When you are driving north up Main Street from downtown, it can be easy to miss. Nestled next to the New Occidental is a restaurant with a cheerful yellow sign hanging over the door and a bear mannequin in the front window. It looks small and unassuming, but it’s one of my candidates for Best Brunch in Winnipeg. It’s a restaurant called The Tallest Poppy.
The Tallest Poppy has a lunch menu that makes me all kinds of happy (variety! surprise! creativity!), but I’m here today to tell you about their brunch. Brunch is a special sort of meal for me, combining some of my favourite breakfast foods with a much later time frame, and it eases me into lunchtime foods at the same time. The Tallest Poppy’s brunch does all this and serves local food whenever possible? Free run eggs? Antibiotic-free, naturally-raised meats? Yes, please!
We’d been to the restaurant for lunch a few times, but one Sunday morning we decided to try their brunch. I was sold on the first visit. Brunch at The Tallest Poppy is a four-course set affair, served family-style. What this means is that if there are four people at your table, you will each get a plate. Then the food arrives on a platter and you can help yourself to however much you want. You know – just like your family did. And just like back home, what you get depends on what the cook decided to make. The staff at The Tallest Poppy check for allergies or other dietary concerns before the food arrives, though, and do their best to help out people with dietary restrictions.
So if you can’t pick what you’re having, what types of food can you expect? Well, we’ve been there for brunch many times now, and it’s different each time. However, there are themes. Fruit and vegetable salads are common at the beginning of the meal, although once we got smoothies and cute little individual oatmeal servings. Scones and latkes often grace the table, followed by omelets, quiches, or frittatas, often served with amazing sausages and bacon. And finally, there is dessert. Breakfast never has dessert – brunch always should. (Another reason why brunch is superior to breakfast.) Pie, lemon squares, cookies and muffins, oh my!
The brunch itself is $25 per person, but that includes everything, including the usual breakfast drinks (including Black Pearl coffee), tip, and taxes. (So really, if you figure $2 per drink, brunch itself is only about $17.) One note, though – it’s cash only!
The Tallest Poppy has an active Twitter account, where you can often find their specials and what’s on for brunch. Watching their Twitter feed for a while will give you an idea of the sort of things they serve for brunch. Bonus – you’ll also get their lunch specials during the week, and a neat little peek into restaurant life.
The Tallest Poppy is located at 631 Main Street. Brunch is served on Sundays only. They open for brunch on Sunday at about 10am, although during the winter they’ve been opening at 9am. If you have a large group, call ahead – their cozy dining room fills up quickly.
If you’re a friend of ours, and you’re in town one Sunday, don’t be surprised if we decide to drag you off for brunch at The Tallest Poppy. I love showing off Winnipeg’s excellent restaurants to visitors, and The Tallest Poppy is definitely on that list.