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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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Dine Out Vancouver is back! Running from January 19 to February 4, more than 300 restaurants are offering prix fixe menus and more than 35 special events are planned over this 2-week period.

Ocean Wise Pop-up Cafe 2017 Dine Out

Vancouver Aquarium Pop-up Restaurant 2017 Dine Out

The 3-course dinner are priced at $20, $30 or $40. Some restaurants may charge extra for special menu items. Some restaurants are also offering a lunch menu, which could be at a cheaper price point. The menus are now live and reservations are open. Pretty excited about some of the participating restaurants this year. After perusing the menus, here are our suggestions, based on past experience (Dine Out or not) as well as menu attractiveness. I’ve included links to the menu to make it easier for you:

$20 Suggestions

$30 Suggestions

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[Editor’s Note: Giveaway has ended. Congratulations to @devouryvr on winning!]

Speaking of Two Rivers in my last post, they just opened their first public-facing shop and eatery last month, which includes a traditional butchery, a deli counter and an eat-in grill.

Two Rivers - The Shop Dining Room (Photo Credit Adam Blasberg)

Two Rivers – The Shop Dining Room (Photo Credit Adam Blasberg)

With the butchery, customers can find house-made sausages, dry-aged beef, and hand-tooled cuts, etc. At the take-out deli counter, there’s artisanal salumi and charcuterie. (more…)

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A spa date with CC took me to North Vancouver and she suggested to try this restaurant called Tour de Feast. It’s located in a business complex next to an industrial complex. It’s not easy to spot in the dark and the interior basically looked like a cafe.

Food

Taken a look at the menu and I was caught off guard by how fancy the menu was. Not a big menu, but with items that you would find at fine dining restaurants. The day’s special was a surf and turf with steak and sockeye salmon; I didn’t go for that because my mood didn’t call for it.

So for appetizer I ordered the Octopus 2 Ways. First, the tentacles were braised to absolute tenderness it could be considered borderline mushy. Haha the suction cups just fell right off as you took bites. The flavour was quite nice; it could be even better if using a bit of heat. Then, there was an octopus rillette. It’s similar to crab cake except it’s mostly dough with some pieces of octopus inside. It’s pretty good but quite filling. I think we were off to a good start.

Octopus 2 Ways

With entree, I chose one of my favourite dishes, Duck Confit Cassoulet. The duck leg looked HUGE!! (more…)

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By invitation we checked out the brunch menu at the District Brasserie in North Vancouver. As suburbers, normally we wouldn’t trek all the way to North Van for food, but a couple of items on the menu intrigued us so we decided to give it a try.

The District North Vancouver

Food

And turns out they are also customers’ and staff favourites at the District, according to restaurant manager Cynthia. But before our plates arrived, we were treated to their home made Cornbread (vs. scones or muffins at some restaurants) with seasonal coulis – at first glance we thought it was hot sauce or ketchup but it’s actually strawberry coulis. The cornbread was in perfect bite size, moist, and the coulis had just the right amount of sweetness. I would’ve liked the sauce to be slightly thicker so it’s almost spreadable, but dipping in was just as good.

Cornbread with strawberry coulis

Then our plates arrived. First, the Crab Cake Bowl caught my eyes the moment I started studying the menu. It has evolved from the crab cake eggs benny that the restaurant used to offer. Now the two crab cakes sit on a bedding of potatoes, then topped with 2 poached eggs, arugula and Hollandaise sauce. The crab cakes were slightly crispy on the outside, moist inside. (more…)

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With an invitation to a Chef’s Table at Earl’s North Vancouver, Mr. and I sampled a number of dishes from their brunch menu. Before this, I never knew that Earls has an actual brunch menu, and it never came to mind when I looked for brunch spots.

Similar to the Chef’s Table we had at the Port Coquitlam location, it was a meal for 6 and we were joined by Tila at Fat Panda, Dee at Gastrofork and their respective guest.

Food

For drinks we had two options, Mimosa or its Signature Caesar. The Mimosa was the classic combination of sparkling wine with orange juice; it wasn’t too strong in alcohol, making it a great option for women. And for the manly men, Caesar would be for you. I’m not a huge fan of the savoury taste in Caesars, but I was quite impressed to hear the long list of ingredients in Earls’ version: Red Tabasco, Green Tabasco, Worcestershire Sauce, Horseradish, Onion Powder, Soy Sauce, HP Sauce, Roasted Pepper.

MimosaSignature Caesar

We got to sample 4 dishes on the brunch menu. First up, the Granola + Yogurt Parfait was quite pretty to look at, and tasty, too. It had a lot of crunchy elements from the house made flax, toasted almonds and pecans, and rolled oats. The use of fresh blueberries, along with agave syrup, gave it a sweet balance. You can control the sweetness by adding as much, or as little, agave syrup as you wish. This makes a healthy yet fun breakfast. I tend to prefer fruit yogurt and never pay much attention to plain yogurt; but now I’m inspired to create my own version of yogurt parfait for breakfast.

Granola + Yogurt Parfait

Next is a classic brunch menu item, Eggs Benny. (more…)

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There’s a direct correlation between how cold and wet the weather gets, and my craving for warm and rich food. I’m sure I’m not the only one to feel that way.

After a short hike on a chilly Saturday morning, we popped into Burgoo in North Vancouver for a late lunch.

We were a little tired, a little cold, and very hungry. It was well past lunch time.

The décor was much more modern and welcoming than their Main Street location.

We got to eating pretty quickly.

What Went In

I went with the Eggs Burgoo. It’s got three scrambled eggs, served on top of oven baked Kentucky Burgoo (slow cooked lamb, beef, and smoked ham with lima beans, corn, molasses, tomato and okra), biscuits, and melted cheddar.

Eggs Burgoo

This gloriously rich dish is a mind numbing explosion of flavours. (more…)

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