Sunday, December 12, 2010

Acme Cafe

I love trying new things, and with the abundance of restaurants in Vancouver, I don't often repeat a restaurant.. so the fact that I have been to Acme Cafe 3 times this year really says a lot..

Located on Hastings, this little cafe looks a little out of place next to the model stripper shoes store, sketchy ass country bar across the street (where a friend of a friend got stabbed at..), and save on meats to the left. Walking in, you are greeted warmly by the staff into a room of brown and white booths and circular bar seating. with pies and other delectable goods placed by the cashier, you already know this will be a good meal.

The first time I was here it was after a massive hike and I needed somethin to refuel. I ordered the turkey sandwich with the broccoli slaw and chips. I fell in love. Cranberry sauce + turkey is my weakness. but what I hate the most is either -super mushy turkey or too much cranberry sauce, not enough turkey. Well neither happened and it was a great sandwich for 12 dollars. It came with a broccoli slaw that I really liked because I liked the raisins, giving it a sweet component I don't usually expect in a slaw, and the chips were very crisp. It was great. Friend decided to eat a sandwich he made prior to our trek . whatever, his loss. The cafe was still relatively new, and there weren't a lot of customers on that day.

The second time I came here, it was very packed, I had to wait about 10 minutes for a booth. Wanting to try something new, I ordered the meatloaf sandwich with the lovely slaw and chips. Friend had the mac and cheese and we both liked our meals. We also ordered a piece of apple pie to share since I've heard raves about it.. unfortunately we weren't a fan because it was cold :(

The 3rd time we came here was before the game where chicity absolutely schooled the canucks (I am a hawks fan). Everything by rogers arena was packed (for obvious reasons) but luckily acme only had a few occupied seats. Ordered the good ol turkey sandwich and I remembered why I liked it so much all over again. friend had the roast beef sandwich and cheddar broccoli soup that was finished in less than 15 minutes. jesus. I think he liked it. maybe.

I really like this cafe, and if ever I am in the area again, I will most likely come back and try something new- like the shrimp and guac sandwich or tuna :) I like the color tones and service has always been warm and friendly every time I've been here. I've recommended this little cafe to many others, and they've all had nothing but good things to say. I guess 12 dollars for a sandwich meal is a bit steep, but everything is made from scratch and quality is great in my opinion. and with 7 dollar crappy ass on the go sandwiches (I am looking at you starbucks) being sold nowadays, I think acme is fine. I really like the abundance of "new"er restaurants popping up around gastown- meat & bread and calabash bistro are also must-trys if you haven't yet :)

Acme Cafe on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

L'Abattoir & Pair Bistro

So sorry for the lack of posts.. So I've been back in Vancouver for a couple months now and have been eating out more than ever.. which completely goes against my "stop eating out after chi" promise but I just can't help it.. too many restaurants..too much good food! I promise more posts.. both from chi and van soon :)

L'Abattoir is a relatively new restaurant (well, in my books anyways). Located in Gastown, it is adding to the abundance of foodie choices with Cork & Fin, The Diamond, Boneta, Irish Heather...etc

Room is 2 floors, with the bottom being the bar serving up some unique and fresh cocktails. There is also a room in the back that seems more secluded and private. We sat upstairs overlooking the bar. I usually try not to eat the bread served at restaurants but L'Abattoir offers 3 different breads that I couldn't help but devour it all. oi.

I ordered the duck, friend had a salad. I loved my dish. Duck was perfectly cooked and the sauces/garnishes went very well with it. The salad was unique and extremely fresh. For dessert, I asked Paul, the gm, to surprise us. He picked the chocolate dessert which was very very decadent. Dinner was great, couldn't have asked for any better. Though a friend of mine recently went and recommended the scallops and wings, and the tapioca dessert.. which I will have to get next time I go. Service was great and accommodating. I was very happy.

Pair Bistro on Urbanspoon I went to Pair Bistro this past week. It has been on my to go list for quite some time now but it's a bit far for me .. I am so glad we went though , this restaurant embodies "pacific northwest" to a t. The restaurant is decorated with Native American art and proudly boasts the use of locally grown ingredients from all over BC.. from Chilliwack cornbread, to Wapiti Elk, to Kettle Valley Lamb.. it was quite refreshing.

I had the peace region bison ribs which were very tender accompanied with cornbread and salad. The blackberry sauce was different but added a sweet component to the usual smokey flavor of bbq sauce.. I like. The cornbread was soft and crumbly, while the radish slaw was extremely fresh. Friend had the shellfish medley from Cortes island which were very beautiful and tasteful. What a neighborhood gem, it's a must try for locals/tourists alike.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Cupcake Insanity [Chicago]

As I wrote before, I had almost 30 fricking cupcakes in Chicago. That's basically like one cupcake a day for a month! gosh! I am home and luckily I only gained 2 pounds. I thought I had gained at least 10. Anyways, here is a compiled list of the cupcake madness I went on in Chicity. I think I m only missing like 4 places. Get ready to freaking drool if you love cupcakes.

The first one I ever went to was Swedish Bakery in Andersonville. I really didn't mean to buy a cupcake here but that was what the worker there recommended me getting. Now this is a nice little bakery.. but I didn't find there goods to be very traditional.. especially if you are recommending the red velvet and chocolate cupcakes to me and not having any fresh cinnamon rolls around. The cupcake was large, but it wasn't very good in my opinion. it was rather sugary.

I went to Sugar Bliss Cupcake Boutique located in the loop after lunch at elephant & castle one day(whyyy did I go there, when they are in vancouver. ugh). It is rather new and filled with beautifully decorated cupcakes. They also have mini ones if you can't have the whole thing. They have a good selection of cupcakes, unforunately the pretty flowers they decorated on my cupcakes fell off when I got home :( They weren't bad, not super good.. but this started my cupcake craze..

I found More which was only 2 blocks from my apt. They don't have a ton of selections at the counter, but here, it is quality over quantity. The cupcakes are a bit more expensive but you can find some very different unique cupcakes here.. including Blt, lemongrass, etc etc. On the day I was there, I chose the white chocolate and chocolate marshmallow. What can I say? they were both HEAVENLY. I really wanted to come back here and try the rest of the flavors.. but there were too many other cupcake stores.. on to the next one!

Everyone in Chicago raves about Molly's Cupcakes. Everyone I talk to asks if I've been here so I knew this had to be a to-go place for me. Stepping inside, I see them hard at work making a batch of frosting for their cupcakes and I was already smiling. The place is extremely cozy serving all kinds of cupcakes. Delicious! I really liked that they had incoporated real fruits in the cupcakes, and the frosting on all 3 were absolutely to die for.

Another popular recommendation I received was Sweet Mandy B's. The shop is really cute but I personally found the cupcakes to be rather normal and nothing out of the ordinary..

We decided to have a picnic at the contemporary arts musuem one tuesday because they have jazz in the back. I brought the cupcakes and I decided to try out Swirlz. She was extremely gracious and kind but the cupcakes was a complete letdown. It was expensive and they were nothing amazing. Especially the "surprise" one which wasn't much of a surprise at all..

Sensational Bites is located by Southport. It is an extremely cute store with lots of delectable goodies. I got 3 cupcakes- red velvet (my staple), cookies & cream, and strawberry lemonade . unforunately, they didn't wow me like the first couple places I went to.. :( A week after, my friends tell me of a place called Southport Bakery and Cafe where, they only serve vanilla and chocolate cupcakes, but they are SO good people line up for them and there is a limit to how many each can buy. Dang, I wish I had stopped by there..

The day Sprinkles Cupcakes opened, I heard there were lineups down the street, for blocks, for this place. I was going to stop by after work, but in fear of the lines, went to Hershey's Chocolates down the street instead. The cupcakes are SO cute, with chocolate bar sticking out. I also got a smores bar, and I think of all the cupcakes I've had, these here at Hersheys were by far the sweetest!! Every bite was sugar.

I made a point to go to Phoebe's Cupcakes and got ABSOLUTELY lost and ended up giving up on this place and going for banh mi instead, but the banh mi I wanted to go to was extremely sketch so I wandered to Cupcake store after an hour.. and I am really glad I tried this place. Though I haven't heard much raves or reviews for them, This has got to be hands down my favorite cupcake store in Chicago. The cupcake was So fluffy, So moist, So Perfect! I was in love.

I finally stopped by Sprinkles at 4pm, and the line up was a little more bearable. Funny I actually tried to go to Sprinkles back in LA but we got lost and went to Spago instead (I get lost quite often, it adds to my adventure). I bought 4 cupcakes here just to see what the hype was about. They were pretty good. Very moist cupcakes, but I don't know if I would line up for blocks for this place..

Fox & Obel is a supermarket that supposedly has great cupcakes too. They are MASSIVE! I had to eat it with a fork but it was alright. The Last place I tried was Sarah's Pastries & Candies located near More and Sprinkles. Their selection of cupcakes is not as large, but I got a vanilla buttercream.. and it sure lived up to it's name. the frosting was EXTREMELY buttery.. felt like I was eating butter..

I also bought some cupcakes from Twisted Baker the last day for my coworkers. I also heard great things from here so I hope they liked them!

And to top it all off, here's a giant massive cupcake I decorated when I shadowed the pastry chef for a day at one of our restaurants. gawwgeous. hahah