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savvy insiderVancouver (Fairview)Since June 23, 20114 Reviews
Average Rating
3.5 (3.3)
  • Food3.5 (3.5)
  • Service3 (3)
  • Value4 (3.8)
  • Ambiance3 (3)

Reviews

Displaying 1 - 4 of 4 Reviews Found
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Go Fish1521 West Broadway, Vancouver
New Go Fish Needs Changes In The Food
Submitted Friday, August 5, 2011 - 4:12pm [Dine in]

Go Fish is a small shack at Fisherman's Wharf just beside Granville Island.

They serve amazing seafood that is delicious with great flavours and is more than reasonably priced.

It has been that way for years and every time we went we enjoyed it thoroughly.

And now there is a new Go Fish kid on the block.

This one is in the South Granville area, on West Broadway, just around the corner from Granville Street.

It once was home to the now defunct Bin 942 that had been serving excellent food for 12 years before being shuttered by legendary owner-chef Gord Martin to make room for Go Fish number two.

The room is long and narrow and there is a nautical modern theme here - chrome and dark blues, booths with stripes of black and white.

But, alas, Go Fish number two needs a lot of work before it can reach the culinary heights of the original Go Fish, and another one of Martins culinary hot spots, Bin 941 on Davie Street.

The menu needs tweaking and needs it fast.

Mind you one of the dishes, out of three, was stellar.

It was the watermelon salad with beautifully sliced sea scallops.

It was stunning in presentation, taste and textures.

The thinly-sliced scallops, so fresh they still had that sea smell about them, were topped off with small flecks of red Serrano chilies.

An oblong piece of icy-cold water melon was topped off with gorgeous heirloom tomatoes, one small red one and a large chunk of a yellow one, alongside a beautiful lime foam. And sitting on top of it all were some small micro greens.

It was a delicious combination - the sweet water melon, balanced by the gorgeous scallops and the hot chilies, the Tequila lime foam adding freshness and those tomatoes with that real tomato taste.

What more could you ask for?

Well you certainly would not ask for the salmon flatbread dish again.

This was plain awful.

The flatbread, nary a char in sight, was an uninspired slab of dough, covered with fresh salmon slices, caperberries and goat cheese.

And whose ideas was it to pair goat cheese with fish - a definite no no?

The strong goat cheese dominated everything and the caperberries with their supposed slight lemon flavour, were not a taste in sight.

The dish had no texture or flavour profile - it was one big goopy mess.

The fish and chips, another stellar dish at the original Go Fish, were okay, the halibut cooked perfectly but the batter was anything but crunchy and crisp.

The chips were all they should have been as was the accompanying cole slaw.

Bottom line: This menu needs some serious tweaking although prices are reasonable. All mains were $13 a pop. As yet there is no website or posted menu for the new location.
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Closed
Cafe Regalade2836 West 4th Avenue, Vancouver
Small French Bistro - Superb Food, Good Prices
Submitted Thursday, July 28, 2011 - 7:58pm [Dine in]

French bistro food is home cooking at its best.

It's food that is delicious, flavoursome and memorable.

The recipes are time-honoured, often passed down from generation to generation.

The recently-opened Cafe Regalade, a tiny French bistro in Vancouver's Kitsilano area, has all these qualities.

The decor is simple, sparse and almost has an industrial look and feel to it; non-descript to say the least.

The kitchen is innovative, creative and cooks food of stellar quality, often introducing a twist and a new element to traditional French bistro food.

Take the Quinoa salad with mango and basil. Traditional Quinoa, an ancient Peruvian grain is earthy and nutty in taste, but under chef's fine hand it is light and refreshing.

The salad contains sweet mango dices, fresh basil, pine nuts for crunch, making the salad memorable.

Likewise the red beet salad, sweet chucks of goodness in a smooth creamy dressing, coating the beets, salty Parmesan cheese shavings; the kitchen scored another hit.

The innovative zucchini tartare, little chunks of zucchini, juicy little morsels of sweet raisins, a slight hint of salty anchovies and crunchy pine nuts, is bold creative and so tasty and unlike anything you've had.

Marinated salmon, with shaved Parmesan, is another stellar dish. The salmon is Gravlax-like (a Nordic dish sliced thinly consisting of raw salmon, cured in salt, sugar, and dill), but the taste here is more subtle and lighter.

The accompanying hearty grilled slices of peasant bread were perfect for the rich, smooth, slightly sweet salmon; the salty Parmesan cheese cutting through the richness.

Beef tartare also known as steak tartare, a staple of a lot of French bistros, said to be Russian in origin, was done perfectly.

The end result of the finely-minced, high quality beef, mixed with mustard, chopped shallots, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper, finely chopped capers and egg yolk, was hearty and delicious.

The accompanying French fries, super crispy on the outside, the inside creamy and smooth. A small green salad went well with the hearty beef and those great fries.

Braised short ribs in pepper sauce were superb. The meat tender and juicy, surrounded by an amazing sauce that was velvety in texture, hearty in taste, the peppers evident, sharp and pungent, but not overpowering.

A side dish of scalloped potatoes, a beautiful brown crust on top, the inside heavenly, creamy rich potatoes.

Dessert was a lemon tart. A thin crust with lemony goodness on top - perfectly smooth and velvety, that lovely taste of tart lemon. Two pools of whipping cream with fresh sliced strawberries, a nice extra touch, completed this delightful morsel of perfection.

But while the food was stellar, the servers accommodating; there were small elements missing - having to ask for butter for the bread, the table not cleared properly after the main courses were finished, servers walking by customers, waiting to be seating, without acknowledging them.

It's those little things that keep Cafe Regalade from achieving memorable status, given its terrific food.

Bottom line: Cafe Regalade serves terrific French bistro
style food, but some service elements need improvement.

Cafe Regalade
2836 West 4th. Avenue in Vancouver.
604-733-2213

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Bistro 101 at Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts1505 W 2nd Avenue, #101, Vancouver
Bistro 101 - A Hidden Gem, Great Food - Full Dinner $24
Submitted Thursday, July 14, 2011 - 8:21pm [Dine in]

It's one of the best deals in town - dinner at Bistro 101.

This small intimate, recently refurbished, dining out spot, serves a three-course dinner for a mere $24 a person.

And why are prices so low you might well ask?

The bistro is run by students - both in the kitchen and the front of the house - of the Pacific Culinary Institute, under the watchful eye of their instructors.

The menu is constantly changing so that students gain the skills and perfect the art of fine cooking.

We have eaten there numerous times.

The food is always spot on although the service (and this is to be expected) can be a bit slow at times as is readily acknowledged on the bistro's website.

But do not let that deter you from eating at Bistro 101.

After all where you can get a fine meal at near to cafeteria prices?

Our latest foray started off with three generous Halibut cheeks, pan-fried with a light brown crust, sitting atop a delicate tartar sauce, devoid of the usual heaviness; instead it was light with a hint of citrus, perfect for the dense Halibut.

This was one delicious appetizer.

One of the mains, Catfish with rice cake and Chinese broccoli, was a delicious down-to-earth satisfying dish.

The fish, perfectly cooked; the cornmeal crust with a nice crunch when you bit into it.

A Tamarind sauce reminiscent of Malaysian street food, sweet and sour, was robust and earthy, enhancing the flavour profile of the light and moist fish.

The rice cake was in the same vein - the outside crunchy, the inside light and fluffy.

An order of Kai-Lan, also known as Chinese broccoli, steamed and seasoned with garlic and ginger, completed the dish.

The flat iron steak with Polenta fries and fresh sweet corn cut into medallions was hearty deliciousness.

The steak, cut into strips against the grain, was hearty goodness enhanced by a myriad of flavours after marinating in a variety of different spices.

A Mexican light cream sauce, hints of lime zest, juice and cilantro, went perfectly with the steak.

The Polenta fries were deliciously crunchy on the outside and smooth and almost creamy on the inside; a nice complement to the hearty steak.

The sweet corn medallions, sweet and juicy, were a perfect accompaniment.

The chocolate ganache, with a dollop of whipped cream and a tart raspberry coulis was the ultimate desert. The chocolate rich and creamy with that real, somewhat bitter, chocolate taste.

Likewise the Panna Cotta, a classic Italian desert, met its mandate of being creamy and light and the citrus flavours of lemon and lime gave it a nice enhanced light flavour.

Reservations are a must and you can do that on-line.

Lunch is only $18 for a three-course meal.

You can view the lunch or dinner menu on the bistro's website.

And one more thing, they have a bake shop on the premises where you can buy fabulous pastries, cakes and artisan breads at really low prices.

And if you buy one bread the second one will only cost you 50 cents.

Bottom Line: Bistro 101 serves excellent food at really low prices.

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Suika1626 West Broadway, Vancouver
Great Japanese Food With A Twist
Submitted Thursday, June 23, 2011 - 12:23pm [Dine in]

Izakayas are Japan's version of Irish pubs - they serve great food, great drinks and the atmosphere is lively and with it.

And Suika, a relatively new addition to Vancouver's South Granville area, meets all the standards of a great Izakaya.

A funky interior, an open-kitchen concept, a super-friendly wait staff, an extensive menu that is priced right and food presented in a creative and innovative way, add up to a lot of happy customers.

By 7 p.m. on a Tuesday evening Suika is abuzz and almost filled.

Our culinary adventure (we've never tried Japanese food; tapas style) begins with an Amabi appetizer - five sweet succulent shrimps totally intact bathed in a spicy Kimchi sauce. It's a great combination.

Our next dish - the restaurant's signature dish - the $10 Suika Box is outstanding.

An elegant lacquered Bento box is full of small beautifully presented appetizer dishes, each in their own small cup, the kind used for serving sake shots.

The box includes various bite-sized appetizers - a soft tofu silky and smooth, sprinkled with tiny crunchy chips of some kind; small pieces of tuna tataki with Daikon, seared slightly on the outside, rich and so fresh; steamed velvety egg pudding with crunchy asparagus; a heavenly small Kimchee marinated tomato with Chinese chives and cilantro oil; three pieces of crunchy tasty stir-fried lotus root; small pieces of mackerel, salty and earthy and two crackers with a creamy spread.

The sashimi salad is brought to the table; the greens, dressing and fresh tuna are all in a closed Mason jar.

The server does a bit of a shake, rattle, 'n' roll and bingo, your salad ends up in a large bowl.

It was yummy.

The combination of the mixed greens, fresh chunks of tuna, and a sesame seed oil soya dressing, added up to great flavour profile.

A large beef short rib, glazed with a sweet balsamic vinegar sauce, charred on the outside, the inside a perfect piece of tenderness, was robust and tasted terrific.

And that braised pork with Suika's special spice blend was a piece of succulent delicious goodness.

The sashimi - three pieces each of spot prawns, tuna and salmon - was clean and fresh.

The presentation was something to behold - the sashimi resting on dried twigs and beneath them a large banana leaf.

Dessert was a classic Creme Brulee with a twist - it was frozen and topped off with Mango ice cream and a dollop of whipped cream.

It was a fabulous combination and it worked - it worked because it wasn't one of those cloying overly sweet desserts that a lot of restaurants are so fond of serving.

When we told our server how wonderful it was he was more than proud in telling us that he created it.

At the end, we received a small bowl of frozen red grapes - a neat way to end a terrific meal.

Bottom line: Suika's food is creative, innovative and tasty.

The Bill: $77.23 for three, before taxes and tip.

There is no website.

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