Dine Out 2014 – Market by Jean-Georges

Dine Out started 11 years ago (this year being the 12th), for this year, we decided to try Market by Jean-Georges Vongerichten, located in the gorgeous, fancy Shangri-La hotel in downtown Vancouver. Market was the first foray by Vongerichten into the Vancouver market and he is THE only Michelin starred (he has 3) chief who cooks/has a restaurant in the city so THIS was a must-try for us when we saw the restaurant on the list, 3 courses for $38? DONE.

When we got there, the restaurant had set up a role of tables against the windows that looked out into Thurlow for Dine Out guests. Complimentary bread arrived, thick, dense and very chewable, no photos because SO and I were still busy chatting.

Since I was on the verge of a cold and he wasn’t feeling like alcohol, we just ordered water then got down to the very serious task of food selection.

We both chose to start with the Seared Gulf Shrimp with Butternut Squash, Ginger and Basil appetizer. It was PERFECT. Might even be my favourite portion of the entire meal. The shrimp were amazing, just perfect…tender and juicy and the meat had that springy taste to it, not over or under-cooked.

ImageWe followed this with Steelhead on creamy truffle mashed potatoes for me and Soy and Sweet Wine Lacquered Pork Cheek for him. Honestly, I preferred his main course over mine, the fish was normal though the potatoes were creamy and fluffy at the same time – redeeming the entire dish. His pork cheek was done superbly, very tender and richly flavoured. Looking at the photos, I’m reminded of how tiny the portion of fish was. TINY.

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He ordered a side of Wild Mushrooms, they were a little sour for my tastes, he loved them.

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We topped all these with dessert, Warm Chocolate Cake for me, Panna Cota for him. He described the Panna Cota as “good” and since he wouldn’t share, it think he actually thoroughly enjoyed it. He also happily proclaimed “It JIGGLES” (so it was properly gelatinous), the moment the plate arrived, reason #2345787 why I love him. ❤

Now according to some bloggers, Jean-Georges is rumoured to have been the one who invented THE Chocolate Lava Cake as a dessert, then again others say he merely brought it over to North American and made it popular. Whatever the case, the chocolate cake oozed with liquid chocolate the moment I cut into it, paired with Vanilla ice-cream I loved it. Had to hand it off to my SO after 2/3s of it though, too full.

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All in all, I really enjoyed our dinner, service was pleasant and efficient, the atmosphere was cozy and warm and the food was just as good as hyped. Will go back for sure.

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And I leave you all with me, midway through dinner and super happy. Xoxo Stay warm, full and happy.

Eun ❤

Hawksworth

For our 2nd Anniversary, my dearest SO made reservations at this fancy-shmancy place downtown that we kept walking by all the time. Hawksworth. Now when he phoned in for a reservation, we were told that the restaurant was largely fully reserved and they could only slot us in at 530pm, with the table needed again for another reservation at 7pm. Lovely, getting told right from the get-go that this was basically a fancy sit and go place. Also, such packed schedules indicated excellent food (or really dull tastebuds). I must say, we were not disappointed.

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Hawksworth, From our table

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Hawksworth, Interior

And His and Her drinks (both non-alcoholic) – part of their Zero-Proof menu of non-alcoholic drink pairings that began in Oct 2012, the drinks will change with the main menu and will complement the Chief’s tasting menu. Crafted by bartenders with herbs and fresh juices.

My dearest SO had the kalamansi fizz and I ordered the blueberry lavender.

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Entrees

He ordered the angus striploin – slow cooked shin, smoked beet, sunchoke gratin, red wine jusImageI chose the Haida Gwaii Salmon – 
lobster truffle cream, crispy spaetzle, black trumpet mushroom

It was the Special for the Day.

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The Salmon

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Wild mushroom stuffing- came as an aside

Both entrees were superb, in presentation, taste and the quantity (surprisingly). Initially, the SO and I both laughed and commented on ramen after, as a filler, but really, after splitting the little crock pot full of mushroom stuffing (with potato chunks) and finishing our respective entrees, our tastebuds were delighted and our stomachs filled.

Being students, we then asked for the bill, deciding that desserts could be had elsewhere for well, less. in a very sweet gesture, these came with the bill.

ImageA couple of strawberry candy and rose macaroons. Perhaps treats from the Bel cafe, Hawksworth’s sister cafe, next door for poor hungry students. They were the much appreciated finishing touch to the perfect meal.

Total cost: A tad over $100 CDN….

While everything was incredibly enjoyable, the price of the food will probably keep these two students on ramen dates for quite a while before the next big milestone.

All in all, Hawksworth is a fine dining place, lovely to dine at on special occasions. the food is impeccable, the decor sleek and the atmosphere sophisticated. Made us feel like the 1%… 😛

Chill Winston

As I somewhat alluded to in the introduction, while this blog is largely going to focus on makeup and fashion…and other girly things, once in a while I will add in a little entry on food. Not much, just a (filler…I’m desperately trying to squeeze photo shoots of recently bought items…but life is getting in the way) little blurb here or there to document places I found rather pleasing. This is such a blurb.

Chill Winston

Price Range: Main courses, drinks and dessert (including tax and tips) came to just under $90.

Atmosphere: Quiet, big hole-in-the-wall restaurant in Gastown, bricked walls, soft dark furniture, subtle lighting.

Food was pretty darn tootin’ awesome, and in fantastic portions, unlike some fine dining establishments where one goes straight from it to the nearest Korean place for some filling Bibimbap. #Werolledhome

We tried Kangaroo meat and it came baked in a flakey pastry with some fried yam cubes (dbf’s choice)

Imagewhile I sampled their Jambalaya, with clams, sausage, prawns and deep-fried wings

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His (Juda’s Kiss, yellow) and Hers (Spooning Jesus, pink) Cocktails

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And we topped it off with a White Chocolate Mousse Cake, with Passionfruit MacaroonsImage

All in all, a really lovely place for a quiet, easy date night.

Here’s hoping this post finds all of you loved and fed. ❤