gracecheung604 | write on time: August 2012

Friday, August 31, 2012

Teri Boy

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Ah, we bid a fond Buh-Bye to Sweet Puritea this month, but a fond Ohayo to TeriBoy! Located close to Gilmore Station, this place is the third Japanese place in the neighbourhood, after Kita Sushi and Sushi Garden. To be fair, this review is based on Day Two of their opening, so take it with a grain of salt. Once I revisit, I will definitely update you all with a revised post. 
IMG-20120811-02314 
Their menu is quite simple, a one-pager with all the offerings and with cartoon imagery of the various proteins for additional assistance. Nothing is over $10 and features mostly chicken or beef. IMG-20120811-02315 We opted for the Combo of Teriyaki Chicken and Beef, with comes with some takoyaki and a salad and miso soup. IMG-20120811-02318
I expected a more Japanese-style salad with a ponzu type dressing, but it actually came with a Thousand Island dressing. Instead of just your usual bagged salad, they enhanced the dish with a sprig of broccoli, a cherry tomato and some sliced cucumbers. These little extras were appreciated. Also, the miso soup came loaded with green onions, which is again a little rare for a Japanese soup. We almost expected it to be more of a wonton noodle soup base, but again, was pleasantly surprised at the actual taste when we started sipping. I would have preferred some seaweed and less green onions, but that's a personal preference. IMG-20120811-02319 So what is surprising with this combo plate is that we got the salad, again. There's plenty of rice under that generous portion of chicken and beef and it will fill you up. Off to the top of the plate is the Takoyaki. These were disappointing, lacking in the bouncy texture of a takoyaki, the taste of any tako and just overall bland. It was like eating a dough ball, a microwave reheated dough ball, at that. Speaking of the microwaves, that is the one predominant sound that you hear in this little restaurant. They are constantly reheating things, and the chicken was one of them. The meat was a tad dry and the teriyaki sauce on top didn't help matters enough. Also, I found the chicken too fatty for my liking. 
IMG-20120811-02320 The daily special was a Pork Onigiri. We ordered this not knowing what to expect, but this sure wasn't it. Most onigiri are like the ones found at the end of this post from Hapa on Robson. It's usually a ball of rice, stuffed with fish and then wrapped in nori. What we have here is a ball of rice wrapped with thin slices of pork. The whole thin is then pan fried to a nice crispy exterior and and a warm filing of rice. And yes, more salad. This was definitely the better of the two dishes we tried. 
One of the things we noticed was the use of disposable materials, plates, cutlery, cups, everything. Perhaps the rest of the supplies hadn't arrived and they are just waiting for it? I will have to return to investigate and to try more dishes. Did you see the Yakisoba Sandwich on the menu? That's carb overload for sure! 

Take Note:

  • Lots of disposable cutlery and plates - not too environmentally friendly
  • Started have Spicy Salmon and Tuna on Rice just recently (have yet to try)
  • Run by Japanese people

Teri Boy on Urbanspoon

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Snacks at The Keg

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A few weeks ago, I was in the mood for nachos and decided to head to The Keg. I was really hoping they would be able to add ground beef (They are know for beef, right?) to the nachos, something that we've been hunting for. The tradeoff was that we would get a healthy starter. 
IMG-20120810-02309 As promised, we decided to get the Spinach salad, with strawberries, dried cranberries, pecans and red onions. You can also get your choice of your choice of goat or Bleu cheese crumble on top. We got the Bleu cheese, and asked for the light vinaigrette dressing on the side. This is a a great choice for a satisfying starter. You do feel healthy having a summer salad on the patio.
IMG-20120810-02310 xSo I was disappointed though with the Nachos. For some reason, they could only add Ground Chicken to their nachos, and not Ground Beef? This is totally shocking for a steak place, but what do I know? If anyone knows of a place where I can get Beefy Nachos, please, please, please leave a comment below. The nachos themselves were good, with lots of gooey cheese, jalapenos, olives and green onions, and generous servings of salsa, guacamole and sour cream. I guess I just missed the ground beef too much. Oh, but in the meantime, I think I'll pay a visit to Memphis Blues BBQ, where they have a Pulled Pork topping!

Take Note:

  • Lots of crows flying overhead, a little creepy if you're on the patio
  • Servers are friendly
  • Salads are hit and miss, their Caesar Salad is horrible

Keg Steakhouse and Bar - Burnaby on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

De Dutch Vancouver Convention Centre is Open!

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***Press Release***

De Dutch - Vancouver Convention Centre is now open for Breakfast, Brunch & Lunch! 
7am-4pm every day. To view our De Dutch Menu click there ← . This flagship location also offers daily specials such as breakfast bruschetta, sockeye salmon burgers or crab benedict’s from our in-house Chef, James Reekie. 
Come by for a full De Dutch Pannekoek or just some lighter fare and wine, a mimosa or a local beer on our signature waterfront patio. We are proudly featuring Granville Island Brewing, Stanley Park Brewery, Quails’ Gate Okanagan Valley, Summerhill Winery and Wild Goose Vineyards. 
Any of our “De-Licious” food on our menu is available for take away, or you can call ahead 15 minutes to be on “De-List” at lunch and we’ll see to it you’re served promptly. 
We also have a full espresso bar for lattes, cappuccinos and iced coffees to keep you going as you walk the waterfront! Our # is 604-647-7530. 

"We earn tomorrow's guests today" 
Founded & Based in British Columbia Since 1975 
Michael Prince 
General Manager 
De Dutch - Vancouver Convention Centre 
60- 1055 Canada Place Vancouver, British Columbia Canada V6C 3T4 
Telephone: 604.647.7530 www.dedutch.com 

To read my review from the Grand Opening, click!




Tuesday, August 21, 2012

East Meets West with Chef Jeremy Charles

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On August 28th, Chef Dang welcomes Chef Jeremy Charles from St-John’s, Newfoundland. 
Chef Charles is the incredible talent behind widely acclaimed Raymonds restaurant, recently named best new restaurant for 2012 by EnRoute magazine. 


Chef Dang and Chef Charles will present a unique “East meets West” menu, featuring favourite ingredients from the two coasts. Wines will be carefully paired with each dish, in partnership with some of Canada’s top wineries, including Tantalus, Laughing Stock and Pilliteri Estates.

East Meets West with Chef Jeremy Charles 
Tuesday August 28, 2012 6:30pm 
$175 (includes seven courses, beverages, tax + gratuity)
FOR TICKETS: 
604-738-8938 or info@westrestaurant.com 
West Restaurant + Bar | 2881 Granville Street | Vancouver, BC 
www.westrestaurant.com

Friday, August 17, 2012

The new De Dutch!

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A few weeks ago, I was invited to the Grand Opening of De Dutch at the Vancouver Convention Centre. The evening promised to be lots of fun, with lots of appies, a fireboat demonstration and desserts too. 
itinerary 
As you can see from above, the evening was full of entertainment, celebrations and lots of food! There were a few speeches from local VIPs, but they kept them short, fun and festive. Once the speeches were done, we went back inside to check out the food samples being passed around.  toast This was the beverage that was served to us for the toast, but unfortunately, I never got the proper name of it. It was creamy, and reminded me of egg nog, but I'm sure it's something more complex than that. If you know what this might be, please leave me a comment below!   fireboat But before we got to sampling the food, the Fireboats put on a great show for us. The view from De Dutch is amazing and their patio is perfect for a great brunch. Mentally making a note to self to bring friends visiting Vancouver for the first time to this place.  salmon Here we have the Windmill, which is essentially Shaved Smoked Wild BC Salmon, tucked into a Pannekeoken with Edam and Hollandaise Sauce. It's not how they normally serve this, but for a finger food,they nailed it. Creamy, salty, and delicate, this was a great introduction to a Pannekeoken! stew balls 2
I know what you are thinking, are these Mac and Cheese Balls? Risotto Balls? Well, you're wrong my friends, these are Beef Stew Balls. They take beef stew and bread it, and then deep fry these babies. They are piping hot so don't be a hero and try to eat this all in one bite. Take a bite, breath, savour the flavour and pop the rest into your mouth. I'm not sure if these are on their regular menu, oh, but they should be! chicken fingers Next we got to try some Chicken Fingers. And although I'm not one to order these in most restaurants, I was surprised by the crunch of the breading as well as the size of this baby. The meat was moist and the breading had really good flavours. chicken quesadilla Here is their version of a Chicken Quesadilla. They really stuffed this baby, and I really liked the peppers for the crunch. The tender chicken meat was diced small enough so that every bite had a bit of it, along with the gooey cheese. prawns The last savoury item we tried was the Prawn Ceviche. I cold dish with fresh veggies, this was a pleasant accompaniment to the heavier dishes we already ate. The prawns were plump and sweet with a nice bite added to it with the slightly acidic salad.
cupcakes 
Now, I was aiming for dessert. I peeked into a glass-enclosed meeting room and look at what I found. Their private room, which seats 20 people, a glass-enclosed room complete with video-conferencing. Oh, and there is free Wi-Fi!  macarons The yummy dessert that I indulged in were the Leonidas Fresh Belgian Chocolates (@leonidaschocola) macaroons! Despite the raspberry flavour that they were featuring, I fell in love with their pistachio one. The mixture of soft cookie and creamy filling was just right! swag And for some of the media guests, we got a little swag bag...some with coffe mugs, some with champagne glasses...It was a nice touch and a great reminder of the event. Be sure to give De Dutch a try when you're in the area for brunch and lunch. The view is great and the food is a perfect match to the scenery.
De Dutch- Vancouver Convention Centre on Urbanspoon

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Q4 Brunch Tasting

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Last month, I was invited to Q4 Ristorante's relocated space at the old Lumiere for a Brunch/Lunch menu tasting. I've always loved the West Fourth location and have had many great meals there. Here are the new location, it's clear that they've done quite to bit of work to the room using both the DB Bistro space as well as BD Modern's.  Room 2 The large dining room and bar is great with lots of natural lighting. The sleek bar is also fun and great for a casual bite.  Paninis This is their Breakfast Sandwich, made with sourdough toast, with two eggs, ham, cheese with a pesto sauce. It's a generous portion, and for just $10, it's a pretty good option. Note, the additional protein (bacon) is a side order. Melon & Prosciutto Here is another great starter for brunch, the quintessential Melon and Prosciutto combination. If you're dining with a few friends, this is a great sharing appetizer. 
Brunch
Another light option is their Granola, Yogurt and Fresh Fruit cup...for those days when you're not in an indulgent mood. Eggs Benny There are four Eggs Benny on offer as well, namely, the Lobster with avocado, one with Chorizo & pepperonata, a lighter Smoked salmon with a mascarpone dill, and a vegetarian option of Spinach, tomato confit. French Toast
If you are looking for something more decadent, be sure to give their Panettone toast, a try. This isn't your average French toast, not when it come with frangelico bananas and a chocolate hazelnut spread! Frittata Also available at Brunch is their Antipasto Bar, here we have one of my favourites, their Lamb Sausage. It has a great texture and the meaty flavour of the lamb is unmistakeable.  Brunch 2 You can also give their Chorizo Hash a try, and it comes with caramelized onion,s corn, roasted garlic. Oh, and their chorizo is cured in wine. How can you go wrong.
Pasta And they are very well-known for their pastas, and there is no shortage of those on offer for brunch. You can't go wrong with their three choices: Spaghetti "bacon and eggs" carbonara, a Rigatoni with Bolognese ragout, and the fan favourite, Spaghetti Q4. Sandwiches! Now, with all the picture taking out of the way, it's time to eat! We were treated to a miniature version of the Torpedo Panini, a weekday lunch item. It's a Q4 Meatball Sandwich and it's amazing. The meatballs are a blend of veal, pork and beef. Super tender and juicy, topped with a bit of pomodoro sauce for contrast. Meatball Here's a closeup of the mini version. The real version lands on your plate just as a torpedo would. Prosciutto Here is their version of a BLT, with Prosciutto, Arugula and Tomato aioli. This was a nice light sandwich, would be great if you're just looking for a small bite. Again, this is a taster size, yours will be larger for sure! Chef's Salad 2 Here we have the Chef's Salad, made with butter lettuce (my favourite), cucumber, egg, pancetta, and served with a gorganzola vinaigrette. I liked the fact that the dressing was not too heavy, since the gorganzola really packs a punch. Risotto 4 As I mentioned before, their pastas are amazing, and this risotto is no exception. Loaded with Caribbean Lobster, this dish is actually lighter than you would expect. The fresh peas are also a nice touch.  Steak Frites
For our last course, we had the Steak Frites. The fries are really crunchy, and goes well with the horseradish foam.  The beef is seared nicely, with a good amount of red in the middle, just the way I like it. Rounded out with some arugula and this is another excellent option for lunch. Dessert 2 And to finish off the meal, we had the Q4 Napoleon, essentially, this is a macerated cherries, layered with whipped Marscapone, and with some caramelized phyllo pastry to hold it all together. Again, this is just a tasting portion, the real one comes stacked with layers of phyllo.
Their old location wasn't open for lunch (except during the holiday season), so it's great to see Chef Bradford's spin on the iconic Q4 dinner dishes, but made suitable for midday dining. Their location on Richards St. downtown, Q4 al Centro is also open for lunch on weekdays. 

Take note:

  • Price points are fair, given the area
  • Free Valet offered nightly
  • Opens early (10:30am) on weekends for brunch

 Q4 on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Scarfing down in Scarpetta - Miami

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Last month, after an amazing Caribbean Cruise, we headed back to Miami South Beach for a few days before heading back to Vancouver. And although I've tried Scarpetta in Toronto, I wanted to see how it would play out in the USA.  Stromboli The meal started off shocking similar, with a bread basket complete with Stromboli with a side of Olive Oil, Marinar and Butter with salt. Even the presentation is the same. But armed with the knowledge that Stromboli lays at the bottom, I moved a bunch of the other "meatless" breads to the side and beelined it for the meaty goodness. The basket doesn't disappoint, but you have to prioritize!!  Swordfish Carpaccio 2 We tried the Swordfish Carpaccio to start which is quite similar in description to the Yellowtail Primi that we didn't actually try. The fennel is a nice touch, adding some crunch to the creaminess of the swordfish. Beef Short Rib 2 The next appetizer we got was the Beef Short Ribs. I had ordered the same thing in Toronto, but the portion size here was decidedly small. See for yourself. If you want to see the full post, click here. Although the amount of beef was probably the same, and the much smaller accompaniment was a disappointment. Fortunately, the beef was tender, fork-tender and very moist. The beef seemed to be very slow cooked and the rich sauce made the rather small dish very decadent.  Polenta This is the Creamy Polenta, another signature Scott Conant dish. If you are not a fan of polenta, this will change your opinion, even Bennett would agree. Most people dislike the grainy texture of polenta, but they sure make it creamy (as promised) and when you put mushrooms in a truffle oil on top of that, it's definitely a game-changer. The best way to eat this dish is slowly. Take a spoonful of polenta, and with another spoon, top it with some of the mushrooms and pop the bundle into your month. Try to take equal servings of both, and then when you run out of polenta, reach for the bread basket. 
Polenta with Truffled Mushrooms
Here is another shot, this is how the servers prefers you to eat this, plop the mushroomy mixture onto the polenta, but I find this to be an inefficient use of the two ingredients. Just my humble opinion.  Scialatelli key west pink shrimp, calamari & english peas 3 Because we had already had a fairly big lunch, we decided that three appies and one mail would be enough, we opted for a pasta dish. The Sciatlelli with Key West pink shrimp, calamari & English peas. They divided this into two servings for us, as requested, so don't think they are skimping in the serving size. The pasta is like a fat linguine, and is often served with a seafood sauce. Although there wasn't a heavy sauce with this dish, I found the lightness very suiting to the seafood. I found the simplicity of this dish very appealing.

Take note:
  • This place is pricey! I think I paid close to $20 for a martini
  • Your servers will spoil you
  • Have the polenta, short rib and dig in DEEP into the Bread Basket
  • This is my second visit to a Scarpetta, here is my review of the one in Toronto
Scarpetta (Fontainebleau Resort) on Urbanspoon

Monday, August 13, 2012

Another Pizzeria - Via Tevere

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Pizza places are getting very common here in the Lower Mainland, with new ones opening constantly. In recent memory, I have written posts on Novo Pizzeria, Verace Pizzeria and just this past month, Cotto Enoteca. Lots of choices to be sure, but it's time to try another one. 
viatevere As with some other ones I've tried, this is another Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana joint. To qualify, there are a host of specifications that have to be met. See them here, with specifications such as: a Wood-Burning Oven, fresh ingredients from Naples or Campania, dough that is needed by hand on a marble slab. The pizzas aren't supposed to be larger than 11" with a thin centre.
salad We decided to start with a salad, to be specific, the Insalata Mista with some Mixed Greens, Tomato, Onions with Crispy Prosciutto. The salad was lightly dressed and decent sized for a started. Oh, and if you put fried prosciutto on anything, I'll likely enjoy it.
Quattro Formaggi The first one we tried was the Quattro Formaggi, with fior di latte, ricotta, smoked provolone, parmigiano. It's perfect for someone who doesn't like spice and just want ooey cheesy goodness. The blend of the cheese isn't overwhelming and you can almost taste the smokiness of the provolone throughout. Or perhaps I was tasting the charred goodness of the crust. I love those little pockets, signifies a good heat!
Vesuvio Because I do like a bit of heat with my food, we tried the Vesuvio, a spicy mix of tomato, fior di latte, salame piccante, capicollo. As you can see, the char is present in the crust but I do like the little bit of char even on the salame. Afterall, a 900 degree oven will do that to meat, right? If you're used to the heavy handedness seen at Pizza Hut, then you will find this lacking in fillings, but trust me, it's definitely not in taste. In fact, the mix was perfect and made the pizza easy to eat, while not being too heavy. 
Salsiccia e Rapini The last one we had was the Salsiccia e Rapini made with tomato, fior di latte, Italian sausage, broccoli rabe. I think this one was my favourite by far, since this had a blend of meat and vegetables. The rabe was smoky from being in the oven, and the flavour is definitely heightened. Oh, and I love the roasted garlic in the middle! 
toppings One of the things I like about sharing pizza with a few folks is that you can still personalize your slice without affecting other people's slices. So I generously sprinkled the toppings of Chilli Peppers and Parmigiano that was provided. And if they prefer to leave it alone, they are welcome to do that too!

Take note:
  • The lineups can be quite long 
  • Closed for lunch and all day Mondays
  • Opens at 5 til 10, except on Fri/Sat, they're open until midnight, Sunday until 9pm 
  • No reservations
Via Tevere Pizzeria Napoletana on Urbanspoon

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