Edible Canada – Seasonal and Local Ingredients

Granville Island is one of my favourite neighborhoods in Vancouver. There is so much culture, travelers and of course fresh and local produce.

I can’t believe I haven’t written about Edible Canada, I’ve been there so many times! This may be slightly overdue but, I promise it will be good.

They have a little gourmet snack and spread section at the back of the store carrying an array of delicious candies, spreads and, more sweets. The layout reminds me of Manzo at Eately in New York

The patio wraps around from the front to the side. As much as I love patio’s be wary of sitting close to the flower beds during bug season. There was a huge clusters of flies, not so appetizing. I always ask for a table inside. I’ll tell you about the horrific bug experience at Minami’s patio another time. I must warn you, it was so disturbingly graphic that I downed two shots of vodka to make me forget and that is saying something, I’m not usually a shots kinda girl. No really, not lying, I can hear you skeptics.

Edible Canada features a mix of local seasonal produce and seafood.

I just love it when I snap pics and you catch people discreetly checking each other out. In her case she had bug eyes and a smirk, not so discreet. I wonder if she got the guy?

Started with Togarashi Rice cracker crusted wild albacore tuna, warm fingerling potatoes, peas, kale, wild mushrooms $15. This was refreshingly pleasant on the palette. The dish was simply flavored, which allowed the quality of the ingredients to come through. 4/5

Togarashi Rice cracker crusted wild albacore tuna
Togarashi Rice cracker crusted wild albacore tuna

Sloping Hills Pork Duo, Slik spice crusted grilled 8oz pork chop, braised pork belly, hot & sour vinaigrette $24. A huge dish, the braised pork belly was so tender and flavourful. The grilled pork chop was a little over cooked making the meat a chewy. 3.5/5

Sloping Hills Pork Duo
Sloping Hills Pork Duo

PEACE COUNTRY BRAISED LAMB PASTA, rigatoni, wild mushrooms, peas, sorrel. $22 Lamb pasta was yummy, our favourite dish of our meal. 4.5/5

PEACE COUNTRY BRAISED LAMB PASTA

PEACE COUNTRY BRAISED LAMB PASTA

KASU & BIRCH SYRUP SABLEFISH, fava beans, asparagus, peas, northern beans, Swiss chard $26. Sable fish was silky smooth. I would definitely re-order this dish 4/5

KASU & BIRCH SYRUP SABLEFISH
KASU & BIRCH SYRUP SABLEFISH

LOIS LAKE STEELHEAD SALMON local Dungeness Crab croquette, wild salmon caviar, smoked tomato vinaigrette. We ordered this because they had crab croquettes. Apparently, it was very delicious I didn’t even get a chance to try it. I did try the salmon, which was very fresh 3.5/5

LOIS LAKE STEELHEAD SALMON
LOIS LAKE STEELHEAD SALMON

I’ve been back a few times already and the food has been fairly consistent. The service was a slow, it took 10 minutes to get our water refills.

Edible Canada at the Market on Urbanspoon

Tableau Bistro Loden Hotel – Old School Comfort

Tableau Bistro, located inside the Loden Hotel serves a locally inspired French menu.

I’m sorry, I haven’t been blogging for a while, I was dying of exhaustion. It took me 12 hours of sleep on Sunday to fully recover from a week-long binge of drinking, eating and debauchery. Vegas is not a relaxing vacation spot. ;I’ve been thinking of going on a cleanse but, seriously who was I kidding, how could a restaurant blogger go on a cleanse and still be able to blog??

Now, I’m back!

I’ve been going to Tableau a lot these past couple of weeks. I always, love coming here, if I ever wanted to relax in a comfortable and nice environment, Tableau is the first place to come to mind and, admittedly it’s one of the closest restaurants to where I live. To my friends outside of downtown…I’m sorry I made you trek all the way downtown but, aren’t you glad you did?

This is a good first date spot. If your date turns out to be a bore you would also have other first dates around you for entertainment.

The service was attentive and the food for the most part was delicious. There were a few dishes that were off but, generally they rated 4/5. Tableau makes one of the best TWENTIETH CENTURY cocktails in Vancouver gin, white chocolate syrup, lillet, lemon and, egg white.

Absolutely DELISH!

I recently went to Bottleneck on Granville, review to come, I ordered the same cocktail and they came back with some disgusting licorice mouthwash concoction. Arghhh gag I can still taste it.

So on to the food….

Lamb chops – we all loved this dish. Unfortunately, this is a seasonal dish and is no longer available on their summer menu. The meat was so packed with flavor and the smokiness really came through. 4/5.

Lamb chops
Lamb chops

Mushrooms on toast, I know, I was skeptical at first, it’s mushrooms on toast, how phenomenal could this be? Our server told us this was one of their popular appetizers so we decided to give it a try. ;I was pleasantly surprised, this was good! ; Expensive for what it is but, I’m a big fan of mushrooms and this is now one of my favourite dishes on the menu 4.5/5

Mushrooms on toast
Mushrooms on toast

French onion soup, crouton-less, the fragrant was amazing. This rich soup was so flavourful, after I finished the bowl, I was pretty much full.

French onion soup, crouton-less
French onion soup, crouton-less

Burger and fries – Gruyère cheese, bacon, lettuce, tomato. I rate burgers by the quality of the patty and the condiments. The patty was juicy and the bun was toasted. Other than the Gruyère there wasn’t much that set this burger apart from every other burger. 3/5

Burger and fries
Burger and fries

Rabbit Dijionaise pan-fried, although it tasted like it was braised. The meat was a sopping mess. 2/5

Rabbit Dijionaise pan fried
Rabbit Dijionaise pan-fried

Beef tartare, the quality of the meat was superb. 4/5

Beef Tartare  with quail egg
Beef Tartare with quail egg

Gnocchi pan-fried was nice and buoyant, often gnocchi’s are doughy, this was perfect. 4/5

Gnocchi pan fried
Gnocchi pan-fried

Garganelli pasta with meatballs was simple and delicious. 4/5.

Garganelli pasta with meatballs
Garganelli pasta with meatballs

Steelhead trout with quinoa 3.5/5

Steelhead trout with
Steelhead trout with

Banana cake and peanut brittle and carmalized and chocolate ice-cream. They ran out of peanut brittle, and cake itself was hard and too dense. 2/5 I was looking forward to the peanut brittle too.

Banana cake with peanut brittle
Banana cake with peanut brittle

Coffee cheesecake, light in texture and also in flavor. 2.5/5

Tableau Bar Bistro on Urbanspoon

Culinary Art School – Art Institute of Vancouver

One of the more acclaimed culinary school tucked on Granville. The quality of food is superb. Compared to VCC’s JJ’s Restaurant the price point was a little more expensive.

Service was impeccable and welcoming. It’s kinda endearing when young to be cooks shyly serves you.

Butternut squash with apples, this was delicious mmm…$7
Butternut squash with apples soup

Arugula & beet salad, portion is smaller than usual but, still very refreshing.
Arugula & beet salad

Braised lamb butternut squash risotto and pear. The risotto was a nice switch to the usual cream and loads of butter. $19
Braised lamb butternut squash risotto

I recommend reservations, this place gets packed for lunch.

Related Lunch Specials:

JJ’s Restaurant at Vancouver Community College

Joe Fortes

Culinaria on Urbanspoon

The American Cheesesteak Co – The All American Dream Sub

Prime rib that melts in your mouth, the Philly cheesesteak subs represents the true meaning of America’s obsession of overindulgence. Hunks of meat, melted cheese, bacon mayo and, onions all in a 9” toasted bun was my dinner, breakfast and lunch.

The American cheesesteak Co

Towards the end of our food cart crawl, I persuaded my foodie co-horts Simon of Life in the Lower Mainland and Rachel of Posh Pudding to try the highly anticipated American Cheesestake Co. on Davie.

American cheesesteak dining

Similar to a cafe, they require you to pay and order at the front before you sit.

American cheesesteak menu

The prices ($9 – 14) were pretty decent considering the whopping size of the subs and fries.

The cowboy was a fatty sub of awesomess. Huge portions of prime rib, crispy fried onions, homemade spicy BBQ sauce, bacon mayo and aged white cheddar on a 9” toasted bun.

May be if I didn’t previously wolf down two meals within a span of an hour I would appreciate the cowboy more. I had 5 freaking burgers / subs that day! It was so huge I had to use a knife and fork. I loved the texture of the crispy onions and the flavor of the meat was very good. 3.5/5

cowby cheesesteak

Fries, are first boiled in sugar, water and vinegar, to take away the starch and to create holes so that the oil can penetrate it when frying. It is then refried twice for extra crispiness. We decided to order the truffle aioli sauce, side note, all sauces are made in-house. The fries are similar to concession fries, thicker and less crispy. That being said, for fries that were refried twice, I expected it to be crispier than what it actually was. 2/5

refried fries

After the holidays, we all agreed we should incorporate healthier diet options hence, the vegetarian sub. Healthy my ass!! The good earth was loaded with so much cheese that it overpowered all the rest of the ingredients. It was as if they decided they needed a vegetarian option but ran out of time, an uncreative veggie option with only mushrooms, onions and peppers. The bun became so soggy after a few minutes because they failed to take away the water from the mushrooms 1/5

good earth

The meal was so stereotypical American is so many ways, a whole lotta sugar, sodium and vats of fat. I don’t think I could eat another sub for the next few months after that meal.

The American CheeseSteak Co. on Urbanspoon

Refinery – Japan vs Granville Island

Refinery Cocktail Kitchen Series

Food Persuasion Level : [rating=4]
Value: [rating=4]
Service : [rating=4]
Ambiance: [rating=5]
Price: $$
Cuisine: Japanese
Location: Granville, Vancouver

www.therefineryvancouver.com

Refinery Cocktail Kitchen Series, a bartending competition inspired by different cultures paired with scrumptious food. This month competition focuses on Japan vs Granville Island. We were thrilled Chef Ben’s food menu was “sushi-free“, we all been to those Japanese themed dinner parties where the selection was limited to two, california and spicy tuna rolls.

The sake and soju was supplied by Masa Shiroki the owner of a local artisan sake shop on Granville Island, Artisan Sake Maker.  Mixologist for the night was Dani Taratin, bar manager from The Keefer.

1st course…

Sunomono saladcompressed cucumber noodles, prawn, pickled Ginger, and citrus, sweetened with lychee and mirin and preserved lemon. It was refreshing and light, good for cleansing the palate and preparing your taste buds for the heavier 2nd course.

Sunomono salad

Paired with…

Sake, gin dream concoction within a carved lime with apple and lime bitters.  Thankfully, we had master sake maker, Masa Shiroki sitting at our table to explain the layers of flavor within the sake drink. This creative sipper was made with Jew Mai Sake, which is premium sake. The drink had a cucumber undertone which paired well with the cucumber noodles.  It was clean, refreshing and simple, as a standalone drink this was by far our favorite of the night.

Lime jew mai sake

2nd course…

Okonomiyake cabbage pancake with bonito Japanese BBQ sauce- bonetta flakes (dried fish).  I’ve been to many Japanese restaurants and I have yet to find one that tastes so good. The combination of Japanese mayo and BBQ sauce, the dashi soup made it so flavorful. Usually this dish tends to be very doughy and dense and chewy, this on the other hand was light.

Okonomiyake cabbage pancake

Paired with…

Blood orange Soju with and passion fruit grapefruit house made bitters and a dash of cinnamon for some for some earthiness and spice.

Blood orange Soju

3rd course…

Kazu  and miso marinated sable fish with mushroom and vegetables. This was dish had quite a bit of bite and,  this is coming from a person who slathers on wasabi like butter. The sweetness of the marinated sable fish was nice and sweet.

 

Kazu  and miso marinated sable fish

Paired with…

Kasu sake, with yin gi mushroom, black tea and a squeeze of lime for its tartness, rimmed with salt and sugar other Japanese earthy herbs. Man! This drink was complex, the sipper alone is a bit confusing. You know when you are expecting chocolate to taste sweet instead it tastes like salty shitake mushrooms mixed with black tea, your taste buds are screaming, “what the hell?” Well if you sipped on this before a bite of the dish yea.  Now, paired with the dish it was amazing! The black tea and the yin gi mushrooms accentuated all the different layers of flavors in the dish and makes it linger a little while longer

The Refinery: Market.Style.Eatery on Urbanspoon

Twisted Fork Bistro – Popular Brunch Fare

Very popular brunch spot Downtown Vancouver on Granville serving benedicts to frittata’s

Food Persuasion Level: [rating=3]
Value: [rating=4]
Service: [rating=4]
Ambiance: [rating=3]
Price: $
Cuisine: Brunch
Location: Downtown Vancouver
Twisted Fork Menu

Get there early, we got there by 10:30AM on a sunny Saturday and there were only a few seats left. By 11AM there was a small crowd forming outside, so get there early.

Every plate on their brunch menu “entree” size is $12.
We decided on their benny’s: Eggs Benny with toasted brioche, poached eggs, hollandaise and served with sautéed spinach, rosti and baked beans
choose your filler ~ chorizo, ham, bacon, roasted chicken, smoked salmon, avocado or roasted tomato.

Eggs Benny with Smoked Salmon, the brioche was a bit soggy from the sauce. The hollandaise sauce tasted like it was made in house the smoked salmon, wasn’t really up to par. It tasted like it was bought from Costco. Not a fan of the beans, but my friend liked it. All in all it’s not a bad dish if you love smoked salmon but not something I would reorder.

Eggs Benny with Smoked Salmon

Chorizo Eggs Benny was far better, that was delicious. The Chorizo sausages gave it a nice spicy kick. Again, the brioche was a bit soggy.

Chorizo Eggs Benny

It is a nice spot, a little cramped. I would return for their French toast and their frittata, which seemed very popular that morning but, would I wait for 45 minutes for a table? No.

Twisted Fork Bistro on Urbanspoon

Twisted Fork other articles

Twisted Fork Tuesday Mussels Promotion

Underwhelming Piece of Cow – Gotham’s Steakhouse and Bar

Fine Dining Steakhouse Downtown Vancouver. Setting the standard of steakhouses in Vancouver.

As a recognized fine dining steakhouse in Vancouver, this was the  foremost crowning underwhelming experience I had the displeasure of sitting through. Sure the prices start at $50 for just the steak but, it does not imply the steak is gastronomic

gothams-filet-mignon

masterpiece, in fact it was a boring, un-flavourful chewy piece of cow. The Filet Mignon and Lobster combo at $52, was a disappointment, I could have went to any other casual restaurants including Fah’Cactus and received a much better value for their filet, it could not be more than $30.

gotham-lobster-and-steak

Gotham’s Prime Rib – $40, very comparable to Sandbar’s prime rib, which comes in a 3 course meal for $30!? How can I compare such a quality piece of meat to that from a casual restaurant? Well, the quality they keep on selling did not exist

gothams-very-rare-prime-rib
The sides range from a heaping side of Mash Potatoes for $5.50 to Spiced Sautéed Mushrooms for $7.50

Perhaps their promising recommendation of their Crème Brûlée will save this dinner but, sadly not only did it not deliver but, the rather uniquely lumpy texture, reminded me of tapioca and oatmeal, with the odd chunks of raw sugar.

gotham-birth-creme-brulee

As for the service and atmosphere, it was great if you want a place to hold your business meetings, or a place to relax with drinks. Unfortunately for Gotham’s Steakhouse, it is not enough for me to recommend it to my readers.

Gotham Steakhouse & Cocktail Bar on Urbanspoon