canitrythat

Let me try that food… and then I'll tell you about it.

THE REEF

1018 Commercial Dr, Vancouver, BC

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The Reef has been around for a long time at its Main St. location, and just a few years ago a second location opened up on Commercial Dr.

The Reef has always been a fun spot. Decor is like a tiki hut/surf shop/beach shack, the music is reggae and they specialize in delicious rum cocktails available by the pitcher.

Stocked Bar

Stocked Bar

The Reef is a Caribbean restaurant, but it also makes a great breakfast, one of my favorites on the Drive. One of the best things about eating at The Reef is that they bring you these things called “Johnny Cakes” at the beginning of every meal. Johnny Cakes are these amazing little balls of deep fried dough… sort of like a donut hole, but more savory. And they come with coconut butter. They probably have about a million calories per ball, but don’t worry they only bring you one per person.

MMMMMMmmmmmmm

MMMMMMmmmmmmm

Sam Lords Breakfast

Sam Lords Breakfast:
Two free range eggs any style with your choice of bacon, veggie or jerk chicken sausage. Served with hash browns & multi grain toast.

Kingston Quesadilla:Flour tortilla stuffed with jerk chicken or with tofu (whole wheat tortilla), peppers, cheddar & refried beans with fresh tomato salsa & sour cream. Served with plantain chips or organic greens.

Kingston Quesadilla:
Flour tortilla stuffed with jerk chicken or with tofu (whole wheat tortilla), peppers, cheddar & refried beans with fresh tomato salsa & sour cream. Served with plantain chips or organic greens.

Thanks for breakfast Reef! It’s been too long….

NOM NOM!

The Reef on Urbanspoon

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ARGO

1836 Ontario St, Vancouver, BC

I had mixed feelings about writing a post on Argo Cafe. I was worried that if too many people knew about this amazing restaurant it would get too popular and I’d never be able to get a table, and the prices would go up. But then I Googled Argo Cafe” and realized everybody already knows. I was keeping a secret for nothing. Greedy.

For those who don’t know, Argo is a hole in the wall, off the beaten track. If you are having trouble finding it, look for the crowd of construction workers loitering on the corner. (OR, if you are looking for work as a construction laborer go stand outside the Argo, someone will pick you up).

Argo is open early, and closes early, so you want to get there for lunch. They’ve got a regular menu of standards; breakfast, burgers, clubhouse, chow mein, etc. But you must look past this to the “Daily Specials” menu. There you will find not one, not two or three, but ten or more (!!!) daily specials. And this stuff is gourmet! We’re talking duck confit , stuffed sole, salmon, LOBSTER!!! And now you’re thinking “so what?” or “I can eat that shit anywhere, I live in VANCOUVER!”. Well, the most expensive item on the “Daily Specials” menu is $12.50, that’s SO WHAT.

Justin had the Duck.

Duck with Blueberry Sauce.

Duck with Blueberry Sauce.

And I had the Salmon.

Teriyaki Salmon Salad

Teriyaki Salmon Salad with Mango Salsa

NOM NOM! Nuff said.
Argo Cafe on Urbanspoon

HARVEST COMMUNITY FOODS

243 Union St, Vancouver, BC

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The 200 block of Union street in Chinatown has changed a lot in the last couple years. The whole block is now filled with boutique shops and restaurants with the exception of one remaining Chinese clothing store and an autoplan brokers. Harvest has been around since last summer, but it took me until now to set foot in the place.

Wares

Wares

Harvest Community Foods is a combination of a market and a cafe, which seems to be the trend lately in this neighborhood. I don’t know why anyone would come here for the “market” portion of the business, as they sell a totally random selection of products, some of which border on ridiculous. (Two cups of rolled oats in a mason jar…. why?).

But I heard that they added a mean Ramen to the cafe menu, and on a cold rainy day it was just what we were craving.

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Ramen w/ pork belly, corn, egg, candied bacon.

Ramen w/ pork belly, corn, egg, candied bacon.

Hazelnut Rice Noodles

Hazelnut Rice Noodles

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The Hazelnut Rice Noodles I had were delicious and really filling! And it was vegan! The sauce was made of ground Hazelnuts and it came with smoked chili oil. Considering that there are quite a few Vietnamese places close by to get a cheap bowl of noodles, the price was kind of steep. But I’m a sucker for Asian food with fancy ingredients, so I quite enjoyed it.

I give Harvest a NOM NOM.

Harvest Community Foods on Urbanspoon

LIQUIDS + SOLIDS

1530 Venables St, Vancouver, BC

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Although this place looks like it’s been here about a million years, it’s actually a new addition to the Commercial Drive hood. There’s a lot of competition for cafes in this neighborhood, and I would have probably passed Liquids + Solids by if my friend hadn’t suggested it.

Liquids + Solids does soups and sandwiches, coffee and tea, cookies and frozen take-away soups. All of which is made on site. The soups and sammys are creative and tasty and most of all cheap!! I think it was about nine bucks for a panini and a soup. Not bad, not bad…

Daily soup selection...

Daily soup selection…

Tuna Diablo Panini with American Onion in Paris soup.

Tuna Diablo Panini with American Onion in Paris soup.

The French Onion soup was amazing. Great flavor! The Tuna Melt tasted a little off to me, but maybe it was just the “Creole” seasoning. I hope.

Montrealer Panini with Wild Part Soup.

Montrealer Panini with Wild Party Soup.

The Montrealer Panini had smoked meat and sourkraut on a hearty loaf. Yum! And the Mushroom soup was not bad either.

I’d go back to Liquids + Solids. I think they’re doing a good job and I hope they last in the hood. NOM NOM.

Liquids + Solids Cafe & Market on Urbanspoon

TANGENT CAFE

2095 Commercial Dr, Vancouver, BC

Tangent Cafe is the new restaurant at Commercial and 5th ave. Over the last 5 years there have been three different restaurants at this location. Commercial Drivers will remember Me and Julios, the fun Mexican restaurant with the cheap drink specials. They lasted 4 years. Next came Sorry Babushka, whose name had me expecting tasty Eastern European treats, but instead offered a weird 90’s club vibe and shitty drinks.
I had low expectations when I first checked out Tangent and was pleasantly surprised! The decor is fresh and new, the menu is creative and the prices are reasonable.

White Bark Ale Mussels

The menu is a mix of Western food, (burgers, salads, wings… ) and Eastern, which in this case means Malaysian. Kind of a strange combo, but it works. I went for the mussels with Yam fries. They gave me a LOT of mussels and they were tasty and fresh.

Yammies

Beef Rendang

From the East we tried the Beef Rendang. It was tasty and came with some spicy beans and buttery roti.

I give Tangent Cafe a NOM NOM. I can’t wait to try some of their other menu items. And I am happy to have a decent restaurant back at that location.
Tangent Cafe on Urbanspoon