Posts with tag "vancouver downtown"

Taste of Yaletown 2013

It’s good to see the Yaletown restaurant scene evolving again with additions of great spots that offer unique quality food. Since I live and work in the neighborhood, I’ve had the opportunity to check out some of these new places and they are becoming my go-tos if I prefer a convenient jaunt down the block for  a good decent bite.

There’s the classic delicious French cuisine with a nod to West Coast ingredients at Cache Bistro

Or thoughtful European inspired dishes turned on its head at Good Wolfe Kitchen Bar

Or perhaps some simple artisan pizzas at The Parlour

Taste of Yaletown is fast approaching and it’s a good opportunity for you to check out some of these still under the radar gems. The 9th annual Taste of Yaletown (TOY) will run from October 16 – 27th, 2013, with 30 participating restaurants.

Here’s a quick low down of what to expect:
- event will move away from limited 3-course menus and chefs can now offer any menu combination at set prices of $25, $35 and $45.
- expect to see a diverse and exciting offering, with specific emphasis on local and seasonal ingredients as a result of this change.
- will include lunchtime menu offerings alongside the traditional dinner.

The addition of lunch will be supported and promoted through a unique, free trolley service to Yaletown for the public. I’ll have a chance this week to rub shoulders with media and fellow bloggers and check out this trolley lunch service. Of course I’ll report back with tweets, instagram pictures, and a quick low down.

The list of participating restaurants for TOY 2013:

  1. Bistro Sakana
  2. Brix Restaurant & Wine Bar
  3. Caché Bistro and Lounge
  4. Cactus Club Café
  5. DD Mau
  6. El Azteca
  7. George Lounge
  8. Glowbal Grill Steaks & Satay
  9. Good Wolfe
  10. Hamilton Street Grill
  11. Hapa Izakaya
  12. Honjin Sushi
  13. Hooker’s Green
  14. Hurricane Grill
  15. Kibo Restaurant
  16. La Pentola della Quercia
  17. Milestones Grill + Bar
  18. Minami
  19. New Oxford
  20. The Parlour
  21. Paulie’s Kitchen
  22. Provence Marinaside
  23. Raw Canvas
  24. Romer’s Burger Bar
  25. Society
  26. Urban Fare
  27. Urban Thai Bistro
  28. West Oak
  29. Yaletown Brewing Company
  30. Yaletown L’Antipasto

Here’s a little recap of last year’s Taste of Yaletown opening party

Taste of Yaletown

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Please visit http://yaletowninfo.com/events/taste-of-yaletown for menu details from each restaurant.

Good Wolfe Kitchen Bar

1043 Mainland Street
Good Wolfe Kitchen & Bar on Urbanspoon

Cache Bistro Lounge
1269 Hamilton St
Caché Bistro & Lounge on Urbanspoon

The Parlour Restaurant
1011 Hamilton St Vancouver, BC
The Parlour on Urbanspoon

Guanaco Truck

The boom of Vancouver street food continued this year with the introduction of 12 new food trucks. I embarrassingly haven’t had the time to venture out to sample from the many culinary trucks of Vancouver. Furthermore, my self-imposed weekday diet restriction sort of impedes on my ability to gorge during lunch time….but I would make the occasional exception. This particular Spring day, the sun came out in full force and we escaped from our gray office cocoon to bask in it. We decided to trek to the corner of Seymour & West Georgia to try out the Guanaco Truck.

The colourful food truck was started by Jose Manzano, who originally worked in the local North Hollywood industry. He humbly began his cooking career by treating the crew members to his El Salvadoran food. And then with some encouragement, entrepreneurial spirit, and seeing a very unique niche opportunity, his ‘on set’ lunch sharing became a mobile business. It’s also a family affair with his mother and sister helping out with all aspects of the food truck operations.

Jose’s food truck serves a good variety of food for those with small to large appetites. The menu is an array of Salvadoran comfort food of Tamales, yuca frita, pasteles, and pupusas. There’s also a selection of sweet chilled drinks to quench your thirst like the traditional Horchata.

I admit it…I’m no expert on Salvadoran food but whatever I ate was good, hearty, and coma inducing filling.  For my sunny lunch, I ordered the Ayote Pupusas.
A pupusas is a thick hand made tortilla, made using a maise flour dough, which is usually filled with a blend of cheese, meats, beans and sometimes vegetables. My Ayote pupusas was a combination of savoury refried black beans, cheese and zucchini served Yuca frita, curtido (pickled slaw) and salsa de tomate (fresh tomato sauce).

The pupusas was piping hot, doughy, chewy, and very cheesy. It reminded of me of the Chinese green onion cake but thicker and chewier. The citrus side of tomato sauce and pickled slaw helped cut into the cheesiness. The yucca frita (fries) was crunchy like regular thick potato fries but a bit more on the starchy side. I also went for the Horchata ( beverage made of morro seeds, ground cocoa, cinnamon, sesame seeds, nutmeg, tigernuts and vanilla) as my post lunch dessert.

If you need some sunny colours on a rainy day or pretend you’re in a far off exotic place, come by and chow down at the Guanaco Truck.

Guanaco Food Truck
Seymour & Georgia from 11:00 – 3:00 pm
Guanaco Truck on Urbanspoon

Urban Tea Merchant

What’s a low key daytime suitable alternative to lounges and drinks? How about a casual afternoon tea with the girls. Having a modern day afternoon tea seems intimate, quiet, and to be honest, nicely girlie. Us fancy girls decided to try out Urban Tea Merchant in downtown for lunch.

The tea salon is simple but elegant with the crisp white tablecloths. They have an amazing array of 200 luxurious teas which is shown in all it’s colourful glory on their library-style wall. We tried a few pots of tea but I won’t even start trying to be a connoisseur of teas as my experience is mostly Chinese ones. This sophisticated tea establishment also generously uses the tea to flavour the food.

We first shared the Petite Signature Tea which is a 3 tier of bite size delights

It was a mix of the sweet with tea-infused macaron, chevron strawberry, petit fours, fresh fruit,
fresh baked scone with crème & strawberry jam savouries. Of course there was the the savoury finger sandwich and bites of cucumber, watercress & cracked black pepper sandwich, Tiger Hill Tea-infused egg salad tea sandwich and petit tea-infused chicken salad cone smoked salmon finger sandwich with wasabi mayo & soy jelly. My favourite was the delicate egg salad sandwich as you can actually taste the slight smokiness of tea with that one bite.

Next we ordered a simple cheese plate to nibble on

It was a small plate of imported & local cheese, dried & fresh fruit, nuts, and a nice basket of fresh sliced baguette and bagel.

The tea service area is in secluded part of the space so you can have a nice quiet time with your friends.  The service was very attentive and friendly.  I wouldn’t say this is my favourite spot for an afternoon tea but if you want a quiet subdue afternoon indulging in exotic luxe tea this would be your place.

Urban Tea Merchant
1070 West Georgia Street
The Urban Tea Merchant on Urbanspoon