Brix and Mortar is a Yaletown staple known for its stunning interior, inviting atmosphere, and fantastic patio. In fact, we already featured them in our Yaletown’s Top Patios post a while back. With unique, premier dishes and signature cocktails, this restaurant has been the ideal place for people to get together throughout its two decade long history.
Recently, we caught up with our local Yaletown friend Jennifer Hannay, the owner of Brix and Mortar, on just what makes both the restaurant and the neighbourhood so special. We’d be remiss if we didn’t mention that part of Brix and Mortar’s charm is Jennifer herself! She embodies the spirit of Yaletown, and she’s full of passion and energy!
Can you tell us a little bit about the history behind Brix & Mortar?
In April of 1999, we opened at 1138 Homer Street as “Brix Restaurant.” Six years later, we opened George Lounge on the Hamilton Street side of our building. Before we opened in 2005, it used to be a Seattle’s Best Coffee Location. George Lounge was a major influencing factor in the Vancouver cocktail scene, but in 2015, we decided to cease operations there. Instead, we absorbed the space to expand Brix Restaurant and rebranded the entire space, which now consisted of two entrances and two patios, as Brix & Mortar restaurant!
What is your favourite thing about Yaletown?
There isn’t just one thing! We love that this neighbourhood has evolved from a “trendy” downtown area to a safe and mixed community of young families, single professionals, and retired couples looking to downsize. We love that at Halloween, we get hundreds of children with their parents trick or treating.
We also love the number of greenspaces, dining choices, and grocery options available at our fingertips. Plus, although we are downtown, we sit right on the periphery, so you never have to drive through the traffic nightmare of downtown.
Speaking of getting around, another thing we love about Yaletown is that you can take the Canada Line from here to the airport, the aqua bus or False Creek Ferry from here to Granville Island, or a bike to go all around the Seawall!
Recently, we’ve developed a deeper appreciation for our community because it has been incredibly supportive of us through the challenges we have experienced as a result of the COVID-19 health crisis.
It really exemplifies what we love the most: that we are a downtown community with a residential heart.
What little known secrets can you tell us about living or doing business in this area?
Brix and Mortar’s location used to be occupied by Heinz. I’ve attached an original photo plus one we did as a recreation for our 20th anniversary. That day, we served French fries with little individual Heinz ketchup bottles as a nod to the history of the building and neighbourhood. We also handed out the little bottles as giveaways. In fact, they were actually donated by Heinz Canada!
Tell us about what Brix and Mortar looks like today.
We’ve been in business for over two decades, and we celebrated our 20th anniversary last year. In addition to offering a la carte dining, we have built a strong event business and have hosted over 1000 weddings and hundreds of corporate events.
We are family owned and operated, and we are committed to helping people connect and celebrate in a neighbourhood we love.
Finally, if you could sum this neighbourhood and community up in 5 words, what would they be?
Walkable, Central, Clean, Family-friendly, diverse.
Thank you Jennifer for giving us such a great insight into your business and into the local history and culture of Yaletown. Brix and Mortar are now open for Takeout and Dine-In service, and you can also check them out for Happy Hour from 4 to 6pm from Wednesday to Sunday. They are located at 1138 Homer Street, and can be accessed by both their Hamilton or Homer entrances.
Do you have an interesting story to tell about your neighbourhood? Let us know at [email protected]!