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Vancouver’s top new restaurants of 2014

So Mia Stainsby Best of the new in 2014 is out and it's a bit different than Alex Gills.

In summary Mia Stainsby's list includes:
-Au Comptoir
-The Abbey
-Café Medina
-The Fat Badger
-My Shanti

Some similarities. I might have to re-visit Blacktail. Seems like the new Chef has turned the place around. I think I need to move up Cinara on my list of places to try, as both critics have it on their top 10.

Vancouver Suggestions

I found Espana to be average. Was disappointed with some of the meat dishes which were kind of bland. Liked the Patatas Bravas and the flan.

There may not be a lot of Tapas specific places but there are lots of small plates Asian and non-Asian in Vancouver for comparison sake and Espana just didn't have too many "wow" dishes for me.

It also didn't help that I had a wonderful meal in Toronto at Bar Isabel this past summer and Espana's not even close.

Every week sushi?

GE, Regarding Zero One it's still the same people running the place. They pared down the menu to eliminate rolls and simply re-branded.

They still have excellent chirashi dons.

Best 21 New Neighborhood Cafes in 2014 | Vancouver Foodster

I like the below website to keep track of the new and upcoming Cafes & Coffee Shops in Vancouver.

Are "small plates" just a trend (I hope)

I don't think this is a fad especially when it's been around for almost a decade and is rooted in a lot of various cultures' eating habits.

I've been dinning on small plates since I was kid thanks to Dim Sum and Da Lang.

From a non-Chinese perspective at least since 2005 with restaurants like Brix, Tapastree, the BINs, La Bodega.

Today it's places like Chicha, Burdock & Co, Espana, Wildebeest and not to mention all the izakayas.

I think the only thing one might have to wrap their heads around is ordering in rounds throughout the meal instead of once at the beginning.

Easy way to try different things maybe one normally doesn't eat and if you like something order another plate of it.

Vancouver’s top new restaurants of 2014

Not sure which ones and maybe it's more her mythology than fact. Here's a video of her speaking about food and why she stayed in Vancouver.

Vancouver’s top new restaurants of 2014

Alex Gill is an "All in" writer and doesn't hold back. When she loves the food, she puts it on a heavenly pedestal. When she hates something, she has no issues calling it out and carving the place up.

As a result, she's developed the rep for being a harsh food critic with an acid tongue. Her "mean girl" rep has been enhanced by the fact that she has been banned and kicked out of restaurants in the city.

In my opinion, her writing style when she writes a negative review is more engaging and vivid in comparison to her positive reviews.

That's why I think a "Worst 10" list would be more interest to read.

Vancouver’s top new restaurants of 2014

That was my impression too when I started seeing a full court PR blitz from both bloggers and MSM in the summer.

Has any CHs been to My Shanti and can give a review?

Vancouver’s top new restaurants of 2014

No, it is Alex Gill's list for top 10 NEW restaurants in Vancouver for 2014.

I just re-read her review of Boulevard and I don't think it should of made her list based on her own review.

Although I think, considering her reputation, A TOP 10 worst dinning experience in 2014 according to Alex Gill would have been more fun to read.

Vancouver’s top new restaurants of 2014

Based on that list, it looks like the Vancouver Regional had a bad year for new notable restaurants in 2014.

I don't really consider Chambar and Cafe Medina new. Both have been around for years and simply moving into new digs allows them to be on the list based on technicality.

Surprised Boulevard made it onto Alex Gill's list considering she gave them a mixed, trending towards negative review.

Glad to see Mr. Red Cafe make the list.

There must of have been other notable restaurants that opened in 2014, perhaps Ms. Gill did not have a chance to get to. Off the top of my head:
-Basho Cafe
-Left Bank
-New Ramenyas: Taishoken, Yah Yah Ya, Gyoza Bar
-Nicli's Next Door

Middle Eastern restaurants in Vancouver

She couldn't have ask for Middle Eastern recommendations on twitter?

The below pop into mind.
Anatolia's Gate

Although I think the real question for me is why there are not more restaurants featuring cuisine from the Philippines in Vancouver?

According to the last census in 2011, in Vancouver 18,805 identify Tagalog as their mother tongue. Only about 9,000 - 10,000 identify mothers tongues from the Middle East.

Shockingly there are only about 7,000 who select Korean as their mother tongue and yet we have tons of Korean restaurants.

Best izakaya for a Birthday party?

I like Guu Garden and Kingyo.

3 Dinners in Vancouver

Call it a case of quirky kismet, fmed was there last night without knowing about Bo's involvement.

Ask what he thought of the food and he deemed it worthy.

Fresh Tofu in Vancouver-ish?

For Tofu desserts, my parents go to Healthy Soyfoods (604-433-2842) in the market place at Crystal Mall.

Turkish Gourmet?

GE, have you tried fatayers? Spotted a place near the Central Library DT during the summer but forgot about it until I saw this thread. Kinda of wondering what the diff is between fatayers vs. pides.

High end dim sum in the area

Chef Tony fits the bill.

Favourable review from G&M's Alex Gill.

Good place to buy meats for Chinese hotpot/steamboat ?

Crystal Mall market place is a good option for good quality meat for Hot Pot that is totally cheaper than T&T. I think it's stall 1119 called Da Tong that already has frozen hot pot meat ready to go.

You can buy vegetables, tofu and other meat products there too.

lunch West End or downtown today?

You can get pretty far if you are willing to drive 10 minutes from Burrard & Cordova.

Full disclosure about Gyoza Bar, my experience was at Friends and Family dinner. However I stand by my recommendation for the Kaisen Tomato Ramen. It's bouillabaisse soup as the base with seafood and sous vide chicken (so good) as toppings. Very tasty - complex and full of umami. The only thing I observed that maybe off putting to some is there is a layer of oil on top. I don't mind it but others have not liked it. You can get smaller portion is you ask and I found the regular size too big for me.

At the preview dinner, some of the gyozas were lack luster and not surprisingly I've seen complaints about the gyoza.

I plan to return to Gyoza Bar fairly soon to see what tweaks have happened since my first visit.

Other Lunch Ideas ....

Hmm what about Taikoshen for Tsukemen.

Tuc Craft Kitchen is open for lunch.

Bestie in Chinatown. I like their daily salads. They had this awesome watermelon and feta salad in summer.

Via Tevere food truck is situated close by.

lunch West End or downtown today?

Hmm interesting about the Kamei Baru curry as I remember the small bits of beef but definitely not the fat chunks. I like the overall taste of the curry, much more complex than Glico curry (or something similar) that most places serve.

Where are you going to be based downtown, GE? I figure if this is work related thing then you're not going to have a lot of time to get to a place and eat.

Off the top of my head.

Gyoza Bar for the Tomato Ramen.

I like Vij's Food truck in particular if they have a fish curry on the menu.

Anatolia Express at the new convention centre is good.

Vancouver Ramen or Sushi and a splurge

Like LR stated, you are literally a hop and skip away from Vancouver's epicenter for Ramen. You can choose from:
-Santouka's Toroniku Ramen
-Motomachi's Charcoal Ramen
-Kintaro's Robust Basic Ramens
-Marutama's unique and light chicken ramen featuring the best Ramen egg in the city.

These 4 shops are within a 2 minute walk from one another.

Regarding Miku, its Aburi sushi is fantastic but this is a splurge as it is an upscale sushi restaurant.

For a more wallet friendly place, I would recommend Sushi Mart (just a few stores fronts away from Santouka). They offer basic but very fresh sushi.

For your return to Vancouver and a splurge I would recommend the following:
-Blue Water Cafe
-Farmer's Apprentice
-Miku (if you still feel like sushi)

(new) Yah Yah Ya Ramen - Richmond

LR, Thanks for supporting my cousin's blog.

Also Ooopsy, I'm a bad fact checker and made a huge BOO BOO on my post about Yah Yah Ya, that Dennis kindly posted.

It turns out that the special broth from Yokohama is called "iekei" not "lekei or Le Kei". My sincere apologies to Yah Yah Ya ramen. Still very good ramen and everybody should go try this place out!

I've updated my post with the correction at the top.

Good salads in Van?

Shishinori, near the Whole Foods on cambie & 8th, offers salads and generally healthy eats. Their formula is raw fish in several preparations served with brown rice and a whack load of greens and sometimes fruit.

My only issue is they seem to like adding an annoying sweetish Teriyaki like sauce to their dishes.

Interested in what other CHers will suggest.

I miss the Nicoise salad from the defunct Street Meet food truck. That thing was awesome.

State of Pho in Vancouver? Help needed.

Wait, no neon lights, and is cozy enough to make a customer want to linger and stay a bit longer?

Hmmm so Bon Cafe is a nouveau Vietnamese place?

NICE, will check it out next time I'm in the area.

anyone know what happens to 29th Ave Cafe for Japanese Yoshoku food ?

Sam - I noticed a Chanpon noodle on Moncton Cafe's menu. Have you had? If so what can you share about it?

Been searching for a good Champon Ramen in the area but have not found anything good. I believe based on the photo in Moncton Cafe's menu, the Chanpon is a Champon ramen.

anyone know what happens to 29th Ave Cafe for Japanese Yoshoku food ?

Not sure where the 29th ave Cafe folks went but if you are looking for Yoshoku food, you can try:
-Marulilu Cafe
-Cafe De l'Orangerie

State of Pho in Vancouver? Help needed.

Thanks for adding to the list LR! The only one I don't think I've been to is Bon Cafe, any intel you want to share?

State of Pho in Vancouver? Help needed.

Thanks for the intel on Hoi Ann! Never tried Mi Quang before. It looks very unique - definitely want to check that out.

Can you or anyone else who's had describe kinda what it tastes like so I know what to expect?

Best cafes in Vancouver

I have to add another "Gold star" for Timbertrain. Spotted this on a trip report by SF poster, Reformed, in another thread who mentioned they had a cookie with potato chips in it at Timbertrain.

I had to check it out. The cookie is unique and wonderful. Called the Comfort cookie, this thing contains not only Potato Chips but also Pretzel bits and chocolate chips!

It's a nice bake good that combines both savoury and sweet.

State of Pho in Vancouver? Help needed.

Yes I agree the Pho at Mr. Red is above average and Rose takes great pride in adhering to proper cooking techniques and shows a great deal of care in making their food.

I think I must go to My Chau to try this Chicken pho with a deep fried chicken leg.

The thing is Mr. Red has worked hard to really set themselves apart from other Vietnamese restaurant and as a result they have line ups.

Why don't more Vietnamese places do that? There are so many Vietnamese restaurants you would think they want to stand out.

Or is it simply the average Vancouverites cannot really tell the difference and as a result restaurants can get away with serving average food?

State of Pho in Vancouver? Help needed.

In all fairness before this joke gets out of hand, I don't think brokentelephone was actually calling me a pedantic tossss.

Thank you all for responding to my question. I think you all confirm my natural instinct that yes there is good Pho in Vancouver but not necessarily ones that are "Must haves". In the end, it comes down to personal preference and other factors maybe not relating to the Pho itself, simply because there really isn't a lot separating the good Pho.

Although I was reading how the chefs at Slanted Door in San Fran roast their ginger and onion before putting them into the broth. Any Pho place in Vancouver doing that? Or is it something no restaurant would bother with here since it probably take a refined palate to appreciate that?