We’re no New York but we do have quite the micro-lens when it comes to our restaurant scene. Somewhat like the Big Apple, when there is a whisper of a new restaurant with a ‘name’ behind it, the press, food critics and bloggers, and twitter are set a buzzed. Therefore it was a surprise that Kits Daily with prolific Chef Brian Fowke behind it opened with quiet reception. Like its hidden Kitsilano location, I’m guessing he wanted to keep low key.
Well I’m a keener and been wanting to dine at this new concept eatery since it opened. Brian shops daily for fresh ingredients, returns to the kitchen and then makes up the complete menu for that night. So if you wanted to know what’s on the menu for that day, check out the website before you head over or follow their twitter.
The night we went the menu had a mix of seafood such as Island Clams, Dungeness Crab, Sockeye Salmon and Prawn. There was also a rich selection of meats: Sloping Hill Park, Pemberton Beef Tenderloin, and Bison Striploin.
As my starter, I decided to go for the Chilled Puree of Winter Avocado
The avocado puree soup was topped with double smoked bacon lardon, tomato, and Banyul’s. I rarely have chilled soup and I somewhat liked it. One can’t really complain about bacon and we usually joke that bacon makes everything taste better. I liked the mixed flavours and textures of warm crisp bacon with the smooth rich soup. It was both refreshing and hearty at the same time.
I ordered the ‘more than I could handle’ Roasted Rack of Sloping Hill Pork
The hunkin’ piece of pork loin was on top of buttermilk mashed potatoes, apple and fennel salad. I liked the nod to the popular ‘pork chop and apple sauce’ dish. I rarely eat pork aside from noshing on the Chinese BBQ style but apparently what I ordered was worth the money. It was such a huge portion that I only managed to eat more than half of it. But for such a huge serving, it was surprisingly on the overcooked side.
My dinner partner in crime ordered the Tenderloin of dry aged Pemberton Beef served with farmhouse cheddar, potato croquettes, and carrot butter. I only tried a bite of it but both us remarked that the cheddar was an odd strong cheese choice for the tenderloin.
Before my friend dived into his piece of meat, he started with Steamed Savory Island Clams
It was cooked in a broth of champagne, peppercorns, and peppergrass. You could tell they were rare quality clams but it was unfortunate that each clam was gritty.
One cool thing that happened that night was finally meeting Wine and Restaurant consultant, Stephen Bonner (@SBonnerABV). He was acting as wine connoisseur and front of house that night. We introduced ourselves to him and he came by often to chat and treated us to glasses of wine that went well with our dishes.
I like Kits Daily concept but in terms of long term viability and consistency they may need to reconsider its strategy. It may make more sense to have a small regular menu that they have perfected along with the daily menu. Originality is rare in this city and is even harder to maintain in an economy that’s coming out of recession. I hope they succeed and stick around.
1809 West 1st Avenue