Sunday, July 8, 2012

On the West Coast --Vancouver, British Columbia

Did you know that Vancouver was named the world's most livable city? I can see perfectly well why it was named so. Our trip to Vancouver was absolutely fantastic and the weather cooperated with a 65-70 degree temperature all week. We stayed at the Coal harbor Marina in Vancouver. British Columbia has a brilliantly scenic location or so I've heard but I never expected anything so breathtakingly beautiful. The Waterfront east of Burrard Street and West of Stanley park which is one of the historical parks of Vancouver were walkable distance from where we were, so we did not deter from adorning a light jacket and setting off on foot. They say the best way to tour around Vancouver is on a rental by cycle but instead we took public transportation as our second way of seeing the far off places. Starting off with a breakfast at this beautiful Robson Street place called Cafe Crepe express we enjoyed a delightful crepe with honey along with eggs, bacon, sausage and hashbrowns. A frothy warm cafe latte  woke us up on the journey around Vancouver's spectacular metropolitan city surrounded by dynamic scenery and snow topped mountains.

The trip took us to Granville Island where the Public Market got our taste buds tingling again. Freshly baked goodies, fruit, vegetables, Italian spreads, olives, cheese and freshly sliced deli meats beyond imagination. This calls for a picnic lunch on the bay with freshly baked whole wheat bread topped with sunflower seeds, artichoke pate and green olives from 'La Baguette & L' echalote'

The Public Market at Granville Island

The Banana Leaf Malaysian Restaurant on Denman Street is a highly recommended South Asian restaurant in Vancouver, so R and I being food freaks we were determined to find out what this little place had in store for us. The nearest one to Coal bay was on Denman Street . It was challenging to order off the menu since one of us is lactose intolerant and the other a vegetarian. The service was excellent and with  a little coaxing from our friendly waiter we agreed on the $56 'tasting menu' for two. We were very impressed. It came out with a fresh salad of greens, tomatoes, papaya and mango tossed in a sweet lime dressing, followed by chicken satay and roti canai(although the dipping sauce was not as good as I expected). Also part of the appetizers was the mussel in coconut sauce a substantial portion of shellfish.

We were famished after the long walk along the Bay so the entree's brought out by the Chef himself was like a bountiful treat for the eyes and palate. The seafood curry with okra and coconut sauce, the slow cooked beef rendang with meat falling part in the brown gravy, the pan fried halibut medallions and I especially enjoyed the green beans with shrimp sambal. The nine course dinner had a side of turmeric rice and finished off with deep fried banana and ice cream. I will have to give it 5 stars for pretty much every criteria of fine dining. Taste, service and presentation!! The room was not too large or high end but just elegant enough to thoroughly enjoy a clean and comforting meal.
Fillo pastry at Acacia Fillo Bar
Now for my first experience tasting Bulgarian food at the Acacia Fillo Bar on Denman Street, Vancouver. I read about this little 'hidden gem' on 'urbanspoon'and it just grabbed my attention. The Spinach-mushroom feta Fillo with roasted yams and potatoes accompanied by a salad was worth every penny. The fillo is definitely home-made, buttery and fresh and I was truly glad I found this place. Although I was tempted to taste one of their 'bird's nest' desserts I was too stuffed after my meal and could not eat one more bite. So I looked through the glass shelf and asked the young girl at the counter about it. I was told that it was made from strips of phillo baked and topped with nuts, cream and fruit. Awesome!!

Besides food, the other highlights of our trip was a ride up to the ski slopes on Whistler Mountain, Shannon falls and Brandywine Falls. At the Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal we enjoyed a 90 minute cruise aboard the BC Ferry back and forth to Victoria Island the capital of Vancouver. The day was spent enjoying the glory of The Empress hotel, the capital building and wandering the little town shopping for souvenirs and enjoying ice-cream at a chain called 'Cow'. The sun sets late at around 9:30 pm, so if your day has been too long you can wind down by watching them make their own waffle cones fresh at the store.
Shannon Falls

Looking down from the sky car from my ride up the slopes of Whistler.

When we got back home, I decided to use the Pacific Salmon that I purchased from Vancouver to bring back memories of our gastronomic adventure. Our Sunday breakfast of eggs benedict made from Pacific Smoked salmon, english muffins, hollandaise sauce, perfectly poached eggs, scallions and slices of cucumber was so good that R did not push his plate away until he finished wiping the plate clean.
My eggs and smoked salmon Benedict!!


  1. I haven't been to Vancouver but I know they're a lot of Chinese immigrants there. Heard it's a great place to visit. How cool! Thks for sharing these shots, dear!

  2. A beautiful place! I'd love to visit Vancouver and British Columbia. Lovely food too.



  3. what beautiful pictures. I would love to visit there someday! Those eggs and salmon look delicious


It’s always a pleasure to get feedback from all our readers. Please leave your name or contact info. Thanks for stopping by!

Print Friendly

Print Friendly Version of this pagePrint Get a PDF version of this webpagePDF