Login or Register
Do a search below using the city or postal code search box if your city is not listed above.

GemsVancouverSince October 7, 200813 Reviews
Average Rating
3 (3.2)
  • Food3.5 (3.3)
  • Service3 (3.1)
  • Value3 (3.2)
  • Ambiance3 (3.2)

Reviews

Displaying 1 - 13 of 13 Reviews Found
Closed
Ben Laila Donair912 Clarke Rd, Port Moody
PoMo local neighborhood find
Submitted Friday, February 11, 2011 - 8:11pm [Dine in]

Ben Laila is a small and friendly family-run donair place in a small strip mall of 3-4 stores in PoMo at the top of Snake Hill, with a very clean + well-mainted but non-descript casual decor. There are a few tables inside and out, an eating bar, and good TV viewing. That being said, I think this place is a good place for a casual bite to eat, and based on the interactions with the owners and their customers tonight, they are developing a solid following with neighbourhood regulars. Food was good, and my favorite parts were the salads provided with the platters - carrot, cabbage, tabouli - fresh, crunchy and distinctly flavorful - I could have had a large plate of just that, with some hummus and pita. Three of us had different items - the beef Israeli wrap, a beef donair and the lamb platter. The meats are all on a spit, and are the minced pressed version. My favorite donair place is in VAN at Mitra's Canteen on Main Street and they have real chicken thighs on the large skewers - just can't beat that. Back to Ben Laila's - the platter was good and medium quantity - rice, meat, salads, hummus and sauces. Donair was ordered large and on pita, and the Jerusalem wrap was on a bread that looked like a large tortilla, but may have been some sort of an Israeli flatbread - not sure. That was ordered as a large and it was filling. There was some baklava for dessert and an array of pops and juices. So what would I like to see? Service to be a bit faster (qualifier: that will likely come as they get going with business - seen that in other small places), more of those salads on the platters as they were that good and that's about it. The staff were very friendly and helpful with showing you the foods they serve. Good basic eats.

  • Food
  • Service
  • Value
  • Ambiance
Tomahawk Restaurant1550 Phillip Ave, North Vancouver
It's a diner and we loved it!
Submitted Thursday, August 27, 2009 - 5:57pm [Dine in]

We finally made our way to this restaurant to avoid the rush hour traffic. Heard lots about it and we were glad we made it for supper. Burger with cheese and bacon - good, lots of fries. Meatloaf, potatoes and vegetables - substantial and flavorful. Breakfast was as good as we heard. Shakes were thick, pies fabulous, service was good and a definite return site. Loved the kitchy decor. The icing on this cake was chatting with the owner whose family recipes are still going strong - and to thank us first-timers, he gave us a bag of coffee - now that is a place that appreciates customers!

  • Food
  • Service
  • Value
  • Ambiance
Victoria Harbour House607 Oswego Street, Victoria
Harbour dining
Submitted Thursday, August 27, 2009 - 5:50pm [Dine in]

Our family enjoyed a meal at this restaurant - we ordered steak, oysters, lobster bisque, halibut and desserts such as creme brulee, cheesecake and lemon chiffon pie. It was solid but not exceptional food - but the service was! Good service can really make an evening. Overall, it was a bit on the expensive side for our family, and although we enjoyed our meal, we likley will not go back. However, let me reassure you that this place is busy.

  • Food
  • Service
  • Value
  • Ambiance
Cafe Mexico1425 Store St, Victoria
Ole Victoria
Submitted Thursday, August 27, 2009 - 5:45pm [Dine in]

We enjoyed a family meal here; it was a predictable menu and something for everyone. Portions were good and the food enticing, and overall, a pleasant meal. We ordered nachos (loved the guacamole), fish tacos (halibut), chicken and burritos. Drinks were good and what we expected. The sides were substantial - nothing like rice and beans! For dessert, deep-fried ice cream for the kids. We have been here once before, and were not dissapointed - we will be back.

  • Food
  • Service
  • Value
  • Ambiance
Blethering Place, The2250 Oak Bay Ave, Victoria
pub fare
Submitted Thursday, August 27, 2009 - 5:38pm [Dine in]

Our family had lunch there and our orders were steak and mushroom pie, ploughman's lunch, burger and fish and chips. Was it memorable? Not really - predictable, but bland and even my kids commented on this. I noticed the tea service at other tables and it was much more appealing to me, and I would recommend this. I did get a scone with cream and jam, and I must say that the jam was amazingly flavorful and fruity fresh - loved it. When we go back again, it will be for the tea service.

  • Food
  • Service
  • Value
  • Ambiance
Stanley's Park Bar & Grill610 Pipeline Road, Vancouver
Dining in the park
Submitted Thursday, August 27, 2009 - 5:34pm [Dine in]

Our family went to this restaurant prior to going to Theatre Under the Stars. We had a patio table on a lovely summer eve, and the service and food together made this a nice evening. We ordered popcorn shrimp appetizer, burgers, fish and chips, seafood soup and Cobb salad. The portions and food were good and what we expected. Beer on tap was a nice complement and the desserts, although looked pre-fab, were a nice finish.

  • Food
  • Service
  • Value
  • Ambiance
Old Spaghetti Factory703 Douglas St, Victoria
Affordable family dining
Submitted Thursday, August 27, 2009 - 5:24pm [Dine in]

In Victoria for a weekend getaway, and this place is a predictable, value-added place to eat for all family members. Portions reasonable, quality acceptable and it does not break the bank. Generous servings of fresh bread and buters, pastas offer a wide array and the sauces maintain their individuality, and - of course - who can turn down the spumoni? I like the fact that it is predictable, consistent and everyone can find something they like. We have hit a few OSFs in other cities, and have not been disappointed.

  • Food
  • Service
  • Value
  • Ambiance
Closed
El Barrio Restaurante Latino2270 East Hasting St., Vancouver
Just like eating in Ixtapa
Submitted Monday, July 20, 2009 - 9:30pm [Dine in]

Our family enjoyed an authentic Mexican meal last night and the food was just as good as how the other reviews have indicated. We loved how the salsa was hand-cut versus shredded in a food processor, and the flavors were still distinct. Our appetizer was the tostadas and were a good indicator the the coming entrees. Pastel Azteca was wonderful "Mexican lasagna", and nicely complemented by silky black beans and a tomato-based rice dish. The same side dishes accompanied the enchiladas that the others had, with chunks of shredded beef or shredded chicken and a deeply flavored enchilada sauce. Dessert was the tre leche cake, made with 3 different types of milk, and served with a generous portion of fresh berries. We shared two orders between the 4 of us and it was more than enough. The ambiance of the restaurant was a detractor as it was very dark, even in the late afternoon, and the music was far too loud to the point that we had to shout to talk to each other and could not hear the waiter. Staff were very helpful by lowering the volume and by getting candles.

  • Food
  • Service
  • Value
  • Ambiance
Closed
La Bodega Restaurant & Tapa Bar1277 Howe Street, Vancouver
Just like Uncle Franco's basement!
Submitted Monday, July 13, 2009 - 10:13pm [Dine in]

This is now a favorite of our teens who are expanding their dining experiences. The decor is like Uncle Franco's basement ... circa 30 years ago ... and now ... and so we have a feel-good time here. It really has not changed much over the years and that's OK. We love tapas as it allows for alot of tasting options and everyone can find something to nibble on.
The plato variado (cold plate) is a good starting point with an array of items, and build from there. Our favorites are the patatas bravas (zesty potatoes), pimiento relleno (stuffed red pepper), calamares (fried squid), the chorizo casero (spicy sausage), albondigas (Spanish meatballs), and jamon (small cured ham breads). We get the livers (which our kids won't touch, but all the more for us). Get lots of bread to sop up sauces, and don't forget the sangria. You can add on after your main order, and it is usually pretty quick. Best seats are on the periphery - we like beside the bar towards the back, or the front inside corner. It can get loud.

  • Food
  • Service
  • Value
  • Ambiance
Hanano Sushi & Grill555 Clarke Rd, #14, Coquitlam
Nice local Japanese eatery
Submitted Monday, July 13, 2009 - 9:51pm [Dine in]

My family have been here 4 time now and have not been disappointed. The contemporary suburban decor and eclectic music (we love the classical and jazz music) make for a comfortable dining experience. Service is good and the front counter sushi staff make every effort to greet and thank diners as they leave.
Portions are good and we enjoy the variety and presentation. Rolls are substantial and firmly done, the sauces for gomae and tempura are enhanced and make these dishes special. Miso soup has good depth of flavor. Fresh fruit at the end of the meal is most appreciated.
We have utilized their takeout service and it is as good as eating in. We will be back.

  • Food
  • Service
  • Value
  • Ambiance
Renovation
Grub4328 Main Street, Vancouver
Good Grub
Submitted Monday, July 13, 2009 - 9:26pm [Dine in]

We received a gift certificate for GRUB and decided to have a quiet Saturday night dinner. We arrived shortly after opening time to avoid the rush. It was an enjoyable meal. Looks like about 32 seats total.

Decor is Main Chic and do take time to analyze the wallpaper themes ... initially looks retro then looks more, well, just look and decide for yourself!

Best tables? For 2, 4, or 6, ask for the window area. Second best area is the table for 4 located under the menu board. Otherwise it can be close quarters with other diners, literally elbow to elbow.

Menu is at the table and on the wall - small but varied and intriguing. Take your time to really look at the complex mix of flavors.

We started with a simple green salad and the bread/dip plate, which was generous in size and flavor. Good indicators for the rest of the meal.

Mains were a difficult choice due to so many good offerings. We had curried lamb rack and quinoa salad, with a great Moroccan flavor, and pork with sweet potatoes, braised cabbage and local blueberry sauce. Wow!

Dessert is not to be missed. We had a lemon tart brulee and Stilton creme with cherries. Yes, blue cheese dessert, and for anyone who is unsure, we say DO NOT pass this one up. It was an "inspiring" plate and we will return to GRUB just to have that again.

Coffee was top quality, decent wine selection and next time we may indulge in a punch bowl - just like Grandma's punch. Enjoy!

  • Food
  • Service
  • Value
  • Ambiance
Pear Tree, The4120 Hastings Street, Burnaby
First visit to the Pear Tree
Submitted Friday, October 17, 2008 - 9:58pm [Dine in]

We finally made it for dinner and it was a delightful experience. The ambience of the restaurant set the tone for a classy understated meal. The size of the restaurant was minimalist elegance and jsut what we needed after a particularly long and hectic work week. The service was confident yet not intrusive, and all our servers were knowledgable with the menu and suggestions. We were surprised at how quickly the food was ready, but when you see 6 kitchen staff working away at each part of a meal, and the detail that each of these staff put towards their creation, it reinforced the quality of the food and service from the kitchen to the dining room. As for food, the lobster cappucino and the scallop first courses were well worth the price. Our main courses of beef tenderloin and lamb shank did not dissapoint and desserts of creme brulee and lemon tart truly finished off our meal on a high note. Coffees were well-prepared and we were delighted to have a chef's creation sweet treat with our bill. We will be back for this refined dining experience, and thank you for a wonderful evening.

  • Food
  • Service
  • Value
  • Ambiance
Jules Casual French Bistro216 Abbott Street, Vancouver
Our first visit to Jules Bistro
Submitted Tuesday, October 7, 2008 - 12:34pm [Dine in]

This was our first visit to Jules and immediately the feel of the restaurant was captivating. It is reminiscent of a small bistro in Europe, understated yet somewhat rustic and elegant. The food was delightfully good, with the lobster bisque being a highlight. We recommend keeping the little dish of saffron mayonnaise to dip your frites in, if you order a main course with frites. Duck confit was delectably well-done. Desserts were lovely, this night we indulged in the vanilla creme brulee and sour cherry clafouti. Where the restaurant may need to focus more on is the service; ours was slow, our waitress was forgetful of our side dishes, and not as attentive to service. The eve was not busy so it was hard to understand why this service was as poor as it was. The eve that we were there, the bistro became busier but the patrons were fairly quiet. However, a rambunctious table arrived partway through our meal and the noise level carried throughout the restuarant which really detracted from the dining experience. Would we go back? Absolutely, and this time with our teens as the menu is sophisticated yet comfortable enough for the teens to enjoy. We will likely go earlier than later to avoid the increased activity and noise.

  • Food
  • Service
  • Value
  • Ambiance