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EatsFatsVancouverSince April 22, 2007322 Reviews
Average Rating
3 (2.8)
  • Food3 (3)
  • Service3 (2.8)
  • Value2.5 (2.7)
  • Ambiance2.5 (2.7)


Displaying 1 - 20 of 322 Reviews Found
Kinome Japanese Kitchen2511 W Broadway, Vancouver
Submitted Saturday, March 4, 2017 - 9:36am [Dine in]

Apparently the place to go for handmade soba noodles. You gotta be aware, make a reservation. Early, like maybe even week in advance, else you will never get in.

Nice cozy little place, no complaints.
Service, well, they wait staff is quite attentive and responsive. Friendly too, not much I can complain about that aspect. But it's sloooooow. I saw a few other tables around us who had gotten there around sametime or even a bit earlier. We all left around the same time as well and the total meal time was going over 2 hours, and it's not like there was a constant stream of dishes. You get one, then you wait...then another tiny dish then you wait...some types of food and restaurant are amenable to this type of dragged out meal (which can be quite enjoyable), but not here.

Now the food, well, no complaints about the quality of the ingredients in general, but the execution was not mindblowing by any measure. We had a bit of everything.
Some grilled/seared fish was pretty much same as I could get anywhere else. They had sushi (who goes there for sushi?) which generally got good reviews from our table, but it was inconsistent. We had 2 orders and they weren't prepared the same, one piece had WAY too much ginger on it and completely overpowered the bland fish. We also had a grilled fish head/neck (hamachi if I recall), but that was a miss, very large but it was definitely on the fishy side. Ordered an udon as well which was quite good but ... I don't think it was udon, more like somen. And the soba? Well you could definitely taste that it was different. The different broths provided were good, no complaints. But is the handmade soba better? Hmmm... I think the jury is out on this one. (We have been to some fine, fine soba place in Tokyo).
The desert, we had a sampling of the pudding, jelly and ice cream+ganache. It was ok, definitely enjoyable, but really, with Thomas Haas down the street and numerous other dessert places nearby you got to be really different or really good.

Total cost came out to around $50 a person or so, no drinks. Given the long wait, need to reserve and nothing particularly outstanding and being rather pricey, I think I will likely give it a pass for next time.
It is good quality and clearly they have some regulars, but maybe that's due to lack of competition in the neighbourhood rather than people traipsing out here from across town.

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Dosa Corner8248 Fraser Street, #110, Vancouver
One of the best!
Submitted Sunday, May 3, 2015 - 8:22am [Dine in]

Relatively clean place, bright, open. Service was friendly enough but they are a tad short staffed.
There is an amazing selection of dosa's and they're really good. Extensive menu with many options. Server told us mild is the default and if you want spicy, you gotta ask, which is great. Could enjoy the food without suffering as happens at some places.
The other dishes we tried were not perfect, some parts of each were fantastic, some meh but everyone enjoyed every dish. Boy oh boy, some of the portions looked quite substantial! No skimping out here. Everything seemed to have been made to order (except the slow cooker curried of course), fresh and not overcooked.

We lasted the day without getting super thirsty or bloated/plugged as many other Indian places.

Highly recommended, we would return again for sure to sample the rest of the menu

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Adelitas5178 Victoria Drive, Vancouver
Yum yum Mexican eats
Submitted Tuesday, December 23, 2014 - 11:06pm [Dine in]

I wouldn't necessarily disagree with one of the prior reviews that said "Best in Vancouver". Could it be better? Absolutely, I've eaten much better Mexican food, but ...

Looks like the greasy joint has been updated, decently clean now though a comforting patina of grease to go around. You know, fits with the place, eh?
Decently varied menu, more than your typical taco & burritos that's for sure. The nachos were surprisingly good. I mean, nachos are nachos, right? Dunno, something different about these. I would order these again. I can't believe I'm saying this...
Tacos are solid, similar to some of the best in town, especially liked the lengua. We had also a stuffed chili with walnut sauce (ha! find that around town!) and very good, if a bit pricey.
Little ones gave a bit thumbs up on the chicken quesadilla which was packed with the goods.

Service is, well, I'm not complaining, looks like a family run joint with only 2 people (one in kitchen and one out front) when we were there so don't be expecting no 5-star service here.

Key thing is, yup, I would like to return and definitely recommend a trip. We ran into an acquaintance there by chance and he said he hits it up every 2 weeks or so and he said most of the time it is filled with Mexicans. Must be somewhat authentic I guess.

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Farmer's Apprentice, The1535 West 6th Ave, Vancouver
Will it survive ...?
Submitted Tuesday, December 23, 2014 - 10:58pm [Dine in]

Okay the place is small, tight and it was immediately packed at lunch. We got the last "table" without enduring a 30+ minute wait. Would it be worth the effort?
The lunch menu is skimpy, very small. Okay, maybe not a big deal.
We started with a soup. Oh yes, very good, but a bit on the small side for the price. Also came with a couple of pieces of toasted bread. It was okay, sourdough base but not the most flavourful bread I've had.
We also had a gnocchi and a steelhead "fondue" with chickpeas. Both were quite tasty, but I felt the chickpeas were not quite soft enough and also not the best chickpeas I've ever had. The "fondue" was mis-represented I felt, it listed octopus as an ingredient in there but we saw none.
The dessert of "poached" raspberry/blackberry with milk sorbet(???) was actually quite good, probably half as much of the milk "sorbet" as it could have used (there was maybe one heaping teaspoon worth). Terrific summer dessert. Oh wait, except it's in the bloody freezing depths of winter!

Execution? Yeah, I think they did pretty good. Creativity? No. There was absolutely nothing unexpected or surprising about the flavours & combinations. I checked their website and looked through their list of suppliers. I'm familiar with all of them, some of them I consider the best in town, but many of them are, while still certainly in the upper tier, far from the best that can be had from local producers. (And I'm looking specifically at you, the vegetable suppliers)!

Service was ok, but for such a small place they had 3 up front and we peeked in and counted 6 in the kitchen. Really? Honestly? How on earth do they pay the bills??? Especially since the food came out quite slowly. We spent about an hour there and we were the fast ones. Most of the tables were there before us and were still there when we left. I also question why it takes so long, with such a small, small menu, everything should be prepared in advance ready for some final cooking. Would you roll the gnocchi to order? Not if it's on 50% of the menu items! The trout "fondue" base of chickpeas must have been made ahead of time which just left the grilling of the trout, which does NOT take that long. I wish them luck, it is good food, but they're not generating enough turnover to survive I suspect.

Price? About $13-18 for the main dishes. And these were SMALL. I mean really small. This doesn't make sense as I could head around the block to the very dependable Salade de Fruits Cafe and get just as good execution, larger portions, a more varied menu and perhaps even more creativity.

Would I return? No. Recommended? Half-heartedly. If you're in the area and it looks not busy, maybe you'll get lucky one day.

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Bob Likes Thai Food1521 W Broadway, Vancouver
Could've been better...
Submitted Tuesday, December 23, 2014 - 10:43pm [Dine in]

Such high hopes...but was not to be.
Started with the Miang Kham. Great idea, good texture, loved the concept. The flavours were also quite good. So where did it get let down? The sauce was WAY too sweet. By far, not by a little bit.
Next up , the Tom Ka Gai. Again, great flavours from the herbs & spices. A bit skimpy on the chicken, we could barely find any. The let down? Too sweet & too salty. It was thankfully masked a bit by the fragrance from the other ingredients, but was far too heavy those 2 basic tastes.
Finally, the Choo Chi Pla, sounded promising, but it was billed as a "dry curry". Really, cause it was so far from the definition of dry short of being a soup. It isn't bad being so saucy, but it was mis-represented on the menu. Again, the fragrance & flavours were delightful. And again far too much sugar and salt.

Each dish could've been, should've been so much better, but was not! Thai food should be fresh, fragrant but not heavy!
Unless I hear of a significant change, I doubt I would be returning. Not recommended.

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Chung's Fish and Chips4811 Delta Street, Delta
The new best fish 'n chips
Submitted Saturday, November 1, 2014 - 10:38pm [Dine in]

One day we found ourselves stuck in the boonies (I think it was actually in Ladner) on a Sunday morning. Well, what are the options? There were only 3 restaurants open in "downtown" Ladner, so we said what the heck, Chung's it is.

Oh my gosh! Are we ever glad we dropped by! The ingredients are all super fresh, the potatoes supposedly from nearby farms and they have even their own home made tartar sauce (it certainly does not taste like anything we've ever got from the store). Tried salmon, halibut and cod versions and all were good.
The "chips" were very tasty, excellent. So good, I didn't even really need ketchup. The fish ... okay, it's rare I say this, but it is the best we've ever tried anywhere bar Nova Scotia. It puts all the other places in town to shame. It's almost in another league along with the one we found in Nova Scotia. Light, crispy batter that is integrated with the fish, it doesn't slide out in one big sleeve like others do. Fish is nearly perfectly done.
The kid's meal version turned out to be a really good deal, better than the regular meals.

Highly recommended. Worth the trip. Seriously.

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Bella Gelateria1089 Marinaside Crescent, Vancouver
Unexpectedly poor
Submitted Saturday, November 1, 2014 - 10:30pm [Dine in]

Really loved the gelato from the original location so quite looked forward to the new location, which also serves Napoletana style pizza.

We stayed away in the beginning due to the long line ups, but finally got a chance to go. We ended up at a very non-busy time, maybe only 2 or 3 other tables there.

Service, quite slow. I was really surprised by how long. The pizza should be very quick and especially given the lack of other customers there. They weren't exactly fast to get or order either, the waitress took the order, went away, then came back because she got confused or mixed up about what we ordered.
After the meal, we also ordered some dessert and a gelato on a cone. Not only did it also take a long time, they got the gelato order wrong. Somebody came back to "fix" the order, but the "fix" also took a long time. In a near empty restaurant!!! All told, we spent much more than an hour there for 2 pizzas and an ice cream. In an empty restaurant. There's no way they generate enough turnover to keep the place running.

To add insult, the gelato here (which we have since tried a few times) is not as good as the other location, usually too sweet. The dessert billed as "tiramisu", was nothing like that. It was a biscuit with 3 very, very tiny balls (~ 2cm diameter) of gelato. And it was really expensive.

The pizza was mediocre. You can get just as good from Famoso or any other number of joints around town. Absolutely nothing special, except maybe by being 10-20% more expensive than the competition! Our evaluation of the pizza correlates well with other friends and acquaintances who also tried at other times. "Meh, it was ok" was the general response.

Not recommended. You can get way better Neapolitan style pizza in any number of places around town. For gelato, the original location is better. For the same stuff, walk up a few blocks and get it for less cost and less lineup. For dessert or pizza, head around the corner to Sciue.

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Linh Cafe2836 W 4th Avenue, Vancouver
Quite the pleasant surprise!
Submitted Saturday, November 1, 2014 - 10:18pm [Dine in]

French style food from what seems to be a Vietnamese chef. Quite a small place, but very friendly.
The server was pretty good if a bit over the top, I'm not complaining.

Eh, the food? WOW! Yeah, wow! Quelle surprise! A couple of French breakfasts were stupendous. Sure, I've had this level of quality before, but at way more expensive and fancy joints. The actual dishes, well, no, I've not had them before, so it has a double hit of good and unique.
We also had the pho which is quite different from other pho joints in town, but was also quite well done. I rather suspect it is more "authentic" as a breakfast item than the other guys,but I suspect most people will prefer "the usual" style more as a full meal.

Tried some croissants which also got the big thumbs up from the party. The thing was just all good food, surprisingly so.

Definitely worth a return trip. Highly recommended.

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Cafe de l'Orangerie1320 West 73rd Avenue, Vancouver
Even better now
Submitted Saturday, May 31, 2014 - 9:13am [Dine in]

It's basically moved around the corner into a quiet neighbourhood.
And it's even better! A greatly expanded menu with a Japanese take on pasta, curry, desserts, etc. along with some more usual Japanese fare.

Service is pretty good, though not on the quick side. I won't fault them on that too much because they are usually packed and seem to be doing their best with what they have on hand.
The food is good portion size (not for getting you super-stuffed) and very nicely done. Delicious & unique flavours if you're not used to the Japanese style Western food.

As I mentioned, it is packed, so expect waits or perhaps try and reserve.

Worth returning for sampling more of the menu and the changing specials.

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Rain or Shine Ice Cream1926 West 4th Avenue, #102, Vancouver
Decent but pricey ice cream, but could we get a smile please?
Submitted Friday, May 30, 2014 - 11:16pm [Dine in]

Beautiful sunny day, we stopped in for a treat. The place was empty. Not too long after we came in, somebody shuffled out from the kitchen to help us.
Yes, she did ask the requisite questions and she did serve us promptly, but my gosh, you could show a little enthusiasm or joy, couldn't you? And if you're having a bad day (seriously? sunny day in an ice cream shop?), then sorry, you are in the service industry, you're not really "allowed" to have bad days and show it to the customers.

On the other hand, we did not see any other staff there and some customers came and left because they couldn't get service in a timely manner, so maybe the service should rank even lower.

Okay, the ice cream was pretty good, but for the price, I'd rather go to Bella Gelateria where you'll get better stuff with a smile and very prompt, enthusiastic service.

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Chau Veggie Express5052 Victoria Drive, Vancouver
Come hungry, leave hungrier
Submitted Thursday, May 1, 2014 - 10:12pm [Dine in]

Vegetarian Vietnamese. Really? Well, we shall see.
Small little joint, cleaner than most pho places (usually a bad sign :-)
Service pretty decent.

Food, ah yes, the food.
Did we get lucky? Everything but the faux pho had spicy in it. Usually a good sign that the vegetarian dudes don't really know what they're doing and just using spicy as a crutch to add "flavour".
There was some rice bowl loaded with veggies. Some spring roll thingies (probably the least compromised of the lot) and taro chips with dip.

I think the quality is pretty good. I would be happy if I had just whipped it up in a few minutes at home (and in fact, it does taste like stuff I might make when I run short on ingredients). Aside from the faux pho, I don't think anything really screams "Vietnamese!" at me. It could be some undisclosed "Asian" vegetarian joint.

However, there are 2 biggies:
1) It is pricey. The whole dang lot came out to about $35 or so before tips. If you're keeping track, that's 2 mains and 2 appies. At any regular Vietnamese joint, this would net you around 10 subs or 5 large pho or ... you would be darned full. I swear I was hungrier walking out. We went across the street to the Chinese bakery to grab some buns...
2) It's pretty tasty food ... for vegetarian. And you can't do that. It has to be tasty period. The faux pho, yeah, it's pretty good, if you haven't tasted real pho before. If you have, this would not rank any where near the top. I've eaten really tasty vegetarian food before, I even make some dishes myself, so I know what can be done and this is not it.

We were pretty much the only ones in the place at lunch time. As we were leaving a couple of other small groups came in, I think just 6 people in the shop eating as we left.
We walked down the block and across the street. There are 3 other pho places around and they are jam packed, for good reason. Significantly cheaper, more variety, way tastier and you won't go away hungry.

Nope, not worth your time unless you are a vegetarian who lives in the area and too weak to make it to some other joint and can't cook on your own.

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Yolk's1298 East Hastings Street, Vancouver
Good food, but need to learn how to run a restaurant
Submitted Tuesday, December 31, 2013 - 12:05am [Dine in]

It's taken over the old Brave Bull location. Inside it gives off an old diner vibe, it certainly doesn't look new at all. Menu is limited, just a few items and it's all breakfast/brunch stuff. The food was actually pretty decent, carefully made, tasty. Thumbs up on this stuff.

The big let down is in service. Oh, the staff were friendly enough for sure. Attentive, yeah, okay, good enough for a diner. But it's downhill from there.
We got there and there was a a bit of a wait (no reservations taken). I could see an empty table and another party ahead of us. We were told about 15-20 minutes, and it was nearly that before the prior party got seated. With an empty table available! They also have a very large empty area with no tables. Okay, sure, maybe you can't service everyone, but having the extra tables is a small cost and allows customers who don't need "active" service to either wait or ones who are done to linger & chat (it seemed some customers liked to do that).

We finally got seated and put in our order quickly. Pancakes, waffles & chicken and the daily special (happened to be pork belly confit with the poached egg). It took a LONG time to get our stuff. Might have even been an hour. We were not the exception, those that came after us certainly got their food after us as well. This is ridiculous, pancakes & waffle mix is pre-made, should be a 10 minute job at max. The fried chicken? Good, but how long to batter up those things & fry it up? And the daily special? Well if you're advertising the special, you better be prepared when people order it. Surely the pork belly confit is not cooked to order (is it? maybe that explains it, but you can't have an item on the menu that is made to order but takes more than 30 minutes), so how long to poach a bloody egg?

I saw maybe 3-4 in the kitchen and they seemingly couldn't handle the small amount of customers. It's not like they got slammed, the customers came in a rather steady trickle. Out front, I saw 5, maybe even 6 staff. Complete over-kill. Should be covered by 2 people. 3 tops if they are training inexperienced staff. The stumbling block is the kitchen anyways. If they cannot handle the full kitchen, then they should dole out reservations in fixed time blocks at a rate that they can handle.
Total time we spent in there may have been close to 2 hours and they squeezed less than $40 (including tax!) out of our small table. As I mentioned, we were not unique. People were there a LONG time. That doesn't bode well, that's not going to pay their salaries & bills. According to their website, the dude behind the truck has 20 years experience in the industry. Doing what? If he does, he's not keeping an eye on the restaurant. They need to up their game. Good food let down by poor restaurant management.

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Kilimanjaro Snack House and Catering789 Kingsway, Vancouver
Interesting, friendly, tasty.
Submitted Saturday, October 5, 2013 - 9:40pm [Dine in]

We decided to go for some Vietnamese ... wait. What? Wasn't this a Vietnamese place last week? What happened? Not sure, but the manage to completely spruce it up and convert it to something completely different. But hey, we're adventurous, so we went in anyways.

Looks like they did some cleaning. but otherwise still small and tightly packed.
Funny place, it seems like it is run by a bunch of Indian aunties who are doing this for a hobby. (That's what it felt like, that's not what they said). I would guess Indian aunties formerly from Africa. Maybe Tanzania? I'm just guessing. My oh my, they are a friendly and amusing bunch. Definitely very welcoming, almost like getting to know your neighbours.

The menu seems reasonably size and there were daily specials. The specials availability seemed to be hit 'n miss depending on if whoever in the back knew how to make them or if they had the ingredients or whatever. No worries, adds to the charm. We ordered a bunch of stuff, snacks, chai, the lot. I gotta say, quite interesting. The dishes did take a wee bit long because it seems they did whip up most of it from scratch, so they will be excused for that.
Is it Indian food? Err ... no ... not really, you can make out some familiar bits 'n pieces. Is it African? Errr .. well, not Somalian, nor Ethiopian nor ... well, let's stop there, I'm not an African food expert. Suffice to say, interesting enough to pique our interest and warrant a return trip.
We did have a bit of chat with them and got a fine sampling of snacks/sweets. The 2nd best Indian-style sweets I've ever had (best was fresh home-made at a friends place, sorry).

No, it's not fine dining. But yes, the food is interesting and different and of good quality. I would say worth a trip and maybe a couple of returns as well. Heck, take your date here. If he/she likes it, then you know they're a keeper. If not, dump 'em.

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Amay's Burmese and Asian Cuisine5076 Victoria Drive, Vancouver
Needs work...
Submitted Saturday, October 5, 2013 - 9:25pm [Dine in]

We got in, the place was near empty. Only one table. Near as I can tell, there's at least 2-3 people on the floor and some more in the kitchen. Definitely a family run joint, or so it seems.

First problem, they're not restaurant professionals. Well meaning perhaps, but if we feel like we're not getting the attention when we need it or the wait seems a tad long in an empty restaurant, you got a problem. And it ain't my problem, it's theirs because if you can't handle an empty restaurant, what're you gonna do if the place fills up? And you should hope it fills up ...

The menu is ... not large. In fact, of the mains, there are only 5 items and frankly, 2 of them are near identical (with perhaps the exclusion of bones on the chicken?). Anyways, having enough mouths at the table, we ordered one of every main combo plate plus some sides too.

I can't tell if it's authentic, I wouldn't know. But it was pretty decent. The flavours were good and the quality seemed to be there. No complaints about that. On the flip side, there was not much outstanding and nothing really unique. I don't think there was one dish were anyone one of us thought "Wow! This is really different! I've never had these flavours before!"
And here's the rub. We're done. Even if it was just the two of us, one return trip would cover the entire menu. Nothing is mind-blowing enough to eat again really and there's not a lot of dishes to try.

It is relatively inexpensive (don't mistake that for "great deal", the dish sizes are commensurate with pricing), the food is okay, so if you're in the area it is worth a stop over. But as a special must-go destination or repeat trip? Hmm.... maybe not so much.

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DD Mau1239 Pacific Boulevard, Vancouver
Sandwich yes, Bahn mi no
Submitted Saturday, October 5, 2013 - 9:12pm [Dine in]

This place advertises itself as a bánh mì place. Not a steakhouse. Not a salad bar. Just bánh mì, so that's how we're going to score it.

It's a hop in, get out place, or so it seems. You grab your stuff, you go. Or you sit and scarf it down in a couple of minutes, so don't be expecting no ambience or table service. That's fine.

Now by bánh mì standards, these youngsters are slooooow. I was told a 5 minute wait for mine. And there was only 1 guy ahead of me. And no, they're not baking bread from scratch. If the Vietnamese aunties got wind of this, they'd come down here and slap them silly. And there were 3 of 'em there. You head to any of the old school bánh mì places, bam, they'd be done before you have time to get your cash out.

Let's get to the food. Is it a good sandwich? Arguably yes. A great sandwich? Maybe not.
Is it a good bánh mì? No. No. No. What's in every bánh mì? Light, very crispy/crusty Vietnamese-French bread. Half wrapped in parchment paper. What do they have? A heavier, almost traditional French style baguette fully wrapped in waxed (butcher type) paper. No light crispy bread there, it just gets soggy .
And the filling, let's get to that (tonight it was ginger chicken, good chicken, but where's the ginger flavour?), but our agents have had the classic as well as some others. Too much and the wrong stuff. Look, in a bánh mì, you got to taste the bread. There was so much filling, it was almost like a burrito, the bread is lost. Also in a bánh mì, there's got to be some sort of "freshness" from crispy, pickled vegetables, cilantro or something like that. None here. Half-hearted attempt at some special pickled slaw or something. Perhaps good, but proportion is wrong. It was a meat sandwich, none of that refreshing flavour or crunch from pickles, herbs, fresh vegetables or whatever. (Frankly I think you need something acidic, like pickles, to offset the meat).
Look at it this way, suppose I ordered a big caesar salad and it came with a big slab of perfectly done, medium rare prime rib. Tasty? Yes. Good deal? Maybe. But is it a good salad? NO. And that's what we're facing here. It's gone all wrong from the bread right through to the filling. This ain't no bánh mì.

And now the price. Things are pretty hefty, from about $7 and up past $10. To be honest, Subway a few doors down also sports foot-longs at this price, so in that light, sure, I'd rather come here than Subway. But any old school bánh mì place will score you a better bánh mì for half the price or less. Go have a saunter up Robson or on the edge of Chinatown. You need a sandwich in Yaletown? Sure, not a bad pick. Looking to satisfy that bánh mì craving? You come to the wrong corner of town my man.

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Rebar50 Bastion Square, Victoria
Needs some work, but has potential
Submitted Monday, August 5, 2013 - 11:12pm [Dine in]

I went in not realizing this is a vegetarian place (okay, protein from the sea doesn't seem to count). But I never hold that against anyone. All the better that it's not boldly advertised out front.

Service friendly enough, but the place is quite tight. But here's my beef with most Western-style vegetarian places. The restaurant running skills suck and the food is mediocre. I dunno, they think they get a free pass by being vegetarian? This wasn't quite the exception. It took a LONG time to get our order to arrive, despite us saying that stuff could come at any time, whenever it was ready. I noticed tables sitting empty for quite a while despite a line up at the door. Wasn't just us, diners lingered long time at their tables around us waiting for food. Servers were nice, just perhaps a little short on experience and organization.

The food itself? It's great that they didn't try to be meat substitutes, they just made dishes out of vegetables. Had a soup, coconut curry I think, enchiladas, pot stickers and salad sampler, some kids pasta noodles.
Could you go wrong with a salad at a vegetarian place? Of course not! It was a wonderful salad, absolutely no complaints. Pot stickers, also good, I prefer a nice, standard pork one, but this one is good by itself, not "good for a vegetarian version". The soup also got a thumbs up, but not that surprising given what kind it was, can you go wrong when loaded with coconut milk? The kids pasta, meh, well, surprisingly, it's what the kids wanted, but it's damn bland and boring, I think there was butter and a dusting of parmesan. Enchiladas were perhaps my favourite, it was also just plain good, no excuses.

Aah, here comes my other complaint about the food ... almost all of it, the pot stickers, the soup, the enchilada's all had a touch of spiciness to it. Usually this is a sign that whoever came up with this didn't know how to make vegetarian food tasty and "spiciness" is usually a cheap substitute or cover, which I think is the case here. There are various ways to do it better without resorting to heat and especially in the case of pot stickers, unnecessary to complete the dish. In one of the dishes, maybe, but when all of our "randomly" selected samples have the same thing ... (just go try some good Chinese or Indian vegetarian dishes, they don't all need heat, or MSG, to be really, really tasty). As a card-carrying meat-loving omnivore, I say the food is good. Full stop. It just bothers me that they are so good, oh so close to being great but just short that tiny little step.

Great idea, good food, but they need to work on their service and improve their food a bit to really bring it over the top. We all left feeling full, but not quite satiated. I am giving it a thumbs up though. Worth some stomach space here if you're in the area and don't have to wait in line.

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Willie's Bakery & Cafe537 Johnson St, Victoria
Hugely satisfying
Submitted Monday, August 5, 2013 - 10:50pm [Dine in]

Went here for breakfast, beat the morning crowd by getting here earlier. Good thing we did! Place filled up fast!
These guys work hard all morning, so cut 'em some slack if things take a bit longer. They're not slacking nor obviously inefficient.

Lots of interesting stuff for breakfast, but more or less "standard" items. Had the "222" and Huevos Rancheros and a kids pancake breakfast. Not sure what they did to the eggs in the "222", but it was waaaay more than 2 eggs. The "dollar size" pancakes were ... well, I dunno what kind of dollars those are, but it's more than enough to feed a grown up. You're getting the picture? You will not leave this place hungry.

Points off for a few pieces of roast potatoes being a bit cold for whatever reason, but otherwise, the food was hugely satisfying. Filling, but not bloating (which is a rare experience for us nowadays). Nothing really too salty, everything tasted fresh and hearty.
Didn't notice anything super innovative, but I guess that is not the target here.

As with most breakfast places I go to , I could not recommend this as a destination. However, if you are in the area in the hankering for breakfast (all day apparently) and you're feeling ambitious, yup, this will feed you nicely for a couple of meals. Would be one of my first choices here probably.

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Sour Pickle Cafe1623 Store Street, Victoria
Pleasantly decent...
Submitted Monday, August 5, 2013 - 10:44pm [Dine in]

As one reviewer noted, it looked a bit sketchy, what with its bubble tea posters and stuff. It did seem a bit quirky and we had heard decent noises about this place. Wouldn't have gone it but the other competitors in the area had huge lineups. Quirky setup, it did have a shelf full of kids books, with one full of just pickle stories.

We went on a quiet holiday morning, quite early, only a handful of tables, but we could tell they were absolute regulars, maybe even friends.
Okay, so we ordered a few bone stock breakfast items, nothing surprising there. Stuff came pretty fast and just as expected.

There's nothing mind blowing here. Toast is just toast. Eggs are eggs. Roast potatoes are just that. But seems like good quality ingredients done well, not overly greasy or salty. You looking for the standards? This is it, it won't produce any memorable meals, but it won't disappoint.

I'm not recommending a trip out here, but if you're in the area for breakfast and can't wait in line for 30 minutes at some of the other places, this will do.

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Pizzeria Prima Strada230 Cook Street, #105, Victoria
Really, really good stuff
Submitted Monday, August 5, 2013 - 10:36pm [Dine in]

Maybe the best we've had is over in Vancouver. But maybe now this should be the best, if not, it's close. At least until we head over to Naples. No, they don't just claim to be Neapolitan style pizza, apparently certified member of Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana. (Not that it means that much, we've been to a similar place and the pizza was significantly inferior).

We managed to beat the lunchtime rush by a few minutes, so maybe that explains the good service. Pizza took slightly longer than expected given, but it's not just baking time, they were working the dough for each one on order I think. Oh, by the way, quite kid-friendly. They were set up to take little ones and both servers and chefs were glad to see them.

The crust was quite flavourful, maybe not quite the best, but very good. On the other hand, it was a bit thicker and didn't serve as a pile of soggy mess, so overall, excellent job. The toppings were first-rate (well, we did have the local buffalo mozzarella and their own pepperoni), perfectly balanced and flavoured. No really complaints, it was really, really good.
Aaah, but we also sprang for some gelato and tiramisu. Gelato good, perhaps a touch too sweet, but at least it didn't leave a sticky sensation from inferior sweeteners or other additives that are usually in cheapy ice cream. Tiramisu was completely awesome, some of the best ever. Heck, I would go back just for that!

Highly recommended for a special trip out here if you live on the Island. If not, well, look hard and you can find just as good on the Mainland.

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Marche Bakery1333 Kingsway, Vancouver
The worst croissants ever
Submitted Sunday, April 21, 2013 - 8:48am [Take-out]

We went to have a bunch of things, tiramisu, some hazelnut chocolate cake and a trio of croissants (plain, chocolate and almond).
Let's start with the good:
Tiramisu - this one made a pretty decent dessert, but a lousy tiramisu. If you gave me a blind taste test, I would have never guessed it was supposed to be tiramisu. I am now guessing some "cheating" was involved using pudding based on my croissant experience.
The hazelnut chocolate cake was okay, but far too sweet.

Aaah, the croissants. Absolutely horrible. The "base" seemed pretty much all the same, so let's start with the plain one. Way too chewy, not enough flakiness and no flavour. It also left a powdery finish in the mouth. It was bad. Imagine a croissant from Safeway, but denser and less flavour. The chocolate croissant seemed to be filled with something like chocolate pudding or something, not "real" chocolate like anyone else has. And yes, it was pretty horrible too. Even a 4 year old rejected it and this one will normally eat anything with chocolate, especially chocolate croissants. The almond one was perhaps the least bad of the bunch, but suffered from the same problem with the base pastry and also left a strange aftertaste. One of the party thought it was curry flavour, I thought it smelled a bit like "old stale bakery".... regardless, it wasn't that pleasant.

Web site says Master Chef since 1981 or something like that. Really? Master Chef of what? From where?
Seem like decent people with good idea and they intend to do well, but they would be well advised to go back to school if they hope to survive.

I would rather eat stuff from Save-On or Safeway or whatever. Hey, Thrifty's stuff would beat them hands down. That's pretty bad, the first time I've ever said this about any independent baker.

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