Dining in Vancouver

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Re: Dining in Vancouver

Postby Vpete » Fri Sep 30, 2011 9:09 am

I ate at Kingyo Izakaya on Sunday night- http://www.kingyo-izakaya.ca/. After a 5 days of various hotel/banquet food through Alberta and all bloody beef it was more than refreshing and good.

It's a great spin on Japanese without being bludgeoned by sushi yet again.

Worth a visit for you West End loving folks.
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Re: Dining in Vancouver

Postby LotusBlossom » Fri Sep 30, 2011 9:12 am

Vpete wrote:I ate at Kingyo Izakaya on Sunday night- http://www.kingyo-izakaya.ca/. After a 5 days of various hotel/banquet food through Alberta and all bloody beef it was more than refreshing and good.

It's a great spin on Japanese without being bludgeoned by sushi yet again.

Worth a visit for you West End loving folks.


Yeah I heard that place was awesome as well! Did you know that used to be an old 7-11 and various other things in between. lol
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Re: Dining in Vancouver

Postby Vpete » Fri Sep 30, 2011 9:29 am

LotusBlossom wrote:
Vpete wrote:I ate at Kingyo Izakaya on Sunday night- http://www.kingyo-izakaya.ca/. After a 5 days of various hotel/banquet food through Alberta and all bloody beef it was more than refreshing and good.

It's a great spin on Japanese without being bludgeoned by sushi yet again.

Worth a visit for you West End loving folks.


Yeah I heard that place was awesome as well! Did you know that used to be an old 7-11 and various other things in between. lol


I can remember when there was a stage theatre down there doing Forever Plaid.

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Re: Dining in Vancouver

Postby KeyserSoze » Fri Sep 30, 2011 9:40 am

Vpete wrote:Sucked to lose Mr. Pickwicks!!

I was there for the "last supper" the night that they closed their doors.
End of the night they handed out markers and let everyone in the restaurant write their farewells or what have you on the walls/windows.
The food was pretty good, but the service there was always great.
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Re: Dining in Vancouver

Postby Topper » Fri Sep 30, 2011 9:43 am

Having shared a back hallway with the kitchen of Guu, I won't go near the place.
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Re: Dining in Vancouver

Postby Eddy Punch Clock » Fri Sep 30, 2011 9:44 am

Topper wrote:Having shared a back hallway with the kitchen of Guu, I won't go near the place.


Unclean? Roaches? Cat and dog tails lying all over the place?
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Re: Dining in Vancouver

Postby Topper » Fri Sep 30, 2011 9:49 am

Filthy and attracting rodents and roaches to their place and up the hallway to ours. We had several words with them about their garbage.
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Re: Dining in Vancouver

Postby Vpete » Fri Sep 30, 2011 11:04 am

who be Guu?
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Re: Dining in Vancouver

Postby LotusBlossom » Fri Oct 14, 2011 10:16 pm

Potatoe1 wrote:Since we are on the subject of restaurants...

I was in Seattle last weekend and right by my hotel there was a trio of restaurants owned by Tom Douglas who I guess is a big deal out there.

Friday night I had the crab cakes at the Dahilia lounge, Saturday mooring was Brunch at Lolas which was just OK, and Saturday night I had perhaps the best pizza I have ever eaten at "Serious Pie" (how the hell can Pizza be that good?).

On Sunday I went to Pikes place market and had the macaroni at the cheese shop and the clam chowder that is apparently the best in the country (both were pretty incredible).

Vancouver has good eats but so far I'm thinking Seattle is a notch above. It also seems cheaper over there for some reason.


It's generally cheaper to dine in the US it seems.

Heading down to Seattle on the weekend of Oct.21-23.

Staying a very nice boutique hotel recommended to me by some friends down by Pike Place.

Gotta do the Crab Pot on Pier 57 (Miners Landing). Last time we were in Seattle last July,the line up was so damn long, we went elsewhere. I've been there a few times and I always want to go back.

Heading to Toulouse Petit for our dinner on the Saturday and probably my favourite restaurant in Seattle, period. Excellent food.

Although there is a game at home that weekend, we gave those tickets to Lil Blossom to take her grandfather to the game and Mr. LB and I get away for a weekend alone during our busy work seasons. Looking forward to it...and Pot, I'll ditch the no wheat rule for a slice of that Serious Pie. Thanks for the recommendation.
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Re: Dining in Vancouver

Postby Topper » Mon Oct 17, 2011 7:11 am

On the road homeward, spent the night in motel hell on the hill in Kamloops. Rolled in from 900km in 9hrs driving, got a room and got cleaned up. Wanted a decent meal, relax with a bottle of wine and did not want to go out, so I wandered into Ric's Grill. Now Don Lever and I had discussed the inadequacies of the joint in general steak house terms, but I was not expecting the the service I received.

I was greeted at the door by a dishevelled looking fellow with a spray bottle of cleaner in one hand, a kitchen towel in the other and for good measure a second kitchen towel over his shoulder. While I wasn't sure if he was there to seat me at a table or shine my shoes I did admire the fact that this Manager/Maitre de/bus boy clearly knew where his towel was. He asked if I would like to sit in the lounge where I could watch football and baseball or in the dining room. I chose the dining room.

I was seated and a waiter came by to offer me a menu, wine list, and asked if I would like something to drink. I declined a drink, saying I would look over the wine list and decide on something. He said he would be back with some bread and left me to look over the menu. A few minutes later the waiter returned, sans bread, and asked if I was ready to order. I requested a few more minutes to decide. He came back again, sans bread, and I place my order for a salad, entree and a nice red that I enjoy, though the 130% markup on the wine was a bit steep. The waiter said he would be back with my bread.

Now look at the picture, man dining alone, orders two courses and a bottle of wine. I would say the the patron would be looking for a slow paced dinner to finish off that bottle with the meal.

A few moments later, the waiter came by with my wine, broke the cork while pulling it, but managed to get the remaining stub of cork from the bottle and then mysteriously brought the bottle to his nose to have a good sniff before pouring a bit in my glass. The wine was fine, my glass was filled, but I now had a full bottle of wine on my table and nothing to nosh on. It was the last time any of the waitstaff filled my glass.

Moments later, a second server delivered my starter, immediately offered up the oversize pepper mill and I requested bread from her and it was finally brought. I sat slowly eating my starter, sipping wine and breaking bread. It was enjoyable, unwinding from the road.

About 2/3rds of the way through my appy, the Manager/Maitre de/bus boy appears on my right puts down a plate with main course. The plate is half hanging off the table, and he says "I'm not trying to rush you but you order came up and I thought it was better to bring it to you than to leave it under the heat lamps.

At that point I went into slow internal burn mode and thought to myself, you dirty filthy motherfucker, who controls the pace of service, the paying customers or a line cook? Now if I was allowed to finish my appy with a glass of wine, enjoy a bite of bread and a glass of wine between courses and then have my main delivered, I could have two glasses with it and then finish the bottle while contemplating dessert. I may even have a coffee or Port with dessert.

Then to top it off, while I am still eating my appy, out comes the phallic pepper mill hovering over my main. "Would you like fresh ground pepper with that?", "I don't know, I haven't tasted it yet, does it need pepper? I replied as the Manager/Maitre de/bus boy slunk off.

As with the appy, the food was good, though the carrots were under cooked and the rapinni could have used a moment on the grill.

As I finished my plate, except for the raw carrots, I still had my knife and fork at the 4 and 8 o'clock positions and two glasses of wine in my bottle when my waiter snatched my plates and cutlery. I pointed out that I still had plenty of wine to enjoy and asked if I could have a bit more bread while I think about dessert. My buddy, the Manager/Maitre de/bus boy appeared from the right to quickly put a bread basket down right under my nose. As he started to walk away I asked what the flavour of the day for their creame brulee was. He told me, and as he turned and was walking away, he rattled off something or other "nut" dessert. Because he had turned and was walking away, I had no idea what he was saying.

I finished my wine, paid my bill, tipped less than our resident dead guy and left.

------------------------------------

Don't greet customers looking like a fucking bus boy. Be professional.

Bring me bread when or just after you give me my menu and keep bringing more through service. Right up until dessert is ordered. Breaking bread is a sacred tenant of dining.

Don't offer cracked black pepper until the customer has had a chance to taste the food. The whole cracked black pepper thing should be shit canned anyways. Pepper does not readily loose flavour after being milled.

Judge your customers order and set a comfortable pace for their dinner. Do not bring the following course while the patron is still eating. The wait staff should watch their tables and instruct the kitchen when to fire and finish the following courses. Five to seven minutes is quite acceptable between courses. It give the diners a chance to relax, converse, enjoy the wine. Hell, you may even sell an extra bottle at that redonkulous 130% mark up.

Do not serve from the right side.

If you notice a customers wine glass empty or nearly empty, offer to fill it.

Remember, you are feeding me something I can make at home for a third of what you are charging. That 2/3rds extra I am paying is for the dining experience. Ruin that experience and you have fucked up big time.
Last edited by Topper on Mon Oct 17, 2011 1:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Dining in Vancouver

Postby Cornuck » Mon Oct 17, 2011 7:48 am

Topper wrote:Remember, you are feeding me something I can make at home for a third of what you are charging. That 2/3rds extra I am paying is for the dining experience. Ruin that experience and you have fucked up big time.


Tough break on the meal, I'm sure you're not the only one that's had the same 'experience' there.

Service is pretty much on the decline everywhere these days, especially in Vegas while I was there. Out here in Nebraska, the food might not always be great, but the service is almost always friendly and efficient. People are generally happier here and it reflects in the service.
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Re: Dining in Vancouver

Postby Vpete » Mon Oct 17, 2011 9:20 am

Topper, you raise a really good point and did so through your anecdote of this recent dining experience. I'm a big believer in the dining experience and I can even overlook a poorly cooked meal if the experience is what it should be. I love the bit about breaking bread- so true but how many people understand this??? few and far between even at very good restaurants.

If some one is going to mark up a bottle of wine by 100% or more I expect ass kissing for the entire meal. Make me feel like you are happy to have me your 'house' or I will choose another next time.
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Re: Dining in Vancouver

Postby Strangelove » Mon Oct 17, 2011 2:40 pm

Topper wrote:As I finished my plate, except for the raw carrots, I still had my knife and fork at the 4 and 8 o'clock positions and two glasses of wine in my bottle when my waiter snatched my plates and cutlery.


I'm amazed at how many folks don't use/get cutlery position signals these days!

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Re: Dining in Vancouver

Postby Potatoe1 » Mon Oct 17, 2011 5:50 pm

Kamloops is a shit hole and it fucking sucks for restaurants.

One of my best friends moved there to start a business and every time I went to visit he apologised, for how crappy the situation was.

The reality is that Kamloops is a shit hole, the recent boom may have covered for things a bit but it's basically lipstick on a pig. Kamloops has always been a shit hole and it will continue to be one. A couple of franchises will move in and try to fill the gap but for the most part no one has any idea what the standards should be.

No offence Topper but going to that shit hole and expecting the type of service you get in an established environment is naive. Yo wont get it so you can either coach them through or you can get passed off and wreck your night

That said you are more then welcome to give a shitty tip, I would feel inclined to do the same, but I doubt the folks I were dining with would agree with my opinion.
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Re: Dining in Vancouver

Postby Topper » Mon Oct 17, 2011 7:13 pm

Spud, it wasn't a destination, it was a stop over. All I wanted was a relaxed pace to my meal, the service I received was poor for even pub standard. If you are going to charge premium prices, then you damn well better put effort into training your staff.
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