If you haven’t noticed the pattern, I’m actually reluctant to eat at restaurants that don’t take reservations. I enjoy the comfort in knowing that a table will be ready for me at around the time I want, instead of having to live through the stress of lining up and waiting impatiently for people to pay the bill and servers to clear the table. Or I have to be early and wait for the restaurant to swing open the door right at 5 or 5:30pm. And that’s why it’s been awhile since I last went to Twisted Fork. They don’t take reservations.
But lucky me, working downtown and getting off work at 5, I was able to get to Twisted Fork right at 5:30pm, as the door opened, and checked out their Dine Out menu.
And you must be wondering about the post title. When I was trying to look up the dishes on the menu in advance of the dinner, what they looked like and what other people thought about them, I couldn’t find anything online. No Twitter, no Instagram, not even Urbanspoon; that actually piqued my interest even more.
Escargots on the menu? Sign me up! I was really surprised to see that on a Dine Out menu, but hey, I wouldn’t give up the opportunity to have them. The Escargot and Mushrooms was actually like a warm salad. Escargots were diced up and sauteed with mushrooms and arugula. The texture of mushrooms and escargots matched quite well, and the earthy flavour was nice. Mixing in the tomato sauce and putting them all on the baguette crostini was like building my own bruschetta. At certain bites, though, I couldn’t really tell which I was eating, mushrooms or escargots. I suspect there weren’t very many escargots on my plate.
The Braised Lamb Shank was filling! The lamb shank was braised beautifully, meat fell right off the bone. The fried polenta wedge was crispy outside and creamy inside. It’s overall a rich dish, but the addition of house-pickled carrots helped cut through the richness. It was just kind of weird that the carrots were cold, an unexpected temperature contrast on the plate.
While the Dark Chocolate and Raspberry Tort was good, it didn’t have the decadence and richness that you would expect in a chocolate dessert, especially dark chocolate. The use of tart raspberries was a good choice against the chocolate. The tort shell was a bit too doughy for my liking.
The Coffee Cake reminded me of sticky toffee pudding. It had the texture of a bread pudding, with a warm toffee sauce. It would probably go well with the house made ice cream that came with the chocolate tort.
As mentioned earlier, Twisted Fork doesn’t take reservations, and it’s no difference during Dine Out period. I got in no problem because I arrived right at 5:30pm; but as I left at around 7pm, there were easily a dozen of people waiting for a table at the door. The staff needed to keep turning the tables around, without rushing the guests, in order to keep up with the demand.
My colleague told me that they make their jams and preserves in-house, as well as pickled vegetables. The jams and preserves are used for brunch, and I heard they’re really good. You can see the jars nicely displayed on the shelves at the restaurant. I think some are available for sale too.
I still don’t understand why there was no pictures being shared on the internet about Twisted Fork’s Dine Out dinners. The restaurant was packed and most people, if not all, were having the Dine Out menu; and the food was good. It was a satisfying meal, French comfort food. Now I want to go back for its brunch service.
Twisted Fork Bistro
1147 Granville Street, Vancouver