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Jeffy Boy

What's best in the Southern 'Burbs?

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What are your favourite eating spots south of the Fraser? Looking for favourite overall (a la fine dining), as well as tips on unique gems that might otherwise go undiscovered.

I'm most familiar myself with White Rock/South Surrey, and am particularly fond of Giraffe (on the Beach in White Rock). It's small and cosy, with great food and service. Cosmos (Greek) is also very good.


I know a man who gave up smoking, drinking, sex, and rich food. He was healthy right up to the day he killed himself. - Johnny Carson

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Only place I can talk about is Ciello in White Rock. I ate there on a perfect sunny day. I had a really nice salad with figs and goat cheese, and a dish of polenta topped with grilled vegetables in a tomato sauce. Was palnning on going to Giraffe but it was closed for lunch. Is La Folie gone? I have heard that Jacques and Aubergine a good but have not been.


David Cooper

"I'm no friggin genius". Rob Dibble

http://www.starlinebyirion.com/

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Been to Cielo twice - first time was good, second time not so good.

Giraffe is open for lunch Thurs-Sun right now (may be more often in the summer?). They have a good website http://www.thegiraffe.com/

La Folie is gone (it was good, but I don't think it got enough business). It's since been replaced by Aquamarine, a trendy looking tasting bar - a bit like Bin 942, if you're familiar with that. I've been to Aquamarine and it was decent.

Jacques Tapas bar is good, not outstanding. Bistro Aubergine is also good, but I found the food not terribly exciting. It also replaced on of my favourites, the Hungry Heart Cafe (I'm going to miss those Saturday morning smoked salmon & dill scrambled eggs....)


I know a man who gave up smoking, drinking, sex, and rich food. He was healthy right up to the day he killed himself. - Johnny Carson

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Went last night to a new restaurant in Crescent Beach (South Surrey) named the Harbour House. The menu is Mediterranean / West Coast, and the place has been open for only two weeks.

It's in a nice new building on Beecher St, and the inside looks like an elegant home. Both food and service were excellent - a pleasant surprise given they opened so recently. The two of us shared an antipasti platter to start, a nice assortment of meats, cheese, olives and grilled vegetables. My osso bucco was very nice, and my wife had a good Penne Bolognese. Both paired well with a bottle of Fetzer Zinfandel. Prices were quite reasonable, with entrees running in the $17-25 range.

I think this restaurant raises the bar in the South Surrey/White Rock area. The chef is 26 year old Kevin Wall, who obviously learned a few tricks at Villa del Lupo.

Harbour House has no presence on the web yet, but their phone # is 604-542-3271.


I know a man who gave up smoking, drinking, sex, and rich food. He was healthy right up to the day he killed himself. - Johnny Carson

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This weekend my wife and I joined the throng of Americans heading north in search of flu shots. We toyed with the idea of making it an overnight trip to Vancouver, or at least staying for dinner, however the logistics of either, with a 3-month-old in tow, seemed too daunting.

Despite my fears of interminable waits, getting the flu shot was a non-event: ten minutes at a small travel clinic in White Rock and we were on our way, and it was lunchtime. The nurse said there were many lunch options along the “beach” so we headed that direction to peruse. The restaurant that caught my eye first was Pearl, a contemporary, bistro-y looking place with a tasty sounding menu.

As with so many restaurants, the most tantalizing options were the starters, so we settled on a selection of four to make up a nice light meal. The first was a dozen oysters, six Kumamotos and six whose name I’m forgetting, but that came from Cortes Island. Both were sparkling fresh and provided an interesting contrast. Kumamotos were creamy and mild while the other were briny in extremis, I loved both.

The other three dishes arrive together. The best of the other three was called a ‘Black and White Bowl; a mix of mussels and clams in the one of those sauces that just kills you. Tossed with a generous amount of chorizo and artichoke hearts, then finished with cream, this one had us polishing the bowl with bread. It was impossible to divine the exact ingredients of the sauce, all our server would let on is that it included cranberry and orange juice, yet it tasted of neither.

Ever so lightly breaded, the calamari had a quality similar to sautéed squid instead of the ubiquitous crispy version. To a great extent, the ‘breading’ consisted of dill, which harmonized with the creamy tzaziki sauce served on the side.

Lastly, and least successfully, were roasted tomatoes with brie and pancetta. There was an inadequate amount of pancetta to balance of the sweetness of the tomatoes and the brie, instead of providing needed creaminess, were two disks of nearly burnt cheese on top of the tomatoes.

Only open six months, Pearl is quite a find in my book; I don’t foresee passing White Rock without a visit and next time I stay at Semiahmoo, it will be great to have another quality dining option.

I liked White Rock quite a bit and among the array of restaurants along the waterfront, there were a handful that intrigued me.


Most women don't seem to know how much flour to use so it gets so thick you have to chop it off the plate with a knife and it tastes like wallpaper paste....Just why cream sauce is bitched up so often is an all-time mytery to me, because it's so easy to make and can be used as the basis for such a variety of really delicious food.

- Victor Bergeron, Trader Vic's Book of Food & Drink, 1946

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Only open six months, Pearl is quite a find in my book; I don’t foresee passing White Rock without a visit and next time I stay at Semiahmoo, it will be great to have another quality dining option

The weather today was gorgeous, so lemon curd and I headed out for a long walk, with lunch somewhere on the beach in White Rock our only destination. We are fortunate to live a quick 5 minute drive, or 40 minute walk from the pier. Actually, with the steep hill down to the beach, it's quite a bit faster and easier getting there than coming back. Especially when the return trip is on a full stomach.

The holiday and great weather obviously brought out the crowds, and many of the restaurants appeared full or near full. The recent post by tighe about Pearl was in the back of my mind, so we settled on Pearl. I say "settled" because we've been there twice before - once for dinner, which was very good, and another time for lunch, which was not so good.

It was getting late, after 2pm, and we were both pretty hungry. To start, I had a roasted parsnip soup - very creamy, rich, and flavourful. Lemon curd had a caesar salad - nice presentation, tasty dressing. She said the croutons could be better seasoned; I thought they were just right. I think they were toasted foccacia pieces.

For entrees, I had a calamari sandwich and lemon curd ordered the fish and chips. This is unfortunately where we experienced some lunch-plate letdown. While the calamari in my sandwich was fine, the baguette in which it was served was too small to hold the calamari, and was cut in a way that made it very difficult to pick up. I found myself poking and cramming the calamari into the baguette with my index finger. My sandwich was served with some not-quite-crisp-enough yam chips and a side salad with too much vinaigrette. Lemon curd's fish & chips were disappointing. The fish was OK (snapper), but was rather greasy. Served on top of a little "log cabin" of fries (they shouldn't be called "wedge fries" if they have two parallel sides), it was at first hard to tell if the oily puddle that had accumulated was from the fish or the fries. Turns out it was the fish, and it made the fries pretty much inedible.

On the bright side, my czechvar was ice cold, as was lemon curd's Carona, so it would have taken much worse than this to spoil such a beautiful sunny November afternoon.


I know a man who gave up smoking, drinking, sex, and rich food. He was healthy right up to the day he killed himself. - Johnny Carson

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That's what you get for listening to tourists! :biggrin:

I loved Pearl, sorry it didn't work out as well for you.


Most women don't seem to know how much flour to use so it gets so thick you have to chop it off the plate with a knife and it tastes like wallpaper paste....Just why cream sauce is bitched up so often is an all-time mytery to me, because it's so easy to make and can be used as the basis for such a variety of really delicious food.

- Victor Bergeron, Trader Vic's Book of Food & Drink, 1946

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That's what you get for listening to tourists!  :biggrin:

I loved Pearl, sorry it didn't work out as well for you.

Hey, not your fault at all! I went there twice before you went, and I really liked it the frst time. You had a meal of starters, and I've always found those to be good. I may give them another go yet, and stick to that part of the menu.


I know a man who gave up smoking, drinking, sex, and rich food. He was healthy right up to the day he killed himself. - Johnny Carson

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I used to really like going to Dante's in White Rock... however, the restaurant changed hands (sorry, I can't remember what the new name is)... while the food is still pretty good (at least when I was there), the whole feel of the restaurant has changed and I don't like it as much.

For something quick (sometimes, HA!), Moby Dick's in White Rock has very good fish and chips. However, the last time I was there, the service was completely awful. (They forgot our order - so for a place where you are usually in and out in 30 minutes, it took us almost two hours... no apology and nothing off of our bill) I doubt I'll be going back.

Unfortunately, I live in Langley and find our nicer dining options VERY lacking. I've heard that the Lamplighter Cafe in Fort Langley is very good (and reasonably priced) but I haven't had a chance to check it out yet. I've also been to the Bedford House in Fort Langley, and while the food is usually excellent, for the prices, I'd rather have a night out in Vancouver (but that's just me). La Masia is supposed to be really good as well - it's on the border between Surrey and Langley.

I'd LOVE to hear other people's recommendations though!

- Meg

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I'm in Langley too (Brookswood area).

My husband and I have been to Melange a couple of times. (19955 Fraser Hwy, 604-530-5228). They're in a building right across from the Burger King on Fraser Highway--I've seen a couple of restaurants die in that location over the years (when I first moved to Langley it was a Japanese/Korean restaurant, then a Mexican restaurant). The last time I was at Melange I had a Moroccan-style lamb roast with an apricot harissa relish and couscous ($18). It was quite good. For an appetizer I had the New Zealand mussels, which was disappointing because the tomato "broth" was more like a really thick tomato sauce that overpowered the mussels.

The first time we went to Melange, my husband and I ordered some tapas (smoked salmon, lamb popsicles, tuna tartare, prawns & scallops in Pernod, with a baby greens salad) and a bottle of wine. Everything tasted great but the plates were overgarnished, which is a pet peeve of mine (chopped parsley all over the plate, trees of rosemary everywhere, which make the plate look messy, grrr.) But overall, their food is good and the prices are reasonable.

Tonight we're going to our favourite neighbourhood restaurant, Hirame (in Brookswood on 200 Street beside the G&H supermarket). The sushi chef has 20 years experience and I've had some of the best tuna belly (toro) there.

edited to add: Last weekend I had some dim sum at Flourishing Seafood Restaurant on Fraser Highway (downtown Langley). Although it doesn't have as many selections as some of the dim sum you can get in Vancouver or Richmond, it's still good and cheap enough to satisfy the dim sum craving I get sometimes. :biggrin:

-Christine


Edited by KnifeSkills (log)

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Gorgeous day today, and if it's sunny and Saturday that means only one thing: Head to White Rock beach for lunch!

lemon curd and I enjoyed a sunny trek down to Marine Drive, and decided to check out a new place called Senses. Senses has been open for about a month, located where the "Hot Rod Cafe" used to be. I never made it to the Hot Rod Cafe because, well, it's called the "Hot Rod Cafe", and also it looked like a bit of a dump. Senses has done some major reno work, and it's a beautiful spot now. Good paint scheme, great lighting and nice new furniture. Their business card advertises it as "fusion cuisine".

The place was empty when we went in, which is surprising for a sunny Saturday at 1pm, but I guess it's still new. Many tapas type dishes on the menu which sounded good. We shared a Butternut Squash & Shiitake Mushroom Soup to start. Good flavour, but it was a bit too thick. Followed this up with Frites served with a roasted garlic aoli. Fries were shoestring style, hot and crispy, and dusted with finely grated asiago cheese Very good. Next were two Smoked Salmon Spring Rolls - lots of salmon in them, properly cooked and served with a spicy mango chili sauce. Then onto a dish of three decent sized Scallops, each lightly breaded, pan fried and served on top of a yam puree and mushroom ragout. With the yam puree it was rather heavy, an unusual partner for scallops, but it worked for me as a "winter" type dish. Could have been hotter. Last was some Beef Short Ribs, served with yam fries. The ribs were nicely marinated, but also could have been hotter. The yam fries went well with the balsamic / star anise reduction.

Overall, I was impressed, and plan to return some evening. I think the room will look great after dark.


Edited by Jeffy Boy (log)

I know a man who gave up smoking, drinking, sex, and rich food. He was healthy right up to the day he killed himself. - Johnny Carson

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This may be more east than south - but we have had many excellent meals at the Bacchus Bistro at the Chaberton winery in Langley. The kitchen has been consistently good on our visits. The mussels, the duck - infact just about everything on the menu is always perfect. Of course this is French country cooking with nothing shi shi or Yaletown about it - as will be immediately evident from faux French countryside ambience. Just simple food expertly prepared.

I did hear just a few days ago that the owners have sold the vineyard and the business - but that the kitchen would remain unchanged for the time being.

Very well worth a visit.

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This may be more east than south - but we have had many excellent meals at the Bacchus Bistro at the Chaberton winery in Langley.

Hey, anything south of the Fraser counts!

Yes, Bacchus Bistro is very good. There's a short thread on it here. I remember the Bistro's chef, Frederic Desbiens, from his days at La Folie in White Rock. La Folie is unfortunately gone, but Frederic took to Bacchus his wild mushroom ragout on toasted brioche. It's heaven!


Edited by Jeffy Boy (log)

I know a man who gave up smoking, drinking, sex, and rich food. He was healthy right up to the day he killed himself. - Johnny Carson

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My family and I spent last weekend at Semiahmoo and popped over the border on Saturday night with the intention of having dinner at Pearl. For whatever reason I didn't think about needing to make reservations, but alas, they were full even though we arrived early. The suggested alternatives were also full, so we ended up at a newish place nearby called Senses. Fusion-y food in a very calm ambiance. We shared four 'tapas' (I'm tiring of seeing this term used to describe any small portion of food, no matter the provenance, but that's just me).

The first could be crassly described as pork McNuggets. Chunks of pork breaded with a garlic and 5-spice seasoning and deep-fried. It was sort of a guilty pleasure, a little voice telling me that this was too close to fast-food and I shouldn't like it, but damn, it was tasty.

Calamari steaks cut into strips and fried were served with a green onion aioli. The steak strips were a nice change from the more common tenticals and rings, but overall this was pretty standard stuff.

The best of the bunch was grilled beef short-ribs with a soy-balsamic glaze served on a stack of sweet potato fries and a hoisin (and fish sauce?) based sauce. These were the thinly, cross-rib cut variety of short-ribs. Excellent flavor and texture; I could have eaten many more. The fries were undercooked.

Fourth were seared shitake dusted scallops served on a bed of truffled sauteed mushrooms and mashed sweet potato. Although the truffle wasn't dectable, this was an interesting and successful combination of flavors and certainly the most creative item we had. Scallops were perfectly cooked.

For wine I had a couple glasses of a perfectly serviceable BC cab/syrah blend.

For dessert we had the ubiquitous molten chocolate cake. Well executed, but no twists or variations to really distiguish it from other versions I've had.

I would go back, but not if Pearl had a table available......


Edited by tighe (log)

Most women don't seem to know how much flour to use so it gets so thick you have to chop it off the plate with a knife and it tastes like wallpaper paste....Just why cream sauce is bitched up so often is an all-time mytery to me, because it's so easy to make and can be used as the basis for such a variety of really delicious food.

- Victor Bergeron, Trader Vic's Book of Food & Drink, 1946

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