French · Restaurants · Seafood · Vancouver/Richmond

Vancouver – Cafe Salade De Fruits

L and I finished shopping in South Granville. Before spending the afternoon at Granville Island, I suggested we have lunch at one of my old haunts – Café Salade De Fruits. I’ve been dining here since it first opened, back in the early 2000s. For this post, let’s listen to Les Champs Elysees by Chantal Chamberland.

Located inside a French school, the atmosphere is cozy and quaint. The music is soothing yet energetic. The French speaking staff are professional and warm.  The day I visited, I recognized one of the original chefs and owners – Antoine Bonard – in the kitchen.

patio

We sat on the patio. I wanted a light lunch, so we shared a regular order of Moules Frites ($19). I ordered a glass of La Vielille Ferme ($10.50) while L predictably ordered a sleeve of beer ($10).

mussle

The fries were cut thin and short, with a crackling of salty goodness. I encouraged L to fork his fries and let it saturate in the broth. Friggin delicious. The fries remained crispy despite its creamy bath.

mus

The temperature of the broth was steaming hot and remained so throughout our meal. The broth was rich and fragrant with what I thought could be wine, cream, butter, shallots and lemon.

bread

The baguette was just as excellent as the mussels and broth. The crust was crisp yet chewy. The bread tasted clean, with soft, springy tissues.  I loved how beautifully the bread soaked up all the flavours in the broth. Our server saw that we finished all our bread and without any prompting, dropped off another serving.

sss

Despite how hot the broth was, each mussel remained soft and sweet until the very end. It’s hard to find a restaurant that can cook mussels properly. Too often, I find mussels are like rubbery bullets. You won’t find that here. This isn’t Salade de Fruits first rodeo.

end

The regular order was like a magical never ending pot of mussels. We were stuffed. L raved our seafood lunch at Cafe Salade de Fruits. I’m pleased that some things don’t change. I hope this cafe is around as long as I keep coming.

Cafe Salade de Fruits Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Bars/Lounges · New York · Restaurants · Seafood · Special Occasion

New York – Cookshop

After our meal at Tim Ho Wan, we shopped in Chelsea. We were still stuffed but Beep Beep had reservations at Cookshop. She wanted to go because Sandra Bernhard took Taste Makers here to eat tacos. Beep Beep was also impressed that Cookshop prints off a new menu every day based on what’s seasonal. What I love about about this restaurant is the superb service and how welcome we felt. For this post, let’s listen to Beauty and the Beast – “Be Our Guest”.

Beep Beep was enchanted by the enthusiasm of the male host – he practically sung his greeting. Our male server – also of Asian heritage – was quietly charming. The quality of his service didn’t suffer when we told him we were too full from our last meal and just wanted drinks. He smiled, nodded and told us to enjoy our evening. He didn’t try to push any extra food or drinks or rush us out. Now I get why Americans tip so generously. When the service is that exceptional, I’m happy to tip well.

menu

Beep Beep and I ordered six oysters ($4 each) and two glasses of white wine ($11) – Alvarimmo Nortico, Portugal 2017. The wine paired well with the seafood. There wasn’t much meat to the oysters. I wasn’t impressed and I’m from landlocked Calgary.

oysters

Beep Beep and I shared the Steamed Bouchot Mussels ($15). At first, I thought bouchot was a type of broth. Nope – it’s a method of growing mussels. This was one of the best things I ate on the trip. The sauce of Dijon mustard, white wine, chile and garlic was delicious. The combination of the crispy, buttered bread and that sauce was downright decadent.

mussels

Look how full and fleshy the mussels are! I’ve never eaten better tasting shellfish in my life. Each morsel was super fat and bursting with juice. When I told our server how much I loved the mussels, he brought over extra bread.

mussel one

Beep Beep said if she lived here, she would dine here at least once a week. She raved about the quality of the food, the value, and the taste. Beep Beep and I both agreed that when we return to New York, we’d come here for a full dinner and brunch.

After we left, we went to a subway to get a 7 day unlimited week pass. There was a man who offered to help and show us which button we had to press. He took three dollars from Beep Beep’s change and told her it was for a sub sandwich. When it was my turn, I blocked him while I bought my transit pass. As the change came out, he reached in before I could and said he would take three dollars as well. He was so pleasant about it, Beep Beep said to let him have it. I guess this is part of New York’s charm? Got to give that guy credit for hustling so politely.

Cookshop Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato