I came across a photo of Bao Down Snack Bar’s chicken and waffles and rounded up my co workers to go for lunch even though it was a bit of a walk from our office. They don’t have the chicken and waffles for lunch but they did have a similar fried chicken dish.
Bao Down Snack Bar is the third restaurant that spawned from their first venture in Gastown and actually, this location is literally around the corner from the first location! Lunch hours start at 12pm and we were their first customers. It wasn’t busy at all when I was there but they do take reservations. Read more
The owners of food truck Le Tigre finally opened up a brick and mortar location last summer and it received a lot of buzz. I finally had the chance to check it out in the up and coming neighbourhood near the edge of Chinatown. I had heard about how busy they were so I made sure to go super early. The day I went was dreary and rainy so I was actually their first customer! I’m just an eager beaver when it comes to food.
The plate was a really artsy looking piece of wood. Read more
The Union is named after the street it’s on at the edge of Chinatown. It’s hipster looking with long wood communal tables and lucky for us, we sat by the window and had a great view of a dumpster outside since the Union is right next to an alley. They do Asian fusion food.
My friend had the Lychee Mimosa with prosecco and candied chili. There was a big piece of lychee at the bottom! You can just taste a hint of spice at the end. Read more
I recently visited the newly opened Tacofino in Gastown. I have actually never tried Tacofino before… They have one side which is a Taco Bar and only open 5pm-12am and a Burrito Bar open 11am-12am on the other side. Since I went for lunch, I didn’t get to try their taco bar but the burrito bar side has one fish taco option if you do go during the day. There was a small counter for ordering once you walk in and there was a substantial line up when I got there.
I was tempted to try their gigantic Chocolate Diablo Cookies ($3) sitting in a jar on the counter but I resisted! Despite the long line up, the wait wasn’t too bad and they’re pretty efficient.
All their burritos are also available as a bowl for the same price. It just doesn’t feel like a burrito to me if I get it in a bowl though (tried that once at Chipotle when I was trying to be healthy). I ordered the Chicken Kaarage Burrito wrapped in a flour tortilla with chicken karaage, rice, black chili mayo, sriracha, cabbage, cilantro and guacamole.
I love chicken kaarage so this Japanese-Mexican fusion burrito hit the spot for me! It was love at first bite. Super crispy chicken was in every bite and the flour tortilla was surprisingly soft but sort of chewy too. The chili mayo and sriracha flavours were subtle but still took the burrito to the next level. Guacamole was mentioned in the description but I didn’t taste much of it. The cabbage and cilantro tasted crunchy and fresh with a hint of lime.
If you love fried chicken then this is the burrito for you! Why didn’t someone come up with this sooner? It’s slightly pricier than your average burrito but I thought it was worth it.
The General Public is the sister restaurant of the ever popular Eatery on W Broadway. I had a bit of trouble finding this at night because they have a black awning that blends in with the store next door and I didn’t see any obvious store sign. The interior was almost as funky as the Eatery but it was also newer and cleaner looking. However, it was really dark and hard to see the food so please excuse the horrible pictures. I’ve only been to the Eatery once and that was a while ago so I’m not going to compare them but like The Eatery, the menu had some interesting creations with funky names.
We started off with the Bacon Striptease which was four pieces of egg and flour battered and fried bacon drizzled with maple syrup and spicy mayo. I think it looks a bit oily here but maybe that’s the maple syrup on top? The pieces of bacon looked big from all the batter but I don’t think it was actually that big. It tasted mostly like syrup and spicy mayo instead of the saltiness of bacon. We still enjoyed the crunchy and sweet combination but I wouldn’t order it again.
On the left we have Sushi PIzza Bites which were deep fried rice patties topped with spicy tuna. These were not bad but it seemed a bit pricey to me and not that special. On the right we have the Japanese Fortress which had spicy tuna and cucumber rolls topped with yam fries and mayo. The yam fries were really good and there was a decent amount too! It was probably better than the roll itself. I also noticed that the rice was falling apart and it looked like it was cut in a sloppy way. Maybe they thought they could hide it under the fries. In the front we have the Tataki Attack which had avocado, crab and scallop wrapped in seared albacore tuna. I didn’t really notice that the tuna was seared but this was a pretty good roll.
We also had a Pork Katsu Donburi but it was flavourless. We had to add copious amounts of soy sauce to it since the breaded pork was on the drier side and had no flavour and the rice was in large dry lumps… It could have used a lot more sauce and there was a lot of rice.
It’s an interesting place to try but it’s mostly for the ambiance and not the food.