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HointheWallMain St.Since November 24, 200915 Reviews
Average Rating
3 (3.1)
  • Food3.5 (3.3)
  • Service2.5 (2.7)
  • Ambiance3 (2.9)

Reviews

Displaying 1 - 15 of 15 Reviews Found
Phnom Penh Restaurant244 E Georgia St, Vancouver
Hi Dkona 2
Submitted Friday, January 11, 2008 - 12:06pm [Dine in]

It's a shame - you really did order the wrong things. PP is one of those places where you always get the same stuff because they do it so well you get cravings at least once a month. If you care to venture back, you should try these key items:

1) Deep friend anything - start with the chicken wings.
2) Beef and egg over rice
3) Wet or dry cambodian noodles. If you're adventurous, make sure they don't skimp on the liver for you.
4) Butter beef

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Il Terrazzo555 Johnson St., Victoria
Those Patio Lanterns
Submitted Monday, May 1, 2006 - 12:52am [Dine in]

It was a windy day in Victoria when i happened to walk by Il Terrazzo. I'd heard that they had a lovely patio so i peeped in and immediately yearned to be sitting in front of one of their four outdoor fireplaces. By far, this restaurant has one of the coziest patios you could find. We made reservations to return for dinner later that evening which was a good idea because the waiting area was packed at 8:30.

The menu selection was just okay - it really needs to shed the italian family restaurant vibe to reach the level of fine dining. They should start off with honing the items down and then getting someone to design more sophisticated looking menus. It's painful to be charged $30 an entree by Size 12 Arial Font.

Also they need more nice touches to the service like offering freshly grated parmesan. At most we got an affable bus boy offering us grated pepper. But aren't the waiters supposed to do that?

The meal started off with a portobello salad which was decent. I really needed to be impressed with the portobello - they're such big yummy fellows. But disappointly the greens completely took over the dish - i thought they had brought the wrong plate to me. My companion raved over his grilled halibut with blackberry sauce over 3 cheese penne. The fish was cooked perfectly however we bother agreed that the blackberries were a pretentious touch. My grilled tiger prawns were also delicious in a light buttery sauce.

Overall, we found the food yummy but a bit too expensive for the level of quality and sophistication. I wasn't completely happy with the service. Our wine took a while to come, perhaps they assumed we'd want it with the main meal. Also the waiter never came by to ask us how are meal was. He just appeared in the beginning and the end.

But not to end on a sour note, there is a great vibe to the place and maybe it's bc the people there are a lot like the menu - an eclectic mix of down-to-earth with sophistication.

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Closed
Vip's Kitchen1487 Marine Dr., West Vancouver
Food for Gaginang!
Submitted Monday, May 1, 2006 - 12:13am [Dine in]

VIP Kitchen is famous for two Chiu Chow dishes: oyster omelette, and satay beef rice noodles. My parents and i trekked over to West Vancouver one evening to check it out and reallly, they're the toughest critics because my mom can make both dishes really well. The verdict: pretty damn good. The omelette was really crispy with tons of oysters. And the satay noodle had the right sauce to it. Unfortunately, the other dishes like the roast duck weren't so authentic.

The place is a bit of a dive as a half restaurant/take out counter but you could tell they have their faithful regulars. My main criticism would be that since there's only one main cook, each plate came out one by one with big pauses in between.

Definitely worth a try, however i don't see myself driving over to West Van just because i'm craving the food.

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Zest2775 West 16th, Vancouver
Understated Zest
Submitted Friday, December 9, 2005 - 10:03pm [Dine in]

Unlike most Japanese restaurants in Vancouver, the decor of Zest strays away from the usual pine wood and fabric flaps. The place is oozing Japanese modern from the clientele to the service staff. We scooted ourselves into comfy suede booths under a dramatically lit textured wall while we poured over an extensive list of Today's Specials and the Menu. First to arrive was the deep fried prawn in chile mayo sauce. The prawn was fried just right to be juicy and bouncy however the batter could be crispier. On a good day, Hapa's version would win hands down. The seared beef wrapped over avocado was quite flavourful. The stewed lotus was a crunchy delightful find. However the deep fried oyster in miso sauce was tasty but too salty. The service was impeccable if not too attentive. Not only did they refresh our little plates but also replaced our teacups at the end of the meal. All in all, i would recommend Zest if you're in the mood for Shiru, Guu or Hapa but don't have the energy to brave the energy of downtown lineups and want to be pampered with service in a relaxing environment.

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La Regalade2232 Marine Dr, #103, West Vancouver
Worth an Outing to West Vancouver
Submitted Thursday, December 8, 2005 - 1:48pm [Dine in]

I've always been a fan of Le Crocodile but i've got a new french favourite. La Regalade has similar hearty rich food and with a warm cosiness and bustle. As you walk into the restaurant, the first thing to greet you is a bar table topped with the night's desserts - rich cream puffs, a cauldron of poached pears, golden tortes, something to keep in mind before you stuff yourself silly...As you sit down, the waiter places a tall chalkboard right beside your table of today's special - about 10 items each for appetizers and entree. My friend has been a fan for years so he knew the score - share one entree, and get a bunch of appetizers. We started with their own La Salade Regalade - an amazing creation of smoked bacon, calamari and prawns over baby romain. It's got that kinda sauce that makes you wanna clean up every drop with the bread. After that, the pear and blue cheese torte arrived. The pastry was flakey and light though it could have benefitted from more blue cheese. Next was a Baked Halibut & Quennelle dish - not bad, though I'm finding that baked cheese dishes can only inhabit a zone of homely satisfying to good but never amazing. And the last dish, half a roasted duck in pears, apricots and grapes with a creamy polenta served in a charming le Creusat pot. How authentic. It's 48hours later, and i'm still full. The only thing that slightly marred the night occured during wine selection. The waiter was quite reluctant to give us a taste of the wine we were interested in ordering a bottle of - this was slightly insulting to my friend who was a regular and never had that problem before. So instead we ended up ordering a half litre of their gamay which gradually tasted too harsh despite her comment that it was a light wine. She put on a smiley front though despite his obvious disgruntleness at her. Things may have been more contentious a la belle Paris. So three appetizers, an entree, 1/2 liter, bottle of white, the bill came to $145. Tres Bonne!

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Closed
Yuji's Japanese Tapas2059 W. 4th Avenue, Vancouver
Hoochies at Yugi's
Submitted Monday, June 6, 2005 - 12:26am [Dine in]

Really there were. I was caught in a Being John Malkovich moment with JLo stand-ins. Never saw so many wraparound sunglasses in one room. Fascinatingly, the girls come in different sizes and haircolors yet so clearly from the same planet. hmm.

Anyhoo, about the food.

Fillers! Give me fillers! Yes, the sashimi was fresh and the rolls were unique. But the sweet potatoe fries were working overtime. At least Guu or Hapa offers some udon or rice on their menus (ummm pumpkin balllls.......) The menu was fitting when i was on the South Beach, but man, it's all about the Bernstein nowadays. After scouring the today's special for something to take us to our happily stuffed place, we ended up ordering the taco sushi. In a moment of lunacy, we actually thought the collision of taco time and a rice roll would be good. You have been forewarned. Next on the creative fusion list: Babaganoush Hamachi Cones. Take that, Tojo!

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Samurai Sushi House5888 Cambie Street, Vancouver
Uncle Willy's Sushi
Submitted Monday, April 4, 2005 - 10:52pm [Dine in]

perhaps a bigger drawback to this place is that they could take a delicate light cuisine and turn it into the grossest thing you've eaten for the year. There's a huge difference between a nicely sliced piece of sashimi, and a slab of frozen fish. Despite the frigid temperature of the meat (fresh sashimi wouldn't be served so cold anyways), i couldn't help but feel that i'd get e coli or worms. And anyways, eating out of take out containers has always lessened my dining pleasure - esp when the in house ambiance is flourescent-lit crowded waiting room. Another definite drawback is the raggedy haired sushi chef. You kinda sense that cleanliness and rigous didn't earn them their sushi mats.

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Au Petit Cafe4851 Main Street, Vancouver
Tres Formidable!
Submitted Monday, March 14, 2005 - 11:41pm [Dine in]

Au petit has the best vietnamese sandwiches in town. They're always freshly made, still warm from their toasting, and they come stuffed with yummy ingredients: sweet garlic meatballs, marinated chicken....they're own ham (a bit of a mystery meat situation but hey, so is lyoner ham). Consider these facts: 1) the sandwich bread is usually sold out by 1pm everyday 2) Their authenticity has been verified by a tough looking vietnamese dude chainsmoking in the line up outside 3) I have the store number programmed into my cel in order to reserve a sandwich lickety split. The place is always filled with a good mix of people from vietnamese & chinese families to the main street locals who are smart enough to ditch hawker's delight for this joint. And most importantly, on the saturdays that i make it out there, they've got a nice strong brew of iced vietnamese coffee to bring me back to life. It's a place where you'll get fixated on a particular item and can't stop yourself from ordering it even though you should try other things. Some people can't resist their chicken or beef brisket curry with vermicelli. I've seen a whole table of people order the same dish, house meatball with french bread. Now that's weird for asians. They like to order everything on the menu and share.

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Closed
Shiru-Bay Chopstick Cafe1193 Hamilton Street, Vancouver
kitschy izakaya
Submitted Friday, January 7, 2005 - 7:42pm [Dine in]

While scooping up the pumpkin salad onto the ritz cracker, i got a flashback of this photo i'd seen in a graphics book. It was a statue of Colonel Sanders with eery oriental eyes, that was taken from a KFC in Tokyo. That figure perfectly represented that kooky thing the Japanese do so charmingly - consume American culture with utter shamelessness. I mean, you have never met a Deadhead, until you've met a Japanese Deadhead. They go to the extreme and its still damn cool. As is the case of Shiru Bay where these eclectic combinations are all so tempting. Granted some of them really don't live up to the colorful imagery (seared duck breast with persimmons) but there's something about the place, maybe it's the chick lil waittress with the slacker drawl or the casual industrial decor, that makes me forgive it instantly. It's as if DoReMa the Blue Guy crapped on me but i can't help but give it a squeeze.

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Simply Thai1211 Hamilton Street, Vancouver
Simply Not as Good As I Remembered
Submitted Friday, December 24, 2004 - 11:51pm [Dine in]

It's hard to live up to first impressions. I came here a couple of years ago with a group of hungry men who were out to drink and eat. And boy, did we do that! My last memory of this place was of an infamous critic getting the alcohol cutoff for his boorish behavior. We had become victims to their great wine list.
However, my most recent expedition was a little more subdued. I brought the two toughest connoisseurs of thai - my parents, who grew up on this stuff in Bangkok. As far they're concerned, this is cheap street food. Not something you pay $20/plate in an swanky bistro in Yaletown. It would take a lot to impress.

7:15 Asked the manager to recommend good authentic dishes. Jokingly told him that mom will be hard to please. He looks alarmed and sends over waiter. Waiter looks confused. No specials of the day and recommends the usual stuff - curry, pad thai..how disappointing. At most says, "I really like #75 but most people like #55". okay leave, useless man.
7:25 Wrong soup comes but it's got a decent zing. My parents pretend to like it but i know they're thinking they could make this better at half the cost (they can't help it, it's a chinese thing)
7:40 Pad Thai arrives - really nice smoky pan fried flavour that slowly becomes too lardish. 7:45 Stir fried eggplant had too much sauce but the basil was a lovely offset. they're too zealous with the green peppers here.
7:47 A big bowl of coconut white rice arrives which almost ruins the whole meal with its lukewarm clumpiness.
7:50 Tilapia fish under a bed of veggies and tamarind sauce. My dad, the fishhead eater, thought the fish flavour was lost. My mom was digging it. You gotta have a sweet tooth to enjoy it.
Simply Thai seems to be making an effort to be a more hip and contemporary than other thai places, so perhaps they should consider having specials that are off the beaten path. And of course, having the kind of staff that can sell a delectable adventure to you.

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Closed
DunHuang Seafood Restaurant705 West Broadway, Vancouver
Dimsummoning
Submitted Wednesday, December 22, 2004 - 4:51pm [Dine in]

The Delicate Art of "Picking Your Heart's Desire":
1) Go in factors of 4. It sucks to split the last ha-gow with the blunt end of your chopsticks.
2) Don't go with any vegetarians - especially losers who won't eat seafood. Might as well stay at home and drink tea.
3) Never expect good service - even the locals get shafted somehow. Anyways, the staff will think you're a sucker for leaving a tip that's higher than 10%.
4) If you're not going to venture into the shark fin soup or duck claw - just try a place like Dunhuang. They've got the staples cheap and pretty decent.
Though one problem: they didn't have carts so we could sheepishly point out what we wanted. Instead we went through a list of items that does a substandard job of describing each dish. We almost ordered the wrong sticky rice item. I spent most of the lunch slightly mesmerized by the penholder by the cashiers/defunct bar. You know those rubber yellow porcupines? Haven't seen one of those in ages. i always like how chinese restaurants always muck it up even when they're trying to look fancy.

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Kedah House1652 SE Marine Drive, Vancouver
NAAN Bread Rules!
Submitted Tuesday, December 14, 2004 - 9:09am [Dine in]

One would hardly describe Vancouver as a hot and sultry city. Now Paris, that's musty sexy. But Vancouver? Nah...more like grandma's wet knickers. However the first time I came to Kedah House, it was mid summer and the place was packed. Everyone was having naan bread, bowls of curry and heaps of noodles and rice. cheap spicy food that you can find in the streets of sultry cities. we were all sweating together. Oh and the price! I was still smarting from my experience at Vij's (highly overrated in my books). So to pay $3 for naan bread - Dinng pleasure exponentially went up.
However when was i just there recently, it was a rainy midweek, and the place was empty. the charm of this hole in the wall went down drastically without the peeps. Our server took our orders with a petulant look out the window and then flitted out the door never to be seen. We sat there awkwardly looking at multiple reflections of ourselves in the mirror. however the food is good for the price, the curry is robust, and the noodles are a healthy greasy portion.

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Tojo's Restaurant1133 W Broadway, Vancouver
Domo Arigato Mr Tojo!
Submitted Monday, December 13, 2004 - 8:57pm [Dine in]

Tojo is reknown in Vancouver as the best place for Japanese cuisine - but i've always been a little suspicious of that because the reputation started when there was hardly any of Japanese food in Vancouver. I was expecting an old school place with shoji screens and real crab california rolls at most. To my surprise, the place was like a casual diner with mood lighting, replete with tacky celebrity autographs on the wall (a bad sign in restaurants. re: Settebellos on Robson). Right away, I was greeted by a funky fellow that had crazy hair like a character from Dragon Ball, who kept making jokes that seemed funny but i couldn't understand what he was saying half of the time. Something like "....but my wife...ramen in Japan...quality bigger and better..." Everytime he walked away, i expected arcade sounds like when Donkey Kong throws the barrel.
About the food, we went for the $50 and $75 chef suggestion which is a great way to try something new and also sample a little bit of everything. I don't know which of these the seared black cod was for but it was a bite worth paying for. I have never in my life savoured cooked fish like that buttery morsel. i wanted to roll it around my tongue until the end of time. If anything, the most disappointing part of the meal was the last entree, a plate of their assorted tojo sushi. They're all pretty original with spinach and whatnot rolled delicately together. However, I found the sashimi and sushi a little on the dry side. Perhaps because i was still reeling from the unique earthmoving experience of the dishes beforehand. Anyways, the service is great - quirky yet quick. I would highly recommend this place if you want to spend a little more dollars for a memorable Japanese food experience.

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Cafe D'Lite3144 W. Broadway, Vancouver
DLite with Each Bite
Submitted Monday, December 6, 2004 - 9:12pm [Dine in]

It freaks people out to see bone on the chicken the way the chinese like it - the marrow bloody and split in two. Well here's the solution: check out how this place debones and arrays the pieces on a plate with an upturned bowl of rice, and then drizzled with sweet soya sauce. nummy. it's one of those places where you keep ordering the same thing even though other items look tempting because dammit you've waited a weekend to get yourself over there and you've had "hainanese chicken on the mind". The place closes early (7ish?) which is a good indication that they must be doing well if they can kick back for the evenings.

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Thai House Restaurant1766 W 7th Avenue, Vancouver
The Thailight Zone - mediocre food/zombie service
Submitted Friday, November 12, 2004 - 12:22am [Dine in]

the listless serving staff makes the flagrant kaorake setup of this restaurant even more intriguing. other than the irate guests who have waited too long to get their bill, who has enough life force to belt out a good tune here? obviously not the waiter who completely forgot our Tom Kai Gai.
okay, there was a fairly decent red curry chicken, and the satays were pretty crispy with a nice bite. but the rest of the dishes were sadly substandard. the pad thai had too much ketchup and not enough tamarind, while the stir fry dishes were held together by a haze of goopy glue.
about the ambiance: a general weirdness to the place that permeates into the food. i bet its one of those places that have draconian rules for the staff that prevents them from having a good time because they're being watched by an eagle eyed manager and his family that hates working there. the servers act like what they think servers should be, but their minds are on breaking loose. fly lil bird fly.

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