Poached Egg with Potato Gnocchi
Leeks, mushrooms, pecorino sabayon

Country style pork pate
Toast, pickled vegetables, apricot sauce

Duck Breast and Leg Meat Sausage
Buttered green cabbage, pan fried German noodles

Homemade Pasta Stuffed with Braised Lamb Shoulder
Roast tenderloin, ricotta cheese, tomato and onion pan gravy

Chocolate Caramel Bar
Banana ice cream, chocolate yogurt

Earl Grey Pot de Crème
Lemon shortbread, whipped milk

Dine out is such a great event each year because it allows us to try a variety of restaurants that we otherwise might not. The prices are often a really good deal for a 3 course menu, so trying places a little more fancy won’t break your wallet. This year, I went to L’Abattoir in Gastown, where they offered a dine out menu for $38. I left the restaurant extremely satisfied as the food and service were both excellent! The poached egg appetizer was cooked perfectly. It was a little runny, but the egg complemented the food around it, like the gnocchi perfectly. The pork pate was also a nice appetizer, but I would probably choose something like foie gras over it. Then came the entrees. The duck breast was delicious! It was cooked perfectly so that it was extremely tender, and not tough at all. The lamb was also extremely tender and cooked just right.The past was filled with lamb, which I found quite special, as it wasn’t just the regular cheese filling. It was a nice twist to regular pasta. Last but not least, the desserts! My favourite part! The banana ice cream was my favourite. It actually had a very strong banana flavour and the dessert just melted in your mouth. Definitely a very special dessert! We also got the earl grey pot de creme, and it was perfect for people who didn’t want something too sweet. The alternating layers of cream and shortbread gave a very nice texture to the mouth. Food was excellent and the ambiance was also really neat. Apparently, the restaurant was built in the 19th century and was actually the first jail in Vancouver! Kind of creepy at the same time I guess…but the interior has been modernized a lot while keeping some of the classic French tile work. It’s even got a bar, so to be honest, it’s not a very fancy restaurant. It’s a really hip restaurant with laid back service, but excellent food!

L'Abattoir on Urbanspoon


Given some complementary white wine!

Margarita Pizza with Fresh Tomatoes, young Bocconcini & Fresh Basil

Beef Tartar with Capers  & Shallots served on Toast Points with a Quail Egg
Potato Ravioli filled with Chicken & Sage
Crispy Calamari with Tomato Caper Sauce
Local BC. Halibut Cakes Served with Spicy Aioli

Chocolate Panna Cotta

My birthday was a while ago, and one of my gifts was a cooking class at Cookshop! Located at West 12th, it’s a cookstore with a large variety of cooking and baking ware, but also a cookschool at the back where you can learn a variety of different cuisines. My friend knew I was interested in Indian food, and had originally paid for the Indian Favourites lesson, but with conflicting times, we ended up switching to the Summer Tapas workshop. It was however quite different from what I had imagined. I imagined the workshop to be like high school foods class, where we each had a unit with our individual ovens and such, but we were only given a few tables with cutting boards in front of us. A large demo table was in the front with a mirror above so we could see. The chef had prepared most of the items and we were divided into 3 groups to work on different parts of recipes. So some people minced meat, others kneaded dough, and also battered dough. But I guess it makes sense that we weren’t given a whole lot, since the whole workshop was only 3 hours.  Quite impossible to make 6 different dishes! Classes are around $79 if you choose ones where you can participate. They are slightly cheaper if they are classes where you just watch the chef cook and enjoy the meal afterwards. There is also a decent amount of food you get at the end, so it’s quite filling. Looked around for a lot of different cooking lessons, but Cookshop is probably one of the few around Vancouver, where you aren’t attending “culinary school”.

Check out their cooking classes at: www.cookshop.ca/