Monday, January 19, 2015

Dine Out Vancouver 2015: Kitsilano Brunch Crawl

On Sunday, me and my boyfriend went to yet another Dine Out Vancouver event. Organized by Vancouver Foodster, this event is special in that it's an organized brunch crawl featuring six locations in Kitsilano. I've been to quite a few restaurants in Kits but luckily all of the places included on this food tour were new to me. Check out what I ate.......
1st Stop: Momento Coffee
We traversed all about 4th avenue and each location had a set sample menu we got to try. First up is modern cafe called Momento Coffee. The place is actually in the middle of a renovation so it looked a little barren but the owners were super friendly.
We were each served a cup of fancy black Panama Esmeralda coffee with cold oats and our choice of a croissant or pain au chocolat. The cold oat is made with a mix of oats, greek yogurt, chia seeds, and mini chocolate chips. It was pretty fulfilling but I wish it was sweeter. The coffee was very light, it almost tasted like a strong tea.
Cold oats, pain au chocolat, and Panama Esmeralda Coffee
Cold oats close-up
2nd Stop: Linh Cafe French Cooking
Linh Cafe French Cooking is a french vietnamese fusion restaurant. Here we tried the Nem spring rolls made with pork, mushroom, shrimps, and glass noodle. They are crispy on the outside and the filling had a good meaty oomph to it. The spicy baguette sticks were mini baguette pieces cut in half like a sub sandwich and inside are some liver pate with house-made sriracha sauce. I really enjoyed the creaminess of the pate and I would eat anything if it is dipped in sriracha!
Nem spring roll and spicy baguette sticks
In addition to the spring rolls and baguette, we were treated with some peanut macarons. The texture of these macarons are quite different from the traditional French macarons. With the thick peanut filling, they had a very chewy texture. I liked them enough though, the peanut flavor works well in sweets.
Peanut macarons
3rd Stop: Novo Pizzeria
At this classy pizzeria, we had the Novo breakfast pizza made with fontina cheese, smoked pancetta, salumi, and a sunny side up quail egg with a side of arugula salad. The pizza had a nice and crispy crust but even with the quail egg it felt very ordinary; it lacked sustenance. The arugula was quite lovely as it was tossed with blood oranges that gave it a bittersweet tang. For dessert we had a mini pistachio cannoli, which was definitely the star of this location.
Novo breakfast pizza, pistachio cannoli, arugula salad.
4th Stop: Krokodile Pear
One of the hippest place on this crawl, Krokodile Bar is an organic juice bar that sells healthy concoctions in mason jars. Here we received samplers of the English Bay and The Rockies.
English Bay is a blend of orange, grapefruit, lemon, mint, and cucumber. This stuff is the essence of juice cleanse, one sip takes me back to when I did the 15 day juice cleanse. The cucumber is very, very prominent and I for one am not a fan of cucumber juice.
The Rockies is a almond milk blend filled with chia seeds. I liked this one although it still tasted overwhelmingly healthy. The chia seeds, though, did give an otherwise bland drink some bite.
English Bay (left) and The Rockies (right)
5th Stop: Rain or Shine Ice Cream
Immediately after the juice bar, we visited the famous Rain or Shine Ice Cream parlor where we had a chance to shake off the healthy aura and indulge in some creamy goodness. We both tried the Blueberry Balsamic flavor with a dash of crumbled waffle cone. The blueberry is very sweet and yummy but the balsamic vinegar flavor is nowhere to be found. Is the place worth a hype? I'm really not sure as every ice cream bar I've visit never seem to stand up to their crazy high cost per scoop. I think I'll stick to my supermarket cartons.
Blueberry Balsamic Ice Cream with crumbled waffle cone
6th/Last Stop: Darby's Public House
Alrighty, after filling our stomachs with breakfast and dessert, we made our way to Darby's Public House. As its name suggests, this place was a real pub, with TV screens everywhere playing some sport game. Aside from the super loud environment, what we ate was actually quite delicious. I had a hanover hash, a mini egg benny, and a "Huevos Rancheros", which was mini tortillas with cheese and bean filling. The hash was crispy and it paired nicely with the hearty breakfast sausage slices. I liked the tortilla as well, it was sort of like a mini burrito, without the spanish rice of course.
Hangover hash, traditional egg benedict, and mini huevos rancheros
Whew, that was one heck of a food crawl; I definitely visited more place in one day than I've ever had. In terms of food I really liked Linh's Cafe and Darby's Pub but the pub is not a place I'd return simply given how crazy loud it is in there. The juice bar is too hip for my taste and the ice cream was overhyped. Momento Coffee I liked quite a bit and would check out again once they finish with their renovations. All in all, this was a pretty awesome food crawl. Getting to try so many places in one day is simply unbeatable!
There are still four more upcoming Brunch Crawls in Vancouver, tickets are $40 per person. Check the out here.

Momento Coffee on Urbanspoon Linh Café - French Cooking on Urbanspoon Novo Pizzeria and Wine Bar on Urbanspoon Krokodile Pear on Urbanspoon Rain or Shine Ice Cream on Urbanspoon Darby's Public House on Urbanspoon
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