Tasting Plates – North Vancouver – 23 July

As Tasting Plates go this one did not disappoint. I am yet to find one that does so if you are thinking about trying one out… Do it!Please keep in mind that if you don’t like a particular type of cuisine eg. seafood, then don’t go to one that focuses on that!Being in North Vancouver was a little bit of a push as we now live at West End, but who doesn’t love exploring a new suburb of your own city… Especially if you get to find some fantastic places to eat along the way.
Our route:-
Fullscreen capture 7242013 84655 PM.bmp
A – Café for Contemporary Art
B – Fishworks
C – El Matador
D – Gusto di Quattro
E – The District
F – Anatoli Souvlaki

G – Pier 7

Total walking time: 11 minutes – 850 metres – Around 1-3 minutes between each location.


We started out at the Cafe for Contemporary Art (@cafca140 – 140 Esplanade E).

Cafe for Contemporary Art

This is where everyone needed to register with their Vancouver Foodster/EventBrite receipts. There was a little bit of a line and we were running about half an hour late but they swiftly gave us our event cards that get stamped at each restaurant location.

Cafe for Contemporary Art

The decor was nice and we were told of a preview show that would be opening tomorrow (24 July). As we were there for the food we didn’t look around but instead made our way over to the first counter where we were given the option of a Thai Iced Latte (Espresso, whole milk, sweetened condensed milk, cardamom and kaffir lime leaf-infusion) or a Hibiscus Iced Tea (Caffeine-free. Lightly sweetened, hint of lime). I chose the Hibiscus and the two boys picked the Latte option.

Cafe for Contemporary Art

Then we were given our first Tasting Plate of the evening. Consisting of two Taquitos:-

A La Vida (Panco breaded basa, salsa roja, pumpkin mole, guacamole, onions & cilantro, creamy coleslaw) left and far right

and Rhonda-Maria (Spicy roasted yam, pumpkin mole, goat feta, habanero mango salsa, guacamole, lettuce) middle


The boys chowing down on our lovely taquitos…

 Cafe for Contemporary Art

From here we took a short walk up to Fishworks (@fishworksLOLO – 91 Lonsdale Ave) while we finished off our beverages.

The line….


Can you spot me in the reflection?


Upside down boat was a nice touch…


I was looking forward to the oysters on offer and they were delectable!

Fishworks IMG_7727

To my surprise they also featured a tuna morsel!



Another short walk… and we got a little lost… But found it in the end by the flags… El Matador (@elMatadorsocial – 131 Esplanade W)!

El Matador 

Here we were treated to

Chorizo Tapas (top) – a nice blend of flavours

a spicy shrimp pinxo (bottom right) – very spicy, not my cup of tea

and some tasty olives…

El Matador

Spilling out onto the street… Good thing it was a quiet street!!

El Matador

 From El Matador we could see our next destination Gusto di Quattro (@GustoDiQuattro – 1 Lonsdale Ave).

On the menu tonight was an ORI-TALIAN inspired noodle salad (roasted tomatoes, capers balsamic & pickled vegetables served in a pagoda box with crispy parmesan wontons).

Gusto di Quattro

I can’t understand why (and you can see my husband’s expression!) a typically Italian restaurant would serve such a dish. It was nice enough but not the spectacular offering I was expecting. We were told of by fellow ‘Foodsters’ later in the evening that this particular restaurant does amazing pasta and antipasto plates. Serve one of your signature dishes in a smaller serving and entice first timers to return again. You have a very small window of opportunity to capture the attention of quite a lot of ‘foodie’ people. This didn’t do it for me and I don’t know that I will be back based on this offering.

Gusto de Quattro Gusto di Quattro

The District (@districtsocial – 13 Lonsdale Ave) is was the only restaurant on our Tasting Plate list that actually gave us a little spiel about themselves… They are a Belgium style bistro… Nice, context! So what was on the menu for this evening? Patat Friet – a popular dutch snack – pretty much fries with a garlic mayo (aioli style) topping. However, they were really quite good. It did make me want to go back and try out more of the menu.

THE DISTRICT 1) Patat Friet in a paper cone with garlic mayo

Down the road, another very short walk away was Anatoli Souvlaki (@AnatoliSouvlaki – 5 Lonsdale Ave). The line here was quite long however this was a sit down venue, the feet were starting to ache so we were happy to wait a little for a nice sit down!

Anatoli Souvlaki

I can honestly say that this particular plate wasn’t the prettiest of the bunch, but some of their food was the highlight of the evening!

Anatoli Souvlaki

I also really enjoyed the ambience here…

Anatoli Souvlaki

Braised country lamb (top) – unfortunately the lighting made it look green so we were a little uncertain as to what it was until we ate it. It was cooked well, juicy and fell apart in your mouth.

Prawns in tomato feta ouzo sauce (bottom) – A excellent tasting prawn. Even with the feta ouzo sauce it still at its essence tasted like a prawn. *standout*

Spanakopita (right) – Spinach in filo… nothing to write home about.

Pita with Taramosalata (left) – quite lemony however nice and refreshing served with pita bread *standout*

NB: Wiki – Taramasalata is traditionally made from taramas, the salted and cured roe of the cod or the carp, though blends based on other forms of fish roe have become more common. The roe is mixed with either bread crumbs or mashed potato, and lemon juice, vinegar and olive oil. It is usually eaten as a dip, with bread and/or raw vegetables. The colour can vary from creamy beige to pink, depending on the type of roe used.

Anatoli Souvlaki

From here we strolled down to Pier 7 (@pier7restaurant – 25 Wallace Mews Road) and saw a very large crane.

Lonsdale Quay

For Tasting Plates we were seated upstairs and had a spectacular view of Vancouver across the harbour.

View from Pier 7

I missed getting a photo of the sangria how it was very nice and lots of ice to keep it cold. The food was nice, but nothing really stood out as being amazing.

Pier 7

 Herb marinated prawn with basil cream – a nice touch that they had cut off it’s little tail which meant no fishy hands. Still, the prawn at Anatoli tasted better.

Pier 7

West coast oyster with horseradish & mignonette – Nice and quite big. Think I enjoyed the oyster at Fishworks better.

Pier 7

Tuna Gomae – Again, nice offering but I would preferred the Fishworks equivalent.

All in all a nice evening out with my main man and our very good friend Jon. I think if we are in the neighbourhood again I would go back to Fishworks, El Matador, The District and definitely Anatoli Souvlaki!!



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