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Lumiere


mamster
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I read the article in the Sun (no link, it's subscriber only content so you'll have to finagle your own copy) - as Neil and Sean have indicated apparently the quite-recently-appointed Patio Cop did the rounds of the city's 250 licensed patios. So strap yourselves in for a long and bumpy ride...

I'm familiar with the area Peppyre has suggested: it's where the City staff used to play volleyball during their summer lunches. Not sure if they still do, or if the Volleyball Cop has cracked down there too.

On a side note (still on "protests"), I also read about the BC Marijuana Party's election campaign sit-in. 1000 smokers. Now fess up, who from this board was in on this one? :raz:

edited to add: and if that doesn't get you thinking about food...

Edited by BCinBC (log)
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The city administrators, in their wisdom, have actually made patio umbrellas illegal.  Not only the ones with corona logos, but the plain, simple and elegant umbrellas that protect us from the sun or (very rarely) the occasional downpour.

Aside from their "control issues" Sean, what reasons (if any) have been given as to why the umbrellas are verboten?

Sounds like it's time to get Mayor Larry a plate of truffled scrambled eggs, a couple kolachy, some GBP and a bottle of Stolichnaya, and then camp his ass on the front lawn of city hall with Mooshmouse & the Lunch-Mafia. Umbrellas would be removed in the event of a downpour. :cool:

A.

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Sounds like it's time to get Mayor Larry a plate of truffled scrambled eggs, a couple kolachy, some GBP and a bottle of Stolichnaya, and then camp his ass on the front lawn of city hall with Mooshmouse & the Lunch-Mafia.  Umbrellas would be removed in the event of a downpour. :cool:

I'm in, especially if Sean Sherwood is providing the truffled scrambled eggs! Perhaps Neil could throw in a Lamb and Yam and a Pear and Stilton Salad while we're at it. :cool:

Be on the lookout for the appropriate post in the ISO thread. :wink::laugh:

Joie Alvaro Kent

"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2,000 of something." ~ Mitch Hedberg

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Add Octopus' Garden to the list...they had to open up their small partially enclosed patio. Nothing like hearing and watching traffic passing by while eating Japanese food. (Just pretend you are in Tokyo now.) I'm not quite sure the reason, but something about being able to see the diners from the street. Perhaps they need to make sure maguro isn't being snorted, no one is smoking nori, nor injecting uni shooters.

July 1st, Canada Day celebration at City Hall, I have a barbecue on wheels.

"One chocolate truffle is more satisfying than a dozen artificially flavored dessert cakes." Darra Goldstein, Gastronomica Journal, Spring 2005 Edition

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Coming Soon to a Theatre Near You...

PATIO COP

You think the streets aren't safe in this town...What about the sidewalks?

Commissioner: Thank god we've got you, Patio Cop, to rid our city of those menacing mushrooming umbrellas.

Patio Cop: They pop up like filthy fungi in this rainy city.

Commish: Go with my blessing and be careful, it used to be a rainforest out there.

..."Later at a Hamilton Street patio, Patio Cop confronts the infamous Pink Tweed triad."

Patio Cop: Good afternoon, ladies. Sorry, but I'm going to have to seize this umbrella.

Triad Babe One: You're gonna pull a Mary Poppins on us? What's so harmful about a little old umbrella, officer?

Patio Cop: This umbrella could be hiding any number of illicit activities. Why, just last week we found an umbrella that had been specifically design to a hide a marijuana grow-op in downtown Vancouver. Last month we found an entire meth lab in one of these babies. In this day and age you can ever underestimate the power of nanotechnology.

Triad Babe Two: Why, officer, that's shocking!

Patio Cop: Ladies, you shock me. Are those Mai Tais you're drinking?

Triad Babe Three: Yes sir. Are you surprised we've strayed from our usual Darjeeling?

Patio Cop: It's not the drinks that bother me ma'm, it's the little umbrellas. I'm afraid I'm going to have to take those too. By the way, do any of you know he whereabouts of a Victor "Dirty Samchez" aka The Norwegian Barrista, aka Alpha Poppa?

Triad Babe Four: No sir, only Alpha Mamas around this table. Why don't you just leave us alone as we face the ravages of the sun's UV rays because of you and your draconian measures.

Patio Cop: (Blushes) Why, no one's every called me draconian before, ma' m. I'm mighty flattered.

What the reviewers are saying:

"Way grittier than Da Vinci's Inquest. It's like Da Vinci's without the pantyhose."

-RoY G. Biv

"It's like Sideways without the umbrellas."

-Dr. Loosen U. P.

"Almost Lifelike."

-R. U. Kiddingme

"More exciting than a city council meeting."

-I. M. Sleepy

"I used to be Snow White, but I drifted."

--Mae West

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I think some of the patio issue has to do with percentage of seats outside compared to number of seats inside, number of washrooms etc. Not sure what the deal is with patio umbrellas though.

Is anyone interested in knowing why certain regulations regarding patios and patio furniture are in place and what purpose they serve?

P.S. Like your movie sketch there Zuke.... are you shopping this around yet? :biggrin:

sarah

Always take a good look at what you're about to eat. It's not so important to know what it is, but it's critical to know what it was. --Unknown

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I'm sorry but wasn't one of the issues in the last election about how Vancouver is a "no fun city". I don't know why Vancouver is obssessed with rules. I just finished a reno on my house and that was a nightmare with inspectors. I almost wish we could go back to the days when we were able to bribe city officials. I'm originally from Toronto which is a Mecca for patios in the summer of all sizes and shapes and character. I was at a great rooftop one last summer in the heart of Yorkville with misters on it to keep people cool from that deadly humidity. My girlfriend, (who's originally from Vancouver) remarked that you could never find a patio like that in Vancouver as some patio cop would cite you for some obscure zoning citation. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure Toronto has just as many rules about patios as we do. The only difference is they don't waste the taxpayers money on hiring some "patio cop" to enforce them with religious zeal. Believe me I saw it all the time during my own dealings with city hall. Some new kid on the city inspection department wants to impress his boss so he goes out to shakedown respectable hard working restaurant owners who are paying their taxes and employing people. It just infuriates me that the city wastes our money on crap like this when we have a whole host of real problems that need to be worked on. I mean it's a patio, it's not like someone is dumping rat poo in the soup. Yes, a protest on the front lawn of city hall would be great, but don't forget to email your elected official and voice your contempt for this pathetic waste of your taxpayers dollars. Remember, we're the one's who elected them and pay them in the end.

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When we were in Honalulu last summer, I was curious why no one ate outside in the most glorious climate known to man, apparently the city has a no sidewalk dining ordinance, that is insane, apparently they feel it makes the city look trashy. Heaven forbid Waikiki go downmarket like those shitholes Paris, Rome or Seville.

There's rarely logic involved in local politics.

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When we were in Honalulu last summer, I was curious why no one ate outside in the most glorious climate known to man, apparently the city has a no sidewalk dining ordinance, that is insane, apparently they feel it makes the city look trashy. Heaven forbid Waikiki go downmarket like those shitholes Paris, Rome or Seville.

There's rarely logic involved in local politics.

Well put Keith,

This city is so backwards in its bylaws and rules and regulations. I'm told today city bylaw officers were on Commercial Drive taking photo's of various patios so who knows what they have planned for that street which is lined with coffee shops and restaurants. I guess they are getting ready for crackdowns on snowmen and ice statues for 2010.

Stephen Bonner

"who needs a wine list when you can get pissed on dessert" Gordon Ramsey Kitchen Nightmares 2005

MY BLOG

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About the patios, not the question. The crowd today at Eat Vancouver was surprisingly non-active and just sat there and stared.. and never asked questions. :hmmm:

But his response was humourous.. it was basically a non-direct rant at the city.

One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.

Virginia Woolf

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Out of curiosity, I looked around the City’s website and found the following large (ie licensed) patio application. If you scroll down you’ll see the “Guidelines” for all patios.

I’ve seen the one at Lumiere and I think the contentious issue might be the foliage (Guideline #6, height not to exceed 1 meter or 40”, must have an “OPEN” appearance), though there may also be a contravention of the “removable-in-24-hours” requirement (Guideline #7).

Guideline #8 says that umbrellas are permitted, but are not to be attached to the railings. And that canopies and awnings require additional permits (or at least that’s how I read it). I wasn’t able to find anything on colours, logos, etc. but there may be amendments out there.

My new questions are, how do the patios of HSG, LMB, all those offenders on Commercial, etc. contravene these guidelines? Or is the Patio Cop playing by a different set of rules? And is Lumiere’s solution as simple as trimming back the greenery or, if those planters are fixed to the concrete, make them unfixed?

Thoughts / rants appreciated.

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Never a fan of Beuaracracy (or spell checkers, apparently), but the regs seemed reasonable, until this; Sidewalk Patio (Large) Rates:

* Downtown = $5.21 per square foot per term

* Outside Downtown = $3.70 per square foot per term

* Minimum Annual Fee = $284.00

What. The. Fuck?

That's horrible. In a city that has tourism as its' only thriving growing industry?

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One quick point of clarification, those rates are per term, a term being a weasle word for half a year. Agian, screw the restauranteur that has a south facing patio on a rare nice winter day, don't you dare drag some tables and chairs out into the sun. You didn't buy your winter permit. We don't want people enjoying themselves outside without a permit.

The rats nest of cigarette butts and inveterate addicts in front of Starbucks is cool year round though.

Vancouver is totally loony.

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  • 1 month later...

I'm still trying to get the bad taste out of my mouth from dinner a few nights ago at LUMIERE. For years I'd heard/read nothing but raves...so it was a huge surprise to have a very mediocore dinner.

We chose from the 3-course options as neither of the tasting menus "grabbed" us.

The amuse was just OK....A "shot" of cold Clam Chowder/bite of sashimi/bite of halibut...

Appetizers: Warm-Braised Veal Sweetbreads....probably the best of the night

Pan-Seared Quebec Foie Gras in a (now here is where it gets weird) BBQ duck broth with enoki mushrooms. Now I happen to LOVE seared foie gras but when you put it in in a bowl of what amounted to SOUP it becomes...well, soft and loses the crispy crust. What a disaster!

Mains: Pan-Seared Dorado...good but not great

Salmon/just plain awful. Long strips sort of raw/sashimi-like on one side and barely cooked on the other side.

Desserts: Strawberry Poached Rhubarb Financier....again..good but certainly not great and Roasted port and Orange Blossom Dates...with something I can't remember....boring.

The place was packed and the service uneven to say the least.

$300 and a real let-down.

We had come from Whistler where we had one of the very best meals of our lives at ARAXI and also an excellent meal at BEARFOOD BISTRO.

I am wondering if anyone as been to LUMIERE lately??

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Wow, them fightin' words. I can hardly wait to see how this one plays out. So before you get totally slagged, congratulations from me on posting what you really think anyway and keep it up! I appreciate that you've saved me a few hundred.

I too agree with your criticisms of the menu, the new tasting menus don't really excite me too much either. To tell you the truth though, I decided a while ago to stay away based on experiences at Feenie's, which have been getting consistently worse since it opened. Inconsistent service, with more attitude than they deserve to have, both of which I could stand, but worse is the inconsistent food. Even the same dish can be good/bad depending on your luck. Not even the burger is immune (one of the safest bets, IMO).

I must admit though, I long for a more detailed critique. Plus that might cover your ass a bit (or draw more fire, hah!). Was the foie really that bad? I can kind of see it melting into the soup.. nice rich broth.. little pieces of crust that somehow survived.. Then those firmer mushrooms.. Honestly I'm imagining something pretty delicious here. How did it taste, aside from the texture problems?

Also what was up with the salmon? Did you just not like the way it was cooked, or were there other problems as well? Flavour? Texture? It sounds kind of interesting to me, too, this one. Would you say this is something you in particular didn't enjoy, but others might, or would you suggest that no one could possibly find something to like here?

It sort of sounds to me like he's trying to be a little more inventive (which he'll have to be to compete with the Relais in Europe...no comparison on that front; I can't believe Carme Ruscadella and Feenie are even in the same org!).

Also, what was wrong with the service?

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I'm still trying to get the bad taste out of my mouth from dinner a few nights ago at LUMIERE.

Surely this was unnecessary.

I can imagine that perhaps in one or the other dish your exceptionally high personal expectations were not met, or perhaps you had a bad night, or perhaps you are from planet Klingon, but to say that you are "still trying to get the bad taste out" of your mouth after a meal at Lumiere must rank as one of the more egregious exaggerations ever posted in this forum.

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I'm still trying to get the bad taste out of my mouth from dinner a few nights ago at LUMIERE.

Surely this was unnecessary.

I can imagine that perhaps in one or the other dish your exceptionally high personal expectations were not met, or perhaps you had a bad night, or perhaps you are from planet Klingon, but to say that you are "still trying to get the bad taste out" of your mouth after a meal at Lumiere must rank as one of the more egregious exaggerations ever posted in this forum.

Is it really so hard to imagine someone having different tastes or experiences than you? If that's what her experience was, who are you to criticize it? :wacko:

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I'm still trying to get the bad taste out of my mouth from dinner a few nights ago at LUMIERE.

Surely this was unnecessary.

I can imagine that perhaps in one or the other dish your exceptionally high personal expectations were not met, or perhaps you had a bad night, or perhaps you are from planet Klingon, but to say that you are "still trying to get the bad taste out" of your mouth after a meal at Lumiere must rank as one of the more egregious exaggerations ever posted in this forum.

Is it really so hard to imagine someone having different tastes or experiences than you? If that's what her experience was, who are you to criticize it? :wacko:

Let's all play nice now :rolleyes:

I have to agree with Ducky here. The statement "trying to get the bad taste out of my mouth" is over-the-top to say the least. I don't think anyone in this forum would deny the right to vent about a bad meal - despite dillybravo's insistance to the contrary.

I must admit though, I long for a more detailed critique. Plus that might cover your ass a bit (or draw more fire, hah!).

I'll second that emoticon :biggrin: Certainly, saying "this sucks" is much less constructive than "this sucks because ..."

A.

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I'd say spending three hundred bucks and not being totally blown away would leave a bad taste in my mouth too. The fact is Feenie is a genius, and one bad meal at his restaurant is unacceptable. For better or worse, he's responsible in large part for our cities resurgent dining preeminince, and is the most visable face or "spiritual leader" of the movement, and unmet expectations are worse when they happen there opposed to anywhere else.

That all said I've not met alot of other people that have anything other than unreserved praise and admiration, perhaps it was a case of differing expectations and tastes. In my own case, I've eaten at Lumiere as sum total of three times, and have never experienced anything other than total bliss. The BBQ duck/foie soup does sound slightly overambitious though.

And lastly, I for one appreciate dissent on the board. This place is at its worst when we're all on the same page. Good for you Foodie girl for having the courage to defy conventional wisdom.

(edited to change dillybravo to foodie girl.)

Edited by Keith Talent (log)
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