The Brokin Yolk
By Seema Dhawan

Brunch Brothers

Delicious things come from the fusion of cultures at The Bro’Kin Yolk in the northwest community of Evanston. Brothers Gilbert and Jeffrey Carlos own and operate the brunch spot, and they spent months planning its menu, which brings together Filipino dishes that reflect their family background with Western brunch standards.

The restaurant is named for its central components: brothers, kin and eggs. The eatery has had customers queuing up since the day it opened in August of 2015. The food is locally grown and so fresh that the restaurant doesn’t own a freezer. And yet, the amount of food served is a bit mind boggling. On weekends alone, the eatery goes through over 350 kilograms of potatoes, and 3,000 eggs.

Another testament to the brothers' winning food formula, the restaurant was featured on The Food Network's hit program You Gotta Eat Here in its first year of business.

We try not to make anything bland. - Jeffery Carlos, co-owner
The Bro'Kin Yolk serves Filipino-inspired brunch.
The mini homemade Belgian waffles can be ordered as an appetizer or as dessert. Photo by Seema Dhawan.

All a Good Bite

Jeffrey works in the kitchen and is the man behind the unique flavours at The Bro'Kin Yolk. He started as a dishwasher in the restaurant industry and worked his way up, eventually training to become a chef. Gilbert managed pubs around the city for years, and in 2015 the duo decided it was time to open their own eatery.

Kin is at the heart of everything at The Bro'Kin Yolk. The staff, local suppliers and customers are part of the family, says Gilbert. "We kind of want to feel like you're entering our kitchen, where you can be one of us and be part of our family," he says.

The brothers' mom  is often at the restaurant. The brothers grew up around the kitchen table, saying her cooking had a big influence on the the food dishes they now serve. "Her cooking was amazing," says Jeffery. "I think her food just influenced me to expand on it.”

The love of food she has imparted upon her sons is apparent in The Bro'Kin Yolk dishes. The restaurant's adventurous flavour combinations are heavenly. Entrees include Spanish chorizo bowls, waffles served with fried chicken spiced with paprika, garlic powder and chillies. The eggs Benedict selection includes a bacon Benny topped with Broxburn tomato, kale, roasted garlic hollandaise and house-cured bacon. Cured with a mixture of sugar, salt, soya sauce and paprika, the pork-belly, this tosino-style bacon is popular in Spain and the Philippines. “We give our bacon a little bit of a caramelization,” says Jeffrey. “People just really enjoy the flavour.”

Another popular dish is the short rib hash, a bed of duck-fat potato hash browns topped with slow-cooked short ribs, peppers, onions and two sunny side up eggs. The dish recalls the home-cooked Filipino breakfasts Gilbert and Jeffrey enjoyed as a child. “We try not to make anything bland,” adds Jeffrey.

Though the restaurant’s fusion dishes are its culinary calling card, the farmer’s breakfast plate, which includes eggs, that lovely house-cured bacon, sausage, duck fat hash and toast, is also a bestseller.

The Bro'Kin Yolk staff serve Filipino-influenced brunch dishes.
The Bro'Kin Yolk staff prepare and serve a mountain of brunch dishes daily. From left to right, Jeffrey Carlos, Kara Leblanc, Alex Molton and Gilbert Carlos. Photo by Seema Dhawan.

Sweet and Savoury

Answering to the sweet or savoury dilemma faced by brunch goers, The Bro'Kin Yolk mini waffles can be ordered as an appetizer or dessert, and are served with house-made sauces that include drunken berry compote as well as decadent lavender white chocolate.

The eggs Benedict selections (including a vegetarian option) are also served on these Belgian-style waffles, giving the dish a unique texture. “It just has that sweet and savoury context, and it goes really well together,” says Gilbert.

"People love how different and unique our menu is,” he adds. "Everyone leaves full."

The Bro'Kin Yolk is operated by brothers Jeffery and Gilbert Carlos.
Brothers Jeffrey (left) and Gilbert grew up in kitchen and say their mother's cooking influences the food they serve. Photo by Seema Dhawan.
Close menu