Given that breakfast during the week consists of Greek yoghurt and muesli, on weekends, we tend to go in search of something a little heartier, particularly if we’ve just done a decent workout. Brew Bros, on Sheung Wan’s Hillier Street, had been on the hit list for some time, and we finally managed to get round to trying it.
This tiny coffee shop is inspired by both Japan and Melbourne, since Japanese co-owner and head barista Hikaru Ono spent a couple of years in Melbourne perfecting his knowledge of coffee. It’s a cute space that’s simply decorated in natural woods and whites, and probably couldn’t seat more than 15 people at a time.
Luckily, although we arrived at peak brunch time on a Saturday, we were able to snag two seats by the window – perfect for people watching and keeping an eye on the pooch, who we tied to a lamp post just in front.
I’m not a coffee drinker myself, but I have heard that Brew Bros’ coffee is pretty special. You can choose between a selection of single origin brews that are either from Melbourne or elsewhere, including Korea, Guatemala and El Salvador. I don’t tend to drink much caffeine, but since there are no herbal teas on the menu, I tried the Prana Chai tea, which was absolutely delicious. Made with roasted spices blended with black Ceylon tea, fresh ginger, organic honey and soy milk, this tasted like Christmas, but the kind you can enjoy all year round.
The menu consists of mainly breakfasty dishes, such as eggs and bagels. Although we usually aim to try different things on the menu to cover more ground, on this particular day we didn’t feel like sharing and were both drawn to the mashed avocado on toast with poached egg and the addition of some loin bacon.
One thing to point out about Brew Bros is that it is not somewhere you should go if you’re in a hurry. After placing our food order, we waited at least 30 minutes before our brunch arrived. Thankfully we were in no rush and enjoyed sipping on our respective tea and coffee, whilst watching the world go by.
When our brunch was finally served, we were quite surprised that it had taken that long to poach a single egg each and pile it up with some mashed avocado and grilled bacon. Granted the kitchen space they have to work with isn’t particularly big, but surely a lot of it could have been pre-prepared to save time?
That said, it was definitely worth waiting for. The egg was perfectly cooked to achieve a wonderfully runny yolk, whilst the generous mound of mashed avo itself, mixed with sesame, feta cheese, mint and lemon, and topped with rocket leaves was incredible. My first thought was that a single egg was a little stingy, but it was actually more than plenty.
Our brunch cost just shy of $250 for the two of us, which actually isn’t bad, even if we did have to wait for it. You could look at it in two ways: either you adopt the general Hong Kong mentality that everything needs to be done as quickly as possible, and so you move on to another mediocre coffee shop that you know will serve you quickly; or you realise that your whole week has been non-stop, so you embrace the slow pace, relax, and some time later enjoy a delicious breakfast that makes everything around you stand still anyway. Sometimes the best things in life are worth the wait.
Shop F2, LG/F, 33 Hillier Street
Tel: +852 2572 0238