Vancouver Foodster launches 1st Vancouver Soup Festival

In the midst of winter,  when nothing comforts like a bowl of soup,  Vancouver Foodster has introduced the 1st Vancouver Soup Festival.

From January 10 to 31, 2019, a different selection of soups will be featured weekly by each of the participating restaurants.

Over the three weeks, the public is invited to visit and try each of the soup entries and choose their favourites. The Vancouver Soup Festival will then have 3 sets of winners, with 1st, 2nd and 3rd place chosen each week over the 3 weeks of the festival. Week one of the festival is on now, until Jan 16, week two runs Jan 17-23, and finally week three is Jan 24-31.

When visiting the and tasting the restaurant’s soup entries, visitors are encouraged to tweet, post on Instagram or Facebook to share their favourite Festival soups, be sure to mention and tag @vanfoodster and #SoupFestYVR so others can follow along.

The weekly entries for the Vancouver Soup Festival include:

Week One:

Location: Moltaqa Restaurant, 51 W Hastings St. Vancouver
Soup: 
Harrira (Chick Pea & Lentil)

Location: Rhinofish Noodle Bar, 550 Main St. Vancouver
Soup: Hun Dun Mian (Wonton)

Location: Las Tortas, 3353 Cambie St, Vancouver
Soup: Pozole Verde (Mexican Corn Stew)

Location: Ban Chok Dee, 20563 Douglas Cr. Langley & 20395 Lougheed Hwy. Maple Ridge
Soup: Gaeng Liang Soup with Cheese Ice Cream (Kabocha Squash)

Location: Liquids + Solids, 901 East Hastings St. & 1550 West Broadway, Vancouver
Soup: The Naughty Thai (Coconut Chicken Curry)

Week Two:

Location: Moltaqa Restaurant, 51 W Hastings St. Vancouver
Soup: Bessara (Green Pea)

Location: Rhinofish Noodle Bar, 550 Main St. Vancouver
Soup: Shu Cai Mian (Vegetable Noodle)

Location: Las Tortas, 3353 Cambie St. Vancouver
Soup: Mexican Lamb Consomme

Location: Ban Chok Dee, 20563 Douglas Cr, Langley & 20395 Lougheed Hwy, Maple Ridge
Soup: Green Pea with Chicken Ravioli Soup

Location: Liquids + Solids, 901 East Hastings St. & 1550 West Broadway, Vancouver
Soup: Grandma’s Chicken Noodle Soup

Week Three:

Location: Moltaqa Restaurant, 51 W Hastings St.
Soup: Loubia (White Bean)

Location: Rhinofish Noodle Bar, 550 Main St.
Soup: Niu Rou Mian (Taiwanese Beef Noodle)

Location: Las Tortas, 3353 Cambie Street
Soup: Mexican Red Lentil Soup

Location: Ban Chok Dee, 20563 Douglas Cr, Langley & 20395 Lougheed Hwy, Maple Ridge
Soup: Tom Yum Hot House Soup (Thai Tom Yum Tomato)

Location: Liquids + Solids, 901 East Hastings St. & 1550 West Broadway, Vancouver
Soup: Garden Variety Chili (Vegan Chili)

For full details on each soup, participating restaurants and to VOTE for your favourites, visit vancouverfoodster.com.

West Village Cafe creates a community

Tucked into a shopping complex in Surrey, the recently opened West Village Cafe is an urban oasis in a suburban sea of chain store conformity. Even as you enter the bright, contemporary, cafe you are aware that you’re in for something good.

Arriving on a Sunday morning, West Village Cafe was bustling and alive with groups of friends and families socializing, studying and sipping a great smoothie, or coffee while digging into their brunch or lunch dishes.  Owners Paul and Jas, and their staff greet guests with friendly and fast service, creating a comfortable, welcoming room. Even though almost everything is housemade the small kitchen turns out food in a rapid pace, comparable to the fast food restaurant.  Paul, Jas and Chef Tim Cuff have created a menu which offers a diverse selection of Breakfast/Brunch, Salads, Soups, Sandwiches, and their speciality Rice Bowls, along with Grab-n-Go baked goods and drinks.  Ingredients have been carefully selected from local sources and the freshness is reflected in the taste.

My meal of the Turmeric, Cous Cous & Grapefruit Salad, with one of best classic Grilled Cheese Sandwiches was comforting and fresh. The AntiOxidant Smoothie and Chocolate & Peanut Butter Energy Seed Bar were a tasty, healthy combo to take on the road back to Vancouver.   West Village Cafe may be out in Surrey, (we wish it there was one near our Yaletown neighbourhood) it’s definitely now on our list of places to visit on a day out and a place to meet with friends in the area. 

West Village Cafe is located at #160 – 5620 152nd Street, Surrey BC
Visit westvillagecafe.ca to check out the menu and more information then make a visit in person.

Step up to The Livet in Victoria

On a recent visit to Victoria, the search for lunch lead friends and I to The Livet.  Stepping up the flight of stairs beside Discovery Coffee on Broughton Street, the Rooftop Patio is a welcoming surprise. While not open on this cold winter day, it was easy to see that this would be a downtown destination on a bright sunny afternoon or evening.

Opened in August 2016, by the crew behind the Van Mag Restaurant Award winning Stage Wine Bar, The Livet is a Charcoal Grill and Raw Bar.  Executive Chef Benjamin Berwick combines his experience in Japanese, Southern and Latin American cuisine to a menu serving fresh salads, soups and wraps alongside, juicy BBQ sandwiches and Latin tapas-style bites.

Sopaipillas with pebre verde

For our lunch, we started with the Sopaipilla; beautifully golden Argentinian fried bread made with squash and flour served with pebre verde. The Sopaipilla were a perfect starter, all three of us enjoyed the soft yet crispy discs, we could have easily made a meal out of them. For mains we each chose a BBQ sandwich, Pork Belly or Charcoal Chicken; tender, slow grilled meat on hearty breads or bun. My Pork Belly sandwich was topped with soft roasted yam which added a sweetness to the sandwich, contrasting with the bright cilantro.

On the side, the Papas Fritas with aioli were so tasty, the varying sizes of the cut potatoes made for small crispy pieces or roasted and seasoned wedges.  The side greens was a crispy bowl of lettuce and veggies in a nice vinaigrette. Daily soup on our visit was Seafood Chowder, a rich amber broth.

South Facing Rooftop Patio

All of us were impressed with our hearty meals and even though we’d been warned that grilling the sandwiches to might make them take a bit longer, we were still in and out in an hour. I look forward to visiting again to see what’s on the dinner menu and checking out the rooftop patio in the summer for an afternoon cocktail.

The Livet is located on the second floor above Discovery Coffee at 804 Broughton Street, across from Royal Theatre. Open for Lunch and Dinner weekdays and evenings only on weekends, call 778.265.3033 or visit thelivet.ca for more information.

Enjoy!

Noodle Mania 2016 Recap

Yesterday hundreds of hungry foodies slurped, sipped and supped on unique noodle dishes on Vancouver Foodster’s 3rd Noodle Mania event.

Photo 2016-01-06, 18 42 47
Platform 7 – Kitsilano

 

Starting off at Platform 7 on Broadway, we checked in to pick up our Noodle Mania Map Cards and were served up a choice of coffee drinks with one of their house baked cookies.

 

On 4th Avenue in Kits, we found Linh Cafe for Vietnamese inspired French cooking. Chef served a choice of Pho Bo – Hanoi Breakfast, Beef Noodle Soup with braised beef flank and rice noodles or Pho Xao – vegetarian stir fried rice noodles with oyster mushrooms, marinated tofu and fresh herbs and greens.

Next up, we headed up to Bubble Waffle Cafe on West 41st in Kerrisdale, where the newly opened Hainanese quick food Cafe served two of their very tasty speciality soups.  House Special – Fish Soup with Rice Noodle, Beef, Fish Balls, Vietnamese Ham, Siu Choy and Bean Curds or House Laksa, spicy Singaporean Laksa with Chicken Soup, Fish Fillet, Enoki Mushrooms, Vietnamese Ham, Siu Choy and Bean Curd.

A crowded U & I Thai in Cambie Village was next, serving up a dynamic duo of U & I Spaghetti Kee Mao with Chicken – a bowl of pasta tossed in a flavourful oil and herb based sauce with chicken, and Guay Tieow Tom Kha Gai – Coconut, chicken noodle soup with broad noodles.

Crossing over to the West End, Che-Licious on Denman presented a Zen Salad Roll – a tightly wrapped tasty roll of Tofu, Carrots, Cucumber, Lettuce, Pickled Daikon, and Red Peppers as well a bowl of Beef Pho – a savoury hot bowl of pho with rare beef, beef balls, tendon, tripe and onions

Finally, the recently opened Grotto Italian (a sister restaurant to Buckstop, another West End fave), hidden below street level on the west end of Davie, wrapped up Noodle Mania.  A tasting plate of two of their house made pastas; Squash Ravioli in sage and brown butter alongside Pan-seared Gnocchi on smoked Chicken and Mushroom Ragout

The 3rd Vancouver Foodster Noodle Mania successfully introduced us to a number of new players in the City’s noodle / pasta scene and some new foodie friends along the way.

If this sounds like an event that’s up your alley, check out the upcoming Vancouver Foodster Neighbourhood Brunch Crawls, part of the Dine Out Vancouver Festival, tickets are on sale now.

 

Ramen Danbo Vancouver

Happy Ramen!
Happy Ramen!

With the news that Ramen Danbo was coming to Robson Street, we decided we’d better check out what the buzz was about by visiting their original Kitsilano location for a weekend lunch.

We’ve eaten and tried ramen at a lot of locations and Ramen Danbo is right up there with the faves.

The small location doesn’t seat many and on a weekend lunch it fills up, but we only waited a short while to be able to be seated.  The fast and friendly service turned over the tables quite quickly, both Billy and I ordered the Classic Tonkotsu Ramen with an egg as an added topping. As well we shared a side of Pan-Friedn Yaki Gyoza, nicely cooked, plump and delicious.

Guests can choose the thickness and texture of the noodles so you get ramen the way you like it.  The Ramen Danbo specially purified water controls the quality and flavour of the Danbo broth, resulting in a flavourful and rich broth.

With the new Ramen Danbo opening on Robson Street today, I look forward to trying the other varieties of ramen and combinations of side dishes and toppings.

Ramen Danbo Kitsilano is located at 1833 West 4th Avenue, Vancouver

Ramen Danbo Downtown is located at 1333 Robson Street, Vancouver.

Homegrown Sustainable Sandwich Shop

Sandwiches, salads and soups are on the menu at Homegrown Sustainable Sandwich Shop, while that may sound simple and limited when they’re done well, they are a great satisfying meal. The philosophy at Homegrown is to create a wholly sustainable product, from the ingredients to the materials used to serves the meals upon. One hundred percent compostable and recyclable serving containers and utensils are an extension of their eat local, eat organic guidelines. Dining at one of their three locations, Capital Hill, my friend and I found the easy, satisfying and tasty bite. Simply choose a sandwich or salad, choose a size, add a side and savour your meal. I tried a Turkey, Bacon and Avocado; nicely roasted turkey breast, layered with bright green avocado, lettuce and crispy bacon between a dense multigrain bread. The soup on the side was a thick, rich, bean, potato and vegetable stew. Everything tasted fresh and perfectly assembled, making a leisurely sunny Sunday lunch in the open windows of Melrose Market.

Homegrown Sustainable Sandwich Shop has three locations; Capital Hill, Fremont and Queen Anne. Catering is also available for delivery to your home or office.

 

Sura Korean Restaurant

20120115-214122.jpgLocated on the west end of Robson Street amongst throngs of other eateries, it’s easy to over look Sura as just another Asian restaurant, rather you’ll find one of the best.
A comfortable, stylish interior welcomes you, as do a compliment of kind, helpful staff.
Each meal starts with three small amus20120115-214133.jpge bouche dishes to whet your appetite. The large, reasonably priced menu features a wide selection of Korean dishes; soups, noodle, dumpling dishes. Pork, Chicken, Beef, Seafood and Veggie dishes means something for everyone’s taste, from the spicy traditional Kimchi to simple and tasty Steamed Pork Bossam and Mushroom Bulgogi.

20120115-214149.jpgSura is located at 1518 Robson, fully licensed and open 7 days per week from 11am until late. For take out or dine in (no delivery) phone 604.687.7872