Monday, July 17, 2006

My Weekend Up North, Way North! Vancouver Eats Part I- Boulangerie la Parisienne, Taylorwood Wine, Go Fish, Mondo Gelato

Do you have certain friends you like more than others? Well I certainly do. I rank my friends according to their taste in food. No, just kidding. (Well kinda...shhh!) Anyways, my friend Laurie from Vancouver is a good food friend because we both had eating training in Japan as we both taught in Osaka for two years. Our lives as English teachers in Japan entailed us to be a part of a very homogeneous, and ultra-conservative society called Japan's Education system. Boooooring! So it's not a surprise that we had to rely on exterior things like food and fashion to make-up for the boring 8 hours/day of crap we put up with. Laurie knows good food and I like her for that. Well, she's also really sweet and she also cares about me. But I really like that she knows good food. When Laurie came down to LA in January, I pretty much stuffed her with all the grub that I could possibly fill her with and then threw her back on a plane with a higher cholesterol count. Now that I was in Vancouver, she was ready to get me back...Vancouver style.

Simply beautiful and incredibly metropolitan, Vancouver is where nature (big green trees) meets a posh city. My short weekend trip in Vancouver was packed with non-stop Vancouver information provided by Laurie, my #1 Vancouver buddy. From the moment I jumped off the plane the "Oh Canada! Tour" began. Laurie was an awesome host and drove me around ALL around Vancouver. I may not remember all the places Laurie showed me...but I'll definitely remember the food.

Friday Day

The next morning, I woke up next to Laurie exhausted from our first night of my Oh Canada! Tour. Fortunately, we had no schedule to go by and Laurie was eager to deliver some oishii (yummy) Vancouver eats. The weather was great and I was ready to get my grub on.

Vancouver's low 80's was perfect for this LA heat struck mama.

Our first stop was an area called Yaletown. Yuppytown...I mean Yaletown, is a Warehouse District turned trendy after Expo 1986. Trendy lunch spots, small boutiques, poshy high-rise condos...that's Yaletown for you.

For breakfast, we headed to Boulangerie la Parisienne for croissants and coffee. I'd tell you how much breakfast was, but I forgot to exchange my US currency. IDIOT!

My ham and cheese croissant was super yummy...melt in my mouth delish! I wish I had more time to try out their breads and infamous Pain du chocolat. Yum.

After breakfast, I told Laurie that I'd like to do some wine shopping for some Okanagan Wine. Laurie responded, "Sure, we'll drop by a liquor shop today."

"LIQUOR SHOP??? Girl...I said WINE, not Alize!"

Apparently, Vancouver liquor stores are different from what we have down here in LA. Vancouver, and also all of British Columbia's liquor stores are government run and actually carry good wine. Back in the day (according to Laurie), during a short period of time the government gave out alcohol licenses to privately owned wine shops. After that period, no more privately owned shops were allowed. So now there are two places you can get wine. 1) Governement liquor shops or 2) The few privately owned wine shops.

Luckily, we ran into Taylorwood Wines while strolling Yaletown. This wine shop was sooo fun. I felt like I was 8 again shopping at Sanrio Surprises. I was sooo giddy! Anyways, I walked away with a 2002 Mount Boucherie Pinot Noir Ice Wine and 2003 Gray Monk Pinot Noir. I gave the Ice Wine away as a gift, but I still have the Pinot Noir for opening. I can't wait!

After Yuppytown, we headed to Granville Island to a new popular local cheap eats establishment called "GO FISH." According to Laurie, Vancouver fell in love with the establishment the minute this shack dropped onto the Fisherman's Wharf. Chef Gordan Martin buys fish fresh from boats anchored a few yards away. Everything about this place is fresh. Well...supposedly.

Oishii Eats LOVED their tempura battered fish-and-chips. So fresh and so clean! I also ordered a BBQ Oyster taco. BIG MISTAKE. What was I thinking? The oysters tasted so not fresh, so not clean. I pretty much spit the oyster out. Baaah! I hate wasting food. But I'd definitely go back for their good, even after throwing up oysters.



After throwing up the oysters, I was still hungry. I think it's time for some gelato! Yum! Ferrero Rocher and Pistachio gelato at Mondo Gelato on Robson Street kept me happy. Thanks Laurie for a great Friday day!

No one's ever cranky with gelato!

*Stay tuned for Friday night eats and my Saturday Belgium affair.

Boulangerie la Parisienne
1076 Mainland St.
Vancouver, BC
(604) 684-2499

Taylorwood Wine
1185 Mainland St.
Vancouver, BC
(604) 408-9463

Go Fish
False Creek's Fisherman's Wharf
1505 W. First Ave.
Vancouver, BC
(604) 730-5040

Mondo Gelato
1222 Robson St.
Vancouver, BC
(604) 694-0108


Kirk said...

Hi Jeni - Hope you have a fun holiday...that's what they call it there, right! And don't slip and fall on your bum....

BoLA said...

Hey Jeni! Great post! Ooo...I wanna go to Vancouver!!! hehehe! Can't wait to see and read about the rest of your mini-holiday. ;)

Renee said...

Hi Jeni,
I love Yaletown and Mondo Gelato too. I also make it a point to stroll Robson (I usually stay at my Grandpa's place which is just off Robson and close to English Bay) and grab a scoop or two of gelato. :) Pistachio and Hazelnut are my staples.
Did you get a chance to have Gu or Hapa Izakaya? I guess I'll find out soon enough. Last time I was in Yaletown and dining at Blue Water, the then prime minister of Canada and his whole security team showed up. It was quite the experience... when I realized if anyone were to try to attack him, I'd be caught in the line of fire!

Tokyoastrogirl said...

I looooooove Vancouver. Do you think Laurie could adopt me and my husband so we could become official Canucks? I want to defect and your photos just convinced me even more that Vancouver is where I should be!

Jeni said...

Kirk...yes...I had a great holiday! haha...why would I fall on my bum???

BOLA...the good stuff is coming!

Renee...thanks for reading. Yes, Yaletown and Mondo Gelato were super yummy! I had a lot of fun eating in Vancouver! More eats to come!

TAG...haha! Whenever I love something...I have to slur it with tons of O's...LOOOOOOOVE! Vancouver summers are incredible. didn't get dark until like 10:30 pm! Caaarazy! Laurie had this really cool magazine, "Vancouver Eats". I think they publish it yearly, but they've got sooo many places to eat. It's pretty incredible how people there stay thin there. Glad you enjoyed the pictures!

Kirk said...

Sorry Jeni - I used to work with many Canadians...and just always loved the way they say bum....

Jeni said... that I think of Canuck friends do say "bum" a lot!

rick james said...

love fish and chips... those look mighty good too.... mmmm...

ya know, i always think to myself.... man, its only been a couple hundred years, and the only thing the Brits can contribute to the culinary world is Fish and chips??? thats it???

i mean this is kinda sad, but thats probably why you never see an English Restaurant (just pubs!) and you never see an English Cook Book at Williams Sonoma. i bet if you found one though it'd only be like..... one page.

and here we have Fish and Chips.. the end.

sorry to go off like that... well... not really... ;p

Jeni said...

Rick James...The cookbook would be 2 pages. You forgot that the English brought us Yorkshire Pudding...the unhealthiest bread you can ever make!

But I agree with you Crazy Man, all they really can offer is Fish N Chips. But that's ok, cuz I love me my Fish N Chips!

PS...we miss our Random Burrito! When are you gonna come out???


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