Cathy House

Address:

6965 Victoria Drive

Vancouver, BC

V5P 3Y8

Tel: (604) 321-8589

 

December 24, 2013 – Lunch

Written by: Second Stomach

 

We’re out doing some errands on Christmas eve and just looking for something quick for lunch. Snowman left it up to me and I opted for noodle soup. Cathy House is really just a very small hole-in-the-wall bubble tea and snack spot. A TV in the background was blaring with a Chinese soap opera.

 

This is what we had for our quick lunch snack:

Cuttlefish Noodle

Meat and Vegetable Noodle

 

Cuttlefish Noodle – $6.50 (including tax)

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Cathy House offers a “set menu” where the noodle soups come with a HK style drink. Unfortunately it took a while before our drink arrived. In fact, the noodle soup arrived before our drink. You can sweeten your drink to your own liking which was an interesting change.

 

Here’s the cuttlefish noodle:

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- Basically I got 3 cuttlefish balls – split into 6 halves, a few vegetables, and noodles.

- I found the noodles were a bit overcooked and the overall portion size was small but overall this was a good snack.

 

Taste: 3/5

Presentation: 3/5

Value: 3.5/5

 

Meat and Vegetable Noodle - $6.50 (including tax)

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- I was a bit surprised that Snowman ordered soup noodles as he often avoids them. It was perhaps the limited choice on the menu that led him to this decision.

- Again, these soup noodles were very similar to my bowl with the exception of the meat and vegetable dumplings.

 

Here’s a closer look at the dumpling:

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I actually didn’t have high expectations here but the dumpling was surprisingly pretty good – juicy and well flavored.

 

Taste: 3/5

Presentation: 3/5

Value: 3.5/5

 

Cathy House is a hole-in-the-wall bubble tea and snack house. The menu is limited but the prices are fairly reasonable for a simple snack. The service was lacking – in fact, it took us a while before anything arrived to us, and it wasn’t even busy today. We also got served our soup noodles before our drinks arrived.

 

The good…

- Reasonable value for quick snack

- You have the option to sweeten your own drink to your liking

 

The bad…

- Extremely casual hole-in-the-wall

- Service lacking.

 
Cathy House on Urbanspoon

SweetSalt Bakery & Cafe

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Address:

3497 Fraser Street

Vancouver, BC

V5V 4C3

Tel: (604) 877-1141

 

October 5, 2013 – Lunch

Written by: Second Stomach

 

Recently, I noticed SweetSalt Bakery & Café when driving down Fraser Street. As we were out and about today, I suggested SweetSalt for a change (from the usual Asian cafes) today. We managed to find street parking nearby and when we walked in, we immediately noticed that the café was set up to be very kid-friendly. At the entrance was a small sectioned off play area for young kids. It was not surprising then, that we did see mostly moms of young kids dining today.

 

Although there were just a few tables, every table had a great view of the kitchen:

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Here’s what we ordered for lunch today:

Latte

Prosciutto, goat cheese, figs, walnut, & honey sandwich

Cinnamon Bun

 

Latte

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Naturally, Snowman ordered a latte. After all, you can’t go into a bakery without also trying their coffee (especially since we ordered a cinnamon bun to go along with it!). It was a really good latte.

 

Prosciutto, goat cheese, figs, walnut, & honey sandwich – $8.50

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- When we ordered the sandwich, we noted that we would be sharing it. We were really pleased that the kitchen helped to split the sandwich and salad for us onto 2 separate plates.

- Sandwiches are served with your choice of salad or soup. Unfortunately, they ran out of soup today. So, the salad that was served with the sandwich consisted of plain greens, pumpkin seeds, and balsamic vinaigrette. I think we would have enjoyed the soup more had it been available.

 

Here’s a closer look at the sandwich:

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- The sandwich was served on apricot carrot sourdough bread. It was a denser bread and quite tasty but we couldn’t really taste the sourdough, which is too bad because I really like sourdough!

- Normally Snowman probably wouldn’t like a sandwich like this because he isn’t fond of goat cheese but the goat cheese wasn’t too pungent and it had a fluffy, soft texture. This was a beautiful contrast against the crunchy walnuts and nicely balanced with the sweet flavor of the honey.

- Although the ingredients are relatively simple, this combination was unique and totally worked.

 

Taste: 4/5

Presentation: 3.5/5

Value: 3/5

 

 

  Cinnamon Bun – $3

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- Snowman really likes cinnamon buns. Whenever we’re at a bakery, it never fails that we always must try the cinnamon bun if available.

- This cinnamon bun was definitely different than many of the more traditional styles. It was not as sticky and only lightly iced. It resembled a cinnamon roll.

- However, the cinnamon bun had good flavor and the bun itself was quite soft. It was a “lighter” style compared to the likes of Cinnabon and Cinzeo.

- Snowman said he enjoyed this for a change, especially to finish off our meal today.

 

Taste: 3.5/5

Presentation: 3.5/5

Value: 3/5

 

Apricot Carrot Sourdough Loaf – $5.50

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We couldn’t help but purchase a loaf of bread after our meal. It was the same bread that was used for our sandwich today. Needless to say, it didn’t last too long after we took it home.

 

SweetSalt Bakery & Café is a german bakery visibly located on Fraser Street and 19th avenue. The menu focuses on coffee, baked goods, and sandwiches. It also appears to be a popular stop amongst mothers with young children.

 

The good…

- Kid friendly

- Some unique bakery items and sandwichews

 

The bad…

- Relatively limited menu

 

 
SweetSalt Bakery & Café on Urbanspoon
 

Benss Cafe

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Address:

5628 Victoria Drive

Vancouver, BC

Tel: (604) 558-3839

 

January 24, 2014 – Dinner

Written by: Second Stomach

 

It was 8 pm. Snowman was hungry and wanted me to find a place to eat fairly quickly. Knowing that Victoria Drive has plenty of quick casual Chinese restaurants, I asked him to stop at Benss Café.

Benss Café serves casual Hong Kong style food. The atmosphere wasn’t fancy but it was packed with people at 8 pm! They also have an extensive menu – including one menu dedicated for creating your own soup noodles, which I was about to get, until I saw that they had clay pot rice:

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This is what we decided on tonight:

Benss Style Clay Pot Rice: Topped with Garlic with Pork Belly

Seasonal Vegetable and Beef Brisket on Rice (from mini set menu)

 

Benss Style Clay Pot Rice: Topped with Garlic with Pork Belly – $7.95

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- When I saw the menu for clay pot rice, I was excited about the number of selections. The menu warns that it takes 15-20 minutes for preparation.

- The benefit of clay pot is that the dish should be served hot – and it was. The other benefit is the crispy rice bits near the bowl’s edge.

- The pork belly was sliced relatively thin leaving the layer of fat intact. Having had lots of pork belly previously, I found myself wishing that the pork belly was more tender than it was.

- Alongside the pork belly was mushroom, green onion, and ginger. Overall, it was a good flavor combination.

 

Taste: 3.5/5

Presentation: 3/5

Value: 3.5/5

 

Seasonal Vegetable and Beef Brisket on Rice (from mini set menu) – $7.95

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- Snowman ordered this off the mini-set menu – which comes with a hot or cold drink and a bowl of chinese soup.

- Overall, this was a very average dish. The beef brisket could definitely have been more tender.

 

Here’s a picture of the chinese soup, or “dishwater” as Snowman calls it:

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Snowman also wanted to get a jumbo size for his drink (upgrade to jumbo is an extra $1) but it never did arrive. Instead, he got the regular size milk tea and it wasn’t great – somewhat diluted and not strongly flavored.

Taste: 2.5/5

Presentation: 2.5/5

Value: 2.5/5

 

Here’s the bill for the 2 of us tonight:

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Benss Café is a super casual restaurant serving Hong Kong style cuisine. So casual, that in the background there are multiple TV’s on with the latest HK soap operas. The service also wasn’t stellar and the milk tea disappointed. However, there are many menu options offered and although we weren’t terribly impressed with the mini-set that Snowman ordered, the clay pot rice was good enough for me to consider coming back again (but only for the clay pot rice).

 

The good…

- Lots of menu selections

- Clay Pot Rice on the menu (which is not always offered) and was decent

 

The bad…

- Cash only

- Very casual and can get busy
Benss Cafe 本色時尚餐廳 on Urbanspoon

Tony’s Beef Noodle

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Address:

5754 Cambie Street

Vancouver, BC

V5Z 3A7

Tel: (604) 327-5061

 

December 31, 2013 – Lunch

Written by: Second Stomach

 

It’s new year’s eve and I had no plans of making lunch. We were in the area trying to buy some liquor from BC liquor store, which was a big mistake, because it was a complete zoo and I couldn’t find what I was looking for anyway! So, we crossed the street over to Tony’s Beef Noodle because Snowman wanted to eat right away and I knew I wasn’t going to want to eat at the food court at Oakridge Mall.

There are about 11 tables – and yet, it was busy today! I don’t know if it’s the new year’s eve effect, but considering that it was a weekday, I was impressed that every table was full. Perhaps Tony’s Beef Noodle also benefits from being across from Oakridge Mall. It may also explain why their hours are Monday to Saturday 11 AM- 8:30 PM

 

Here’s a look at the menu:

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For lunch, we ordered the following:

Deep Fried Tofu

Beef + Noodle in Soup

Crispy Salty Peppery Chicken with Rice

 

 

Deep Fried Tofu – $4.50

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- We ordered the deep fried tofu so that it would be our appetizer for lunch. In reality, it took forever to come. We had already received our noodle soups and were nearly finished eating it before this arrived.

- Although this was served hot, there was very little flavor. The exterior of the tofu was very dry and wasn’t all that crispy. It was very plain – it didn’t appear to have any spices/seasoning added. So, the only source of “flavoring” was the sweet thai chili sauce that was provided with it.

 

Taste: 2/5

Presentation: 2/5

Value: 2.5/5

 

Beef + Noodle in Soup (small) - $6.50

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- As usual, you an order beef noodle soup as spicy or non-spicy. I opted for non-spicy this time. I also ordered the thick style of noodles today.

- Actually the noodle soup arrived to our table very fast. Unfortunately, the soup itself wasn’t served very hot which was a huge disappointment. We were also disappointed in the flavor of the soup. It didn’t have that satisfying beef flavor that we were looking for.

- In total, there were 5 chunks of beef (yes, I counted), and fortunately most were tender chunks. Also, the noodles were a little soggy!

- This was, overall, a disappointing bowl of beef noodle soup especially considering the high calibre of Taiwanese beef noodle shops in Greater Vancouver! In the grand scheme of Taiwanese beef noodle soups, both Snowman and I thought this was fairly average.

 

Taste: 2.5/5

Presentation: 3/5

Value: 3/5

 

Crispy Salty Peppery Chicken with Rice – $6.95

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- Snowman must be a bit tired of noodle soups because he ordered a rice dish today. Usually he can be convinced into a bowl of beef noodle soup so I was surprised he ended up ordering this.

- I can’t say that I was impressed with the presentation of his plate today- especially since the side dishes didn’t look terribly appetizing. Aside from the salty peppery chicken, there was half a boiled egg on rice, a bit of cabbage, and tomato & egg scramble.

- Snowman felt that his chicken was a pleasant surprise. He said that the chicken was very tender with a light crispy coating, although it did seem to need just a bit more salt.

Taste: 3/5

Presentation: 3/5

Value: 3/5

 

Here’s the bill for the 2 of us today:

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Tony’s Beef Noodle is a Taiwanese beef noodle shop located just across from Oakridge Mall. It’s a small shop that gets busy especially around lunch time and their hours certainly reflect that they cater towards the weekday lunch/early evening crowd. Overall, the food is quite average but the pricing is reasonable. They accept cash only for payment.

 

The good…

- Different option for lunch if you don’t want food court items at Oakridge Mall.

- Noodle soups get served very quickly

 

The bad…

- Food is of average quality.

- Cash only

- Finding parking can be a challenge.

Tony's Beef Noodle 王哥牛肉麵 on Urbanspoon

Sandy La Chinese Restaurant

 

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Address:

5258 Victoria Drive

Vancouver, BC

Tel: (604) 327-1862

 

September 30, 2013 – Dinner

Written by: Second Stomach

 

Sandy La Chinese Restaurant is the latest Chinese restaurant located in the complex at Victoria Drive and 37th. Over the years, I’ve seen a number of different Chinese restaurants change over, despite the restaurants “looking” busy. Sandy La was no exception – we weren’t able to find parking inside the complex and had to look for parking nearby in the residential area.

 

Here’s what we had for dinner:

Pork and Century Egg Congee

House Special Rice Noodle

 

Pork and Century Egg Congee – $4.50

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- I realize I’m not terribly creative- always ordering the same type of congee. But, this is what comfort food is to me.

- The congee was thick and relatively smooth. It was also fairly plain – with the exception of the pork which gave the salty flavor.

 

Here’s a closer look at the fillings in the congee:

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- Although the congee wasn’t going to compete with my big favorites (Congee Noodle House/Congee Noodle King), I was pleasantly surprised that the congee was reasonably decent. Perhaps a bit better than average and reasonable in value.

 

Taste: 3.5/5

Presentation: 3/5

Value: 4/5

 

House Special Rice Noodle – $9.50

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- I left it up to Snowman to choose the second selection tonight. I was surprised he went for the “house special” rice noodle. We have both cringed in the past whenever something on the menu says “house special” because to us, house special has meant a number of things in the past. It has presented as a smattering of left over ingredients to make up a dish. It has also meant organ meats (obviously, not Snowman’s favorite).

- So, when this dish arrived to us – we were impressed. Yes, we saw a variety of ingredients – but the dish arrived to us hot and a decent portion as well. No organ meats (Snowman was thankful)!

- The ingredient variety this time was – squid, prawns, vegetables, Chinese mushrooms, BBQ pork, and sliced chicken. We’re not sure if any “left-over” ingredients were used – but certainly a huge variety was there. Although the squid might have been a little chewy the dish overall was not too salty – and I was pleased.

Taste: 3.5/5

Presentation: 3.5/5

Value: 3.5/5

 

Here’s our bill for tonight:

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Sandy La Chinese Restaurant is located in a shopping complex off Victoria Drive and near 37th avenue. It’s a decent sized restaurant with plenty of tables. Casual chinese food and more upscale items are on the menu. Prices are reasonable and service is relatively quick. Although there wasn’t anything that particularly stood out for us, our dinner tonight was a pleasant surprise as we were provided with food of reasonable quality and value.

 

The good…

- Good value

- Lots of choice on the menu

 

The bad…

- Parking might be hard to find (parking often full in the complex!)

 

Sandy La Chinese Restaurant 富華海鮮中菜館 on Urbanspoon

Huang’s Beef Noodle

 

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Address:

6940 Victoria Drive

Vancouver, BC

 

Tel: (604) 324-8884

 

October 6, 2013 – Lunch

Written by: Second Stomach

 

This was a day where I really didn’t feel like cooking. So, when asked what I wanted to eat today, I knew I wanted some comfort food, fast. Also, it probably didn’t help that I had all-you-can-eat buffet at Kedah House the previous night and I felt like I needed some sort of “cleansing”. It’s been a while since we’ve been back to Huang’s Beef Noodle and hot noodle soup was what I was craving. I knew Snowman wasn’t going to go for typical wonton noodle soup so I suggested Taiwanese instead.

Huang’s Beef Noodle shop is conveniently located on the south end of Victoria, guaranteeing a higher likelihood of finding street parking. We parked nearby and walked into familiar surroundings. A small, hole-in-the-wall shop with a simple menu.

 

Here’s a look at the menu:

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This is what we ordered today:

Beef Noodle in Soup

Popcorn Chicken

 

Beef Noodle in Soup – $6.95

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- Both Snowman and I ordered the same bowl of noodle soup today. Normally I would order the spicy version but I wasn’t really feeling up to having something spicy. Despite ordering the “regular” soup, we both found that the soup still was a bit spicy! I actually didn’t mind at all – but I know that there are people who are really sensitive to spice and would be disappointed in this.

- Otherwise, the broth itself was quite good. It wasn’t overly greasy like some other taiwanese beef noodle shops we’ve been to (ahem, Wang’s on Granville/70th!). Although I wished that the broth itself had more “beefy” flavor to it, I was pleased that it wasn’t too greasy.

 

Here’s a closer look at our soup:

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- We had the option of choosing thick noodle, rice vermicelli, or bean thread. As usual, we went for the thick noodle.

- There was an average amount of beef chunks in our soup and they weren’t too fatty yet still had decent flavor.

 

Taste: 3.5/5

Presentation: 3.5/5

Value: 4/5

 

Popcorn Chicken – $4.75

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- Snowman ordered this after seeing the ad for it pasted on the wall. I didn’t mind, because for under $5, this would serve as a good appetizer.

- We liked that this dish arrived to us very hot. The coating was light and crispy and the chicken was tender. The chicken pieces were lightly salted and spiced.

Taste: 3.5/5

Presentation: 3/5

Value: 4/5

 

Huang’s Beef Noodle shop has been around for a long time. Located towards the south end of Victoria drive, the street is quieter and street parking an more easily be found. The shop has that hole-in-the-wall feel to it and there are very few tables. The shop sticks to the main staples on the menu and as a result, the menu items generally taste good and the value is high in comparison to other Taiwanese noodle shops.

 

The good…

- Great value

- Street parking can easily be found

 

The bad…

- Small noodle shop and few tables

- Be careful – the non-spicy noodle soup still has a bit of spice to it!
Huang's Beef Noodles on Urbanspoon

Continental Coffee House

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Address:

4295 Main Street,

Vancouver, BC

V5V 3P9

Tel: (604) 255-0712

 

October 27, 2013 – Brunch

 

Today, we were looking for the coffee shop on main street that advertises their cinnamon buns. We looked at the usual location – near the VW dealership, but couldn’t locate it. Instead, we found a new coffee shop – Continental Coffee House. The shop has seating indoors and outside. Given that it’s becoming more rare to have sunny days, we opted to sit outside.

 

For brunch we had:

Turkey sandwich

Breakfast sandwich

 

Turkey Sandwich

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- The turkey sandwich had sliced turkey, red pepper, cheese, and mustard, served on focaccia bread.

- It was a fairly standard sandwich that lacked meat. It could have used a lot more turkey than what was provided.

 

Taste: 3/5

Presentation: 3/5

 

Breakfast Sandwich

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- This breakfast sandwich had cheddar, ham, and scrambled egg on a toasted English muffin. Basically an upscale Egg McMuffin (for an upscale price).

- It was nice to have real meltedcheddar but it was disappointing that there was only 1 slice of ham.

 

Taste: 3.5/5

Presentation: 3.5/5

 

We did have a latte today at the coffee house today, which was decent. The food overall is standard fare – about what you would expect from a coffee shop. I liked that there were a few tables set up outside – perfect for people watching along Main street.

 

The good…

- Indoor and outdoor seating

 

The bad…

- Nothing particularly special about the menu – but this is a coffee shop!

 
Continental Coffee House on Urbanspoon
 

The Old Bavaria Haus

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Address:

233 6th Street

New Westminster, BC

V3L 3A5

Tel: (604) 524-5824

 

 

July 19, 2013 – Dinner

Written by: Second Stomach

 

It’s not very often that we have gone out for German cuisine. Our last memorable experiences were in fact in Germany where we had some pretty amazing schnitzels. I felt it was time again to order schnitzels again but with the caveat of not expecting the same authentic quality as we had in Germany over a year ago.

As we approached the Old Bavaria Haus, I was delighted to see that the building exterior was designed with a German theme. Inside, there appeared to be plenty of tables – but the room was a little dark. I got the impression that the Old Bavaria Haus offers fairly traditional dining. Tonight, we opted to sit outside in their patio as nights with dry, warm weather are precious in Vancouver!

As I mentioned, we came here for schnitzels, and wow, did the menu ever have a huge selection of schnitzels. And, if you didn’t want a schnitzel, there were other options like chicken, fish, rouladen, steak, and bratwurst, to name a few. It took Snowman and I a while to wade through all the menu options and finally decide on something.

 

Here’s what we had for dinner tonight:

Roasted Garlic Potato Pancakes

Schnitzel Hawaii

Schnitzel Cordon Bleu

Bavarian Amaretto Mousse

 

 

 

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Roasted Garlic Potato Pancakes – $7.95

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These potato pancakes were topped with blackforest mushroom sauce. I was surprised that Snowman was willing to order these given his dislike of mushrooms, but I think he thought it would be mushroom flavored sauce rather than sauce filled with lots of mushrooms.

 

Here’s a closer look at the potato pancakes:

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- The potato pancakes were served very hot and had a smooth texture inside. We suspect that the smooth texture was likely from food processing the potatoes. Snowman said he would have preferred if the potatoes were shredded instead to give a slight difference in texture.

- The garlic flavor was subtle. The sauce itself resembled a mushroom gravy.

Taste: 3.5/5

Presentation: 4/5

Value: 3.5/5

 

Schnitzel Hawaii – $18.95

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- Wanting something a bit different, Snowman ordered the Schnitzel Hawaii – a veal cutlet topped with ham, pineapple, melted cheese, and béarnaise sauce.  The schnitzel was served with plain mixed vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, carrots), potatoes, and cabbage. The cabbage was sweet but the rest of the vegetables, including the potatoes, were very plain and tasteless.

- We were impressed with how large the schnitzel was – it was half of Snowman’s plate.

 

Here’s a closer look at the schnitzel:

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The schnitzel was a thin cutlet of veal with a crispy exterior. The meat inside was tender. You can see the slice of ham and the pineapple ring that topped the schnitzel

Taste: 3.5/5

Presentation: 3.5/5

Value: 3.5/5

 

Schnitzel Cordon Bleu Champignon- $20.95

 

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I ordered this schnitzel – stuffed with blackforest ham and swiss cheese and topped with sautéed mushrooms and béarnaise sauce. Again, on the side was the same plain vegetables, potatoes, and sweet cabbage. Both entrees arrived to our table hot.

Here’s a closer look at the schnitzel:

 

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Because the schnitzel was stuffed, it was thicker than the schnitzel Hawaii.

Taste: 3.5/5

Presentation: 3.5/5

Value: 3.5/5

 

Bavarian Amaretto Mousse

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- This was a really pleasant dessert. We were actually quite full already given how large the entrees were, so we didn’t have that much room left, but this was the perfect finish.

- The mousse was very light and super airy. In fact, the fresh cream that was on top of the mousse was heavier and denser than the mousse itself. On the bottom, was a maraschino cherry.

- The mousse wasn’t all that sweet and it had a touch of amaretto. I enjoyed it for a change.

 

Taste: 4/5

Presentation: 3.5/5

 

Here’s the bill for our evening:

 

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We enjoyed our evening at the Old Bavaria Haus. The traditional building lends itself to be a possible venue for group functions. Although Snowman was disappointed he wasn’t able to try the rouladen (which we were told is a specialty of theirs), the schnitzels were a fine substitute. The entrees were huge - as we would expect from a German restaurant. We noticed that the restaurant tends to cater towards an older crowd and they even closed at 9 pm tonight! There is plenty of seating, inside, and a few tables on the patio. Group menus are also available.

 

The good…

- Lots of menu selection including group menus

- Large portion size

- Seating inside and out. Possible venue choice for group functions.

 

The bad…

- Restaurant closes “early” at 9 pm

 

Old Bavaria Haus on Urbanspoon

Peaceful

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 Address:

532 W Broadway

Vancouver, BC

 

Tel: (604) 879-9878

 

September 8, 2013 – Lunch

Written by: Second Stomach

It’s been a while since we’ve been back to Peaceful. I had raved about the famous beef rolls to Snowman but he seems to have no memory of visiting here. Peaceful is usually very busy during lunch time – especially on the weekdays. I wasn’t sure how it was going to be today on a sunday – but made sure that we’d try to be there when they open.

When we arrived, it was already starting to fill up. The space is very tight – jam packed with lots of small tables to accommodate as many people as possible.

 

Here’s what we ordered for lunch today:

Peaceful Beef Rolls

Cat Ear Stir-Fried Noodles

Pan-Fried Pork Dumplings

Xiao-Long Bao Steamed Buns

 

Peaceful Beef Rolls – $7.95

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These are the famous beef rolls. Described on the menu as – five-spiced beef rolled in a crispy green onion flat-bread & sweet hoisin sauce. I believe that they are the best I’ve had so far.

 

Here’s a closer look inside the wrap:

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Isn’t the wrap beautiful? The light, crispy flakes of the wrap exterior are a big part of why these rolls are famous.

- Here’s why I think these beef rolls are outstanding:

- the pancake wrap has a light crispy exterior.

- the pancake wrap is just the right thickness. Others out there are sometimes too thin or too thick

- the beef is thinly sliced

- there is just the right amount of sweet & savory hoisin sauce. Others out there sometimes suffer from too little or too much sauce.

- Perhaps a personal preference, but Snowman and I would have preferred more green onion in the flat bread.

 

Taste: 4.5/5

Presentation: 3.5/5

Value: 3.5/5

 

 Cat Ear Stir-Fried Noodles – $13.95

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- The “cat ears” are simply to describe the shape of the gnocchi noodles. It was nice to have these noodles for a change as they had a more chewy type of texture that we don’t always see in asian noodles.

- The vegetables included snow peas and bell peppers which were crunchy – a nice contrast to the noodles. Along with the vegetables were thin slices of pork stir-fried in.

- Snowman was disappointed in this dish as he felt, overall, it did not have much flavor. I was also disappointed because I felt this dish was pricey at almost $14 and the portion size was mediocre.

 

Taste: 3.5/5

Presentation: 3.5/5

Value: 2.5/5

 

Pan-Fried Pork Dumplings – $7.95

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These dumplings were pan fried on one side and you can see that they did a fairly good job of frying them.

Here’s a closer look at one of the dumplings:

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- I liked that the dumpling skin was not too thick. The pork inside was flavorful and very juicy

 

Taste: 4/5

Presentation: 3/5

Value: 3.5/5

 

Xiao-Long Bao Steamed Buns – $7.95

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- We can’t help but place an order for XLB’s whenever we see them on the menu.

- Unfortunately, these were very disappointing! I was surprised because everything else was quite good.

- One order provided 8 dumplings. 6 out of 8 dumplings had punctured dumpling skin! This meant that all the soup juices spilled over. This is a huge NO-NO! The dumpling skin was on the thicker side as well – so in a way, there should be no excuse for broken dumpling skin. Otherwise, the pork inside was flavorful.

 

Taste: 2.5/5

Presentation: 2.5/5

Value: 2/5

 

Here’s our bill for lunch today:

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I was happy to return to Peaceful again to have their famous beef rolls. Unfortunately, everything else today didn’t quite compare and the biggest surprise was the huge disappointment I felt over the Xiao-Long Bao Steamed buns.

Overall, however, Peaceful is a great choice for good quality northern style chinese food. It’s a popular choice especially at lunch-time during the weekdays so expect line-ups. The dishes were on the pricier side but still reasonable given the quality.

 

The good…

- Peaceful beef rolls are a must try

- Fairly quick service

 

The bad…

- Often crowded – expect line-ups

- On the pricier side.

 

Peaceful Restaurant 和平飯店 (Broadway) on Urbanspoon

Moon Cafe

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Address:

6181 Fraser Street

Vancouver, BC

V5W 3A1

 

Tel: (604) 301-0281

 

 

 

August 22, 2013 – Dinner

Written by: Second Stomach

 

Moon Cafe is a relatively new addition to Fraser Street. We were a little tired of Angel Cafe – including the line-ups there. So, for dinner tonight, we decided it was time to check out the latest casual HK style restaurant.

It wasn’t too busy and we were able to be seated right away.

 

The menu has a good selection – including chinese and western style dishes. Here is one page from the menu that got me a little excited:

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These days, I have enjoyed customizing my noodle soups. My recent visit to Deer Garden Signatures has sparked my interest in any restaurant offering something similar.

 

In the end, we found an “Afternoon Tea” Menu. It was clearly well into dinner time, but we were allowed to order the specials on this menu – which we did, because a drink was included in our order.

 

This is what we decided for our dinner tonight (off the afternoon tea menu):

Pork and Spinach Rice Cakes

Baked Pork Chop on Rice

 

 

Included in the afternoon tea special is a drink. We both ordered cold milk tea:

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Because we ordered a cold drink, an extra charge of 50 cents was added to our bill. The milk tea was a bit disappointing. It wasn’t very strongly flavored at all.

 

Pork and Spinach Rice Cakes – $7.50

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- Even though we weren’t at a Shanghainese restaurant, I had a bit of a craving for rice cakes. I knew it probably wasn’t going to be as good – and it wasn’t, but it seemed to hit the spot. The portion size was generous.

- In the dish, there were mushrooms, slivered pork, and spinach.

- Overall, the dish was on the salty side for me and the rice cakes could have been more chewy. Snowman seemed to enjoy it though.

 

Taste: 3/5

Presentation: 3.5/5

Value: 4/5

 

 

Baked Pork Chop on Rice – $7.95

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When this arrived to our table, both Snowman and I were flabbergasted how big this was. This was probably bigger than what you’d order off the regular menu.

 

To give you an idea of the size of this dish, here’s a side profile:

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- This was served in what looked like a mini serving bowl that was quite deep. Snowman claims we could have just ordered this one dish tonight and shared it.

- There was a huge piece of deep fried pork chop and this was topped with tomato sauce and cheese. Other vegetables inside included tomatoes, carrots, mushrooms, peas, and green beans. I’m quite sure they used frozen mixed vegetables in this dish.

- Overall, the pork could have been more crispy and the dish needed more flavor and more sauce. It was a deep dish – so when we got to the rice, there wasn’t much sauce to mix in – so the rice was a little dry.

 

Taste: 3/5

Presentation: 3.5/5

Value: 4/5

 

 

Here’s the bill for the 2 of us tonight:

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The bill is a bit curious – “If you pay cash, total is 17.25″. The restaurant didn’t offer any other options other than cash.

Snowman and I were impressed by the afternoon tea specials today. We were fully expecting fairly small portions (as per our experience in other HK style restaurants) but instead we got great value out of our meals tonight. The milk tea was disappointing but the food was decent and comforting and the portion size was generous. So, overall, we were quite happy.

 

I noticed this sign at the entrance of Moon Café:

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I am now curious about their breakfast. Snowman and I will try to visit again in the near future.

 

 

The good…

- Free delivery

- Great value- especially Afternoon Tea specials.

- Big menu

 

The bad…

- Cash Only
Moon Cafe on Urbanspoon