Dine Out Vancouver officially kicked off on January 18 and right away I started on the eating. Typically, downtown is the destination to go for Dine Out, but a number of North Shore restaurants have some tempting menus and so, we decided to venture out. On this first night of DOV, my parents and I went to Fishworks in North Vancouver.
Since there were 3 of us, it was the perfect opportunity to try every dish on the DOV menu. Let’s start with the appetizers.
The Dungeness Crab was probably the tastiest of the three. It was a coconut soup with a crab claw in its perfect form. The soup was creamy, reminding me of Thai curry with lots of coconut milk. I could also taste a hint of heat in the soup.
The Qualicum Beach Scallops was the most creative appetizer. When you expect to see a couple of nicely seared scallops on a plate, you got this Vietnamese salad roll. Instead of noodles, it’s filled with pickled julienne cucumber. They only used one scallop, sliced in half to put in the roll. It’s refreshing, but I found this to be a bit too vinegary for my taste.
The Organic Beet Salad, as expected, was an ordinary beet salad. They changed it up by using yogurt as the dairy component instead of goat cheese. It’s more tangy this way, but it’s a welcomed change. There was probably a bit too much yogurt though.
As for entrees, the best value of all was the Duck Breast. Not only did it come with a big slice of duck breast, but also a portion of a duck leg. The duck breast may be a bit too pink for my liking, but I liked the crispy skin. And the sauce, was awesome! It was rich, savoury yet sweet; went very well with the meat. The honey roasted carrots were tender, nicely glazed – definitely consider making it as a side dish in the future.
The Ling Cod was also pretty good. The fish was flaky and cooked well. I would’ve preferred crispy skin, but it wouldn’t go well with the broth. I liked that they used endive and radish, which added texture and a slight bitterness to the dish.
Our least favourite, surprisingly, was the Lobster Tail. The size wasn’t an issue because we fully expected it to be small given that it’s on a budget menu. But according to my dad, the flavour just wasn’t quite there. And they didn’t pair it with a sizable side. There just wasn’t enough food on the plate.
To compensate for the little amount of food my dad got, and was prompted and forewarned by our server, we ordered some Pommes Frites on the side. This costs an extra $5. Money well spent. They were fresh out of the fryer, so it’s piping hot and crispy. There was also a generous portion of fries. The truffle emulsion made a nice dipping sauce even though I tasted mostly garlic and not so much truffle.
And finally, no dessert disappointed us. The Chocolate Mousse was a standard affair, and we were glad that it’s light and airy and not very sweet. We could use some more of the raspberry sauce.
The Cheesecake is made with mascarpone cheese so it’s lighter in taste than the regular cream cheese-based ones. I didn’t really like the crust because it’s too coarse, but the cheesecake was smooth and creamy. Could do without the caramel apple on top.
Lastly, the Poached Pear was my favourite dessert. It was nice and warm, contrasted with the cold vanilla ice cream. It’s poached in a cinnamon syrup which also went really well with the ice cream. I also liked the crunch of the toasted hazelnuts.
Note that each DOV reservation is allotted just under 2 hours of dining time. No worries, the service was very efficient, so you can enjoy the dinner without feeling being rushed.
By the way, don’t miss out on the yummy truffle chocolate that comes with the bill. They are really good!
For $28, I thought this menu is of great value. It offers a good variety of dishes, and for the most part, they are all interesting dishes (minus the beet salad). Food quality was pretty good, and service was decent. The restaurant is located just 2 blocks from Lonsdale Quay so it’s quite easy to get to even on transit. I would recommend this restaurant for Dine Out, or for a regular visit.
91 Lonsdale Avenue, North Vancouver