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mealsgrrlEast VancouverSince April 22, 200912 Reviews
Average Rating
3.5 (3.3)
  • Food3.5 (3.5)
  • Service3.5 (3.3)
  • Value3 (3)
  • Ambiance3 (3.2)

Reviews

Displaying 1 - 12 of 12 Reviews Found
Tandoori Raj689 E 65th Ave, Vancouver
Delicious Delivery!
Submitted Tuesday, April 19, 2011 - 8:55pm [Delivery]

In study mode, I order delivery quite often. I am, in fact, procrastinating my studies as I write this because I have just eaten the best Indian Delivery I've had in Vancouver and I need to tell you about it.

While Tandooriraj charges $5 for delivery, their prices are still great value. When I compare the quality, quantity, promptness of delivery, and courtesy of the driver to other delivery experiences I've had, this restaurant tops my list. Even over the phone the staff were patient, communicative, and had great personality. I can't wait to try eating in the restaurant, as I can imagine the service is impeccable.

I ordered the matter paneer ($8), butter chicken ($11) two pieces of incredible naan ($1.50 each), pappadum (60 cents each), pakoras ($3.50) and pickle ($1). The butter chicken, while slightly salty, was well spiced and delicious. Ditto to the paneer minus the salt. The naan was perfect: large, toothsome, and tasty. I would have liked the chutney for the pakoras to have a little more spice, but the plum flavour was still good.

Thank-you, Tandooriraj, for making my study time a culinary delight.

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Corduroy1943 Cornwall Ave, Vancouver
Cool Corduroy
Submitted Wednesday, May 6, 2009 - 11:07pm [Dine in]

This relatively new, happening place is a great place to be for live entertainment and good chow and drinks. I've been there several times and intend to continue going because I've always had a good time.

To give you an idea about their menu- they've got a tapas section, an entree section which I would describe as 'comfort food', and a variety of drinks to choose from including organic beer. The poutine is divine and mouth-smackingly salty in the right way: skin-on skinny fries, guinness jus, and aged cheddar with truffle oil to finish makes this a sinful favourite. I've also had the duck, brie, and caramelized onion pizza which was satisfying and tasty.

The atmosphere is rustic and funky, complete with a wall full of religious tabernacle beside the well-maintained bathrooms. Their live music is always a bonus, and the packed room feels like a cozy cabin in whistler.

I may be leading you on, but last time I was there I heard that they do a half-price tapas menu before 7pm. That would definitely be a great way to check out the food without worrying about investing too much money, though it is certainly fairly priced (organic food) to begin with.

Here's my recommendation: come hungry, bring your friends, and show up early to ensure a seat for the live entertainment.

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Tipper Restaurant & Review Room, The2066 Kingsway, Vancouver
Lighten up and tip the bottle our way
Submitted Wednesday, May 6, 2009 - 10:21pm [Dine in]

I've been to the Tipper twice now and have a lot to say about it. I think that Kingsway needs a place like this. There is so much potential: the back room, the open mic, the theatre productions, the funky wood, and thirsty, willing patrons.

So what's the catch? There are a few- but don't get me wrong. It's not a bad place, but I'm a critic and I would love to see this place improve. For starters, the open mic's 'passed hat' proceeds don't go to the musicians. As a musician looking for connections and community, I take offense to that and won't be playing their open mic. Next, there is no drink menu and if you do order a drink the prices are exorbitant. The food is uninspired (though not bad) and the menu is strangely organized. Why have a 'fresh sheet' that doesn't change? You're just listing appetizers and burgers twice.

While I'm on the topic, let's discuss the meal. On my first visit, my dining companion and I wanted to order some beer with our meals and enjoy the game. Vancouver is a hockey city and loves its beer, but alas, no drink menu and the TV is only viewable from the bar or a select two tables. We did manage to order two true pints, though. Local brew- Lighthouse Amber is decent but only two choices on draft with 6 taps behind the bar? What's the point? To eat, we shared the yam fries to start. Good west-coasty idea but poorly delivered. The oil needs to be incredibly hot for yam fries to get crispy and not soggy. (Maybe they have old kitchen equipment?) For the entree, we both had the buffalo burger- mine with salad, my companion's with fries. Nicely seasoned patty but under-dressed. The lacking pickle, onion, and mustard on a white bun was a little bit sad. I felt like howling, 'show me some passion!'' All of their burgers lack flair but certainly don't lack cheese which is nice if you happen to like cheeseburgers (I do!). But honestly- how about instead of american cheese on everything, offer a buffalo burger with some spicy chipotle mayo and avocado or blue cheese? What about fried onions or barbeque sauce? Do the animal some justice! Or- if you're not into eating animals- how about a house-made veggie burger instead of processed soy from a package?

On my second visit I had the seafood chowder which was lovely and definitely hot. I appreciate that they use wild salmon and local spot prawns. It really tasted homemade. I splurged on dessert this time and ordered the trufflicious cake- I couldn't tell if it was a cheesecake or just a chocolate cake with lots of sweet, rich icing. It was frozen in the middle but didn't taste entirely pumped with chemicals. Service was much more relaxed this time.

The place wasn't very busy, so I got the sense that much more attention could be given to food preparation. On the awning they call it a "fresh food bistro" but, speaking from a cook's perspective, it is not fresh bistro food. Why order cakes from a company when homemade apple pie is easy, cheap, and impressive to make in-house? 7 bucks a slice will make you money if you bake it in the restaurant, I promise.

The Tipper is torn between being a bar and a bistro. It's an identity crisis. What I think has happened is the organizer of this place has over-thought everything. So, there are prostitutes on the corner: that doesn't mean you shouldn't have a drink menu or frown on drinking altogether. So, you own the place, that doesn't mean you have to go out of your way to awkwardly make us feel welcome. Just chill. We like you- lighten up and tip the bottle our way. Simply provide us with some fresh food and show some passion for it. Create a drink menu and offer pitchers on game nights. Pay struggling musicians and artists. And don't be mean to prostitutes.

One more qualm I have: Cola steak?

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House of Dosas1391 Kingsway, Vancouver
I'll Definitely be back for Dosas
Submitted Wednesday, May 6, 2009 - 9:21pm [Dine in]

Like many others, having driven by a million times and chuckling at the "come watch cricket" digital sign while waiting at the light, I had never expected to have such a great time here.
Based on my red-light waiting, I expected the House of Dosas to be a quiet restaurant with a sticky floor and plastic forks. I was pleasantly surprised to find a full-fledged restaurant inside, and licensed at that. I love to have beer with Indian food and they've got some decent choices. The packed tables with large groups of laughing friends was another bonus. What a great spot to escape the rain.
I ordered a Duvel beer to drink which was ice-cold. For dinner my date and I shared the lamb korma and a palak paneer dosa. They both arrived with all of the proper accompaniments: the korma with pickles, raita, poppadom, and naan, and the dosa with lentil gravy and two side sauces. I've got to say that the dosa was great- superbly long, light and flaky with the proper amount of filling and extra crepe on the sides for dipping in the gravy. However, the korma was above great- it was excellent. Super fresh cilantro and tomato atop; rich spices, the sauce was of proper consistency, and tender lamb. The naan was a bit chewy but fresh and tasty nonetheless. Next time I'll get the lamb korma dosa.
I thought that the server juggled the tables very well considering the crowd. To pay the bill, you've got to go up to the cash register which is fine with me because it allows you to sit and digest without pressure to pay until you're ready.
I'll definitely be going back and next time I'm bringing my hockey friends. Maybe we'll get into the cricket game that's playing...

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Bandidas Taqueria2781 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
Golly, I think I like it
Submitted Saturday, April 25, 2009 - 1:41am [Dine in]

Understated yet funky, enjoyable yet unpretentious chow, and totally appropriate for the area: I'm happy that Bandidas is the new girl on the block.

Last time I was there I had the Camillo tacos. They make their own corn tortillas in-house which are soft and warm. Breaded walnuts were the highlight of this dish while subtle sweets and cheeky chipotle nuzzled through.

I like the casual atmosphere and wooden bar. I like that kids are welcome and the space is open. I like the bikes high-up near the ceiling. I like that it is a women-owned, person-friendly place. It feels good to be there.

I like this place!

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Benny's Bagels2505 W Broadway, Vancouver
Bagels and cheap beer!
Submitted Saturday, April 25, 2009 - 1:21am [Dine in]

I love the bagels and cream cheese here. My favourite bagel is the sesame and in close second is poppy seed because they are loaded with seeds. The best thing on the menu is the lox on a bagel with cream cheese, tomatoes, capers, and red onion. I love to eat it outside in the summer with a lager that costs 3.25. Seriously! They have cheap draft beer and it's not Miller Genuine Draft or Kokanee! I think MGD and Kok are available in bottles, though. hehe.

When they get busy, it may take 10 minutes for a bagel- but what's the big deal? It's 10 minutes. Obviously use your judgment if you're in a rush, just like any other place. Again- being slammed during a rush is no fun, and sometimes they lag behind on cleaning the tables. I don't blame the service; it's a lack of staff on shift that causes this frustration (aka blame management). Usually the tables are cleaned as soon as the staff are capable.

The paintings need to be updated but I like the eclectic, industrial-looking tables and the couches next to the fire place. The coffee is pretty good and teas are a decent brand.

Seriously, though- bagels and beer all the way. Wheat and yeast. I mean it.

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Aphrodite's Organic Delights Cafe3598 West 4th Avenue, Vancouver
Great concept
Submitted Saturday, April 25, 2009 - 12:40am [Dine in]

Despite the unfortunate (though not untrue) reputation for service, Aphrodite's was instantly one of my favourite restaurants in Vancouver. Why? Their attention to local, organic, and fresh food. That's the main focus for me: good food- and they've got it. Last time I was there I had the turkey pot pie with a lovely garden salad that included farm-fresh radishes and a beautiful assortment of greens. My date had a tangy tomato borscht and the wild salmon burger. Their pies are expertly made and they have great coffee. The food is definitely quality cafe fare- sandwiches, homemade soups, pizza, etc, except for the salmon benny at brunch and their dinner special entrees which are a bit more bistro.
It is truly unfortunate, though, that of the three times I've gone there, the service staff have been disgruntled. Though I've never felt 'abused' by a server there, I am uncomfortable and perplexed in situations where the server's disposition makes me feel guilty for asking for the cappuccino I ordered half an hour ago. Good, socially-conscious food should breed positivity. I don't mean corporate bubbliness- I mean an ease of communication and a pleasurable atmosphere that allows for an occasional bad or grumpy day. It's human. But a bad day every time is questionable. So I need to ask- is the food ethical while the service staff aren't being paid fairly? Are the servers overworked because there are no bussers? Or does management just hire cranky servers? What is going on?
I want to go to this cafe more often. Two things are stopping me: the first we can guess. The second is that quality organic food costs more money. While I believe that it's worth it, it's just not something a student can afford very often.

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Chai Gallery3243 West Broadway, Vancouver
Third time's a chai?
Submitted Saturday, April 25, 2009 - 12:00am [Dine in]

I've been to this place three times in the past two years, and each time it was on a Wednesday which raises money for orphans of war. This is such a great idea- to give money to a charity and make a night of it- weekly!

The first visit- So incredible. Rustic wooden chairs, Afghan carpets wall-to-wall-to-ceiling, skylights, and warmly coloured couches. The only thing missing is for ambiance is a hookah. I love that food can be an experience at this place. I can take my shoes off and snuggle next to my date there. The food is all-you-can eat and during my first visit there were non-stop chai and mango lassi samples. This evening, I bought myself some wine for an extra $5 (no biggie). The entertainment was great, too. The cost for this entire night (not including the wine) was $25 dollars and from my understanding, the proceeds were going to the orphans because the staff were volunteering. However, I am a bit surprised... volunteer staff?

The second visit- same incredible atmosphere, less people, more expensive? This time it cost me $25 plus $5 for the orphans. I thought that the staff were volunteering? Huh? I'm confused, but I think it's worth it. The entertainment was incredible- flamenco musicians and a dancer that not only moves her body, but moves my emotions as well. Unfortunately, the food is not as hot as last time, but it still tastes good. I remember loving the chicken dish best.

The third- Great atmosphere and spectacular entertainment. Even more expensive, ($25 for the event and $10 for orphans) and one teeny sample of chai was included. OK- volunteer staff is impossible. I ask a server and she admits, yes she's getting paid but she wasn't before. Well, I'm glad the workers are being paid for their time. I know I don't need to be concerned with that sort of thing, but coming from the restaurant industry, I want to look out for my comrades. But back to the food which was... disappointing. I had two small plates of "hot items" that were barely warm. Maybe my timing at the buffet was bad, but I wish they would've kept some heat in the dishes more efficiently. The quality seemed to be lacking, too- less spices, kidney beans instead of paneer in the saag (cheaper), and waxy peas in the paneer and peas with a watered-down sauce. The tofu and vegetable coconut curry was incredibly sweet even for a coconut curry. While the Afghan lamb and Turkish eggplant were yummy, they were literally cold. The cauliflower in what looked like an Aloo Gobe curry simply tasted like cauliflower in tomato sauce. The best dish of the night was the stuffed parantha- I think I caught them when they'd just come out because they were hot and pillowy soft- delicious! There is also an extensive salad bar with homemade dressings, which I can really appreciate.

Dessert includes spiced rice pudding, pistachio custard which tasted like cardamom (yummy), cheesecake, Golub Jamun (honey donuts), various cookies, and homemade chocolate and fruit sauce. Drinks are apparently not included now and expensive. It was $4.50 for a teeny chai (maybe about 4 oz) that wasn't nearly as good as last time. Their wine selection is pretty sad and expensive ($7.50 for house red?).

Overall, I feel like the quality has gone down while the price has gone up. I don't mind so much about the price- $15 for food, $10 for entertainment, $10 for orphans, but the food has to live up to the standard. Isn't that the point of a restaurant? I can say that I will be going back because it's such a beautiful experience, but I hope the food is hotter and well-spiced next time.

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Koko Japanese Restaurant2053 East Hastings St, Vancouver
Wicked WIld Salmon
Submitted Tuesday, April 21, 2009 - 7:18pm [Dine in]

I think this place is so great. I love the booths or sitting and interacting with people at the bar. The size of the sushi is perfect and the cuts are appropriate- I always feel like everything is well-balanced. Clearly, they have well-trained sushi chefs. My favourites: the dynamite cone is delicious, but the wild salmon sushi is perfection.

Sometimes I feel like service is a bit confusing. I think the servers share tables and it would be more organized if they each did their own tables. Despite the confusion- "no we're not waiting for the bill- yes, we're waiting for food," the servers are well-mannered and refill drinks often. It's such a nice touch to have hot towels at the beginning of the meal.

I would recommend this place to anyone looking for quality sushi in the Hastings-sunrise area.

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Closed
Social Restaurant & Lounge332 Water Street, #200, Vancouver
It was a cold night
Submitted Tuesday, April 21, 2009 - 7:05pm [Dine in]

It was a cold and snowy night in December. I was in the mood for the slurp of ice cold oysters and a fish stew. I've passed So.Cial's oyster bar several times so decided to finally try it. Unfortunately, on this cold and snowy night the oyster bar wasn't open so we sauntered upstairs.

I really loved the ceiling, and the chill of the evening made the space feel gothic, though I wasn't enticed to feel comfortable. I have a feeling a fireplace near where we were sitting would've warmed my spirits and loosened my wallet a little more.

We ordered the mussels with black figs, some raw oysters and a bottle of wine. It was a very slow evening, so service was prompt, albeit slightly cold. Let's blame the snow. We were served some great warm bread with whipped butter- I can't remember if it was complimentary or if it came with the mussels. I just gobbled that up. Whipped butter is such a nice touch. The mussels were solid, but not tasty enough to ignite my palate. While the oysters were quality, the shucking was unfortunate. Hmm. Crunchy raw oysters? They came with a wedge of lemon and some very hot habanero sauce. Hot sauce from the bottle is a bit much for me. I much prefer plain ol' horseradish or cocktail sauce. Or maybe a mignonette? Anyway- I think because it was slow, the usual shucker had gone home because I saw the server hacking away at them behind the bar. Next time if the oyster bar's closed, I won't bother going upstairs expecting oyster expertise.

In summary, what I was expecting was a warm blaze but instead got cold feet. Maybe I'll go back in the summer and update my review.

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La Grotta Del Formaggio1791 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
My favourite deli
Submitted Tuesday, April 21, 2009 - 6:44pm [Dine in]

I agree with everyone else. Why do I even need to bother with this post? Because I want to talk about the fact that in their pasta selection, they have spelt pasta and other Low Gluten options. Also, they are locally, family owned and operated- one of the few ancient Italian shops left in 'little Italy'. This place makes me wish I knew how to speak Italian.

There are actually two tables there- on the sidewalk. Most of the time there are already people sitting there. If it's sunny, I'd say walk over to Grandview park to enjoy your sandwich on the grass.

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Timbre Restaurant2068 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
Solid as Wood
Submitted Tuesday, April 21, 2009 - 6:33pm [Dine in]

I really like this place. Quaint, unpretentious, friendly and music focussed. The food is typical Vancouver fare which doesn't exactly excite me, but it's tasty and a decent value. I personally like the service staff and haven't had a long wait for food before.

Drink specials make this bar noteworthy, but I don't really think paying 6.25 for a pint of local beer is fair unless it's organic. Last time I was there, I had a caesar with a jumbo shrimp for garnish! It was so good- it made me smile. Those caesars should be highlighted on the menu.

The washroom is always clean! Good sign!

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