Raw Bar at the Lobby Lounge (at Fairmont Pacific Rim)

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Torched Wagyu Beef Salad; Bloody Mary

Back in December, I took S out for her birthday at the Raw Bar at the Lobby Lounge located inside the Fairmont Pacific Rim. In the winter months, they had a five-course cocktail brunch for $42 per person with the cocktail pairing for an additional $28.

For the first course, there are two selections, so of course we got one of each. I chose the Torched Wagyu Beef Salad which comes with red onion, sake-beet puree, scallion-ginger emulsion, nori chips and miso creme fraiche. The wagyu beef was tender and melted in my mouth! The only complaint was that the beef was served cold, but I guess since it is a salad, the rest of the ingredients are cold.

The cocktail pairing was a Bloody Mary with vodka, lemon, tomato juice, sriracha, horseradish, salt, and pepper. I normally don’t like Bloody Marys but I actually quite enjoyed this one as the spice level was just right.

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Red Tuna Tataki

S got the Red Tuna Tataki  with yusuf cosh vinaigrette, soy glee, daikon, and micro greens. This was beautifully presented and the tatami was seared just enough while keeping the centre a beautiful pink.

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Light- Zaiten

The tuna tataki was paired with a Light-Zaiten which consisted of gin, organic green tea, dry vermouth, rosemary, cucumber and lime. This was a light and refreshing drink which paired well with the fresh tuna.

 

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Signature Bacon and Sable Miso

The second course was the same for everyone which was the Signature Bacon and Sable Miso. This soup featured bacon dashi, house-cured sablefish, ginger and scallions. This is definitely a gourmet miso soup and we both really enjoyed it. The bacon bits with the sablefish was absolutely delicious and paired so well together! I only wish this came out piping hot as it was served warm rather than hot.

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Beer Makes Miso Happy

The miso soup was paired with Beer Makes Miso Happy which we thought would be beer at first, but it was served in a tall cocktail glass. Turns out it consists of Grand Marnier, wheat beer, ginger, and lemon. The ginger flavour was very strong so if you’re not a beer drinker, you can still enjoy this. Love how they put puns in their menu names by the way!

 

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Wild Salmon Motoyaki “Benny”

For the third course, S chose the Wild Salmon Motoyaki “Benny”. This is their take on an eggs Benedict as it’s not what you would usually see. It came with a poached egg, sweet milk bread, inure, miso hollandaise and avocado. Unfortunately, the egg rolled off and broke once our server placed it down. However, S really enjoyed the dish and the twist from the traditional.

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Kurobuta Pork Kakuni

For myself, I had the Kurobuta Pork Kakuni, which feature braised pork belly, 62 degrees egg, sweet soy broth, daikon, carrot, potato, and tamanishiki rice served on the side. The pork was very tender with the fatness bringing some richness to the dish. The soy broth was delicious with the rice and the egg was poached perfectly with the yolk oozing out. By this course, we were starting to get full, so the rice itself makes this course even more filling.

 

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Pepe Le Pew; Pork ‘N’ Cider

The cocktail pairing for the salmon benny was the Pepe Le Pew, which featured a Lillet rose, sherry, and sparkling brut. This was definitely sweeter but I enjoyed the fizz from the sparkling brut. The cocktail pairing for the pork belly was the Pork ‘N’ Cider which featured Lonetree cider, sweet vermouth and sherry. The sherry paired really well with the pork although I found the drink on the sweeter side.

 

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Sushi Omakase; Sparkling Junmai Sake

The fourth course was the Sushi Omakase, which featured a spicy tuna maki, temari sushi topped with crab meat, halo sushi topped with cured saba, and salmon and tuna nigiri. Honestly, this was one of the courses I was excited for, but I felt that the sushi left me disappointed. The presentation was not as nice as I expected, and the fish was cut sort of choppy. The seafood is oceanwise here, which is a plus, but I just didn’t find the fish very fresh. As for the pairing, this came with Sparkling Junmai Sake, which I really enjoyed. It can be quite strong for some though.

 

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Yakult Shooter; Wakayama Beach

For dessert, the five course meal ended with a Yakult Shooter, which featured plum glee, pear, matcha green tea, black sesame powder and yusuf pearls served in oyster shells. This was visually beautiful to look at, but S and I both agreed we were confused with the flavours and ultimately did not enjoy it. Something was just off about it. This came with the Wakayama Beach which featured gin, yuzu, basil, coconut water, and ginger. The drink was a refreshing drink to finish off the meal, although we were quite buzzed after the 5 drinks!

As it was S’s birthday, I mentioned to the server the special occasion hoping to get a message written on our dessert, but they ended up giving us a delicious plate of truffles on the house which I thought was very sweet.

Overall, I quite enjoyed the five course brunch and would highly recommend getting it with the cocktail pairings. You get quite a lot of food and will be stuffed at the end and given its reasonable price, I think it’s a pretty good deal. I did have some issues with service, since I made the reservations a month in advance through email and had received confirmation. Yet, when I arrived, they told me there was no such reservation. Quite disappointed with that given they are such a large hotel, but luckily since it was a snow day, the restaurant was not very busy. Our server also did not tell us what our drinks were each time she placed them down, which would be expected at hotel restaurant. However, the ambiance of the restaurant is A+ since it has amazing natural light coming in and the simplicity of white tables and chairs with the orange chopsticks makes the setting visually appealing. I will be back again if they have other set menus in the future!

Pros:
– Cocktail pairings are on point with overall good food
– Ambiance and plating is visually beautiful

Cons:
– Service was a miss for us

Price Range: $50-80

1: Terrible 2: Poor 3: Average 4: Good 5: Excellent

Food: 3.5 Service: 2 Ambiance: 5 Parking: 2.5 Overall: 3.5

RawBar at The Lobby Lounge - Fairmont Pacific Rim Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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Big G Large Fried Chicken

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Ever since we came back from Taiwan, we’ve been craving the large fried chicken you can get at the Taiwanese night markets. The first time we came across it in Vancouver was at the Richmond Night Market, and now Big G Large Fried Chicken has opened up a store front in the mall on Capstan.

 

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Take out is available, but there is also a decent amount of seats for you to dine inside.

 

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Whether you order take out or dine in, you will need to first order and pay up front. Other than the signature large fried chicken, they also have a variety of Taiwanese snacks and bubble tea.

 

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Large Fried Chicken – Seaweed Powder

Of course we had to try the Large Fried Chicken which costs $9.99 for one piece. It’s quite expensive compared to Taiwan where it’s only around $3. Here, you are able to season the chicken with a variety of flavours though and can choose up to two flavours for free. The chicken itself is huge (the size of your face), but the chicken remains moist and juicy inside with the outside being extremely crispy. We chose to have one with salt and pepper which is essentially the original flavour. The other, we chose to have seaweed powder which was my favourite. Although quite expensive, I would still come back for it and share it as a snack.

 

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Crispy Oyster Mushrooms

In Taiwan, we were also obsessed with the Crispy Oyster Mushrooms. Here, these were just as good with the oysters remaining moist and the outside well seasoned and crispy. They were priced at $5.75 but you got a decent portion.

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Big G Milk Tea

Last but not least, we got the Big G Milk Tea for $4.50 and added $0.50 for pearls. By buying one main, one snack, and one drink, we made this a combo and received $1.50 off our total combo. The milk tea is okay, but nothing super special, so I find it quite expensive.

Overall, we are happy that we now have the large fried chicken available in Richmond. It makes a great snack when you are craving something deep fried and the best part is they open late!

Pros:
– Chicken is moist and batter is crispy
– Open late

Cons:
– Not exactly cheap for fried chicken

Price Range: $10-20

1: Terrible 2: Poor 3: Average 4: Good 5: Excellent

Food: 4 Service: 3 Ambiance: 2.5 Parking: 3 Overall: 3.5

Big G Large Fried Chicken Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

WildTale Coastal Grill

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With 2017 Dine Out Vancouver underway, our first dine out of the year was at WildTale Coastal Grill in Yaletown. The interior has a rustic charm and is great as a date night spot.

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The Dine Out menu this year is $30 per person for three courses with wine pairings and add-ons available for extra charge.

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WildTale Seafood Chowder

S started off with the WildTale Seafood Chowder which came with a corn and crab fritter. I found the chowder to be very flavourful and probably best of the night. However, the chowder was extremely small even for an appetizer. Looks like they gave us half the portion because of dine out.

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Albacore Tuna Carpaccio

For myself, I had the Albacore Tuna Carpaccio with a baby gem citrus salad. The tuna itself was not seasoned and therefore really required the citrus fruits to enhance the flavour. Still, I found the dish to be rather bland and the tuna texture doesn’t really work well as a carpaccio since it’s rather mushy.

 

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Herb Crusted Wild Soho Salmon

For his entree, S got the Herb Crusted Wild Soho Salmon, which came with risotto, bay scallops and brown butter caper sauce. S actually disliked the dish and ended up trading it with mine. The salmon itself was cooked to medium rare, but we found it to be almost slightly undercooked. Definitely not dry, but parts of it was almost raw. The cook on the salmon was not the biggest issue. I think it was the sauce it came with and the risotto. Something about the flavour was really off and was too strong in lemon juice. Not sure if it’s just our personal preference, but we didn’t like the flavours at all.

 

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7 Hour Braised Alberta Beef Short Rib

For myself, I ordered the 7 Hour Braised Alberta Short Rib which came with a celeriac pomme puree and roasted bone marrow jus. The short rib was very tender and came apart easily, but again, the flavour was off. I wish they had marinated the short rib ahead of time as the inside of the beef was very bland and you really had to soak in as much jus as you could. The puree itself was pretty good though, but the overall dish was quite bland in flavours.

 

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Bittersweet Chocolate Mousse

There was only one option for dessert, which was the Bittersweet Chocolate Mousse and it came with a housemade biscotti. I found it odd that our two jars were different, and I thought they should’ve at least presented the same types of jars for the same tables if they were short on jars. The mousse itself was also extremely sweet given the menu name said it was bittersweet. You really needed to mix it with the cream or it was too overwhelming. Still, we couldn’t finish the jar as it was quite sweet.

Overall, we were quite disappointed with our experience at WildTale for their Dine Out menu. I hope this is just a one off whereby their regular menu is executed much better. I understand that they are busy during dine out, but I was extremely surprised how fast the food came out. It was as if everything had been prepared in advance. Our total dinner took 45 minutes because of how fast our food came out. It almost felt uncomfortable as we had no breaks between our food. We personally also did not really enjoy any of the dishes on the dine out menu. Nothing blew our mind and made us want to come back. We’ll have to try their regular menu on a normal day to really see how it compares.

Pros:
– Date night ambiance
– Reasonable prices

Cons:
– Flavours were a bit bland
– Dishes came out way too quickly

Price Range: $30 based on DOVF menu price

1: Terrible 2: Poor 3: Average 4: Good 5: Excellent

Food: 2.5 Service: 2.5 Ambiance: 4 Parking: 3 Overall: 2.5

WildTale Coastal Grill Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

The Deluxe Chinese Restaurant

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The Deluxe Chinese Restaurant opened up a few months ago in Richmond. It is located next to Yuan’s Shanghai Serendipity.

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The restaurant offers dim sum in the early mornings and lunch and switches to Cantonese cuisine for dinner service. What is more interesting is that they serve sushi and sashimi during dim sum service. Yes…that is a sushi bar behind the counter. Honestly, that made me question the food even more because who comes to a dim sum restaurant for sushi?

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The decor inside is definitely pretty nice, on par with the Yuan’s next door. They also have private rooms if you are hosting parties.

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Tea came in a fancy teapot along with a heater. However, because of all these appliances, we found it took up way too much space on the table.

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Shrimp Dumplings

We started off with the Shrimp Dumplings which were quite typical. Large shrimps inside but nothing out of the ordinary.

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Beef Rice Roll

The Beef Rice Roll came accompanied with two gai lans. The rice roll itself was quite thin and smooth.

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Sticky Rice in Lotus Leaf

The Sticky Rice in Lotus Leaf was a decent size with a variety of ingredients including minced pork, dried shrimp and egg yolk.

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Steamed Custard Bun

Next up were the Steamed Custard Buns. Not super pretty in appearance with the odd bumps here and there, but there was a good amount of filling and the bun itself was light and fluffy.

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Pork Shiu Mai

They offer truffle shiu mai here as well, but we opted for the regular Pork Shiu Mai as my mom doesn’t like the taste of truffle. These were quite large and the wrapper was thin.

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Taro Mushroom Bun

An interesting dish was the Taro Mushroom Bun. The bun itself is actually filled with taro and the outside is decorated with cocoa powder to imitate a mushroom.

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Is this cute or what? Even has the stem! The bun itself is nothing special but the appearance definitely won us over.

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Steamed Malaysian Sponge Cake

To finish our meal, we had the Steamed Malaysian Sponge Cake. This was a big portion but I found it to be a little too dense for my liking.

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Overall, we found The Deluxe Chinese Restaurant to be quite average for the price we were paying. The price is slightly higher than average, but the food was nothing too special. We also found the selection of food to be quite limited unless you want to venture into trying their sushi (which is quite expensive by the way). Not sure if I would return given the many options there are in Richmond.

Pros:
– Luxury ambiance
– Decent eats

Cons:
– Limited selection
– On the pricier side for the quality of food

Price Range: $15-20

1: Terrible 2: Poor 3: Average 4: Good 5: Excellent

Food: 2.5 Service: 3 Ambiance: 4 Parking: 2.5 Overall: 2.5

The Deluxe Chinese Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Bibo Pizza al Taglio

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NOTE: All food and beverages were complimentary, but all opinions are based on my own experience.

Last month, we checked out the newest Bibo Pizza location in Olympic Village called Bibo Pizza al Taglio. It’s a short walk from the Canada Line station and makes a great lunch or dinner spot for the offices and residential buildings nearby.

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The interior has a rustic charm to it with brick walls on one side and hand-painted tile walls on the other. I especially liked this painting which requires a closer to look to find everything all so Roman about it.

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The menu at this location is much smaller, and focusses on Roman style pizza compared to the Neapolitan pizzas we see at their other locations. I first tried Roman style pizza when I was in Rome and fell in love with it! Instead of the typical circular shape, Roman style pizza are usually rectangular and sliced into squares. They also feature some focaccia options and gourmet pizzas with ingredients I haven’t seen elsewhere.

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Aranciata, Chinotto

We started off with some beverages from the Italian brand Lurisia. These are sodas which are imported from Italy. The Aranciata is my favourite as it’s a delicious soda made from oranges from the bays of the Adriatic sea. Think Fanta but way better. The Chinotto is also a fruit similar to an orange and tastes sort of like cola but not as sweet. Both are great choices to get a taste of Italy!

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The pizzas here are sold by slice with the exception of the gourmet pizzas which require an order of 3 for $20. However, the owner said that the menu will be changing and he hopes to offer the gourmet pizzas by slices as well. The gourmet pizzas are also made to order and ready within 10 minutes.

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Margherita, Prosciutto e Funghi, and Diavola

We first got to sample their traditional pizzas which included the Margherita, Prosciutto e Funghi and Diavola. The Margherita is topped with DOP tomato sauce, bocconcini fior di latte and basil. DOP means that the tomato sauce is certified to be locally grown and packaged in Italy. The Prosciutto e Funghi is topped with DOP tomato sauce, bocconcini fior di latter, cooked ham and mushrooms. Lots of toppings but I found this one to be rather bland. My favourite was the Diavola which consisted of DOP tomato sauce, bocconcini fior di latte and spicy salami. I really liked the kick of spice!

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#2 – Shitake Mushrooms, Bresaola Cured Meat, Parmigiano Reggiano, Arugula

We also got to try their gourmet pizzas which are made with focaccia and therefore much more fluffy than the traditional. We chose #2 which is topped with shitake mushrooms, bresaola cured meat, parmigiano reggiano, arugula and lemon. Their gourmet pizzas are what I would come back for. I love the variety of toppings which you can’t find at most pizza restaurants, but they actually work! There were so many mushrooms and the salt from the cured meats balanced the flavours very well. I’d definitely order this again.

Overall, we were impressed with the new Bibo location and am excited that we now have Roman style pizza in Vancouver. The prices are slightly higher, especially for the gourmet pizzas, but you get what you pay for. The gourmet pizzas are what I’d definitely come back for.

BiBo Pizza al Taglio Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Foodora: Food Delivery by Bike Launches in Vancouver

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NOTE: I was offered a voucher to try foodora for free, but all opinions are based on my own experience.

Have you ever gone home after work to only find nothing in your fridge or you’re just simply too exhausted from work to do any cooking? Then you do some searches and only find pizza, Chinese food and most of the time they don’t even do delivery. Third party food delivery services have been popping up all over Vancouver, and the newest to our city is foodora. Read on to find out how you can win a $30 voucher or claim a $10 voucher!

 

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Foodora started in Berlin, Germany and is already servicing Montreal and Toronto, and now Vancouver. What differentiates foodora the most from the other delivery services is that they can deliver to places other than your work and home. For example, foodora can deliver to English Bay or even Stanley Park. Currently, foodora can only deliver to the downtown core, but they are constantly expanding, so check back often if your location is not included yet. In addition, the choice of restaurants include everything from cold-pressed juices, poke, sushi, ramen, sandwiches, and even fine dining food like Bauhaus!

 

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Foodora contacted me to give the service a try and ordering was super easy! You can order from their website on your desktop or through their mobile app. Once you place your order, your meal can be delivered within 35 minutes. You can also pre-order like I did. You can then pay for your meal including any tips you would like to pay your driver online with credit card or PayPal. Another differentiation is that foodora delivers by bike and you are able to track your delivery status online and watch the bike go. These foodora bikers bike super fast by the way! I had a good time watching how quickly my food was being picked up and bypassing all the busy downtown traffic. My order arrived right on time which normally never happens with other food delivery services I’ve tried using cars. Eco-friendly and fast!

 

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Pork & Prawns Salad Roll

I was craving some Vietnamese food on this cold rainy day so ended up choosing a new restaurant, Little Saigon, in Yaletown to try. For our appetizer, we had the Pork & Prawns Salad Roll which featured vermicelli, lettuce, bean sprouts, pickled carrots, cucumber, basil, pork and prawns wrapped in rice paper served with a house made peanut sauce. The rice paper was thin and they didn’t cheap out on the filling.

 

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Saigon Special

For our entree, we had the Saigon Special which included grilled lean pork, pork patties, chicken patties, 4 tiger prawns and 2 spring rolls served atop vermicelli. We were super impressed that the food was still warm when it arrived and the portions were great. We especially liked the pork patties which were seasoned perfectly.

 

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Coconut Curry Chicken Stew

Last but not least, we had the Coconut Curry Chicken Stew. The stew was filled with large chunks of chicken, carrots, yams & potatoes and cooked in an exotic blend of herbs, spices and coconut milk. We got this with a side of baguette which was perfect for soaking the curry sauce. Extremely flavourful and wasn’t too spicy.

 

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Overall, we were extremely happy with the food at Little Saigon and have added it to our list of favourites for Vietnamese food. In addition, we really enjoyed how easy and efficient foodora was. We will definitely be using their service again when busy season hits and we are stuck at the office working overtime!

RECEIVE A $10 VOUCHER!

Use this referral code and download the foodora app to receive a $10 voucher towards your first order with foodora.

GIVEAWAY!

To celebrate foodora’s launch in Vancouver, I’ve collaborated with foodora to giveaway a $30 voucher to use on your next order. Check on my Instagram for details on how to enter. Contest ends December 2, 2016 11:59 pm PST.

Little Saigon Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Sushi Bar Maumi

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Extreme late post, but for my birthday this year, S took me to Sushi Bar Maumi for dinner. They are known for their fresh fish which is imported daily from Japan and what most believe is as authentic of a sushi bar in Japan as you can get in Vancouver. The restaurant seats only 10 people each time slot and you must reserve the specific time slot in advance. Because the restaurant is only run by the chef and one waitress, they only take reservations from 3-5:30pm. In fact, S said they were extremely strict on the phone stating that they don’t serve any alcohol, that you must order from their omakase menu, and that you better arrive a bit early because latecomers will be frowned upon. They only have 3 seatings: at 6pm, 7:30pm and 9pm.

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Because the restaurant is very small and intimate, I tried to avoid taking too many interior pictures. Essentially, the chef stands in the middle and the seats form a half circle around him. Apparently, this is very different from what it was like a year ago, when you could order off the omakase menu. Now, the nigiris are served one piece at a time. However, we were surprised that all the fish is cut in advance. I guess this saves time so that the service can be done as quick as possible. At the same time, some may find this is not as authentic as what you would experience in Japan. However, for the price point compared to the ones in Japan, I can’t complain.

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Fresh Kisu Tempura

Other than sushi, they do feature some soups and appetizers. We decided to try the Fresh Kisu Tempura, which comes with one silver whiting and three pieces of assorted vegetables. The batter wasn’t too thick but I thought this was quite expensive given how little and thin the vegetables were sliced. I would skip this next time and focus on the nigiri.

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Flounder

When we visited, there were only two omakase menus to choose from. A 10 piece nigiri omakase for $45 and a 12 piece nigiri omakase for $60. The difference is that the more expensive menu comes with Bluefin tuna and Bafun Uni from Hokkaido. We decided to go for the latter to get the best experience. The fish change daily depending on what the chef believes is fresh, so you may get different items from what I experienced. In addition, the chef will ask you if you want wasabi inside or not. In Japan, most restaurants would have wasabi inside already, but I guess they are catering to the clientele in Vancouver. Our first item was the Flounder. I loved this as it was oily and melted in my mouth.

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Amaebi (Spotted Prawn)

Next was the Amaebi (spotted prawn). I usually don’t like this as I find it quite slimy, and if not fresh, it can have a weird aftertaste. However, this was extremely fresh and sweet.

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Fried Amaebi Heads

In Japan, they don’t waste any of their ingredients. This meant that the heads of the prawns were lightly fried. We looked around and everyone was eating the whole thing, so we did the same! I guess it’s like soft shell crab, but I honestly wasn’t very used to eating the shell.

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Surume Ika (Flying Squid)

Next up was the Flying Squid, which was lightly brushed with soy sauce. I’m not usually a fan of squid for sushi because it can be too chewy sometimes, but this was actually very tender.

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Bluefin Tuna

Because we paid for the more expensive option, our menu included the Bluefin Tuna. This was seriously the best part of my meal. The tuna literally melted in my mouth! I highly recommend trying this, but don’t eat too much since this type of tuna has been overfished!

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Hotategai (Scallop)

Onto another favourite and must order of mine at all sushi restaurants is the Scallop nigiri. I love a good fresh scallop, and this was perfect with a subtle sweetness of the sea. Apparently, this is fresh from Hokkaido. I love it paired with the wasabi underneath.

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Buri (Japanese Amberjack)

An unfamiliar fish to me was the Japanese Amberjack. To be honest, I am not very adventurous with my sashimi and usually stick to the typical tuna, salmon, and scallops. I was suprised that the Japanese Amberjack was more of a deep red as I always thought it was more of light pink flesh colour. However, paired with the light soy sauce, it was delicious.

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Aji (Japanese Horse Mackarel)

I’m usually not a fan of Japanese Horse Mackarel because I find that it can be quite fishy sometimes. However, this was very fresh and along with the ginger and green onion, it complemented the fish very well.

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Big Eye Tuna

Another favourite of mine was the Big Eye Tuna which is a cut from the red tuna. It was brushed with soy sauce so it was glistening! This is not the melt in your mouth type of cut, but I actually really enjoyed it. You get more texture from this.

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Kanpachi (Greater Amberjack)

I’ve never had Kanpachi, so this surprised me. It was very fatty and high in oil content and therefore melted in my mouth. So creamy!

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Bafun Uni (Sea Urchin)

I love Uni! Not something for everyone because S tried it for her first time and absolutely hated it. I can see why as it does have a strong sea flavour and can taste funny for first-timers. However, I loved how it was paired with wasabi to bring the sea flavour out. The bafun uni comes from Hokkaido which is the most prized due to the kelp and clean water that they feed on. Absolutely delicious!

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Saba (Mackarel)

Similar to the aji, the Saba came without the garnishes and was also not as tender. It was meatier and had more of a chew.

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Anago (Saltwater Eel)

To finish our omakase, we had the Saltwater Eel, which had a more delicate texture than your typical unagi. It was my first time trying this, and although I usually dislike unagi, I fell in love with anago! The chef torched the eel slightly and therefore the eel just melted in my mouth! A great way to end the meal!

Overall, S and I were very impressed with the quality of sushi at Sushi Bar Maumi. I definitely cannot afford to come here all the time, but it is a nice treat once in a while if you want to experience what a Japanese omakase would be like. Keep in mind that there is a time limit, so it’s not a place to stay long and chat after and your conversations should be kept quiet. Also, after your omakase, they present you with a menu with all the nigiris you can order (many of which are not on the omakase). Each piece is quite expensive but you can try many fish that you might not be able to find elsewhere.

Pros:
– Fresh cuts of fish and skilled chef
– Focuses on high quality nigiri

Cons:
– Wished we could watch the chef cut the fish in front of us!
– Can get quite pricey

Price Range: $45-60

1: Terrible 2: Poor 3: Average 4: Good 5: Excellent

Food: 5 Service: 4 Ambiance: 3.5 Parking: 3 Overall: 4

Sushi Bar Maumi Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Maille Flavour Studio: Make Your Own Mustard

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NOTE: All food and beverages were complimentary, but all opinions are based on my own experience.

Last month, I was invited to the Maille Flavour Studio at the Columbia StrEAT Food Truck Fest. La Maison Maille has been around for amount 300 years now and originated in Marseille, France. They have boutiques around the world including London and New York, but unfortunately not in Vancouver. You can find select items in Loblaws or Urban Fare though.

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Other than their classic dijon mustard, they also carry cornichons and flavoured mustard. The flavoured mustards are great for pairing with pretzels and crackers. Some of the flavours include Parmesan Cheese and Basil, Blue Cheese, Pesto and Arugula, and Mango and Thai Spices.

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Peach Chutney Glazed Waffles with Honey Mustard Fried Chicken

When I think of mustard, I automatically think of hot dogs. But after attending the Maille event, I was amazed at all the recipes that mustard can be incorporated in. First up was these bite sized Peach Chutney Glazed Waffles with Maille Honey Mustard Fried Chicken. I loved how the honey mustard came in the little pipettes and you squeezed the mustard into the chicken as you pull it out.

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Steak, Coleslaw and Honey Mustard Sliders

Another favourite was the Steak, Coleslaw and Honey Mustard Slider topped with a cornichon.

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Smoked salmon and mustard also pairs very well!

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Vanilla and Maille Mustard Poached Pear

Wait, dessert and mustard? Yes, apparently you can use mustard in sweets! Served in verrine with bourbon mascarpone mousse and a pommery mustard praline topping, these were a delicious treat!

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Okay, so mustard can be used to make desserts, but what about cocktails? Yes! This was definitely a huge surprise for us.

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Le Moutarde

K loved the mustard cocktail called Le Moutarde. Slightly sweet with a shot of Vodka, this got us curious what was in it. The following is the recipe to make Le Moutard:

  • 2 tsps. liquid cane sugar
  • 1/2 oz lemon juice
  • 1 oz white cranberry juice
  • 4 cucumber pieces
  • 1 tsp. Maille à l’estragon mustard
  • 1 oz lemon flavoured Vodka Absolut
  • ice

You can find more recipes for cocktails and other dishes on their website!

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Halfway through the event, mustard sommelier Harry Lalousis showed us how to make a mustard vinaigrette perfect for salads. He knows everything about mustard and I’m amazed at all the recipes he’s made with mustard!

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Then we got to the fun part! We got to make our own mustard! At the event, the public was able to do this for $2 which is a pretty good deal!

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The stations are set up with a variety of ingredients that pair well with mustard including fruits and herbs.

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Everyone gets their own mortar and pestle.

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For my mustard, I decided to add rosemary and lemon juice. You really have to grind up the rosemary leaves!

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You can then choose to add either the Old Style Grainy Mustard or the smooth Dijon Mustard.

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I decided to go with the grainy mustard since I love this paired with meats and cheese on a charcuterie board.

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Mixed it up a bit and there you have it! My own creation of mustard! K made a raspberry infused one and it was surprisingly very good as well. We’ve already been using our mustard with our dishes including pairing it with our rack of lamb. Delicious!

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Overall, it was lots of fun learning all about mustard and the ways you can incorporate it in your dishes. You won’t want to go back to the generic brands after you try this gourmet brand of mustard, Maille!