A lot of the food items found at Hong Kong-style cafes aka ‘Cha Chaan Teng’ owes much influence to its British colonial past with a diverse mix of East meets West fusion dishes. If you’ve ever stepped foot in any Hong Kong-style cafe, you’ll be quick to notice that many western ingredients like milk, cheese, and western sauces like tomato sauce are heavily incorporated at an affordable price. Over the weekend, the boyfriend and I paid a visit to Happy Day Cafe in East Vancouver. We rarely dine out at Hong Kong-style cafes so it was a nice change to venture out of Tri-Cities for brunch!
We mainly came here for the breakfast menu – I believe last call is 11:30am. The place was super crowded but luckily we managed to snag a table before the switchover! You have to be quick and grab the hostess’s attention to take down your name otherwise aggressive patrons will try to budge in line which was what we experienced! Similar to other Hong Kong-style cafes in the Lower Mainland, combos are available allowing you to customize from style of eggs, choice of protein, to having a bowl of congee or noodles served with your drink of choice. Being such an indecisive eater sometimes, it’s good to always have a companion to dine with otherwise I’ll end up ordering way too much! Boyfriend and I ended up splitting two breakfast combos to share.
All of their breakfast combos come with your choice of drink. Cold drinks are extra $0.50-$1.50 depending what you decide to get. I wasn’t a huge fan of their milk tea as I found the tea to be steeped too weak and overly milky.
Pineapple Bun + Butter (+$1.50) We paid extra to have the slab of butter sandwiched between our pineapple bun. For a restaurant that advertises on their pineapple bun, I was quite disappointed with this one. The pineapple bun lacked freshness and the crisp coating on the top. Since it was served cold/borderline lukewarm our slab of butter didn’t melt as fast as we had hoped as well. Despite my disappointment, I still want to give their pineapple sandwiches a try in the future.
Combo C + D ($8.50) with Toast or Hash Brown or French Toast (Half). Combo C includes an omelette with your choice of either with cheese, mushroom, shredded chicken, sausage or shredded ham. Extra ingredients are +$1 . The hashbrown was nothing special as they probably came straight from the freezer package and deep-fried on the spot. Eggs were quite watery and lacked flavour 😦 It also came with a side of fruit. Overall, Combo C was another underwhelming dish.
Combo D Noodle in Soup with Satay Beef in Rice Noodle. The only saving grace from our breakfast combo was their satay beef noodles. It’s pretty hard to mess up on this! Of course it’s nothing like the ones from Hong Kong but quite similar in terms of taste.
French Toast ($5.95) I’ve heard pretty good reviews about their french toast so I was excited to give this a try. Hong Kong-style French Toast is an iconic dish served at Cha Chaang Teng’s consisting of two thick slices of soft milk bread doused in egg batter and fried to a crispy golden brown topped with butter and syrup or condensed milk. Serve this with a cup of delicious cold milk tea and you’ve got yourself a sinful yet delicious snack!
3312 Kingsway St
8135 Park Rd