Earls Showcases their New Brunch Menu

Earls Brunch – Chef’s Table

Earls has decided to join the brunch crowd and has put out a new menu to cater to the growing demand for weekend brunch. Chef Braden Matthews served up 4 courses from this menu.

We kicked things off with their Signature Caesar served with a beef jerky stick and pickle wedge. The use of both red and green tabasco along with horseradish gave it a nice kick but it wasn’t too spicy overall. We definitely enjoyed the early morning drink!

The first course was the granola and yogurt parfait. It had a nice medley of oats and nuts which was made in house. It was topped with a tangy greek yogurt parfait which appeared to be slightly whipped and made it slightly lighter. It was also served with a side of agave syrup which worked well as people tend to have their own preference for sweetness. It was nice to have the granola on the crumbly side without a lot of syrup or sugar. It made for a lighter dish but overall it was still pretty hearty given the ingredients. I know many people don’t order granola for breakfast but this one is worth a try.

Earls granola parfait

The second dish was eggs benny with Virginia ham on top of grilled sourdough. The eggs were soft poached and nice and runny. The hollandaise was noticeably lighter than almost all other sauces around town and was quite runny. I think many people order hollandaise on the side but this one worked well the way it was served. We also picked up hints of lemon which added a nice freshness to it. The grilled sourdough had a nice crunch to it but it also had a noticeable sour finish and almost overpowered the rest of the dish. There was also a side of smashed potatoes which had a very nice crunch to it. They were tossed in a confit of garlic butter with rosemary and thyme. We were pretty full from all the food but could’ve easily eaten a whole plate of it!

The third course was eggs Florentine with parmesan cream sauce, spinach and mushrooms. The eggs were cooked in a skillet and served over a creamy polenta. The dish sounds heavy but it was surprisingly light. The spinach and mushrooms didn’t play a big role in this dish though. A few more grilled mushrooms would’ve added more character and depth to this dish. We would’ve also liked a tad more seasoning. There was also a side of grilled sourdough toasts which were lightly buttered. These worked well with soaking up the creamy polenta and eggs.

Earls - mushroom florentine

Last but definitely not least was the sourdough French toast…yes, more sourdough. This was a thick cut toast as you would expect but more so than other places that serve a similar dish. The bread was light and fluffy which again made for a lighter dish overall. The outside of the toast was nicely battered and crisp when served. The dollops of chantilly cream and a light drizzle of a salted caramel sauce complemented the dish overall. Again, as in the eggs benny dish though, we found the sourdough overpowering.

french toast - earls

Brunch food is hard to make healthy or light but I think there was a conscious effort to do so in this case which is commendable. The use of sourdough in the dishes worked well in some cases but overall we found the taste overpowering even though we are naturally big fans of the bread itself. It’s good to see more choices for brunch in Vancouver and hopefully we will be seeing more from Earls as it joins the brunch crowd!

Guest Blogger: Simon Wong, who is still pissed off because I called him a co-eater in one of my previous posts. Soo prissy. Thank you for your post.

Chef Hung – West Vancouver’s Newest Noodle House

West Vancouver newest Taiwanese beef noodle house.  A nice addition to West Van’s dining district on Marine Drive.

When I go out I always hear people complain,” this is too salty”, or “there is not enough flavor, it needs more salt”, is there a happy medium!?

I am one of the “too much salt” complainers.  That being said, it was one of the reasons why I enjoyed this place. The dishes were overall less oily and salty compared to the other noodles houses, IE #1 Beef Noodle House on Willingdon etc. the plethora of noodle houses I tried in Richmond.

Chef Hung Beef Noodle House | Food Persuasion

Champion braised beef tendon & beef shank with noodle in soup $10.95. I liked it wasn’t too salty or oily like some other noodle houses. The combination of flavours was simple yet it was delectable. The braised beef tendon was so tender 3.5/5

Beef Noodle - Chef Hung
Beef Noodle - Chef Hung

This is more expensive than similar bowls in Richmond but for the West Vancouver, it’s a decent deal. Also, there are not that many options in West Van for noodle houses.

Pork chop rice, the pork is really crispy and not too salty, not much to say here, it was very typical. Similar to what you can find at bubble tea houses. 3/5

Crispy Pork Chop on Rice

Marinated beef wrap 6.95. The wrap itself was crispy but it lacked the meat lacked flavor.  3/5

Marinated Beef Wrap | Food Persuasion

Mango green tea, Argh… I want real fruits, I could almost taste mango kool-aid. 2/5

Chef Hung Taiwanese Beef Noodle 洪師父牛肉麵 on Urbanspoon

Fraiche – French Fine Dining at It’s Best

Fraiche – French Fine Dining, Top French Restaurant

Food Persuasion Level : [rating=4]
Value: [rating=3]
Service : [rating=5]
Ambiance: [rating=5]
Price: $$
Cuisine: French Fine Dining
Location: West Vancouver
Fraiche Restaurant
Tel (604) 925-7595

Amazing fine French restaurant overlooking scenic city views. Almost everything about our experience at Fraiche was impeccable. From the warm and personalized service to the amazing food and the spectacular views.

Now the Food..

Starters

Seared Albacore Tuna Tataki – cucumber & micro green salad, spicy asian black bean vinaigrette. Light and refreshing and tuna cooked very well, too bad it was a size of a quarter.

Albacore Tuna Tataki - Food Persuasion
Albacore Tuna Tataki

Duck Liver Parfait – country bread toasts, seasonal chutney. Very flavourful and liver was not too overpowering as found in some.

Duck Liver Parfait - Food Persuasion Image
Duck Liver Parfait

Mains

Pan seared Steelhead Salmon – turned potatoes, provencal garnish, sautéed shellfish, rich aromatic tomato saffron emulsion. Amazing! The tang from the apricot and lemon sauce highlights the the sweetness of the perfectly cooked salmon. Explosion of flavor

Steelhead Salmon - Food Persuasion
Steelhead Salmon

House-made Turkey Boudin – spiced with caramelized onion, winter fruits & herbs, apricot chutney, pomme purée, haricot vert. I expected more flavor in the turkey, a bit bland for me. The mash was very creamy not overly salty.

Turkey Boudin - Food Persuasion
Turkey Boudin

Desserts

Pear & Almond Tart – chantilly cream, spiced caramel sauce. It was above par however the Coconut Brulée – toasted coconut tuille, chocolate sorbet is the clear winner. It was lovely not too sweet, the texture was smooth and creamy. The sugar layer was crispy without being burnt.

Pear & Almond Tart - Food Persuasion
Pear & Almond Tart
Coconut Brulée - Food Persuasion
Coconut Brulée

Fraiche gets Food Persuasion of Date Restaurant Approval. A bit of a warning if you are not familiar with West Vancouver this place is quite hidden and off of the busy major streets, bring your GPS.

Fraiche Restaurant on Urbanspoon

La Regalade – Delectable Comfort French Food

La Regalade – Delectable Comfort French in West Vancouver

Make Reservations La Regalade

West Vancouver’s best French restaurant offers delectable traditional French dishes in a charming rustic setting. They work on a rotating daily menu, a few items may not be available depending on the day of the week you go. This place gets packed very quickly even during weekdays

The mood was charming and inviting and, the service was attentive without being intrusive. So comfortable and warm it was as if I was eating dinner at my Gram’s house and, just as delicious.

Appies..
We started with the soup of the day, Duck Soup with Foie Gras – $9.50. A semi clear broth soup with a duck infused essence, with bits of foie gras and mushrooms and a dollop of cream. It was so intense as if drinking juices from directly from a duck.

Entrees..
Lamb shanks with apricot glaze and spices – $18.85 on a mixed with sweet carrots on a bed of cous cous. This was above average the sweetness from the carrots and the tanginess from the apricot was good. It was good but by far not the best lamb I’ve had.

Our comfort French dish of the night was the Beef bourguignon $24.50 with a side of potato gratin. The beef was very tender, the sauce mixed with mushrooms was perfect.

The potato gratin was creamy and flaky. I would go back just for this side dish.

La Régalade on Urbanspoon