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Posts Tagged ‘Poutine’

Mr. and I went on a week-long trip out east to Montreal and Toronto. In the next few weeks, you will be reading up a few eateries that we visited. Enjoy!

We arrived in Montreal right before dinner time, so obviously the first thing we did, after we checked into our hotel, was to find a place to eat. Luckily for us, our hotel was on one of the main streets, Boulevard Saint-Laurent, so our eating options were countless. That took us to Schwartz’s, an institution that has been serving smoked meat since 1928.

Smoked Meat Sandwich

Food

To my surprise, there was a long line up of people on this Monday night. I guess if it’s a famous restaurant there would be people at any given time. Finally we were led inside the diner-looking space and grab a seat at the bar. Of course, given this is a smoked meat shop, we had to order a Smoked Meat Sandwich. You have the option of lean, regular or fatty; we opted for the regular option to get a good balance of lean and fatty meat.

Schwartz's Montreal Hebrew Delicatessen

And wow, check out the stack of meat! (more…)

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For a triple-date night, we went for Dine Out at Chicha, a Peruvian-inspired eatery in the Mount Pleasant area. There were lots of options on the $28 menu, with some interesting combination of ingredients. I was intrigued.

Food

Because of its “tapa-style” menu, instead of 3 courses, you actually get 4 plates at Chicha. Definitely a bonus, I’d say. To start, I ordered myself a Chilcano (left), a ginger-beer based cocktail. It had some nice acidity to it, with a bit of heat from the ginger root. Mr. ordered the Inka Cola, a Peruvian soda which we were told “taste like cream soda.” And it did taste just like cream soda, not much fizz, and a bit sweeter than the actual cream soda we’re used to.

ChilcanoInka Kola

And then the feast began! First, my Aji Amarillo Local Seafood Chowder was pretty good. I was expecting a bit of heat with the aji amarillo chili pepper, but rather on the mild side for me. In addition to fish pieces, there were squid in the chowder, tender and not like chewing bubble gum, which I thought was different from most other ones.

Aji Amarillo Local Seafood Chowder

Mr. had the Palitos de Yuca, which was basically cassava root fries. They were a lot starchier than potato fries, and had a harder exterior too. The Peruvian Huancaina sauce was spicy, creamy, reminded me of a curry mayo. This was quite filling as an appy. While it’s good, I think we prefer regular potato fries.

Palitas de Yuca

Each of us received two entrees, i.e. 4 for us! Each of the Pan Con Chicharron Sliders had a hearty slice of pork belly, and the fatty part just melts in your mouth!
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In addition to the traditional prix fixe menu offered by restaurants in Vancouver, the Dine Out Vancouver organizer also put together a number of culinary events, including the popular Street Food City. Returning for its second year, a dozen or so food trucks gathered at the Vancouver Art Gallery, allowing food truck enthusiasts to experience street food all in one spot!

So I made it over to the Vancouver Art Gallery with my colleagues. Of the list of participating food trucks, some I have already tried, some I’m not particularly interested in. I had my eyes set on the Kaboom Box and that’s exactly where I headed.

The Kaboom Box

The Kaboom Box

Food

Some food carts had a special DOV creation on their menu, not for the Kaboom Box. Of its regular menu, I was choosing between the Hot Smoked Salmon Sandwich and the Venison Burger. In the end, I ordered the Hot Smoked Salmon Sandwich because it claims to be “world famous” and appears to be the most popular menu item.

To be honest I wasn’t sure what to expect because I’m not really a salmon burger person. (more…)

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After a fun day out in the Fraser Valley, we stopped at Fort Pub and Grill for some food and drinks. It’s a nice, stand-alone establishment close to where the Albion Ferry terminal used to be, at the north tip of Fort Langley.

Food

In addition to food, we ordered a mini jug of Strongbow Cider. It’s about half the size of a pitcher, fills perhaps 2 pint glasses, and was recently priced at about $12.

Strongbow Cider

Strongbow Cider

We ordered two things. First, Fort Poutine isn’t only about fries, cheese curds and gravy. It included some spicy ground beef, sauteed onions and mushrooms, which added extra flavours to the otherwise ordinary poutine.

Fort Poutine

Fort Poutine – Heaping bowl of house fries topped with spicy ground beef, sauteed onions, mushrooms and blended cheeses, then baked and drenched in beef gravy

The Personal Pizza actually has similar toppings as the Fort Poutine. (more…)

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The Story

Moonrakers was my first pub. It was the first place that I became a “regular”. This visit was a reminder of how much has my life changed, and how terribly old I’ve become. And just like me, Moonrakers has come a long way since its neighbourhood dive days.

When I was just a young lad of 19, Moonrakers was a seedy little joint near where I worked. A good friend of mine lived above it. So it wasn’t long before it became our after work, after school, and after workout hangout. It was dark, shady, and often had questionable people. We loved it dearly.

The food was cheap, the portions were generous, and it had the BEST wings in town. They were crispy and moist pieces of heaven, served with sauce on the side. Rest of the menu was amazing too, I could go on and on.

Fast forward to the present, few things remain the same. (more…)

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We were invited to the media event for Max’s Burgers, which is opening next Monday, January 23. The restaurant is at Cambie and 8th, the location that was formerly the Max’s Deli. Owners Bruce and David transformed it into this burger concept and invited Chef Connor Butler to come onboard.

At this event we were served several items from its regular menu, as well as beverages, only in smaller size (e.g. slider vs burger). Since the portion is smaller, this may not necessarily reflect the true quality of the food, but I think it serves as a good indication of what you could expect at Max’s.

Staff hard at work preparing food

Staff hard at work preparing food

Food

I admit that I’m not a burger person, especially when it comes to beef burgers (I know, I’m weird in many ways), but I know when food tastes good. Overall, I was very happy with the food. I’m a sucker for brioche, so the fact that the burgers are on house-baked brioche buns is already a +1 for me. Here are the 4 sliders I tried, in the order of my most favourite to my least favourite. Keep in mind, there were no bad burgers on that day, in my book anyway. I just preferred some over the others. I’ll explain it below.

Rooster on a Tailgate (Chicken)

I’m probably biased, because I think this burger is created for me, but this was by far my favourite burger of the evening. Why? It uses chicken thigh meat instead of chicken breast! I am not a white-meat person and I often find chicken (breast) burgers dry if not cooked properly. This one was more moist and fattier compared to chicken breast, more flavourful, and the crispy onion ring was a great addition. I enjoyed the sweetness from the red onion ring and the BBQ sauce, as well as the little kick from the chipotle mayo.

Rooster on a Tailgate Slider (Chicken)

Rooster on a Tailgate Slider (Chicken)

The British Columbia (Beef)

You’re probably surprised that the beef one would rank higher than the next one, but on that evening, I did like the beef one more. (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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