The Templeton is that diner you wish you had in your neighbourhood; a place with a love for nostalgia and a commitment to fresh, organic and local. It’s diner food made healthy, and it’s a delicious slice of a bygone era on the Granville Entertainment Strip.
I was meeting a Brunch Buddy who was visiting from Toronto. Rebecca Hales is a writer who lived in Vancouver but left for the television writing program at the Canadian Film Centre in Toronto and never came back. I’m really proud of Rebecca. She’s that person we all root for; the one who takes chances on life and reaps the reward for the leap of faith. We were celebrating her first television writing credit; the November 21st episode of the critically acclaimed Travelers currently airing on Showcase in Canada.
My genre writing friend and I arrived at 10:30 to a busy restaurant. We ended up taking the two counter seats near the cash because it was the only option. Yes, The Templeton is that popular.
Because this is a diner, the classics seemed to be appropriate. Rebecca had been on the go already that morning so kept her order simple. The kitchen and staff had no problem with her special order of scrambled eggs and rosemary potatoes. Yes, I said rosemary potatoes. They were a huge hit with both of us. The potatoes were roasted and the rosemary was a prominent part of the dish. They were something I would do at home, and isn’t that the point of a diner; comforting home-made meals delivered from a kitchen other than your own. They were so good that next time I’m ordering the Templeton’s version of a hash, the Farmer’s Breakfast (rosemary potatoes sautéed with veggies, topped with aged white cheddar and two eggs, fresh salsa and sour cream).
I ordered the Trucker’s Breakfast; 3 eggs, turkey sausage or bacon or veggie bacon, rosemary potatoes and toast. I chose the turkey sausage. The eggs were a perfect over-easy and the toast was well-buttered. It’s hard to imagine, but buttered toast is one of the most inconsistent items in the city. Some are over buttered, some are buttered too late and some barely have any at all, but Templeton toast glistened from end to end. The turkey sausage was a little dry, but I like to dip mine in the egg yolk so that wasn’t a deal breaker.
As usual, I ordered coffee. It was good, but not great. It was smooth but kind of weak. I find that coffee in diners can be hit or miss, and I would like to try it again at the Templeton to be sure. The size of the mug however, was anything but small. It’s huge. I mean, and I do mean HUGE. I had a half cup refill but that was wishful thinking. Portion control, between the size of the coffee mug and the number of eggs they give you, is surely not a problem. I doubt you’ll go home hungry.
There were a lot of interesting items on the menu. If you want gluten free, it’s doable, as is eating vegan. For instance, there’s a vegan lentil loaf on the menu. It’s made of lentils, veggies and nuts with a hint of curry and a side of mushroom gravy. It’s served with a choice of salad, soup, or fries. There’s also vegetarian friendly fare like the huevos rancheros, tofu scrambler, and baked grapefruit with brown sugar and pecans.
Want to set your own brunch soundtrack? The booths all have that classic diner juke box attached to the wall. It’s a classic touch that adds to the whole experience.
Whether it’s because of the food, or the atmosphere, the Templeton is sure to make you feel like Sundays were made for good food, great conversation and trip back home to watch the rain in your big fuzzy slippers.
The Templeton serves up breakfast you wished you’d made yourself every day until 3:00pm.
Movie Recommendation: Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore (1974). Ellen Bursteyn wins the Best Actress Award for her portrayal of Alice, a woman on a road trip to find her dreams, only to end up working at a diner in Tucson.
1087 Granville St
Open for breakfast every day from 9 am.