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Posts Tagged ‘Coal Harbour’

[Editor’s Note: This giveaway is now closed. Winner has been chosen and contacted. Thank you for entering.]

When I say “hotel breakfast”, what comes to mind? I would think of a la carte standard affairs, or varied quality of “continental breakfast” from 2-3 star hotels.

We are lucky in Vancouver in a sense that there are many hotels offering delicious, not your typical breakfast/brunch options, e.g. Tableau, Mosaic, Yew, Blvd. Enter the new player, H2 Rotisserie & Bar at Westin Bayshore, which offers a weekend brunch buffet.

H2 Rotisserie & Bar Brunch Buffet

Brunch Buffet at H2 Rotisserie & Bar

I was invited to sample H2’s brunch buffet and wow, it was a big spread. It certainly has the typical brunch items such as eggs, pancakes, waffles, bacon and sausages. But what caught my eyes were the following:

Rotisserie chicken carving station – H2 prides itself for its rotisserie chicken so I wasn’t surprised to see it at brunch. Walk up to the chef on duty and they will get you a slice (or two) of white and/or dark meat.

H2 Rotisserie & Bar Brunch Buffet

Dim sum/congee station – it serves up har gow (shrimp dumplings), siu mai (pork dumplings), BBQ pork buns, and sticky rice. Oh you can also build your own congee bowl, but it’s located in a different section of the buffet line.

H2 Rotisserie & Bar Brunch BuffetH2 Rotisserie & Bar Brunch Buffet

H2 Rotisserie & Bar Brunch BuffetH2 Rotisserie & Bar Brunch Buffet

Made to order french toast station – they literally soaked the bread in the yummy custard, heat up the pan with some butter, and made me my French toast right in front of me.

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As one of my numerous birthday celebrations, my folks and I went to the new Chewies location in Coal Harbour. I’ve heard good things about Chewies but I’ve never been to its Kitsilano location. The second store has just opened its door recently and it’s located at the former Miku spot.

ChewiesChewies

Food

For a restaurant that uses oysters as a feature, of course we had to order some Fresh Oysters on the half shell. They are surprisingly affordable here, $3 each with the exception of a cheaper kind at $2.50. We ordered one dozen each of Kusshi (my fav!) and Shigoku (aka Fat Bastards at some restaurants). Oh wow, these oysters were delish! I have never had such good quality of fresh oysters at any other restaurants. They were big, plump (for their kind) and tasted fresh. They were all of equal size so you know it’s been picked through for quality control. The fresh oysters come with 3 housemade sauces and hot sauce, which all bring some various degree of acidity to the oysters. These were so good that we could have had a few more dozens of them, but we figured we should stop so we could eat other things too.

Fresh Oysters

Next, the Louisiana Blue Crab Cakes were probably one of the best crab cakes I’ve had in Vancouver. (more…)

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Meat & Bread didn’t really catch my attention until I saw it feature in an episode of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives. In fact, it was precisely at 5:13 of this clip that made me decide that I have to try this place.

Naturally, I was very excited to learn that they’re opening a second location on Pender Street, only steps away from my office. We were counting down the days to its opening, yet several months later we still haven’t stepped inside the store. Must be the “it’s so close we can go anytime” mentality.

Finally, for a team lunch we chose Meat & Bread as our destination. This is it – the moment a few of us have been waiting for!

Lunch lineup at the door

Lunch lineup at the door

Food

It just smells so good as soon as you walk inside. There’s a staff chopping mushrooms right in front of you. Then another dicing the house-made porchetta.

Chopping & dicing the Porchetta

Chopping & dicing the Porchetta

Without hesitation I ordered a Porchetta Sandwich. Because there’s limited seating in store, we ordered our sandwiches to go. But I was able to take a glimpse of my sandwich before it went into the box. Argh the anticipation! (more…)

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Thanks to work, a few of us were treated to a nice lunch at Hapa Izakaya near the Convention Centre. Even though it’s always been part of the Hapa family, this location was formerly Hapa Umi which went for a more fine-dining direction, serving Japanese/fusion cuisine. A few months ago, it was converted back to be another izakaya, doing what Hapa does best.

Hapa Izakaya Menu

Hapa Izakaya Menu

Food

There were five of us, so we each picked out 2 dishes to have 10 dishes to share. Well, we only had 9 dishes at the end because the last one never came. Here are the dishes in no particular order.

The Ebi Avocado Salad was quite refreshing. I like that it had a generous amount of shrimps, instead of giving you just a few as “garnish”. The citrus dressing was tasty, although nothing special about it. And I can really do without the sprinkle of green onions on top; it felt a bit out of place to mix green onions together with a green salad.

Ebi Avocado Salad

Ebi Avocado Salad – Prawns, avocado, organic greens, citrus dressing

Ebi Mayo is my izakaya staple – something I order at every izakaya restaurant. Thankfully everyone at the table is also willing to give it a try so it made it on the list. (more…)

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Joyce and I attended the media launch event at Prestons for its fall menu — my first food blogger-type event. Socializing and Lisa equals: out of comfort zone plus awkward, which also equals to complete social misfit. Nevertheless, still had a good time, met some really cool people, some really flamboyant people, and a couple of drinks.

One of those occasions where cameras are definitely allowed

One of those occasions where cameras are definitely allowed

Menu at the event included a selection of its fall menu items, served appetizer style. Preston states on their menus that they are a West Coast style restaurant with Mediterranean and Asian influence. I’m definitely not an expert in Mediterranean food, but the Asian influence on the dishes was present on many items served that night.

Our first item was the Thai Red Curry. I loved the colour of the dish and the flavour of the curry was pretty spot on, until the heat kicks in at the end. The vegetables were overcooked as well as the rice. The presentation in the tiny glass cup was adorable, until I realized I had to eat it with a giant Chinese porcelain spoon.

Mini Thai Red Curry

Mini Thai Red Curry

My favourite for the night was the Gyoza, described in their menu as seared shrimp and vegetable dumplings with miso vinaigrette. This was definitely not your traditional gyoza, but the presentation couldn’t be better. Each gyoza was served in a bamboo steamer on a leaf, with the vinaigrette drizzled over. (Note: This is a tasting event so items were served/plated in cute, miniature fashion. Chances are you won’t get the same presentation when you dine off the regular menu.) The gyoza itself gave a nice, light finish, but the “vinaigrette” was very heavy and creamy, almost like the consistency of mayonnaise. I’m a sucker for creamy food, so I felt like the pairing was in harmony, light finish from gyoza with the drizzle of heavy cream sauce.

Gyoza

Gyoza

Their Asian-influenced Baby Back Ribs had a decent texture. The meat was tender, fall off the bone, and didn’t leave that nasty fatty feeling in your mouth like some ribs do. The hoisin sauce on it was oddly sweet, but the ginger component was definitely lacking. Would love to come back to try it again, as I think the idea of having an Asian style rib sounds really interesting.

Baby Back Ribs

Baby Back Ribs

This next food was probably one of my least favourites, the Eggplant and Parmesan Slider. (more…)

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