We sampled a few things from Bel Café because of convenience. I was told their Almond Croissant won some kind of award and they only offered it twice a week, so I gave it a try. It was a good Almond Croissant with enough Almond paste, but too much powder sugar on the top. I don’t know why bakeries love powder sugar so much? Their Plain Croissant was not good at all; it was not flakey and buttery enough. My brother had the breakfast sandwich before he left for the airport and he said it was fine. My mom had the Honey Bran Muffin and my father had the Strawberry Rhubarb & Ricotta Danish. They both liked it. We had the Dark Hot Chocolate right before we left for airport. At first the temperature was off and I asked them to warm it. The second try was better and it had a nice deep chocolate flavor.
Earl Gray Tea
Tiramisu crème, 70% dark Chocolate Mousse, Lady Finger Biscuit, Espresso Syrup
Lemon Crème, Lemon Curd, Mandarin Oranges, Almond Dacquoise
70% Dark Chocolate Mousse, Dark Chocolate Crème Brulee
Dark Chocolate Raspberry Mousse, Saké-Vanilla Crème Brulee, Saké Sacher Sponge
Wow, what a delicious way to end our trip in Vancouver. This bakery was located in the Yaletown area of Vancouver, very close to Opus hotel, where we stayed 10 years ago. Too bad this bakery was not around back then. If only we knew how great and tasty this Patisserie would be, we would have come here more than once. I took a picture of their whole case so I can look at it and wish I could have one of those beauties. I have never seen such a large selection of pastries anywhere. Ok, enough gushing and on to what we had. My mom had the Tiramisu-Chocolat and even though the description mentioned, 70% dark chocolate mousse, to me that was the only choice that didn’t win us over. It wasn’t anything exciting. My father’s choice was much better. He had the Citron-Mandarine; it had great mandarin and lemon taste with Almond Dacquoise. I picked Chocolat Framboise for my husband and it was amazing. It had Dark Chocolate Raspberry Mousse, Saké-Vanilla Crème Brulee and Saké Sacher Sponge. What a lovely combination and very delicious. I picked the Chocolat Velouté; it had 70% Dark Chocolate Mousse and Dark Chocolate Crème Brulee. Wow that was like dying and going to chocolate heaven. I also bought a bag of their caramels. It came in Vanilla, Passion Fruit and Chocolate flavors. They were good, but not as great as the ones from Jacques Genin in Paris. I know my brother is going to hate reading this review, because he had to fly home earlier that day and missed Ganache Patisserie.
This was our last brunch in Vancouver. Forage was located in the West End area of Vancouver inside Listel Hotel. I had the Dungeness Crab, Charred Onion, Poached Egg, Cress with Croutons. I enjoyed the taste of Cress which is a leafy vegetable. The dish as a whole was fine, but nothing exciting. My adventurous mom, dad and husband all had the Salmon Bowl!! It came with Wild Rice, Pickled Blueberry gel and very unique Sea Asparagus. Service was friendly.
Beyond Bread Sourdough
Onion Butter, Olive Oil
Beets, Radishes, Yogurt, Horseradish
Smoked Spring Salmon, Nasturtium, Beets
Grilled Octopus, Chorizo, Peppers, Potatoes, Parsley
Olive Oil Poached Ling Cod, Whey Sauce, Dill oil
Poached Egg, Brandade, Pine nuts, Black Olives
Sakura Farm Pork Chop, Chanterelles, Apricot, Chutney Jus
This was our last dinner in Vancouver and we were tired because we had walked for miles that day. I am glad I had made reservation two weeks prior, since the whole place was booked. We started with Smoked Castelvatrano Olives and it was very tasty and for what ever reason it reminded me of Chocolate. Their Sourdough bread with Onion Butter was pretty good. Beets with Radishes, Yogurt and Horseradish was not only pretty on the plate it was very tasty and refreshing. Smoked Salmon, Nasturtium and Beets was the tastiest smoked Salmon I have had and the plating looked very pleasing to they eyes. Grilled Octopus, Chorizo, Peppers, Potatoes and Parsley was very flavorful. Olive Oil Poached Ling Cod with Whey Sauce and Dill oil was very bland and forgettable. Poached Egg, Brandade, Pine nuts and Black Olives was a delicious and comforting dish. Our last course was the Sakura Farm Pork Chop, Chanterelles, Apricot with Chutney Jus. The pork itself was fine, but combined with the very tasty Apricot was pretty good. Service was fine and four out of five of us had their lemon grass drink and when we got the bill we noticed that we were charged for four bottles of water. We probably had two bottles at the most and even though the cost was very low, still that practice left a little bad taste in our mouth.
It seemed like most places on my list were located very close to each other in the Gastown area of Vancouver. After our breakfast at Café Medina, we stopped here to pick up some donuts, so later on we could snack on it while visiting Stanley park and Queen Elizabeth Park. I was disappointed that they didn’t have the Triple Chocolate Threat.
The Mexican Mole was Four kinds of chilis, cumin, coriander, star anise, cinnamon, dark chocolate. It was very good and had complex flavor. The Bee Sting was a savory one and had Parmesan, Black Pepper and Honey. It was very unique and delicious. The Earl Grey was a tasty cake donut infused with an organic Earl Grey Tea, topped with Earl Grey Glaze and a sprinkling of Rose Petals. It had a great flavor, but the glaze was a little sweet for me. My father had the Maple Glaze, it was a yeast donut topped with Maple Glaze and spiced walnut. My brother had the Coconut Cream and he liked it. He also had the Salted Caramel; it was a Chocolate Donut topped with sweet buttery Caramel and course sea salt but he felt it was too sweet.
Very fragrant Earl Grey tea
2 Fried Eggs, Braised Short Ribs, Roasted Potatoes, Balsamic Onions, Watercress, Applewood Cheddar and Grilled Foccacia
Chambar Pork Sausage, Soft boiled Egg, Baked Plum, Grilled Potato Baguette, Frisée Salad, Tarragon Vinaigrette
2 Fried Eggs on Baked Beans, Saussison de Paris, Double Smoked Bacon and Andouille, Grilled Foccacia
2 Poached Eggs, Spicy Tomato Stew, Red Pepper, Merguez Sausage, Moroccan Olives, Cilantro, Grilled Foccacia
We had a late breakfast at this very popular Vancouver restaurant. Their Earl Gray tea was unusual and very fragrant. I have to call the Cafe to find out what brand they used. My Fricassé was tasty but on the sweet side due to raisins that was not listed on the menu. I am not a raisin lover, so I tried to give all my raisins to my husband. Even my raisin loving husband didn’t care for them. Anyway, the combination of the short ribs, potatoes, onions and cheddar was satisfying. My husband enjoyed his Cassoulet but was not crazy about the bacon. My mom liked her Saucisse Maison and I took a bite of her tasty Chambar Pork Sausage and juicy plum. My father found his Tagine on the spicy side and he said there were no olives in his dish. Service was professional and we had pretty good breakfast and were ready to hit the streets of Vancouver.
Bella Gelateria was located in the Coal Harbour area of Vancouver. I had high hopes and expectations after reading that bella was the 2012 Florence, Italy Gelato Festival Winner.
I sampled a few flavors and liked the Strawberry lime so much I had to go back the next day to have more of that delicious sorbet. Their Frutti di Bosco was good, but not as great as the one from Pizzeria Mozza. I also liked the Raspberry Yuzu and 85% dark Chocolate. Their Akbar Mashti (Rosewater, Saffron, Pistachio) was very good. Their Black Sesame was not as intense as some I have had in the past. Chocolate Bacon was on the sweet side. My parents enjoyed Faloudah (Rosewater/noodles).
Pork 2 Ways
Slow Braised Gelderman Farm Pork Belly & Roasted Pork Loin Chop, Espresso reduction, Smashed Fingerlings, Eggplant Relish
Faux Lamb Tagine
Braised Yakima Valley Lamb Shoulder, Parsnips, Braised Navy Beans, Water Chestnuts, Dried Cherries served on Gnocchi Romaine
Lois Lake Steelhead
Steelhead, Sweet Peas and Corn, Champagne Sauce, Grapefruit & Warm Dill Potato Salad
Hangar Steak à La Bourguignon
Braised Okanagan Beef, Gratin Potatoes, Glazed Vegetables
Red Bandit Meuniére
Warm Savoy Cabbage Slaw, Crisp Shiitake Chips, Semolina Gnocchi Cake
We originally had reservation for Wildebeest, but after reading some unfavorable reviews I canceled that. We also considered Acorn, but since it was raining we wanted something within 15 minutes of walking or public transit. After researching for a while we settled on Tuc. If you want comfort food with no fuss, this is the place. We started with citrus ceviche that had BC Lake Trout, Red Bandit, Mussels, Clams, Leche de Tigre. It was light and refreshing. I enjoyed my Hangar Steak à La Bourguignon , it came with Gratin Potatoes and Glazed Vegetables. It was a true comfort food and perfect for a rainy night. I tasted my father’s Faux Lamb Tagine, it came with Parsnips, Braised Navy Beans, Water Chestnuts, Dried Cherries served on Gnocchi Romaine. It had a complex flavor from all the spices. My mother had the Red Bandit Meuniére, it came with warm savoy Cabbage Slaw, Crisp Shiitake Chips, Semolina Gnocchi Cake. The fish portion was on a small side but the Semolina Gnocchi Cake was tasty and the Cabbage Slaw added nice crunchiness to the dish. My husband had the Lois Lake Steelhead, it came with Peas and Corn, Champagne Sauce, Grapefruit & Warm Dill Potato Salad. It was a nice fish, lighter than Salmon and he enjoyed it. My brother had Pork 2 Ways, it came with Gelderman Farm Pork Belly & Roasted Pork Loin Chop, Espresso reduction, Smashed Fingerlings, Eggplant Relish . I liked the smashed fingerlings and he said the pork was fine. Doughnuts with Rum Caramel Sauce was our last course. I didn’t have any, but my family liked it. Service was attentive and informative.
We stopped here for lunch after visiting Granville Island. There was a line formed before they were even open for business. The Fish & Chips was good, but I thought the fish was a little overcooked and fries was nice and crisp. The Tuna sandwich came with Sweet Sesame Dressing and Avocado and it was fine but three thin slices of tuna was not satisfying. The Scallop Sandwich was mostly bread and not much Scallop for the price, but it tasted good. The coleslaw that came with all the dishes was good. My husband enjoyed his Salmon salad. My family liked the Seafood Soup. Overall, I thought for the price you didn’t get much specially when it came to their sandwiches.