Vancouver Foodster Best Chicken Wings Challenge – Recap

From June 8 – 29, Metro Vancouver restaurants offered their own unique entries into Vancouver Foodster’s Best Chicken Wings Challenge.

Like all Vancouver Foodster challenges, the chefs were invited to be as creative as they like to highlight either an already existing menu item or create a wholly unique dish for their entry.

In the 2017 Best Chicken Wings Challenge, seven chefs plated their take on chicken wings, resulting in a great diversity of flavours to sample.  The wings were served at nine different eateries from all across Metro Vancouver, from Langley to North Vancouver.  The public was encouraged to try any or all the Best Chicken Wings entries and then vote on Vancouver Foodster’s website for their favourites to be crowned People’s Choice Best Chicken Wings.  A panel of media judging, including myself, was also busy trying all the selections to choose the Judges’ Choice Winner.  Sabai Thai’s flavourful Deep Fried Tom Yum Wings came out on top of both lists. Visit vancouverfoodster.com to find out the top three winners from each category.

The entries of the 2017 Best Chicken Wings Challenge were (in random order);

Maru Korean Bistro – North Vancouver
Koritalian Snow Wings – crispy, sous vide cooked, parmesan topped wings

 

 

Preston’s – Downtown Vancouver
Comox Chicken Wings – dry rubbed or wet sauces classic whole wings.

 

 

 

House Special – Yaletown
Food Court Wings – wings two ways; hoisin and five spice flavoured served as a food court two item special with rice and veggies.

 

 

 

 

Ban Chok Dee – Maple Ridge & Langley
Massaman Dragon Wings – elaborately presented under a coconut smoke-filled glass cloche, a stuffed wing with rice berry and more in massaman curry

 

 

 

U & I Thai – Cambie Village & Mission
Red Wings with Thai Herbs – mildly, spices dry wings on a slaw of green papaya

 

 

 

 

Storm Crow Tavern – Commercial Drive
Rick’s Elusive Szechuan Sauce Wings – wet and sticky, szechuan sauce coated wings with a sharp spice cooled by the sour crema

 

Sabai Thai Restaurant – Guildford, Surrey
Deep Fried Tom Yum Wings – crispy, mildly spicy, wings served with a sweet dipping sauce and coconut rice.

 

 

 

 

Vancouver Foodster Taco Crawl – recap

A sunny autumn evening was a perfect occasion for Vancouver Foodster’s first Taco Crawl.  The selected Vancouver restaurants created their take on their best taco bringing a balance of flavours and styles for the Taco Crawl patrons.

TacoCrawl_img_8927Meeting at Kalai’s Dosa Hut on Fraser Street we collected our Taco Crawl cards and menus.  Then we sat down for Dosa Hut’s unique variation on the taco, taking one of their signature dosas, and wrapping it around a nicely spiced tomato chicken (or vegetarian) filling.  Watching some of the other dishes and massive dosas coming from Chef Kalai’s kitchen made us put Dosa Hut on the list for a return visit.

TacoCrawl_img_8949Over in Cambie Village, we had a traditional pair of tacos from the always reliable Los Tortas Gourmet Mexican Sandwiches.  Soft tortillas enveloped rich, barbecued pulled pork or Mexican Zucchini, tomato and cheese.

TacoCrawl_img_8943Across the street, Tmix Tea & Dessert served up another unique ‘taco’. Tmix brought together hot and cold for a sweet taco. Wrapping one of their hot-from-the-griddle bubble waffles around ice cream.  From the list of a dozen plus flavours we settled on frozen brulée banana and red velvet cheesecake. The warmth of the waffle softened the frozen flavours enough to make it a soft ice cream sandwich or more like a burrito.

TacoCrawl_img_8955Downtown La Catrina Tacos, said to be Vancouver’s Best Mexican Tacos, presented another pair of traditional style tacos.  Hot tortillas piled high with filling; Papas Mexicanas – Mexican potatoes drizzled with cream and Res En Cascabel -zesty braised beef cooked in cascabel chili sauce. Add hot sauce, pickled onions, hot peppers to taste and make the tacos your own.

TacoCrawl_img_8963Getting into Patron Tacos & Cantina just before the Canucks and Whitecaps let out, let us wrap up Taco Crawl with another pairing with another unique ingredient.  Cochinita is tender, braised pork butt with achiote paste and onion. On the other side Nopales, the tender new leaves from a prickly pear cactus, were cooked with corn salsa and topped with cheese. Served with refried beans to add to the filling or eat on its own.

While we may think we can never get enough tacos, the Taco Crawl certainly satisfied us with great tastes for the evening.

If you missed out on this great tasting Vancouver Foodster event, get your tickets now for Tasting Plates Yaletown on October 19th.