2881 Granville Street, Vancouver
Advice: Be adventurous, try some of the Elements dishes or have the multi-course tasting menu.
Since Chef Quang Dang is on my top chefs to watch in 2012, I just had drop in for dinner to try his new Elements menu that I had heard was recently launched. I hadn’t eaten at West in over 6 years and was due for a return visit. This wasn’t any ordinary visit this was gastronomic heaven. The Elements menu is made up of 4 sections if you will, from sea, starch, pasture and vegetable and it makes for simpler dining, if you are dining solo or dining with friend as I did, you can experience so many more dishes and flavours by ordering a few of these and a few of those without having to follow the routine of ordering appetizers, entrees and desserts. Gerry and I did mix it up a bit, ordering some dishes off the Elements menu and others from the regular menu.
To begin we were served a complimentary plate of house baked rolls and an amuse arrived to the table to whet our palates.
To start we had 4 dishes off the #elements menu – Charred Vancouver Island Octopus ($11.50) with Barigoule Vinaigrette followed by the exquisite Salish Sea Sockeye Salmon ($11) mountain berry cured, Ikura; then the Marinated Scallops ($5.50) with Granville Island sake and lime emulsion followed by the Albacore Tuna ($9) with ponzu gel and shiso.
Chef Quang Dang surprised with a dish not yet on the menu to see our reaction, it was a brilliant idea and was delicious. “The Float” Tenderloin Soup cooked as served at the table, with dried rice noodles.
I then had the delicious Cauliflower Soup ($13) with wild salmon caviar, crème fraiche, truffled croutons and chives; while Gerry had the Hand Picked Biodynamic Greens ($12) with a balsamic vinaigrette.
Next we had another 7 dishes off the #elements menu, starting with unique in presentation and flavour, Forraged Mushrooms ($11) ‘en Papillote’ thyme and confit Garlic; along with the outstanding Honey Mussels ($2.50 each) crispy stuffed mussels with spinach and lemon puree; Chick Pea Croquettes ($9) with mint dill yogurt. Then the outstanding Gnocchi ($18) with sage brown butter and parmesan; along with the tender and flavourful Overnight Braised Short Ribs ($14) with red onion marmalade; with the North Arm Farm Beets ($8) with hazelnuts and parsley pistou; and the Brussel Sprouts ($9) with shallot crumble.
For dessert, Gerry had the Pineapple Brioche Tartin ($13) with coconut macaroon Ice Cream and I had the heavenly Chocolate Tasting ($14.50) it was 3 individual desserts in one, warm Chocolate Cake filled Profiterole and toasted cocoa meringue; Raspberry Chocolate Almond Cake with milk chocolate semi freddo and a 75% Chocolate Ganache with raspberry compote and ice cream.
For the perfect ending to our outstanding dinner we were served Ginger Chocolate Truffles, a sweet finish!
Review By: Richard Wolak