Saturday, September 6, 2014

Dinner at Dark Table

Would you feel safe eating in the dark? How would you feel if I told you that your server was blind? Well, Maria and I experience our first (literally) blind date at Dark Table. I was interested in dining at this restaurant since they opened, but I easily forgot about it. I stumbled upon a coupon for this restaurant and thought why not, now or never. Upon arriving, you are greeted at the door and asked to take a seat at the patio. They show you the menu and ask for your order before stepping into the restaurant. I should also note that they have a set dinner time; you can't arrive at your leisure. You remain in the patio until the blind server comes and calls for you. You enter the first door and arrive in a room. The server waits until the door shuts behind you, making the room completely dark. The server then opens another set of doors that leads to the actual restaurant. Everything is pitch black, and we relied on the server to guide us to our table. We placed our hands on the server’s shoulders and took tiny steps while the server took huge strides. It felt like we were in a haunted house, and I was waiting for someone to jump out to scare me. Before going to the table, I asked to go to the washroom. Without thinking, I thought I would be peeing in the dark. Thankfully there was a dim light. Depending on where you sat in the restaurant, you may see the light from the washroom. After a while, my eyes were strained. My eyes were trying to focus on something in the room, and eventually I had to close my eyes for the remainder of the duration. The server started us off with bread and butter. I had a difficult time spreading butter on the bread and got butter on my hand instead. All three dishes that I choose were mysteries. The first dish was an appetizer, and I think it was a caesar salad with watermelon. I thought it was a good start into the night. It was refreshing and light on the palate. The second was an entree, and I think my dish was parmesan chicken. I was bit disappointed at this dish because I always eat chicken, and if I knew that the mystery dish was chicken, I would have chosen something else. Also, when I usually eat parmesan chicken I have pasta along with it. It felt very naked without the pasta or an extra side. At least they didn't hand us hot soup. Maria got the tenderloin, and she was worried about cutting the steak in the dark. The tenderloin was cut into strips beforehand, but the strips were still too big for her liking. She tried her best in the dark to cut the steak into smaller pieces with a butter knife. I was very excited for dessert. I really wanted to test my taste buds. Maria tasted raspberry mousse, but I later corrected her. It was raspberry cheesecake; I was not amused. I was disappointed. I wish it were a different dessert. Also, it tasted store bought and not in house made. The food was okay; it wasn't bad but wasn't great. At times it was difficult to know if I ate all the food, I constantly use my finger to touch my plate to see if I missed anything. I was content but not satisfied. The experience was unique but very niche. I would not come back here for a long time. I would recommend this place for dates and adventurous eaters.

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* 3 Course menu *

Dark Table on Urbanspoon

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Sunday Fun Day August 10, 2014

LOL! Another late post *sigh*.

Another action packed weekend but at least I have something to blog about. We spent a Sunday with Paul and Angie, and our first stop was at the Food Cart Festival in Vancouver. I was excited to grab food from Le Tigre, Mom's Grilled Cheese Truck, Street Meet, and Yolk's Breakfast. Even though I have tried them before, it has been awhile since I had it. I was very disappointed when I entered the Food Cart Festival; All the food vendors that I wanted to try wasn't there except for Mom's Grilled Cheese Truck. I guess it was time for me to explore and try other food carts.

Our first stop was at Mangal Kiss Mid East BBQ. They ran out of food, but we got a Honey Dew Cucumber drink, which was perfect for this scorching day. It was light and refreshing. It kept us cool, but I wish I had some food to go along with it. Next was Mom's Grilled Cheese Truck. Maria stood in line while I went next door to The Reef. We were both in line for roughly twenty minutes, which I thought was forever. By the time I was in the front for The Reef, they had sold out of everything that I wanted to order *FUCK*. I didn't want to leave empty handed, so I got a Jamaican patty. It was not worth the wait. I was feeling unsatisfied and decided to go over to Feastro the Rolling Bistro to fill my void. I ordered the fish taco, and I was unimpressed. Also, it expensive in my opinion. I thought the fish was grilled, but it was fried. The batter on the fish was mushy and not crispy. It fell apart as I ate it, which, I thought pulled away from the taste of the fish. The topping was good but wasn't enough to carry the weight of being a home run. To end off the event, we went and grabbed dessert at Brown Paper Packages Ice Cream. We got the Tropical Thunder and Strawberry Blonde. It was amazing even though it was hard to take a bite. Everything was hand made in small batches, and you could taste it. It may look small, but it was very dense. I was very satisfied. I think this was the highlight of the Food Cart Festival.

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* Honey Dew Cucumber *
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* Mom's Grilled Cheese Truck - Ham and Grilled Cheese *
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* Fish Taco *
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* It may look small but its heavy and dense *
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* Strawberry Blonde *
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* Tropical Thunder *

Feastro the Rolling Bistro on Urbanspoon

Next, we visited the Evolution of Gaming at Centre For Digital Media. I thought the exhibit was a lot larger, but it was only one room. It took about less than thirty minutes to explore the exhibit. It would have been less if we didn't stop to play any games. They featured a lot of oldies and it was cool, but I pictured this event to be a lot different in my head. I think the newest console they had on display was the NES. We spent a lot of time waiting for the main attraction. The opportunity to play an interactive game with an oculus rift. The wait was roughly an hour, but the experience was worth it, especially that I don't think I will ever own an oculus rift. It only lasted two minutes.

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* Missile Command *
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* Playing with the Oculus Rift*

Since the event was so short, we took a break at the beach before dinner.

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* Where are you taking me? *
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* Beautiful Sunday *
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* Forever I will... *
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* I need a selfie stick*

For dinner, Paul and Angie took us to La Quercia for an eleven-course blind meal. We could have chosen the seven-course meal, but the eleven was such a better deal. The restaurant was quite small, but I think they had an expansion next door. All the food came out slowly, and the portion size varied. Everything tasted 100% in house made (down to the sauce) and authentic. The meal took nearly two and a half hours; longer than your average movie. Out of the eleven dishes, I think I didn't like three. I can't recall all the dish I had or how they tasted, but I'll let the pictures do the talking. I should also add that the dishes changes daily and you don't have to opt in the for seven or eleven-course meals. They have a menu written up on the chalkboard that also changes daily. I would recommend this place for people who are in an adventurous mood and looking for authentic Italian food.

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* Bread to start *
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* Beet Salad, one of my favorite dishes *
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* Souffle, my first time having it and it was phenomenal. I want more of it. *
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* Deep Fried Pork Belly, another home run *
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* I think this had anchovies. I did not like. *
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* Beans, smoked salmon?? I did not like. *
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* Risotto *
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* ??? *
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* Pork Belly Spaghetti ??? *
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* Braised Beef Tenderloin ???*
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* Cheese!! *
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* Dessert *
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* Dessert *

La Quercia on Urbanspoon

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Dinner at Deacon's Corner

Welcome to Deacon's Corner! Miles suggested this tucked away diner while we were planning our next get together. Luckily after months of not looking for coupons online (such as Groupon, etc....), I stumbled upon a coupon for Deacon's Corner. The coupon offered two choices, dinner for two or dinner for four. I opted in for dinner for four. For $17, each person got an "Award Winning" (That's how the coupon was advertised) burger and side. Pretty good deal if you ask me. The best part of the coupon was that I was able to use it right away. Here's the catch, the deal was for a plain burger, additional toppings would cost extra. I decided to get fried (sauteed; I don't know why they called it fried) mushrooms, bacon, fried egg and avocado. After all the upgrades, it took forever for the food to come out. Even with the additional toppings I didn't think the burger was that great. I didn't taste any seasoning on the patty. The burger was a bit dried and was not satisfying. I also upgraded my fries to a poutine. I didn't mind the fries, but the gravy did not go well for this combination. It was salty and bit dull if I remember correctly. I felt mislead and tricked. On the other hand, the fried chicken were excellent, but expensive. The piece of chicken was almost as expensive as my burger. Anyways, they used chicken breast and deep fry it to perfection. When I first took a bite of it, I thought I was eating a thigh; it was juicy and moist. I would recommend the fried chicken.

The diner was at the end of Gastown / Railtown. The service was okay, but they were very attentive which I appreciated. Despite the fact that a prostitute came and tried to seduce us. The burgers were so-so, definitely not award winning. The fried chicken hits the spot, but I need to come back and try their breakfast. Apparently the line up for breakfast would wrap around the corner. For the time being, it is thumbs down for me.

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* Fried Chicken *
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* Burger + Poutine *

Deacon's Corner on Urbanspoon

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Kidrobot x TMNT x Nickelodeon

I'm a huge TMNT fan. As I was growing up you would see me glued to the TV every time, the episode came on. I was obsessed with turtles. My mom would buy me all the action figures. She even bought me a shell backpack. I wouldn't leave home without one of them. I even brought them to class. I remember one time that I took Splinter with me to the grocery store thinking that if something were to happen, he would protect me. Silly imaginations. I regret giving it away when we moved houses. I missed out on the re-release of the retro / classic TMNT action figures that were exclusive to Toys R Us, so I got the second best thing. Kidrobot x TMNT x Nickelodeon. I took me a while to complete the set, but it was worth it. I can't wait for the movie.

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Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Peace Arch City Cafe

I don't get a lot of chances to eat breakfast with Maria, but luckily, she decided to accompany me to the states while I pickup packages. We stopped over by Peace Arch City Cafe for our breakfast. I think this placed used to be a house, and they transformed it to a restaurant. There were stairs leading upstairs and downstairs, but it was either blocked off or sealed. It was weird at first, but I guess this is what makes it hip / hipster. The menu was very basic, and they didn't have Eggs Benedict, which Maria wanted. The waitress was super awkward, as if it was her first day. We knew she was trying her best, and we tried to make her day easy. We ordered the Three-Egg Omelet; (A) Spicy Poblano Verde Salsa, Roma Tomato, Avocado, Pepper Jack and (B) Bacon, Avocado, Roasted Tomato, Pickled Red Onions, and Brie. The meal was good. Maria had (A), and it had a small kick from the salsa. I had (B), and it hit the spot. All the ingredients were fresh. It tasted like it was picked from their backyard; maybe organic too. Their hash brown was addicting; it tasted like it was cooked with chicken stock. The hash brown had a great flavor to it. It was soft and fluffy, almost like congee consistency. It was not crispy in other words. The omelet was a bit runny but I think it was from the tomato. Other than that, I thought it was decent. It is worth a try.

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* (A) Spicy Poblano Verde Salsa, Roma Tomato, Avocado, Pepper Jack *
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* (B) Bacon, Avocado, Roasted Tomato, Pickled Red Onions, and Brie *

Peace Arch City Cafe on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Sunday Fun Day June 8, 2014

What happened to this post? It's more than a month late. I truly apologize. I lost track of time. I can't remember why I was too busy to do this.

I won't go into great details but I will let the pictures do the talking. Italian Festival 2014!! =D

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* A busy day on Commercial Drive *
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* Fresh Oysters *
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* Meatballs anyone? *
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* Tacos!! *
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* Sicilian Burger *

After the Italian Festival, Maria and I took Paul and Angie to Hakkasan, since they have never been. We have been going here too often lately.

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*Watercress & Pork Soup, Papaya & Pork Soup *
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* Spicy Green Beans *
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* Deep Fried Tofu *
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* Honey Garlic Spareribs *
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* Hakka Salty Free Range Chicken *
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* Creme Brulee *