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Archive for the ‘Chinatown’ Category

For the second year, Juke Fried Chicken in Chinatown is participating in Dine Out Vancouver. I was invited to a tasting of its $25 menu.

Food

The appetizer includes two options. The Country Biscuits are to die for! They were warm, had a nice crispy crust on the outside, and soft, buttery inside. Combining with the herbed schmaltz (think butter), mmm it’s one of the best biscuits I’ve had in town. There was leftover from the tasting, so I brought some home. Even with reheating, my family was still marvelled by how delicious these biscuits were.

Juke Fried Chicken - Country Biscuits

The other option is Fried Zucchini Pickles. Since it’s home made, it’s not pungent and acidic like the typical pickles. There’s a bit of sweetness in them. The corn flour-cornmeal crust was thin, making the exterior perfectly crunchy. The honey dill dressing goes well with it, and I tasted a hint of heat too. I didn’t think much of it when I saw this option on the menu, but it’s actually some good munchies before the highlight of the meal.

Juke Fried Chicken - Fried Zucchini Pickles

Suggested by the restaurant name, obviously fried chicken needs to be on the menu.

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Dine Out Vancouver is back! Did you know I’ve been doing Dine Out Vancouver since, like, forever? My first year was when Rob Feenie still had his restaurants and I was there for DOVF.

Running from January 18 to February 3, the prix fixe portion of this year’s program has changed to 4 price points – $15, $25, $35 and $45. There are also more lunch and brunch options, usually at a cheaper price than dinner. This would give an opportunity to try the pricier restaurants with less.

The menus are now live and reservations are open. Actually, Aeroplan members already had access since Monday, so I had the opportunity to go through all the menus. Here are some suggestions, based on past experience (Dine Out or not) as well as menu attractiveness (e.g. value for the money, choice of ingredients, creativity in the menu, enough options for two people, etc.). Now keep in mind I curated the list based on my preference (as you know, I’m a meat lover), my way of thinking, so it may not all suit your taste. But hopefully this gives you a place to start.

I’ve included links to the menu to make it easier for you.

$15 Suggestions

  • Brewhall
  • Chutney Villa (Last year was $20 so I’m guessing portion size would be smaller this year, or it’s super deal for $5 less!)
  • Popina
Chutney Villa Dine Out Vancouver 2018

Chutney Villa Dine Out Vancouver 2018

$25 Suggestions

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An impromptu dinner on a Friday evening took us to Torafuku, the new brick and mortar location brought to you by the Le Tigre food truck team. Frankly, and feeling guilty to admit to it, I never ate at Le Tigre. With the rave reviews about Le Tigre, I was quite excited to try Torafuku.

TorafukuTorafuku

Food

The Rye So Messy Chicken Wings was an award winning dish. The gochujang marinate really came through as you can taste this garlicky, spicy flavour. The skin was crispy, meat was juicy, and I like the ramen crumble to add even more texture to it. These were really good wings, but 5 wings for $12 maybe a bit too expensive.

Rye So Messy Chicken Wings

Dr. Octopus vs. Mr. Tuna seriously sounds like a superhero movie title!
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There’s a new bratwurst in town that I keep hearing about from people and it took me awhile to figure out where it was. It’s a little bit outside of my lunch radius, since it takes me 15 mins to walk – yes, I walk at the pace of a 65-year-old with a walker and severe arthritis.

From the outside

Glowing sausage!

Sausages are delicious and in such a simple form that you can’t possibly screw it up, right? Unfortunately, I’ve been disappointed time after time again – lack of spices, poor choice of meat/combination of meats, not enough fat, ripped casing, etc. The more disappointed I got, the more I realized that a sausage is actually very complex. It’s served exactly as the maker intended, from the amount of crunch from the casing, to the seasonings and spices, the texture of the meat, how juicy it is, all served into this sausage – after you take one bite. That’s a lot of pressure to get everything perfect.

Why did I come to Bestie after I started hearing the great reviews from others? To be honest, I wasn’t here for the food. I saw pictures of the interior and it looked beautifully designed – kudos to Scott & Scott Architects for a nicely executed project. All the print work was done beautifully – wonder if the owners designed it? Bestie is located on Pender Street in Chinatown, the area that’s slowly converting from old Chinese stores to these “hipster” (or whatever you want to call them) run places, like vintage stores, bicycle shops, and hair salons. The staff working here are pretty hip, a little bit retro, with their clear framed glasses or clubmaster frames, bright lipsticks, and toques.

Lovely peg board design by Scott & Scott.

Lovely peg board design by Scott & Scott.

The service here was friendly, one of the staff was a bit overbearing. I came here with the bf, and they explained how their menu worked as it was our first time. There are two styles to the dishes, one is currywurst in which they slice the sausage for you and put it on top of fries with house made curry ketchup; the other is the sausage and sauerkraut where they leave the sausage whole, with fries and sauerkraut on the side. (more…)

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