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For the Canada Day long weekend, Mr. and I went to the Okanagan with Bryan and Kathryn. Last year, we received a certificate for a two-night stay at The Villa at Hester Creek Estate Winery, so we took the opportunity to spoil ourselves on this getaway.

Terrafina Restaurant

During our stay, Mr. and I also had dinner at the Terrafina Restaurant at Hester Creek.

Terrafina RestaurantTerrafina Restaurant

To start, we shared the Wagyu Beef Carpaccio. There was so much on the plate you can barely see the thinly sliced wagyu beef. The flavour combination was quite typical — capers, parmesan, arugula, aioli — what came as a pleasant surprise was the little sprouts sprinkled on top. They gave a slight crunch, an earthy note, which brought a new dimension of flavour.

Wagyu Beef Carpaccio

Mr. ordered the Ricotta & Confit Duck Pizza. It’s, interesting.

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It started with an express of interest in visiting a recently opened dessert place, then led to a scheduled visit to that place, but we needed a dinner first, so the ChineseBites crew ended up having dinner at Golden Eats on Kingsway near Victoria. For some reason I thought the restaurant has been around for ages and I just never went; turns out it’s only been open for about two years.

Food

We ordered a total of 12 dishes, and here are some highlights:

Served in Hong Kong style, the Peking Duck (片皮鴨) is served over two courses. First, the roasted duck was skinned, and served with crepes and scallion and hoi sin sauce. The skin was crispy, flavourful, but the crepe was a bit too thick for my liking. The highlight of the plate was the bed of lobster crackers. Typically restaurants use shrimp crackers because they come in different colours and more common, but they don’t have much flavour and can get soggy after absorbing the grease from the roasted duck. The lobster crackers here seemed to hold up quite well. They were firmer and thicker, yet still crispy and crunchy, and had some “seafood” flavour.

Peking Duck 片皮鴨

Meat from the duck carcass was then used for the second course, Lettuce Wrap (生菜包). The meat filling had a decent amount of meat. By the time we could dig in, though, the crisp at the bottom had become a bit soggy, relying on the iceberg lettuce to offer the crunchy texture.

Lettuce Wrap with Duck Meat 生菜包

Dark Vinegar Spareribs 銀山鎮江骨 Pan Fried Black Cod with Soy Sauce 豉油皇煎黑魚
Dark Vinegar Spareribs
銀山鎮江骨
Pan Fried Black Cod with Soy Sauce
豉油皇煎黑魚

The Lobster with Sticky Rice in Lotus Leaf (荷香龍蝦飯) is one of their signature dishes. Continue Reading »

Planning a double date with WK and MS and man, was it difficult to decide where to go! We all love to eat and there are just too many options. We finally decided on Italian and chose Pronto Cafe on Cambie.

Food

As a meat lover, I ordered the Porchetta Plate. I had this once at Pronto before and I really enjoyed the crispy skin and tender meat. This time around, the skin wasn’t crispy. In fact, it was a bit tough and chewy and not very pleasant to eat. Felt like it wasn’t rendered well so the skin couldn’t crisp up. That being said, the meat was still tender and flavoured nicely with herbs. Perhaps a tiny bit too dry for my liking, but the roasted pepper sauce helped. Part of the highlight on this plate was the roasted potatoes & yam – they were seasoned well with just simple rosemary, salt and pepper, and the natural sweetness in the yam really came through.

Porchetta Plate

Mr. always has a thing for gnocchi (and you should ask him how he used to pronounce “gnocchi”. It’s cute.), so when he saw Gnocchi with Pesto and Pancetta on the menu, he couldn’t keep his eyes away from it.
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There have been a number of shaved ice shops popping up around Vancouver. One of them is Snowy Village in Central Richmond. It’s been a few months and there’s still lineup out the door. Finally one Friday I was determined to try Snowy Village, whatever and however long it takes!

Taking Mama Lam and Papa Lam with me, we waited for 30 minutes before we were seated. We had ample time to study the menu, Instagram photos, and what other customers were eating, and we ordered a few things to try.

Food

To start, the Taiyaki, the fish shaped waffle with filling. This is commonly found at night markets and I’ve seen them at Korean supermarkets as well as street carts. The texture of this Taiyaki is quite different from the other ones we’ve had around town because it uses croissant pastry. Other ones are more like Belgian waffle, crispy outside and fluffy inside. This Taiyaki is more like Leige waffle, more dense and chewy, and it had speckles of sugar on top. We went for the traditional red bean filling but the Taiyaki was rather thin so it didn’t hold a lot of filling inside. For that reason I think I prefer the fluffy kind, even though this one tasted really good and I quite liked the texture of the pastry.

Red Bean Taiyaki

As for the shaved ice, here they call it Bingsoo, a derivative of the Korean dessert (I think it stands for “iced water” in Korean). Continue Reading »

One Saturday afternoon I was going to take Mama Lam to a restaurant on Fraser Street for lunch, but that place was opening much later on that particular day than its usual hours so we were greeted with a “Closed” sign. We decided to go somewhere else for lunch. And we stopped at the doorstep of Jethro’s Fine Grub.

This is the second location of Jethro’s and the lesser known one, so the line up was not as crazy as the Dunbar location, where the “You Gotta Eat Here” episode was filmed. In fact, we were able to get a table as soon as we arrived.

Food

Jethro’s serves breakfast all day long. There is a wide selection of savoury and sweet items to choose from. Mama Lam and I chose one of each. The Crab Cake Benedict was smothered with a lot of hollandaise sauce. The crab cakes had a good crust and didn’t feel like having a lot of filler. The eggs were poached just right to medium softness. I wish the crab cakes were slightly thicker so it could hold up to the eggs. It’s also a carb-loaded plate, with lots of hashbrowns and four pieces of toasts on the side.

Crab Cake Benedict

For the sweet item, we opted for the Apple Cobbler French Toast. Continue Reading »

Summer is just around the corner and that means it’s the season for iced tea! How do you usually enjoy yours? Pure Leaf Canada sent us a few bottles of their unsweetened iced tea, and we came up with a few recipes for your everyday occasions.

Pure Leaf Canada Iced Tea

The unsweetened tea has 0 sugar, 0 artificial sweeteners and 0 calories, so it is the perfect base to add your own ingredients and make your own iced tea creations.

Sunday Brunch

A fruity iced tea is perfect for any brunch dishes. Mr. and I love having waffles for brunch. Now that mangoes are in season, we made some waffles and topped them with super sweet Ataulfo mango and maple syrup. To go with it, we made some strawberry & mango iced tea with the unsweetened lemon tea.

Recipe (4 servings)

  • 1 Ripe Ataulfo Mango, Diced
  • 1/2 lb Strawberries, Fresh or Frozen
  • 1L Pure Leaf Unsweetened Lemon Iced Tea
  • 4 Teaspoons of Maple Syrup (optional, to taste)

You can prepare this ahead of time, to allow the fruit to be infused into the tea. We actually froze the strawberries so they served as ice as well! When you drink the tea, muddle the fruit a bit to allow the flavours come through even more. Add some mint for some freshness and colour.

Mango & Strawberry Iced Lemon Tea for Brunch

A Day in the Park

Whether you are out for a stroll, or having a picnic by the water, this refreshing green tea would make a great beverage in your cooler bag. Continue Reading »

Arnold Bread recently launched four varieties of premium bread in British Columbia and Alberta. We were sent a couple loaves to try, and the possibilities with this product are endless!

With the No Small Potatoes Country Potato Bread, we made Toast with a delicious pistachio spread. We also made some PB& J and Grilled Cheese with it. There’s a hint of sweetness in the potato bread. While it’s good on its own, it also makes a good canvas for rich and bold flavours. I actually thought the bread reminded me of potato chips but Mr. said I was crazy!

Arnold Bread Grilled Cheese

As for the When It Grains, It Pours 12 Grain Bread, the texture of the bread is perfect for sandwiches. Not only did we make HLT Sandwiches (ham, lettuce, tomatoes) for picnic…

Arnold Bread Sandwich

…we also made our own Oyster Po’ Boy Sandwich at home! The nutty flavours in the grain worked so well with meat and veggies.

Arnold Bread Oyster Po' Boy

Are you tempted to make your own creations with these delicious bread? We have partnered up with Arnold Bread to give away an awesome #Breadie Prize Pack valued at $100.

Continue Reading »

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