Posts Tagged ‘Communal Table’

CAFÉ AL MERCATO

il mercato 3

2215 Marine Drive, West Vancouver

Tel: 604-922-4334

Web: n/a

Twitter: @CaffeAlMercato

Advice: Sit at the communal table.

il mercato 2

This Italian style café and market is filled with a large selection of fresh baked goods, such as breads, muffins, scones, cakes and cookies as well as an array of freshly made sandwiches, soups, pastas and pizza along with homemade gelato. I loved the long wooden communal table as well as the big windows, coated cement floors on the inside and the red Muskoka chairs on the patio.

 Truffle Mushroom Pizza and the Panzanella Salad

Truffle Mushroom Pizza and the Panzanella Salad

I had the special pizza of the day, Truffle Mushroom Pizza and the Panzanella Salad both were delicious and made for a great combo. The café also features Italian inspired coffees, desserts and pastries.

The owners of Mangia E Bevi Ristorante on the South side of the street opened this café directly across the street to welcome the community by day. There is a large deli section featuring fresh cheeses, meats and sauces for cooking at home. Looking forward to a return visit to try one of their desserts.

Review by: Richard Wolak

PLANTOPLANTO

plantoplanto 1

125 East 2nd Street, North Vancouver

Tel: n/a

Web: http://www.plantoplanto.com/

Twitter: @plantonorthvan

Advice: No reservations, check out their Foodie Friday bi-weekly feast.

Fruit Chutney & Brie Sandwich with a Quinoa Salad

Fruit Chutney & Brie Sandwich with a Quinoa Salad

Carrot Juice

Carrot Juice

Iced Tea

Iced Tea

 Gluten-free Carrot Cake

Gluten-free Carrot Cake

Specializing in plant-based foods, this mostly vegetarian café is a great to eat in spot for lunch on the North shore. You’ll love sitting at the high-top shared communal table which I did on my visit. I had their delicious Fruit Chutney & Brie Sandwich with a Quinoa Salad on the side that was full of feta, kale, cranberries and almonds. I also had a Carrot Juice as well as an Iced Tea which was the perfect refreshment to go with the yummy Gluten-free Carrot Cake with cream cheese icing in a jar that I had for dessert.

They offer something awesome for their customers and you can take part, every 2nd Friday for only $10 you can taste all sorts of new dishes, it’s like a foodie feast where you can try their newest creations before they end up on the menu. It’s a chance for you to give them feedback on the dishes you like and perhaps you may suggest a tweak, customer involvement is key and this is a great idea. The menu features a great selection of smoothies and juices along with sandwiches, salads and desserts. I can’t wait to try their Black Bean Chocolate Brownies on my next visit.

Review by: Richard Wolak

PIZZA FABRIKA

pizza fabrika 1

1680 Robson Street, Vancouver

Tel: 604.559.1680

Web: www.pizzafabrika.ca

Twitter: @PizzaFabrika_CA

Advice: Have a seat at the communal table if you are dining solo.

Dukkah

Dukkah

SPUD Pizza

SPUD Pizza

Duck Pizza

Duck Pizza

The most recent in the new wave of pizzerias is spot on, stepping up my love for pizza to another level with their chewy golden crust. Owned by restaurateur brothers Stephen and Michael Wiese these guys know that the secret is in the crust. It’s a simple affair here, serving up 8 pizza pies on the get go, perhaps more will be added to the stellar line-up down the road. Their crust is a yeast-leavened sourdough created via time-honoured kneading techniques. The tomato sauce is made from D.O.P. San Marzano tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil and Kosher salt, and the Fabrika cheese blend which you will see noted on the menu is a balance of full fat Canadian Mozzarella and Danish Fontina. I started off with the Dukkah ($6.50) crushed delicious blend of toasted hazelnuts & aromatic spices with EVOO & warm bread sticks. Then it was on to the pizza, the seriously good, SPUD Pizza ($16) which stole my heart, it was outstanding with sliced potatoes, oven roasted rosemary, fresh garlic, Grana Padano, red onion, cauliflower purée. I also had the Duck Pizza ($18) with Duck prosciutto, fresh pea shoots, and Fabrika cheese blend.

Chocolate Mousse

Chocolate Mousse

Blueberry Lemon Curd

Blueberry Lemon Curd

Noting that you may want something sweet to end your meal, they have a couple of desserts on rotation in glass jars to eat-in or take to go, I had the Chocolate Mascarpone Mousse and Blueberry Lemon Curd on my visit. The restaurant is licensed and they have a selection of craft beer along with wines on offer. I can’t wait for a return visit for more of that heavenly SPUD Pizza.

Review by: Richard Wolak

THE JUICE TRUCK CAFÉ

juice truck cafe 1

28 W 5th Ave, Vancouver

Tel: (604) 719-8861

Web: www.thejuicetruck.ca

Twitter: @juicetruck

Advice: Have a seat at the communal sharing table.

juice truck cafe 2

As one of the juice movers and shakers, The Juice Truck’s founders Ryan Slater and Zach Berman started the ball rolling a few years ago with their bright pink mobile truck. They were one of the first purveyors of the city’s first cold pressed juice, now they have grown and added a juice bar café. The storefront houses a large new production facility for nutritionist-approved cold pressed juices, ready-to-go cleanse packages and smoothies, a community space, and a juice bar and café.

juice truck cafe 3

 

juice truck cafe 4

The interior design is by Glasfurd and Walker with brightly coloured walls, playful fruit-inspired art and wallpaper, a fruity bathroom, and custom lighting by Gamala create a fun and inviting space for the community.

The Remedy

The Remedy

Hearty Salad

Hearty Salad

The Sushi

The Sushi

I have been a fan of their juices and smoothies for quite some time, happily you can get the ones that you loved at the truck in the café. I had The Remedy juice with Pineapple pressed with cucumber, kale, mint & ginger; along with one of their Hearty Salads that was filled with vegetables and grains along with a delicious garlicy dressing and The Sushi that is made with parsnip rice. In addition to their juices and smoothies, the café features grab-and-go meals, breakfast and lunch—think breakfast bowls and salads, and energy-boosting, indulgent snacks. Raw, gluten-free and vegan options abound, the retail space shelves are also stocked with superfoods like chia seeds, hemp seeds, and custom made tinctures, plus The Juice Truck cold pressed bottled juices to take home.

Review by: Richard Wolak

NOOK

nook kits 1

1525 Yew Street, Vancouver

Tel: 604-734-3381

Web: http://nookrestaurant.ca/

Twitter: @Nookvancouver

Advice: No reservations.

 

Peach Soda

Peach Soda

Baked Ricotta

Baked Ricotta

Baby Dutch Pancake

Baby Dutch Pancake

I have always been drawn to Italian restaurants, with no Italian ancestry that I know of, it is a cuisine that I have loved. It’s approachable to most, flavourful dishes, and simple ingredients, at Nook’s original location they have been serving up delicious eats since opening. Nook #2 is their latest and they have done a fine job, there is a beautiful communal table on one side where I sat, and then there is seating on the other side, great ambiance and people watching to be had. I started off my brunch with a refreshing Peach Soda, then indulged in their Baked Ricotta ($10) with drizzled Honey and blacked pepper, a delicious dish that takes ricotta to another level. Next was the delicious Baby Dutch Pancake with roasted apples and mascarpone cream in a caramel sauce.

Their brunch menu which is only available at their Kitsilano location is fairly simple, you will find some starters, skillets, some specialities as well as their line-up of amazing pizzas. There is also wine, beer, and cocktails with or without liquor. I’m looking forward to my next visit to this Italian eatery near the beach, for their Meatball Sandwich.

Review by: Richard Wolak

BUFALA PIZZERIA

bufala pizzeria 1

5395 West Boulevard, Vancouver

Tel: 604-267-7499

Web: n/a

Twitter: @bufalayvr

Advice: The bottles of complimentary oils are unmarked, vegetarians should ask which one is the ham oil to avoid.

Gnocchi

Gnocchi

Pesto & Ricotta Pizza

Pesto & Ricotta Pizza

Finocchiona

Finocchiona

As a pizza lover, I yearn to try each new place that is a purveyor of the pie. Known restaurateurs James Iranzad and Josh Pape are behind this new neighborhood eatery that is bound to re-energize the Kerrisdale dining scene. It’s got a casual, rustic vibe with a 20 seater communal table for the single folk or small families to share in the centre of the room, comfy booths lining the side and cool décor. My friend and fellow writer Tara Lee joined me for dinner last night to try a couple of pies and an appy. We shared the Gnocchi ($15) which was a small bowl of polenta gnocchi with braised oxtail, English peas, mint, asparagus, and goat cheese for our appetizer. Then it was into the Neapolitan style pizza pies where the bianco won our hearts over the rosso, it was the delicious Pesto & Ricotta Pizza ($14) that stole the show so to speak, topped with basil pesto, fresh ricotta, pine nuts, grana padano, bianco; we also had the Finocchiona ($19) fennel sausage, smoked castelvetrano olives, caramelized onion, smoked provolone, and marinara.

The menu offers a selection of appetizers, as well has several specialty pizzas, some bianco (white sauce) and others rosso (red sauce), there are also a few desserts, cocktails, wine and beer. A selection of complimentary bottles of oil line each table for drizzling on your pizza, my favourite was the oregano followed by the parmesan, there is also a ham oil and a chili oil. I’d be curious to try the desserts next time around as well as brunch once it begins.

Review by: Richard Wolak

WILDEBEEST

wildebeest 1

120 West Hastings Street, Vancouver

Tel: 604 687 6880.

Web: http://wildebeest.ca/

Twitter: @WildebeestYVR

Advice: Reservations suggested, late night solo visit shouldn’t need a reso.

Angus Beef Short Rib

Angus Beef Short Rib

Pear Mousse

Pear Mousse

Since I’ve known of this eatery being a spot for carnivores, it was one that took me far too long to visit, I did just that recently to partake in meat. This is what they do well, they do all the butchery on site for the animals that they serve which for the most part are locally raised. They support as much of the local farmers as they can for their produce. Dining here is a gastronomic experience and one that is finely executed. I had one dish in mind  to try and ended up ordering a couple, very impressed by the level of excellent service, the wonderful ambiance and I enjoyed watching the chefs at play in their open kitchen.  I had the outstanding slow-cooked natural Angus Beef Short Rib ($25) with salt-baked beets, hay jus, smoked salt as I had my eye on this dish. I then skipped right to dessert, to indulge in the delicious Pear Mousse ($9) chocolate sorbet, chewy pear, dehydrated chocolate mousse, salted caramel.

Although the menu is meat heavy, you will also find fish and vegetarian dishes as well that are plated with the same precision. The cocktail line-up is crafted by co-owner barstar Josh Pape. I’m looking forward to another visit perhaps next time for brunch.

Review by: Richard Wolak

PAPPAROTI

papa roti 1

1505 Robson St., Vancouver

Tel: 604-336-2867

Web: www.papparoti.ca

Twitter: @PappaRotiCanada

Advice: Order at the espresso bar.

papa roti 2

Known all over Asia and the Middle East, this is their first location in Canada, the café opened recently featuring their buttery, coffee-caramel coated buns. It’s an almost around the clock baking process for the twice baked buns which are baked fresh throughout the day. The café is large and spacious, with a nice wooden communal table in the centre.

Coffee Bun

Coffee Bun with caramel

Coronation Chicken Sandwich

Coronation Chicken Sandwich

orange juice

orange juice

Espresso Macchiato

Espresso Macchiato

Since it is all about the buns, I enjoyed my Coffee Bun with the caramel topping which is served on the side. There are all sorts of other toppings available including Cream Cheese, Local Organic Jams, Fresh Fruit, Nutella, Kaya, Maple Syrup, Honey, Whipped Cream, Ice Cream, Dark or Chocolate. On another visit I had the Coronation Chicken Sandwich which is made for them by Chef Tony Marzo, I have also had a fresh squeezed orange juice as well as an Espresso Macchiato.

You’ll find the usual range of espresso beverages made with JJ Bean, a selection of cold drinks with the star attraction being the coffee buns.

Review by: Richard Wolak

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