Showing posts from August, 2013

Stick to Oysters at Oyster Express

It's kind of tough to find particularly interesting eats at the Chinatown Night Market when your entire party is Asian (Chinese), so we had to go with the backup plan last Friday -- Oyster Express . I would normally never go to it because I'm really not into oysters. I just don't have a particular appreciation for the various types and slurping it down with Tabasco or what not. So, of our party of four, only one person had the oysters. He's big on oysters, and was happy enough to make a second order of a half-dozen, so that's a good sign. New England Fish Chowder ($9) ( picture ) This was okay tasting and for your dollar you do get a reasonable amount. Combined with the slices of baguette, it works out to a reasonably filling meal, but not so much that you didn't have room for an appetizer before or dessert after. At $9, the price feels between okay and slightly pricey. Shrimp Cocktail ($13) ( picture ) If I remember correctly, this was six "shrim

50% off at Don Francesco Ristorante

If you've avoided Don Francesco Ristorante / Francesco Ristorante Italia because of the price, now is a great time to use the 50th anniversary half-price-off coupon to try it (look in the Georgia Straight or Metro -- the offer is for the summer and will probably end soon). It works only for the items listed under "The Art of Pasta", but 50% off is a big deal. Sunday dinner only. It's actually a pretty big restaurant, so while a packed patio might make it look full, chances are they will be able to squeeze you in somehow. There is lots of seating, and generous room to move around as well. Inside there are garishly coloured abstract paintings and lots of flowers. The lovely hostess is an opera singer and there's a chance you'll get a opera-ish Happy Birthday sung at your table if you book a birthday event there. Service is professional and reserved. The male waiters do their thing and then disappear, leaving your party alone. No getting-to-know-you chit-ch

Goat Cheese Burger at Colony

I was just at Colony this past Friday for an after-work get-together. We were in at around 5.30pm and by 6.30pm the bar was still rather quiet. TVs on the walls showing soccer, but without any volume to disturb patrons who might be disinterested. As is my wont, I probed them for freshly squeeze juice. Nope, not available (I didn't think it would be, but I'm ever hopeful). Of the fruit drinks they had, I chose a tall glass of pineapple ($4.50). The online menu shows their $10 lunch specials, but there is a small link at the bottom where you can download the dinner menu ("Food Menu"). I tried the Organic Quinoa Vegetable Burger (house made quinoa and goat cheese patty, pickled red onion, lettuce, tomato, tartar sauce, brioche bun). Our lovely waitress Sam said that she didn't like it herself because of the goat cheese. This is good information to know, since the online lunch menu does not mention goat cheese. And it's good to have it pointed out because g

Pear Tree Restaurant not afraid to be salty

I finally made it down to the Pear Tree Restaurant in Burnaby after having it on my list for the longest time. They were closed for part of the summer and had just starting up operations again. Fully booked for both dinner seatings (6pm and 8pm), which for a restaurant of their small size is easy to do. It also has no windows! We were not too far from the front door (which has glass and admits light), so on the sunny Saturday evening we were at the proper angle to get actual daylight. The rest of the restaurant was moderately lit -- certainly not the romantic darkness that some other places maintain. The Pear Tree has a few quirks that first timers should be aware of: First, the chef prefers that you concentrate on the food. So we were all rather surprised when they started collecting menus when my initial order of the scallop appetizer came. My idea was to have something to snack on while the rest of our party arrived and we browsed the menus. They didn't really push it too