed and guacamole.  Beef was added for another $6.00.  This was a pretty large portion of nachos for one person to eat.  Frankly, this would probably be better to share for the table.  This was quite good where the nachos were crunchy and well topped with tender spiced beef.  They remained crunchy despite the amount of wet toppings.  There was some spice to this, but not overwhelmingly so.

Probably the most aesthetically-challenged dishes was the Chicken Pesto Quesadilla with pumpkin seed pesto, sundried tomato, marinated chicken, roasted red peppers, jack & feta cheese and hard ranch dip.  Not much you can do with a quesadilla as it is always flat with the ingredients hidden by the tortilla.  Despite its appearance, it was also quite good.  The pesto chicken was tender and had all of the bright flavours we expected.  Lots of melted cheese and the addition of sundried tomato and peppers provided some sweetness and tang.

For myself, I had the Hard Bean Burger with a house-made patty, lettuce, tomato, pickle, bacon, cheddar, burger sauce and fries.  I really enjoyed this burger as it reminded me of some of the better smash-burgers I've had in town.  The patty had a crispy exterior while still moist inside.  Fresh produce and melted cheddar help add even more moisture while the brioche bun held things together.  Fries were good too being crispy.

My son went for the Yorkshire Benny with bacon and smashed hashbrowns.  Rather than having an English muffin, the Yorkshire pudding was so much softer and eggy which made things not as heavy.  The medium poached eggs featured fully cooked egg whites while the yolk was still runny.  The hollandaise sauce was creamy while properly seasoned with just a touch of acidity.

As usual, Nikita and Bluebeard ordered the same dish in the Hard Bean Co. Hash with smashed browns, ham, onion, bloody mary sauce, red pepper, eggs, garlic toast, Brussels sprouts, grana padano cheese and green onion.  As much as this was satisfying in terms of the amount of well-prepared components, the overwhelming sour tomato taste of the bloody mary sauce made this dish completely one-note.  Hence, both of them had a hard time finishing it.  

My daughter went big with the Brunch Charcuterie Board with sliced hardboiled eggs, maple drizzle French toast sticks, marmalade, bacon rolls, blueberry maple sausage and seasonal fruit.  This was a bit interesting in terms of presentation, but ultimately, it was just a collection of breakfast things.  She enjoyed it though as the French Toast sticks were crunchy while soft on the inside.  Sausage was moist and tender with the sweetness of the blueberries and maple syrup.

The last plate at the table was the Barnyard Omelette with hard ham, free run eggs, corn, peppers, jack cheese, red onions, spinach and smashed browns.  This was essentially a fold-over omelette that featured fairly cooked eggs, so it wasn't exactly fluffy.  It wasn't rubbery either, so that was good.  Inside, the amount of filling was substantial enough for impact.   In the end, the food at Hard Bean was not bad.  I wouldn't say it was outstanding, but there were some highlights. 

The Good:
- Some interesting items
- Cool space, cool vibes
- Most items are good

The Bad:
- The hash was too sour


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