Friday, December 31, 2010
Raul’s 2010 Year In Review: Food
January introduced me to Glowbal Grill and I fell in love with their linguini with giant prawns. Enough said.
I also tried a few new restaurants on Main Street, including Grub and re-tried Latitude (which has now become one of my favorites), with my good friend Nathan Tippe.
February was another blur – with the Vancouver 2010 Olympics coverage, I rarely had any time to do anything else other than work in my consulting projects, prepare classes and teach and run around town covering events and visiting Olympic Houses. Insane. I did visit Timbre, Hakone Sushi and others, but for the most part, it’s hard for me to remember. But there’s one restaurant that stayed with me: The Well (on Main Street near 14th). I’ve been there for brunch several times, including this summer with my Mom. And they know how to do brunch, for sure.
My highlight, other than Parksville Uncorked in Parksville that was amazing pairing of food and wine, was Bandidas, surprisingly, a little Mexican-themed vegan/vegetarian restaurant on Commercial Drive. Go figure. Oh, right! How could I forget the Tomahawk in North Vancouver? Artery-clogging goodness for brunch.
Visited two of my favorite Glowbal Group restaurants: Italian Kitchen and Coast. Both with my best friend from Mexico, both incredibly important evenings for me, because we (CB and I) spent a lot of time talking about the important things that we share, amongst those, a wonderful friendship. I am so grateful to have him in my life, and having shared two great restaurants with him was incredibly relevant to me. Plus the salmon at Coast is to-die-for.
Other restaurants I loved: Hime Sushi (Mount Pleasant), Sitar (Gastown), Momo Sushi (Gastown). And of course, one of my best experiences (shared with Jason Sanders, who has since become a good friend of mine), dinner at r.t.l. yaletown (Regional Tasting Lounge).
Kerkis Taverna in Kitsilano (on 4th Avenue) reminded me why I love Greek food.
Wow, the more time I put into creating my year in review posts, the more I realize I don’t have time for it (I have to work on writing my book instead of these posts). So, quickly – Rogue Wetbar was good, and more importantly because I got to say goodbye to my good friend Karen Parker, who moved to Edmonton.
I also loved Les Faux Burgeoises (finally made it there for dinner with JT). Comfort food with Acme Cafe and Phnom Pen.
I returned to Q4 Restaurant (formerly Quattro on Fourth) in Kitsilano, which was one of my absolute favorite. I adore their pastas. And you know what I like the most? That they treated me and my Mom like absolute royalty. And anybody who treats my mother extremely well is alright by me.
I took Mom and JT to Trattoria Italian Kitchen in Kitsilano (one of the restaurants of the Glowbal Group). Glowbal partnered this year with me to give away packages for Father’s Day and I am indebted to them. While I have eaten at and adored each and every other of their restaurants (in particular Glowbal Grill, Coast, Italian Kitchen and Society, although Sanafir is also a favorite), I wasn’t totally taken with Trattoria. But that’s ok. It’s out of my way so I’ll stick to my trusty Italian Kitchen downtown. Very good Italian food at Trattoria, nonetheless.
Absolutely delightful: Conviction Kitchen Delilah’s. Particularly because I got to enjoy it with my Mom, Minna and Jay.
And of course, Arms Reach Bistro in Deep Cove (North Vancouver) is and remains one of my absolute favorite restaurants.
Other honorable mentions include also my partner for Father’s Day: Refuel Bar and Restaurant in Kitsilano. I *loved it*. More importantly, because I went there with my friends Lisa and Greg to welcome Jenny and Thad to Vancouver (they were visiting from Chicago).
Highlights in dining out in August 2010 include The Academic in the Broadway and Granville area.
The most amazing restaurant this month and probably this year was Milestones Crossroads on West 8th and Cambie. Milestones Crossroads partnered with me for my birthday, which was hosted by my good friend Minna. The service was absolutely stellar, and my birthday trended on Twitter in Canada. Go me.
For my birthday, JT took me to one of the great restaurants I had never been to, Le Gavroche. And it was spectacular. More important than the food was the company, and I adore JT to the bottom of my heart, but the food was just fantastic.
October and November 2010
In October and November I shuttled so much between Victoria and Vancouver that it feels like I was never actually anywhere for long enough. In Vancouver, I visited Sanafir again, as well as Piato Estiatorio in Kitsilano. New favorites in Victoria include Brasserie L’Ecole and Pizzeria Prima Strada. Especially that last one. But I never forget Rosie’s Diner, particularly because JT and I celebrated his birthday there.
December is a month of eating, and I’ve had fabulous dinners all around, including The Helm in downtown Vancouver.
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