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  1. Try the Crow and Gate in Cedar just south of Nanaimo. It's a great English pub out in the country. Also, take a side trip to Hazelwood Herb Farm in Cedar.
  2. I really enjoyed it a couple of weeks ago. What a beautiful room. The halibut and crab rosti I had was lovely. I'd go back.
  3. So what happened to Gill's Friday reviews in the Globe? There wasn't one last week, and this week it's by Fiona Morrow. Anyone know?
  4. Went to "Drift" in downtown Nanaimo last night. It's a pretty room, nicely lit with huge windows looking back towards Mount Benson (yes you have to look past the Tim Horton's and the car dealerships, but, hey, that's Nanaimo). There's a nice bar. They brought us some good bread right away, a selection of warm baguette slices, olive bread and spicy pappadums. I drank Cono Sur Viognier and my partner had an Italian red recommended by the server which he enjoyed ( I can't remember the name). The food was pretty good. The seafood seviche was delicious with prawns, squid, grapes, lime, and basil. My partner had the lamb shank which was indian spiced with daal and potatoes. I had the ling cod pakoras. The frites that came with it were excellent, but the pakoras were really just cod coated in a slightly soggy batter. If they could crisp that batter up, it would be a good dish as the sauce with it was tasty, a chili/lime mayonnaise. We finished with a creme brulee with two teeny spoons. I would definitely go back. Nanaimo really needs a place like this.
  5. Drift is just down the road from Gina's Mexican cafe. It's where the old Souvlaki House used to be. I think there's"world cuisine" on the sign (could be great, could be awful). I think I'm going to drag my husband there this week, and I'll report back.
  6. Has anyone been to Drift in Nanaimo? I'll probably go there next week.
  7. Hi Brenda, just to clarify CP Hotels purchased Fairmont in 2000 not the other way around. Service issues have nothing to do with the change of the flag over the door, I would hazard a guess and say it has a lot to do with the overall shortage of labour that the island is facing, as well as an aging workforce (The Empess has some of the longest term CP/Fairmont employees in the whole company) and not being able to replace them as they retire. Colin ← Interesting. I honestly don't know how some restaurants are going to survive as young people have so many choices right now re jobs.
  8. Too bad about the service at the Bengal Lounge. Perhaps with the takeover by the Fairmont people and the loss of some long-time servers, things have changed and not for the better. The Spinnaker's food doesn't sound very "gastro" at all. I haven't been there in ages. Glad that Brasserie made up for the other places. We were there a few weeks ago, and my husband had a delicious braised shortrib with gnocchi, and I had steak frites (I usually go for a fish course there) because I was feeling carnivorous. We were very hungry, and we left very happy.
  9. Anyone else read Alexandra Gill's review of Connor Butler's new place? She certainly didn't like it much, and I have to say from what she described, I probably wouldn't either.
  10. Well for comfortable chairs, great ambiance, and not bad food, I'd go for the Bengal Lounge in the Empress. They have a curry buffet, but if that's not to your taste, they have tea sandwiches and other menu items. You can have a pot of tea or a gin and tonic and pretend you're in the Raj (BTW, it's cheaper than the high tea elsewhere in the hotel). You can probably find the menu online at the Empress Hotel's Website. Milestone's is OK but a bit noisy and crowded.
  11. Brenda


    I was at the Shebeen a few week's ago. Had a delicious Bushmill's Bourbon cask and my husband had some exotic Scotch. Great little hideaway.
  12. I go there every time I am in Victoria and love their noodles and curries. Last time, I had a great special as well: Thai fish cakes with a red curry sauce. However, there is one thing they don't do well, in my opinion. Their fried dumplings are tough. Now, I've only had them once, as I didn't want to repeat the experience, so if someone else wants to try them and report, please go ahead.
  13. My husband and I were in town for a couple of days R and R. On Wednesday, we ate lunch at "Century." What a gorgeous room. My husband had the Mojito (I tasted it - perfectly minty and limey). He had the pulled pork sandwich, and I had the seafood burritos. Both came with an assortment of freshly fried tortilla and potato chips and guacamole and a salsa with a kick. I liked the burritos and the chimichurri sauce that came with them, but I'd have to give it hands down to the pulled pork sandwich - spicy and sweet. I kept asking for bites. Very nice place, and I will certainly be back for supper next time I'm in Vancouver. That night we went to the Irish Heather, and before we went in, we went down the alley to peek in Salt's door. Looks great, but I just wasn't in the mood for charcuterie (which will surprise anyone who has read my postings on the Vancouver Island thread), so we went back to the Heather and had a delicious whiskey (OK I had a bourbon cask Bushmill's whiskey and my husband had a 15 year old Bruchladdh (sp?) whisky) in the Shebeen before eating fish and chips on the patio. Good solid pub grub and a wonderful atmosphere. I love the old gaslights and the cobbles. The next night, we went to Hapa Isakaya for lemon drops and some silky tuna sashimi, short ribs, kabocha pumpkin spread, shrimp salad, and spicy chicken. We'd never had the kabocha before and were surprised that it was like, well, pumpkin pie complete with sweetened whipped cream. It was strangely good, though. And then we came home and had a TERRIBLE Bread Garden chicken salad sandwich on the ferry. How did they get that contract? When is their contract up? I just don't get how a place called the Bread Garden can make such stale tasting, fluffy, tasteless bread.
  14. My husband and I ate lunch there on Wednesday. We loved it and will be back for supper sometime. I will post more details in the "last three places" thread. We were the only ones in there, though, for the hour or so we were there.
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