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Sun Sui Wah Seafood Restaurant - Vancouver, BC

By shokutsu on October 27, 2008 - 11:42am

The original Sun Sui Wah on Main has an excellent reputation for Dim Sum, and with the positive reviews, rewards, and accolades, a fairly sterling reputation over all. “Best of the City”, “Best High End Chinese”, “Best Seafood”. High praise in a dining city as diverse, filled with excellent quality choices, as Vancouver.

All in all, Sun Sui Wah Seafood Restaurant was a reasonable, yet disappointing Dim Sum experience. There was nothing wrong with the food per se, but based on the recommendations, and the reviews, I was expecting a lot more. Sadly, all i got was another average Dim Sum experience. This leads me to question how often people really dine here - because while the quality of their reputation lives on, the food clearly fails to match. I wonder if in this case, the restaurant has lapsed into complacency - content to live on their reputation alone. That would be disappointing, because if they truly deserve the reputation they’ve carried for 20-some years, I would expect something better. Much better.

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Sweet Obsession - Vancouver, BC

By shokutsu on October 26, 2008 - 12:24am

Nestled in a quiet neighborhood along West 16th Avenue, Sweet Obsession has been in existence for well over a decade now and has a strong customer base that appreciates the delectable delights and creations of Pastry Chef Tracy Kadonoff. Associated with the next door Trafalgars Bistro (previously reviewed on Foodosophy), Sweet Obsession currently operates a sit down cafe as well as housing a retail counter for take-away orders. It is a popular destination for late night gatherings, and you will often find the tables inside (and in the summer on the sidewalk patio) all occupied even past 9pm. I’ve been there several times now over the past few years to eat-in as well as to take out, and most recently took friends there for their first experience after a group dinner.

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Cho Sun B.B.Q. Korean Restaurant - Vancouver, BC

By shokutsu on October 17, 2008 - 11:15pm

Seated in one of the partitioned booths with a ready-to-use grill cook top, my attention turned right away to the booth to my left. On their table was this large round stone hotplate, with nice thick circular shaped cuts of beef short ribs that was covered in a thick looking sauce. I knew I had to have this. But after reading the menu, I had no idea what it would be called. This was where my fortune turned, as my dining companion could read the Korean writing on a handwritten piece of paper that was hanging by the cash register bar. Maun Kalbijim, was a new menu item that could be ordered on this night (and not yet in the proper booklet). “Maun” means spicy, “kalbi” means “beef ribs”, and “jim” means braised.

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Babylon Cafe - Vancouver, BC

By shokutsu on October 12, 2008 - 11:39pm

On a recent off-day, just before checking out a movie at the nearby Vancouver International Film Festival on Granville Street, I passed by this establishment, the Babylon Cafe. Actually, I should say that it was the amazing smells of the meat cooking on the spits that were being vented out of this small business that drew me inside like a snake charmer.

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Candia Taverna - Vancouver, BC

By shokutsu on October 12, 2008 - 12:13am

Few ethnic cuisines have such a see-saw effect on me between love and hate as Greek food does. The reason for this revolves around the use of certain ingredients or cooking methods for which I have a strong fondness for: cheese, grilled meats and seafood, yogurt, garlic, lemon, potatoes. And on the other hand, my dislike for anything that tastes like licorice such as ouzo and fennel, and the generous use of things such as mint, grapevine leaves, olives and eggplant that turns me off from many dishes in Greek cuisine. Over the years, I also grown to enjoy lamb meat which is a popular protein, though this tends to heavily depend on the quality and how well its cooked.

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Food Sustainability - building awareness and does it affect your shopping/dining choices?

By shokutsu on October 9, 2008 - 6:58pm

Here locally, I’ve recently learned of Eat BC! - that works to decrease our environmental impact, asking British Columbians to support local growers and suppliers in order to help the environment by reducing carbon footprints (due to shipping/fueling costs of food transportation). As well, I recently attended the Fourth Annual Farmade event at the University of British Columbia Farm. It was a festival/gathering to create a public forum, provide support and engage people in the discussion on the importance of the need for agricultural sustainability.

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Kitsilano Sushi - Vancouver, BC

By shokutsu on October 5, 2008 - 12:15am

We settled on Kitsilano Sushi - I know, not a very inventive name but it served as a bright beacon for us as we scanned the streets for something that met our needs in terms of location and the food being served. Unknown to me, it was a very popular place for dinner, judging from the mostly full dining area as well as a line up at least five people deep who were either placing takeout orders or waiting to pick them up. There were at least four people behind the sushi counter, which you see immediately upon entering the front entrance, as well as some staff whose main role appeared to be shuffling between the kitchen and tables, but with a lower emphasis on paying attention to the immediate needs of eating customers. Either they are in need of more bodies to man the fort, or feel that service should just be about bringing things to tables and clearing empty dishes away. Friendly, personal attention is not to be expected here - think more cafeteria service.

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Spice Alley Korean Restaurant and Bar - Vancouver, BC

By shokutsu on October 3, 2008 - 12:07am

The burgeoning part of Robson Street in downtown Vancouver that is home to several Korean restaurants makes for a challenging array of choices when explicitly looking for a Korean meal. A notable range of quality and prices can be had, and along with the Japanese izakaya-style places in the neighborhood, you have a complex scene to try and satisfy both food and alcohol cravings. But judging from the frequent busy crowds that I’ve seen over the years through the front glass, Spice Alley seems to be succeeding with its offering that combines both an authentic lineup of Korean food and drinks. Though if I were to characterize Spice Alley, it probably holds greater strengths as a bar, that serves up food that traditionally goes well within this drink-first-eat-second setting.

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Sushi Vancouver - Vancouver, BC

By shokutsu on September 28, 2008 - 12:59am

The name alone should tell you something about this place. Much like all the pizzerias (or “pizza parlors” as our friends south of the border are apt to call them) that try to outdo their rivals by putting a series of letter A’s onto the beginning of their business name in an attempt to get to the front of the line when it comes to the Yellow Pages, the generically named Sushi Vancouver is just trying to get noticed. After a pair of visits, I can confirm now that unfortunately, I think it will be for all the wrong reasons.

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Dunbar Pizza and Grill - Vancouver, BC

By shokutsu on September 27, 2008 - 12:05am

I found a great example of this recently in the Dunbar neighborhood of Vancouver. A very homey, somewhat eclectic street (but no where near the level of say Vancouver’s Main Street or Commercial Drive), that flies under the radar for most of the city’s residents, is home to several restaurants with most of them being of the casual variety. With a relatively close proximity to the University of British Columbia campus, I am sure the numerous pizza, coffee and pubs that abound, make for some convenient pickings for students on the evening prowl. Just off the corner from 16th Avenue turning onto Dunbar, I immediately spotted two pizza joints. Having no idea which one was better, I simply went with the one that was easier to park nearby and I could see someone inside of. Through this unscientific decision process, Dunbar Pizza & Grill was the selection on this night.

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