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    Vancouver, BC
  1. Nondual, do you have any Thai recommendations (in the area or not)? Maenam has been getting a lot of good "press," the official kind and the online kind. Having said that, there have been a small number of less-than-impressed opinions, yours is not the first. Again, I haven't been yet so I don't have an opinion - only high hopes.
  2. I haven't been yet myself, but you might want to check out Maenam, the newer, Thai-er incarnation of Gastropod. (Also on Opentable.) Chef Angus An worked under icon David Thompson and supposedly brings a lot of that to us in Vancouver. Coincidentally, Alex Gill reviewed Maenam in today's Globe .
  3. Thanks for the info. No, I'm not looking specifically for small plates. I was originally going to book Terroni, but they don't accept resos. JK was my second choice, but same deal. Though I now notice that JK at Gardiner does accept resos for Friday nights. Any thoughts on this outlet, and anywhere within walking distance to go for drinks afterwards? (They close at 8:30.)
  4. Hey folks, sorry for yet another Where To inquiry, but. Am looking for a place for tomorrow night, three sets of out of towners converging on Toronto. Probably in the vein of JK or Nyood, and closest to the Casa Loma neighborhood would be best. I would reserve at JK except for the fact that they don't take resos for dinner. Should I just stick with Nyood? Thanks. PS: Any thoughts on Kultura? These names sound immeasurably pretentious, which is kind of scaring me off. Otherwise the food looks good.
  5. Safe trip home (or home away from home), Peter. And don't worry, it never snows in Richmond.
  6. "Legacy participant." Don't worry, he's still on the internet, as is everyone else - just not here.
  7. That actually is one of the coolest things about Hunan spice, besides the endorphin rush, how it pretty much dissipates once the eating stops. My favourite dishes, besides the lamb and cumin, are the beef with pickled chilis and the house-cured pork belly with garlic bolts. Also, try it on the big heat next time, it will be even better!
  8. As investigated by fmed, the Xiang is still there, it has just undergone a reno and rebranded as Alvin's Garden. Phew.
  9. Hey, I went by the Xiang today to pick up some lunch, and they were all papered up. Was driving so I did not bother to stop, but does anyone know what's the what?
  10. Rare is currently closed, but I would sub in Parkside in a second. In fact Parkside should be on your first team, period. Aurora is west-coast-centric in ingredients and wine, which will probably prove interesting to you as you can contrast it to ON. Vij's is an institution, and although I hear we don't hold a candle to [just about anyone] for Indian food, think of this as a highly successful marriage of Indian and BC. Remember they don't take resos so you may want to keep this one for the least busy night that you are here. If you want to stay close to downtown, go to Kirin on Cambie and 12th instead of SSW for dim sum. Otherwise go to Richmond.
  11. I agree, high alcohol wines have a limited appeal to me. (I like alcohol just fine, don't get me wrong - but burning hot wine is generally not the way I like to administer it.) My take is that they are modeled after big sellers from the US (California), presumably in reaction to the market. Which is fine - there are still other, smaller BC producers that continue to make very good products at decent value that I can continue to support. And as you say, Spain always presents excellent options as well.
  12. Anchoress - by "East Indian" I am assuming you mean "Indian" as in the subcontinent of India, as opposed to Eastern India (vs North vs South vs West). Not that I am an expert in any, just want to try to make sure I'm answering your question. We live in the Nanaimo/1st neighborhood and have been ordering delivery from Ashiana Tandoori (originally tipped off about this place by our neighbor Mooshmouse). To be honest they are hit and miss, but I chalk that up to being a fact of life with delivery food, any delivery food. And they are more hit than miss. I do think Indian travels better than other traditional take out such as Chinese. Ashiana tends to shine with their curries, and (IMO) falls short with their breads. We've tried their naan and roti and both, though leavened, come out more like tough crackers than puffy and chewy bread. But yeah give one of their Goa curries a go, it's something I really enjoy from them as it gives the familiar "Indian" curry flavours with a coconut milk base. Timely thread though; I was thinking about Indian take out tonight, maybe we'll give Saffron a shot.
  13. Thanks for letting us know CH. The jellyfish and sharks fin salad looks to be the most intriguing dish to me, a true departure from a more traditional Chinese plating. Did you get a chance to ask the chef about his steamed live crab dish? I'm still trying to understand how he does this for less than say 4 people (given the serving sizes that appear above). Unless he does not use dungeoness?
  14. I like the range because it has 5 burners including a simmer (none of them turn off when you set them to the lowest setting, so the 16,000 btu burner will still boil on its lowest setting), the convection oven is good (though I am still learning roasting times with it), it had the best grate configuration IMO, and it was the most aesthetically pleasing of all the mid-high end units. Basically the best bang for the buck that I could find. For wok hei, to be honest I don't know if you can ever truly replicate commercial Chinese in a home kitchen (without buying something like this). You know when you see Chinese cooks working those gas valves with their knees while flames are leaping into the hood? I'm pretty sure those valves are 3/4" minimum. Even if they are only 1/2", compare that to what is likely a 1/2" feed to your entire range (probably totaling about 70-80,000 btu) - the amount of gas going to one restaurant wok is, well, a lot. The previous link said even that home wok ring produces 100,000 btu's. But the Frigidaire range works for me, the 16,000 btu burner gets pretty hot - and I'm pretty sure it was the highest heat rating that I found in the comparable model range. Plus if you got a heat diffuser / ring to concentrate the heat on your wok then I'm sure it would produce pretty good home results. For cabs, we went with Liljestad - the colour is very rich, and even though it is dark, we get enough natural light (south facing kitchen) to offset. You know what, though - unfortunately the pic on the website is not very flattering, now that I look at it. PS - Above I meant to say Coast Appliances gave us a very good quote on appliances, not Trail.
  15. I don't think the local scene in general is insulted or threatened by DB's arrival. At the intro lunch last week there were quite a few big local names in attendance (so I've read, Fiona was there and has more details). As I recall the list included Hawksworth, Vij, Pino, etc. Apart from Neil Wyles, that is about as grand a list of chefs as you can find in the city. So I think the local industry is actually excited to see what happens. When it comes to individuals' reactions, though, that is where I think we're seeing the full spectrum: some are very excited, some less so.
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