An ingredient-driven, seasonal focus sets the tone for the menu, with distinctive dishes embracing the sensibilities of Italy.
While planning a trip to Italy, we wanted to dine at an Italian restaurant while we discussed the details of our trip. During our dining experience, we felt fully immersed in a Vancouver version of Italy...the beautiful floor tiles, the wine list and the cuisine were exceptional. Our server was able to recommend typical dishes of Italy and he timed our courses well. The room felt like it ran like clockwork; quiet, yet all staff walked with a purpose. After our trip we hope to visit again!
I had a reso to eat here with my wife on my birthday. When entering I thought the place looked very nice inside, the tiles & decoration were nice. We showed up on time for our reso but there was not a table ready for us. They suggested we wait at the bar & order a drink while we wait.. I prefer to wait so I can drink with my meal so we were kind of uncomfortably waiting off to the side.. Once we sat we were met by a very friendly & knowledgeable waitress. I tried the beef carpaccio with shaved truffles for an appy & the osso bucco in a bed of risotto as my entree. Both were very good. The bottle of white wine that we ordered (2008 La stella vivace from the Okanagan Valley) has since became my favorite white wine to drink. Overall we enjoyed our dining experience here & I will be returning.
I was really looking forward to Cin Cin's as I really enjoyed their sister restaurant, Araxi. I also hear good things.... However, I was a little disappointed -- the food was good but not GREAT (and for a restaurant of this stature, I expected a little more "umph")
The biggest issue I have is that the portions are very small... even for fine dining... The fish I ordered came with sides so little it was like literally a table spoon of starch and one baby potato cut into two. Appies and dessert were of course even smaller.
We were so hungry at the end of the meal that we ended up at another restaurant and ordered a full dinner again.
Well, I've been a really closeted dining type so my sister decided to get me gift certificates for this place so I could try something new - her biggest mistake.
Ordered the grilled calamari to start - yuck. It was tough, had a thick seafoody smell and taste (like it had gone bad) and such a small portion for $12.
Ordered the house caesar salad - ehn. The dressing was a little different (a cross b/w thousand island and caesar) but that wasn't the problem. It cost $8 but only contained 6 or 7 giant leaves of lettuce (a dollar a leaf??!??). And the leaves were wilting around the edges... the least they could have done is get some good lettuce for a dollar a leaf.
My boyfriend had the ostrich and I had a chicken breast entree. Wasn't so bad. Small portions but I think that might have been the theme of this place... Decided to skip dessert cuz the dinner had been so disappointing.
Waiter was friendly, and made sure there were NO crumbs on our table a few times after the complimentary bread had been served. However, upon paying, I saw him take the bill to the machine, he opened it up, saw the gift certificates in there, opened up the gift certificates, rang in our bill and brought it back without the gift certificates included!!! He then claimed he hadn't seen them and thought they were business cards - liar. He then gave us the wrong bill after the certificates were rung in but no matter cuz it was cheaper. Ha! At least we got some of our money back...
Excellent wine selection (although there are plenty of other places that do) and the ambiance is fantastic, great for a first date if you wanna eat crappy food.
It started out slightly iffy when we wanted a bottle of fizzy water, and it cost $8.00, and the 2 choices were both imported. Canada is the land of water, and you have to import it from little Italy? But you can't single out Cincin...even at some supermarkets you can't get Canadian sparkling water. Our waiter was genuinely nice, but - and here I go obsessing about water again - he kept our fizzy out of reach, so I couldn't pour it when I wanted it. When I finally got up to get it, he in a friendly way admonished me for doing so, and insisted on pouring it. I noticed that another server had left a bottle of water on a man's table for him...that customer didn't have to go through my mild ordeal. But I must state that the server was very good otherwise, and could answer my questions about the food intelligently, like where is Hecate Bay? (Where the halibut was from.) The food - the dessert was the best I ever had, seriously. A pistachio and lemon curd semi-frozen tart, ...worth the 12 bucks because it was spectacular and filling. Worth more. It was the star of the evening. The halibut was a good-size portion, and delicious. The rolls were as good as I've had anywhere in my life, and they were served with a generous mound of tapenade, and really good olive oil. Everything gratis. The server offered me another mound of gratis tapenade, but I just needed a bit more bread for my pasta dish, and it came promptly. I broke down (I had promised my lady friend that I wouldn't drink that evening) and had their red wine sampler - 3 wines of Italy, 2 oz. per glass, at 15 dollars something. There was a light, a medium organic, and a full-bodied. I liked the organic the most. Try a bottle of it, please, to those who order wine by the bottle. The tuna appetizer we shared was melt-in-the-mouth wonderful. Thank you, Cincin. My lady friend was very pleased with the evening, and that's what counts.
Went here for dessert last night - absolutely wonderful time!
Had the apricot panna cotta (with honey gratin, and pistachio macaron) and fondant cake (pumpkin chocolate cake with a caramel? ice cream and toffee bits & brittle). SO delicious. For the panna cotta, it was perfectly sweet, because of natural flavours like the fruit and the honey. The macaron was melt-in-your-mouth! For the fondant, the pumpkin was very subtle and not overpowering, which I was afraid of. All the elements just worked together very well in one spoonful.
The service was top-notch, very attentive, friendly, and he felt like he was pleasant because he is naturally, not because he was doing it for the job.
Value - a bit more expensive than I'd like but I didn't mind because there was so much care and attention in the food flavours and then also the service.
Ambiance was warm and cozy, tables set not too close together.
It was a very pleasant dinner, we were greeted with a friendly and warm welcome, our waitress was very polite and experienced. I would definitely come back more often for dinner. I ordered the caesar salad to start, which was delicious, I especially enjoyed the crispy bacon, although the lettuce was too big, I still thought it was one of the best caesar salads I've ever had. I definitely liked the cocktails here, I got a strawberry cocktail drink, which was really yummy, it was served with a slice a sweet strawberry. For entree I had the rib eye steak, it was juciy, tender and flavorful, the only complaint was that it was overcooked. The desserts here are really special, I really enjoyed the dessert platter the kitchen prepared for the birthday girl. (which we shared)
Had dinner as a party of 4 earlier this week. Everyone had a good time, and although everything was good, we've all had better in terms of food and service.
Let's start with the ambiance... loved it! From the beautiful stairwell leading up to the restaurant to the layout inside to the decor and lighting.
Service was below my expectations of a high-end restaurant. While we were greeted promptly and server was knowledgeable, we waited an awful long time for our food. The server didn't seem to notice or care that we had to wait almost 40 minutes for our entrees (appies didn't entice us). No apology made. Thank goodness for the complimentary bread they serve (which wasn't warm like the previous reviewer also noticed), because we would've starved w/o it. Another strange thing was that our server passed our table off to another server when it was time to order dessert. It was weird b/c her shift hadn't ended - she was still serving neighbouring tables. Had to ask for water refills, but she at least made a good wine suggestion.
Food: We had the sablefish, anitra, arctic char and taglierini al'astice. Two fish entrees were good, albeit a little small. We were only full after the meal b/c the comp. bread had digested already. The duck was very nice- juicy, tender. Handcut pasta w/lobster wasn't very authentic. Desserts were all excellent. Tiramisu & apple tart were awesome! Ten-layer coffee/choc. cake a little too rich, but still good. Creme brulee was heavy, but liked it and the fruit and nuts that accompanied it.
Overall, you should try it... staff weren't pretentious and food is good.
Restaurant #2 in my Dine Out 2007 schedule. I'd previously heard great things about this restaurant. Even their menu boasted all of the awards they had won in the past. I really, really wanted to like this place. Having said that...
Food - Not impressed at all. I ordered the salad, pork loin, and pear tart, and my significant other had the soup, arctic char, and tiramisu. The salad was tiny, good enough for about 6 bites. No kidding. My SO's soup tasted like flour. The entrees weren't much better. My pork loin was cold, even though the plate was hot, and the texture was so rubbery I felt like I was chewing bubble gum. The arctic char was pretty tasty, but it was also a tiny portion. I don't wanna harp too much about the small portions, but even my 90-pound girlfriend was hungry after our meal. Come on!
The only saving grace for the food was their wonderful desserts. The caramelized pear was superb. Probably the best dessert I've had in years, and I love my desserts! My SO's tiramisu was also really tasty and nicely presented.
Service - Solid, but still lacking, especially for a restaurant of this 'class'. Our table was late, even though we had reservations, and our pre-dinner bread came so late, we had already finished our appetizers. Having said that, our server was friendly and courteous, and apologized for their mistake.
Ambiance - Best part of the dining experience. Great layout for a restaurant. Well designed, nice decor, and dimly lit. Cool bar, and nice view of the kitchen from the dining area.
After a single drink each, plus taxes, the total bill was $95 for a pretty disappointing meal. After all was said and done, we decided we wouldn't be giving this restaurant any return business. Too bad. I really wanted to like this place.
Cin Cin is one of the more popular restaurants in Vancouver. Known to attract celebrities and sports fugures alike. The location is convenienet and the decor is almost spanish like. Service is great but dont forget you get whjat you pay for. Avergae bill for 2 including a $150 bottle of wine cost you around $400 plus tips. Romantic place !
I say it's not just about food here. It's an experience - the ambiance is warm and luxurious - a little bit of Tuscany right on Robson Street. The food is great Italian. This is the place where I have lengthy dining experiences with great company. It's more upscale but not snobby.
During the Vancouver Dine-Out Event in February of 2004, I relished at the opportunity of visiting one of Vancouver's highly-regarded New-World Itallian Restaurants - CinCin. I mean, this place was frequented by Hollywood stars such as Al Pacino and Goldie Hawn! Indeed, the color scheme, tiles, walls, and decor of the restaurant spoke of the Mediterranean when I walked in.
Going for the dine-out menu, I had with the 'Vitello Tonnato' appetizer . To be honest, this was the first time I've ever tried Veal in its cold form...and to a certain extent, I was repulsed by its gamey taste. The tonnato sauce was good; however, I found myself trying real hard to enjoy the rest of the dish. Next up, for the main dish, I had the Crispy Duck leg confit with braised cabbage. Pretty good - the only problem is, there wasn't enough duck leg to make this satisfying as a main course in a 3 course meal. And to save the best for last, I had their delicous Tira Misu. I've never had something quite like it - truly tasty but not too sweet.
I must also make note of the server we had. He was very eager to help, perhaps a BIT TOO eager. He literally came to our table and asked if everything was fine in 7 minute intervals. I was also annoyned when the blonde restaurant manager came by to our table to announce: "And next, we're going to haaaaave dessssssert!" like if me and my date were 11 year olds who were dining at a fine dining establish for the first time in our lives.
Otherwise, the visit to CinCin was worthwhile...but its not the sort of place that regular folks would go to regularly for Italian food. There are MANY good Itallian restaurants in Vancouver that serve far more Authentic fare. If you want to sit where Al Pacino may have sit in one of his visits to eat and feel trendy, then this place is for you.
Another Dine Out experience for me this year, and another great meal. They actually called a day in advance to remind me of my reservation and ask if 2 hours would be enough time for my dining experience. Considerate, especially since I've heard most places just try to rush you when you're there.
The waiter came over to take our orders and then came back with our wine and some bread, served with a wonderful green olive tapenade. I don't think my friend cared much for it, but I loved it and ate pretty much the whole thing.
To start, I had the Cioppino, which was very flavourful. The presentation was lovely, with slices of fish and baby shrimp placed carefully at the bottom and the tomato, saffron & fennel broth poured over. A decent-sized serving for an appetizer.
For my entrée, I had the veal osso buco which was served with white beans in a soffrito and chianti sauce. The veal was so tender it practically melted in my mouth. I didn't care much for the beans, and would have preferred something else, but the flavour of the sauce was really good so I had no complaints - just personal preference on the beans.
The dessert was a Tiramisu - very original presentation and not like any I'd had before. Had I not known it was tiramisu, I wouldn't have guessed. It was very good, just not what I was expecting, I suppose.
The meal was great, as was the service and the value for Dine Out was outstanding, considering their regular prices. I'd like to go back to try their regular menu sometime, maybe after I get a raise. :)
I thought, from the outside streets of Robson, that the restaurant wouldn't be that great...but after I went inside, it looked pretty nice, giving a rustic italian feel. if the terrace was open, it would have been more memorable in my opinion.
Anyhow, we ordered the grilled squid appetizer and the flavour was somewhat interesting. I've never tasted squid like this before, the flavour was rich. I can't really describe it. The sauce that came with it was even better. I dipped my bread in the sauce to make the most out of it...haha.
Then for the entree, we ordered the risotto with mushrooms, and ahi tuna. I thought the tuna was going to be better, but the risotto was just awesome. my boyfriend ordered it, and I really regretted ordering the ahi after the first taste. But the ahi tuna was good too.
Dessert was a litlle bit disappointing, but I still loved it. the triple chocolate mousse cake was a bit too sweet for me, but the accompanying gelato was perfect. My boyfriend's tiramisu wasn't very tasteful in my opinion. a bit too bland. We went there mainly for the dessert, because apparently the pastry chef was known for being one of the best in the "michelin" ratings.
Service was alright, the water was filled, bread was filled, and crumbs were gone. However, I noticed that the waiter (same waiter serving our table) kept telling the couple beside us that this certain plate was "not enough" for them.......which sounded a bit annoying.
Anyways, I loved the decor and food, so I'd definitely return.
This was a pretty amazing dining experience! My cousin is the Sous Chef at Cin Cin, so we got what felt like the red carpet treatment as far as the food goes. Our 8-course meal started with an absolutely massive portion of Beef Carpacio with pecorino cheese and truffle oil, we then had a Potato Leek soup,Cherry Tomato salad, risotto, Smoked Arctic Char, Veal Tenderloin with Fois Gras, a Dessert platter to share and then we each got a Warm Cherry dessert. It was Decadent, amazing and really expensive.
Decided to accompany a friend of mine to Cin Cin because she had been wanting to try this place for awhile now. We were greeted promptly as we entered the restaurant and our coats were taken. When we finally got seated, I couldn't help but realize that our table for three was more like a table fit for two.
Of all the food that evening, I have to say that the best is, believe it or not, the spread that came with the bread, absolutely amazing! The appetizers were nothing to be wowed over, they were in fact somewhat dull. The main course was decent, but for prices in those ranges, you are sure to get better food elsewhere. I had a ling cod, which was very mediocre, nothing special at all. My friend had some kind of pork chop, which was excessively salty (salty to the point where I had to swallow it with water, and I rarely drink water at restaurants). To finish my main course, I had some espresso.
As for the service, it was great, except for little minor things such as the small table, and the fact that my server forgot my glass of wine. I had to ask him for it. Things that they did well is the swiftness in which they took out the food for the table and cleared the table. We each had our own appetizers and main course, and they were all brought out at the same time (server got someone to help him bring everything out so that no one sits there waiting, something that happens frequently at other restaurants).
I do however have to congratulate Cin Cin for such a formidable wine list. In the future when I have the desire to sip wine and eat bread (Absolutly love the bread spread,which has garlic, capers, and I believe olives), Cin Cin will likely be the place. However, as a place for dinner, I would probably go elsewhere.
Having been to Cincin's many times in the past, my wife and I looked forward to our anniversary dinner here however we were extremely disappointed by the overall experience.
The server treated us as 'uneducated tourists' after she couldn't provide me any details of their beer/ale selection. When I queried if they had any hefeweizen beer and who the brewer is, she replied by saying it was a local.
To start, we shared a caesar salad at $13, grilled squid at $15, scallops at $19 none of which was exceptional nor well portioned. The best dish of the starters was the caesar salad.
For the entre's, we both ordered the whole grilled seabass at $42 each as we were both very fond of the smoked sea bass which was a signature dish for Cincins. Regretably the smoked seabass is no longer available even though it is still pictured prominently on their website.
The whole grilled seabass dish was the most disappointing as it repeats it's flavoring of stuffed olives which was already presented in the olive tamponade served with the bread.
To their credit, the GM, Ed (formerly of Lumiere) offered us replacement entres but we declined.
The desserts we had were forgettable.
It is with regret that our favorite Italian restaurant has changed to unfortunately a lesser offering. Likewise, it is time to re-assess some of the other fine offerings in Vancouver.
6 of us did dine out here. The decor was modern yet warm with great service. Food was good but some dishes were definitely better than the others. The starters weren't remarkable. For main, the arctic char was way better than the slightly dry pork chops. Desserts on the other hand were all excellent. The one complaint I had about this place is the fact that my top 2 picks of wine were both no longer available. So why not take them off the menu??? I'd go back even though this place is not really Italian.
We went for a nice dinner while on holiday in vancouver. I have never been to a nicer resturant before that was in a larger city, but my boyfriend who came with me has been many times as he is a chef himself. We shared the complimentry bread and olive tapanade, which was excellent, then chose a selection of "add-ons" as well as a main course (pork chop), and creme brule and tiramisu as deserts. The food was very good, and portion sizes were excellent for price, we were both very satisfied. Our server was awesome and knew lots about different wines and menu items. We both have food intolerances one being to beef the other to nuts/seeds, and they were very helpful and accomodating even with brining a fruit plate at the end of our meal (complimentry) because the cookies and mini scones contained nuts/seeds. We had a very good experience and would highly recommend this resturant to anyone who appreciates good food.
Tonight I took my family to CinCin for dinner. We were seated immediately and the server was with us shortly thereafter. She introduced herself and asked us if we'd like carbonated or flat water. We are a family of non-drinkers and asked for hot water. She did not give us any trouble and gave us hot water with sides of lime. She was attentive to our needs when ordering and explained the different types of proscuitto thoroughly. We ordered the octopus and proscuitto to start and these dishes were prompt and delicious. My only gripe at this point was the bread given was much to hard and felt quite stale.
The main courses: crab-stuffed raviolli, pork rack, house sausage and halibut came. These dishes were great. We split and shared with the halibut being the clear favorite. The server was very attentive and asked for feedback after giving us sufficient time to taste the food.
Overall the food was great and the service was impressive. I would definitely go back to CinCin for good eats.