Submitted Sunday, November 21, 2010 - 5:23pm [Dine in]
Me and my fiancee were in the mood for some French cuisine, though after reading the previous review here we nearly decided skip on the bistro de paris to go elsewhere. Good thing we gave this place a chance as it turned out to be great experience!
Food was incredible, the service was gracious and perfect. We were under a bit of time pressure as we had a show to catch, but the waiter made sure everything arrived on time and in perfect order.
We went for the $30, 3-course deal they had on special that day. It was an incredible value in my opinion, all considered. We both started with the escargot de provence, which were delicious, hearty and bursting with flavour. The fish du jour as tuna with spicy mango sauce and came in a masterfully arranged plate and was to die for. Our deserts - creme brule and chocolate mousse were scrumptious.
A wonderful bonus, they give you complimentary fries with your order, which were some of the best fries I have ever had!
Great experience, we will definitely be coming back for more!
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Submitted Sunday, June 17, 2007 - 11:58pm [Dine in]
The service at Caffe Artigiano is about as bad as it gets.
Recently I had my tolerance for customer abuse reached and exceeded there after some obnoxious aussie snowboarder dude started yelling at the line-up to go away so he can finish his shift earlier. It wasn't even closing time yet and the door to the place was wide open. Go figure. He was so rude that I don't think any of the people, having waited some time and then being told to go away are ever coming back.
In all honesty, the taste of Artigiano's coffee is nothing special. They do a nice finish on their lattes, but I have been to Europe many times and this is NOT how good espresso tastes like. For a true European coffee experience and service, head out to the bistro on Burrard and Smithe (right across from the Paramount).
The ambiance at Artigiano reminds me of a youth hostel common area. It is crowded, noisy and generally not very tidy. Their choice of deserts is very limited, looks like a bunch of goodies they bought bulk from Costco.
In short, this place is not worth going to.
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Submitted Sunday, April 8, 2007 - 11:23pm [Dine in]
My experience at Black Tuna was truly incredible. The sushi was probably one of the best ones I have ever had and the ambiance made the dining there even more memorable.
My expectations going into the place weren't very high because of the other so-so reviews here. But the gf wanted to go somewhere with a bit more style that most of the West End sushi places have to offer, so Black Tuna was an obvious choice.
The atmosphere inside was modern, quiet, spacious yet cozy. Classic jazz filled the room and gave an extra touch of elegance to the evening. They started us off with a complimentary plate of sizzling grilled mackarel which was delicately spicy and packed with flavour. We just went on and did several rounds of small sushi and maki orders until we were full.
I found the toro and yellow tail sushi amazingly good. The octopus was truly remarkable. The cooks even managed to get something mainstream like a salmon skin roll to stand out . My gf ordered one of their mini cones which came nicely arranged on a very elegant little stand. We aren't tourists but just had to take a picture of it.
Aqua Riva200 Granville Street, Suite 30, Vancouver
Nice place, but beware of cheating bartenders
Submitted Wednesday, February 7, 2007 - 12:11am [Dine in]
My dining experience at Aqua Riva would have been much better if the staff didn't try to cheat our entire table on the drinks we ordered. The martinis had hardly any alcohol in them, and the bartender tried to slip some cheap crappy wines instead of the vintages we ordered. I ordered an Australian merlot (Ferngrove) and my girlfriend ordered what was supposed to be a Californian zinfandel but we certainly didn’t get that. The waitress did exchange my glass for another wine, but judging by how so-so my girlfriend’s wine tasted as well as how unimpressed by the wines everyone else on our table was it looked like they pull this kind of trick fairly often.
Other than that, Aqua Riva had a pleasing, spacious ambience. The food, although hardly remarkable or original, was mostly palatable. We were on the dine-out menu and I had the seared scallops followed by a steak and an apple rhubarb crisp for desert. The crisp was decadent and melted in the mouth - try it if you go there, it is absolutely amazing. The rest of my meal was less so. Even though the steak was delicious, tender and full of flavour, it came with a rather humdrum lump of mashed potatoes topped with a few strips of carrot and cabbage shavings. The salmon that my girlfriend ordered did not look particularly inspiring either as the rice pilaf it came with looked drab, bland and dry. The service was prompt, courteous and en par with some of the finer restaurants in town.
The best thing about this restaurant is the location. Situated right on the waterfront, almost all tables have a direct view of the North Shore lights. It can get a bit noisy there at times though.
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