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CoffeeKidEast VancouverSince April 2, 200615 Reviews
Average Rating
4 (3.9)
  • Food4 (3.8)
  • Service3.5 (3.7)
  • Value4.5 (4.5)
  • Ambiance3.5 (3.3)


Displaying 1 - 15 of 15 Reviews Found
Nu1661 Granville St, Vancouver
Wow Factor in Food and Ambiance
Submitted Sunday, August 3, 2008 - 7:48pm [Dine in]

Had our first dinner at Nu on the Water the last night of the 08 Fireworks, and it was quite special.

We had a 9pm reservation, and when we walked in, noticed most of the diners were outside on the patio, and I had brief concerns we wouldn't have a good view of the fireworks (i'd requested as such during my reso call), but they had a nice two seater for us getting set up. Then 5 mins later, they pulled out a better 4 seater location that was nearly perfect for the restaurant's location (Burrard Bridge partially blocked things from even the best seats).

Service and details were top notch. Our cocktails were fantastic, and first courses of beef tatare and tuna ceviche were delightful, tangy, spritzy, savoury, and perfectly paired with sommelier's suggestions on red glasses.

We asked for the mains to be delayed till after the fireworks, and they complied, putting them on our table literally after the final burst of explosions. I had the trout, and I can say it's the best trout I've ever had in my life. Crispy seared filet, matched with Isreali couscous, basil, and olives, and a nice Alsace Reisling to pair. Date had pork, which was also fantastic.

On service - the table next to us had kids and more people show up near the end of our meal - they were a bit noisy; our server came over and discreetly asked if we'd like to move to the lounge for more privacy and our desserts. Very nice.

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Sake Maki1414 Commercial Dr., Vancouver
V. Good Sushi on the Drive
Submitted Sunday, July 27, 2008 - 5:59pm [Dine in]

Been to Sake Maki four times now, and all visits (2 dine in, 2 take out) provided excellent rolls, and I was impressed by the quality of the hamachi, tuna, toro, and salmon in nigiri, sashimi and rolls. They have some inventive chef rolls, some better than others - I like the Alberta roll with tempura tuna on top, teriyaki beef and avocado.

They also have some inventive saki cocktails - most are good priced, some seem a tad high.

The food prices are excellent overall, including the $10 dinner meal choices, and the individual nigiri and sashimi pricing. Rolls are long, with 7 pieces cut usually. The Chef choice rolls are even bigger.

Downside is, the place still has much of the former Greek restaurant's design and aesthetic, and service is a tad spotty. I didn't get my salad last time I ate there (ordering the $10 meal), but the rolls were so big, I didn't miss it.

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Bump N Grind916 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
Great Drive addition
Submitted Thursday, February 14, 2008 - 2:46pm [Dine in]

I read the other reviews here with a lot of... sadness. The early reviews are pretty harsh, and it's almost as if I see a generation gap between the reviewers and the people who own Bump n' Grind. A classic "you don't get it" situation.

I have a generation gap with the owners myself. I'm not an "altie", "left leaning" "militant" Commercial Drive type, but I sure know good coffee, and I know good cafes. Bump n' Grind fits both bills nicely, and I've never been treated badly in the place - I've always been treated like a VIP, even when they didn't know me there.

This is not the place to go if you're someone proud of your thirty-syllable Starbucks custom drink order in the venti size. This is a place that takes quality coffee seriously, and it shows. When they refuse to serve things in a certain way, it may offend some, but the results in the cup prove the request denials are quality driven, not snob-driven.

I like the decor, and appreciate the artwork changing often. The furniture is "ratty comfortable" and while it looks old, it's not smelly or mouldy - though it could be more comfortable, I suppose.

On the taste of the beverages, I've had about 50% of their menu in a dozen or more visits, and have rarely been disappointed. Straight espresso ranks among the best available on the Drive (incl. Prado, Continental and JJ Bean). Americanos are the proper size / ratios, and they know exactly how to steam milk properly for the white drinks. Press pot service is great and always varied. I've discovered some excellent new flavours in various coffees tried there.

WiFi access (ask for the PW), comfy surroundings, nice nooks for private convos or group gatherings, it's a great Third Place.

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Brix Restaurant & Wine Bar1138 Homer Street, Vancouver
Could be better, but we'll be back!
Submitted Monday, February 4, 2008 - 1:02am [Dine in]

This may be a confusing review - because right off the bat, I'll say we'll be going back to Brix for another try, probably very soon. I'll explain why below.

We did DOV at Brix. This was going to be our "romantic" Dine Out Vancouver meal, based on what we saw on their website about the restaurant ambiance. It looks romantic, intimate, quiet, and quality.

When we got there, it was a zoo. The place was literally packed, with extra tables put in what I believe is the wine bar area. We were put into a table area that later I found out was where stand up wine sampling / tasting customers go.

Service was kind of meh. Our server was quite friendly, but hard to spot or track down. They had both a $35 and $25 menu; I went for the $35. Food was okay - again, nothing great, nothing poor either. Standout for me was the off-menu pairing one of the owners did for me - I wasn't crazy about the 04 Tinhorn Creek Oldfields' Merlot (too young!) so the owner, also the sommelier, made another suggestion, and it was amazing, and went quite well with my main.

Late in our dinner, I asked the walking-by hostess if the restaurant was always like this - bizzzzy. She said "oh my, no!" and took a few moments to tell me about the non DOV Brix experience.

When we were done, she sensed we weren't thrilled - we were hoping for a quiet, candlelit kinda experience, and got a freight-cattle one. She asked if I had a card, and promised, if we tried again, she'd make sure we got the best table in the place, and a great experience. At that point, the other owner came up, and offered the same. It felt good that they recognized some dropped points (we didn't really indicate as such till asked), and really stepped up to offer something better. They also took the icewine glasses I ordered for dessert off the bill, as a sorry.

Huge props for that. We'll definitely try again. It's an amazing space, but was just too busy during DOV.

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Social Restaurant & Lounge332 Water Street, #200, Vancouver
Ups and mostly downs at So.cial.
Submitted Monday, February 4, 2008 - 12:50am [Dine in]

We had a DOV reso at So.cial for the last night of DOV, for 8pm. The place was absolutely packed with extra tables (second DOV restaurant I've seen do this), and we had to wait exactly 42 minutes to be seated after arriving on time for our 8pm reservation.

There were four of us, and our meal took over three hours from order taken to check delivered - and not through our own fault. It took so long to get our desserts that we ended up playing a childish game of truth or dare at the table, hoping maybe we'd get kicked out for causing a scene. Our server was friendly enough, but at times I could see him polishing glasses or chatting over by the bar, as we waited for our food or service.

My meal, from the $35 menu, wasn't anything special - overall okay, but with one huge problem. Chacouterie first course was good, Duck breast second course was cooked fine, but the main side - parsnips or turnips, I really don't know, was so hard and uncooked, that I almost sent my plate flying across the table when I first tried to cut them. I pushed them to the side, and ate ONLY duck for the main.

The other people at the table weren't so lucky. Everyone complained that the sauces used on their foods (pork, steak, and some seafood thing) were FAR TOO SALTY. Beyond salty.

The server did the 2 minute check up after the mains were delivered - I asked him about my turnips (whatever) saying they were too hard; he took the plate away, went to the kitchen, came back and said "they're supposed to be that way" and didn't ask anyone else how their food was. We figured at that time, it was a lost cause.

One more thing. They have negronis on the cocktail menu. But I had to walk the bartender thru how to make one (during our 42 minute wait for the reserved table). Come on! It's a basic, classic cocktail! Are you D'arby's or something?

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Hamilton Street Grill1009 Hamilton Street, Vancouver
First time at HSG for DOV
Submitted Monday, February 4, 2008 - 12:40am [Dine in]

I hadn't been to Hamilton Street Grill ever, but knew "of" the owner / executive chef Neil Wyles, so Dine out Vancouver was a good chance to give it a try.

The decor is awesome - my S/O is European, and she felt it was very much in tune with a classic "comfort" European restaurant. The food is definitely meat eater / west coast style, but the decor screams Euro-comfort.

I had beef carpaccio / salmon / mousse. They didn't have a wine paring fixed price, though some great wine suggestions. I ended up ordering a bottle for the table based on the four mains we had. Food arrived in a timely manner, and while not mind blowing, was still extremely good - hence the 4 rating on food. Carpaccio was presented well, and I actually only ordered salmon because the rest of the guests (4 of us in total) ordered the other two mains - lamb and grilled striploin. Salmon's a hit and miss for me - at best, I *like it*, not love it, when it's cooked perfectly. Most times I just don't like it. At HSG, I liked the salmon, which meant it was cooked and paired with sides very well.

After our meal, the owner came over to have a chat, ask how our food was, and was incredibly kind and engaging. He obviously has great passion for food and service, and it shows.

We also got an amuse before the meal that everyone agreed really set the tone for the dinner to follow. The place also, while presenting some really fine dining, kind of bucks the trend for Yaletown. No prima donna princesses that I could see in the place - a good thing.

Highly recommended.

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Rare1355 Hornby Street, Vancouver
Big 5 stars all around - we pressed them, they delivered
Submitted Sunday, January 20, 2008 - 3:29am [Dine in]

This a review for a huge dining event I called Rare up to perform at the very last minute. It was a Sunday, I was involved with a group of coffee professionals in town, and they were hungry. I called up Rare and asked if they could handle a party of 20-25 people at the last minute. They were very frank and honest with me about possibly being understaffed. We negotiated, and they offered up their Dine Out Vancouver menu a week early.

It was nearly perfect.

One server. One floor manager. One chef. One (or more, I'm not sure) sous chefs / helpers. But they managed to handle our crowd with aplomb. We had some serious foodies in our bunch - a couple of Italian espresso machine manufacturers used to serious fine dining; some foodie types from Australia, the US, Brasil, UK and elsewhere. And the next day, all were praising my choice of restaurant. That says something.

For the size and impact of our group, I'd say our food was delivered in a timely fashion - perhaps a shade slow if it were a normal dining night, but for this last minute thing, awesome. The DOV menu was spectacular, but it wasn't just that. We had seven courses - Amuse bouche, two palate cleansers, and petit fours to add to the 3 course meal. All for $35. My own choices (duck and duck for the appy . main) were amazing - the duck confit I could die for. The desert choices were well received, and the on-the-fly wine pairing they did ($45 exta I think) was spot on.

I place high value in a restaurant that serves a couple out for a nice meal well. I place even higher value in a restaurant that can handle a surprise party of 20+ at the last moment (1 hour notice) and do it with aplomb.

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Me & Julio2095 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
Me and Julio need to upgrade their bar service!
Submitted Sunday, January 20, 2008 - 3:18am [Dine in]

This is mainly a review of the bar service at Me & Julio - I've already written a review for the food dining experience, this time around, it's about sitting at the bar.

The bar in this place is the obvious centrepiece. It's huge, sitting probably 10-15 people, and the big wraparound style says "hey, we take our mixology seriously".

Problem is, they don't. I've been there now three times for a tequila experience. I was excited to see the "choice" option of a tequila flight, as well as other flights, but every time I ordered their selection flight, one or more of the tequilas in the mix was missing. That's strike one. I can accept a tequila missing on one visit, but three?

Second strike - their PBTC (persons behind the counter) are not mixologists, not even bartenders. They do not know their liquors from liqueurs, and frankly, given the setting and the prices, I expect more. The owners need to seek out a serious mixologist to work their drink program through the roof, and make sure all staff hired to tend bar know their stuff.

Third strike - mentioned in a previous review I did, it happened again - ordered a premium tequila, sitting at the bar, and it took about 10 minutes to get it. Once I got it, it was too bloody hot! Now I've done some research into tequila since my last visit, and I know this - tequila isn't meant to be served at 25-30 Celsius! Their excuse is the premiums are up high on the shelf, hence the wait and hence the heat, but I call shennanigans on that. If I'm paying $15+ for a shot, you better damned well serve it right. Especially on the Drive.

Come ON Me & Julio - get your act together! I had such high hopes!

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Zin Restaurant & Lounge1277 Robson St., Vancouver
Nice restaurant - good DOV Experience
Submitted Sunday, January 20, 2008 - 1:47am [Dine in]

Zin was our first (of many) Dine Out Vancouver restaurants for 2008, and my spouse and I had mixed reactions to each course. I loved my soup; she didn't care too much for the beet salad; she loved her lamb shank (braised six hours!!!); I thought my ling cod was a bit bland. I loved the chili-infused chocolate mousse - she found it way over the top.

Our server was great - very on top of our needs, food arrived timely, no complaints at all there. I did give ambiance a 2 rating though because, even though the restaurant had many empty tables, we were (for some reason) seated near the back next to a very noisy party in some other room - I think I would have preferred to sit somewhere away from that noise, as the rest of the restaurant was pretty quiet.

I had the wine pairing, which was just ridiculously inexpensive at $18 on top of the $25 three courser. The pairing helped my bland cod, and my s/o said her pairing went especially well with her braised lamb.

The space is nice and definitely funky retro 70s style, but not over the top. We'll definitely be back (but next time, we may ask to sit away from any loud function that may be going on next door).

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Feenie's2563 W Broadway, Vancouver
Best DOV for us so far this year
Submitted Sunday, January 20, 2008 - 1:41am [Dine in]

My S/O and I are on a DOV (Dine Out vancouver) mission this year, with ten reservations, spaced over the two + weeks of the 2008 event, and Feenies was our third DOV.

It didn't disappoint. If anything, $25 for the three courses (I had the salmon, veal cheeks, and vanilla laced brownie) was almost an afterthought - the veal alone would cost $25 or more anywhere in town.

Everything, and I mean everything put before me was perfect. The 1st course was citrus cured salmon with frisee and creme freche - absolute devine combo. This is food pairing heaven. I was someone else complain about the sizes. Maybe they need to stick with Applebees; Feenies may not position themselves as "uber fine dining" but they sure are during DOV. And my main was huge for a typical Feenies / Lumiere serving. There's nothing wrong with the plate sizes here, unless you used to supersizing your big mac a lot.

My main was the veal cheeks, and it was possibly the best I've ever had. The dessert was a good palate cleanser, nothing super special, but a perfect end to the meal. I splurged and got a 1995 Firesteed Pinot to go with our meal, and it matched well. My partner was equally pleased with her soup (celery root and apple), arctic char and lemon tart for the finish).

Server was fantastic, even though there wasn't a single empty table in the place - I expected to be forgotten / overlooked, but no, our server was tops. This was a fantastic dining experience overall - only problem was the place WAS packed, and very noisy.

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Refuel Restaurant1944 West 4th Ave, Vancouver
Top five all time meals
Submitted Sunday, November 18, 2007 - 5:02am [Dine in]

I'd been meaning to go to Fuel for some time and having some out of town Coffee industry friends visiting was a perfect opportunity.

Our table got adventurous - we ordered the chef's 6 course meal - where the chef invents the menu on the spot based on the table's likes and dislikes. We got a Kir Royale amuse bouche (!!!!) before the meal (where does this happen! no charge!) and our desserts were all unique and invidual, along with the drinks for the desserts (six different "dessert" style cocktails). In between, we had six fantastic courses that had the wines paired exceptionally well.

Showing a restaurant that goes the extra leg - one of our guests doesn't like duck (one of Fuel's specialties), so there were no duck courses. When I mildly joked and complained to our server, 4th course in, "where's the duck?", within 5 minutes, she was back with a special plate just for me. So I actually got seven courses.

Amazing experience. We were fantastically treated. Highly recommended. And a tip - go on Tuesday (like we did) - their one day a week mixologist is brilliant.

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Chow3121 Granville Street, Vancouver
Great addition to the Vancouver Scene
Submitted Wednesday, June 27, 2007 - 1:10am [Dine in]

We presented Chow with one of those nightmare situations for a small space: a last minute booking for 16 people (which they accommodated), and one which grew to 24 people by the time all the late joiners-in showed up. I wanted to showcase some west coast cuisine to visiting Europeans, and this new spot on Granville was at the top of my list. 16’s scary enough for a 45 seat restaurant - 24 is pushing it. But the nightmare was made a dream event by the Chow staff, including a lot of personal attention by manager Mike Thomson.

Prior to the evening, I asked Chef Jean Christophe Poirier if he could make up a unique non-menu appetizer for 16 souls; then he had to expand it last minute to 24 servings but no matter - they came out perhaps a bit later than normal, but to the delight of all of us, they were fantastic. The mains were a la carte, and again fantastic meals - not a single complaint.

For dessert, Chef Poirier matched up an amazing chocolate / caramel concoction with a foam reduction that matched a 30 year old tawny stunningly well. The pairing blew peoples’ minds.

Handling our 24 souls was done very well, and the food was a brilliant representation of west coast fusion cuisine. Highly recommended.

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West Restaurant + Bar2881 Granville Street, Vancouver
Best place for the pre-proposal!
Submitted Monday, September 11, 2006 - 10:47pm [Dine in]

Sorry to hear the last two reviewers had a bad experience at West. My first visit there was through the stratosphere.

Maybe it helped that I called ahead and told the staff that I was going to propose to my fiance later that night at a different location - who knows (lol!).

We went for the early prix fixe menu (because if I just took her to West and got the full menus, she'd know something was up - I was trying to look classy but cheap). We got what is probably the best table in the place, by the window in the corner, very secluded and romantic.

Table service was absolutely impeccable. The server, a very nice French worman, seemed to read our minds. She recommended great wines to go with our meal (outside the menu's recommended pairings), and was just perfect.

The prix fixe menu was five courses with a good selection for the middle three (the amuse bouche and petit fours are not choosable). I ended up having the duck confit and halibut, which were just... perfectly done and portioned. The dessert - mine was a tad bland - just a tad, but my (future) fiance's dessert sent her to heaven.

It was an awesome start to what ended up being a perfect evening for me (she said yes!). I highly recommend the place, and if you want to try it on the cheap, try their prix fixe before 6pm menu.

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WaaZuBee Cafe1622 Commercial Drive, Vancouver
Premium prices for Neighbourhood Dive Atmosphere
Submitted Monday, September 11, 2006 - 10:37pm [Dine in]

I used to love Waazubee. Three, four years ago, it was considered "expensive" for the drive, but the food quality was good, the portions right, and you could get a pint for under $5, sometimes under $3.50.

Some time back (maybe a year and a half ago), their liquor prices went through the roof; the food menu started climbing in price as well. But I also noticed the portions were getting smaller and smaller. So I stopped going.

Last night, I was walking in the area with my fiance and her friend, looking for a place to eat and I said - hey, we've been semi-boycotting Waazubee for a long time - should we give them another try? And we did.

Food was "okay". Service was "okay", and friendly enough. Same old atmosphere which I can absolutely love when entrees are around the $8-$12 range, and appys are around $5-8.

But the average entree on their menu these days is around the $20 mark, and appetizers are sometimes as high as $12 or more. There's nothing in this place, in the quality of food, nothing, that I can see justifying these high prices. Given that at places like Cru or similar where you see these prices, you get a) fresh linens, b) clean utensils and plates, c) no spilt food on the walls, d) white tablecloths replaced for each sitting, e) glasses that aren't chipped and scratched, and f) cold water (none of these things can be had at Waazubee!), I'm sorry, but Waazubee needs to drastically change before I'll go back. It's a shame - it's dive, and I love dives. But not at uber-premium prices.

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Uncle Fatih's Pizza1685 Broadway East, Vancouver
Ghetto Gourmet Pizza!
Submitted Saturday, April 1, 2006 - 9:01pm [Dine in]

Uncle Fatih's pizza is literally the epitome of how good a buck fifty slice of 'za should be. The slices are well cooked, always full of toppings and cheese, always fresh (so much turnover on the 'zas helps this), and there's some really interesting combinations of flavours up for the grabs.

The shop is very small and always seems crowded, and the poor staff - so harried. I also notice whenever I'm there that no one really tips, which sucks. You get two slices and a drink for $3.50. Dropping the other buck fifty into the tip jar ain't a biggie, and it's still a massive bargain, given the cost.

Every potential pizza shop owner in town serving by the slice should be studying how Uncle Fatih does it, and try to even come close. There's two other shops within spitting distance of this one, and its like eating cooked cardboard.

Yeah, I'm a fan. One of the reasons why I love living in East Van.

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