Brunch at Commune

I’ve always thought it was a shame that most restaurants only serve brunch on the weekends. I love breakfasty foods, but can’t always get to them before the lunch service begins.

Which is why I was pleasantly surprised when I discovered Commune, a great downtown that serves brunch 7 days/week.

Tagline billed across the building “Those who eat together, stay together.”

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They have a simple, modern aesthetic. There are booths lined against the wall, but other than that there isn’t much for private seating.

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I wanted to try their vanilla bean latte. It was good, but I couldn’t really taste the vanilla bean. Was pretty much just a plain latte.

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They also have these really charming old school cola bottles. I actually really enjoyed the taste; not as sweet as your average coke, and less bite. Sometimes I feel like pepsi is burning off the lining at the back of my throat.

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For the main course, my friend ordered the bacon & cheddar omelette served with roasted potatoes, fresh fruit and multi-grain toast. He enjoyed the omelette, but the toast was a bit soggy.

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This is the tuna melt with split pea soup, made with aged white cheddar, tomato, cheese & herb. He said it was very tasty, with nicely dressed tuna and great creamy texture for the soup.

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I decided to go with the pulled pork eggs benedict: topped with beurre noisette hollandaise served with fruit and roasted potatoes. This was very delicious. The pork was well flavored and tender, going great with the eggs. The eggs themselves could have stood to be a little less cooked though (as I like to have the yolk still a bit runny in my bennys).

Overall, we enjoyed the experience as it was pretty decent eats with a nice atmosphere.

Commune Cafe on Urbanspoon

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Ballet & Thierry

Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve always wanted to go see a real live ballet rendition of The Nutcracker. It’s just such a classic.

Well, the other night I finally got my chance. We booked tickets to see it performed by the GOH Ballet Acadamy at the The Centre in Vancouver for Performing Arts.

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I took it as a chance to wear my new dress from Topshop, and topped it off with a classic high bun.

This was my first ballet, so I don’t really have anything to compare it to.. but I thought the performance was fantastic. My favorite part was having the live orchestra present; it really makes the experience seem so much more alive, and they played all my favorite Nutcracker classics with such aplomb.

After the show, we decided to go for dessert at Thierry Chocolate Patisserie Café. The place was packed.

Couldn’t get a table, so we just grabbed some goodies to go.

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We ended up getting a chocolate eclair, a piece of tiramisu, and a six pack of macarons.

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The tiramisu was pretty good, but quite pricy for the serving size. My favorite was the eclair. Nice light shell with a creamy thick chocolaty filling… mhm.

And of course, I had to get macarons. Because it was quite late into the evening already, they didn’t have much selection left. We just got a couple of each; hazelnut, chocolate, and caramel.

They had a nice chewy texture, with just the right balance of sweetness.

However, I do still prefer the ones from Soirette Macarons & Tea; they always have a large selection to choose from, including my all time favorite pistachio.

Does anyone else feel like Vancouver goes through such sweeping dessert fads?

First it was cupcakes… then macarons… and now I’d say that the current focus is on doughnuts.

What do you think the next one will be?

Thierry Chocolaterie Patisserie Cafe on Urbanspoon

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas everyone!

I hope you’re all having a great time relaxing, and spending time with loved ones.

Our tree finally got some presents underneath!

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For my days off, I decided to tackle a tiramisu recipe from scratch. It’s one of my favorite desserts, and I’ve always wondered how it was made.

 

Here’s a quick recap of my kitchen adventure.

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Decided to do dark chocolate shavings rather than cocoa powder dusting.

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I was bringing this to a Christmas dinner so I really wanted the presentation to be on point. I knew from past trifles that it can be quite hard to make the layering look pretty, so I went with a ladyfinger fence instead.

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Kinda just winged it from seeing pictures, but I think it turned out pretty well.

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There’s always time for a ribbon.

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I left it in the fridge overnight for all the espresso flavors to sink in, and voila!

Couldn’t believe how easy this was to make this intimidating dessert.

 

Christmas Lunch

Me and my girlfriends decided to celebrate Christmas with a lunch at Trattoria Italian Kitchen. We’ve been trying to coordinate a dinner for a while, but none of us have had time, so we settled for a little daytime get-together.

My outfit:

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I wanted to go for a Christmasy feel. Something colorful and cute with a hit of preppy.

My secret santa gift:

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When we got to Trattoria, I noticed right away that their lunch menu was a smaller condensed version of their dinner one.

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I saw a nearby customer with a dish that was served in a cast iron skillet, and immediately knew that was what I wanted. I guessed- and was confirmed by the server, that it was the tagine.

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Tomato poached eggs, chicken sausage, eggplant, sun-dried tomatoes, arugula, charred scallions.

It was delicious. Great combination of different textures, and the sausages had a nice kick. I used the bread to slop up the leftover saucy goodness.

Two of my friends decided to go with the classic eggs benedict. Served with crispy prosciutto, hollandaise sauce, and trattoria potatoes.

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This was pretty standard. Nothing to complain about, but nothing to rave over either. I thought the prosciutto was a nice touch, and the potatoes were very crispy (I hate when they come soft/soggy).

One of my friends decided to order off the lunch menu and chose a pasta.

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It was cooked al dente, and had a light refreshing sauce.

The last dish on the table was the lasagna, which I unfortunately forgot to snap a picture of. It was a passable dish, but I found it very mushy and one-noted. I have definitely had better lasagnas.

We had a great time catching up and exchanging gifts, and the staff were all good sports about taking pictures for us girls. I definitely want to come back on a Tuesday night for their 11$ pastas.

 

Trattoria Italian Kitchen on Urbanspoon

Flowers & Fable

It was me and my SO’s 2 year anniversary on Monday, and it started off with a surprise delivery of my favorite flowers to my work- so sweet!

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Then, I came home to find two more sets of flowers waiting for me at the door.

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This one is called The Guardian (according to the florist) so I figure it will be a nice addition to the bedroom.

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Later in the evening, we went for dinner at Fable Kitchens. It’s an open kitchen concept restaurant run by Top Chef Canada contender Trevor Bird.

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I was dying to try their canned tuna that everyone was raving about. Albacore tuna with olive oil, fingerling potatoes and a hint of lemon served with crostinis and rock salt.

Was absolutely amazing. Love the subtle notes of flavors and texture.

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More food.

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This is their Spaghetti and Meat Balls; duck meat ball over tagliatelle and mushrooms. When it first came I thought it was an egg! But the white layer on top is actually cheese foam haha.

As we cut it open, juices and sauce slid out over the pasta. I think this was my favorite of the night; so flavorful!

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For my main dish I had the special of the night which was potato crusted beef cheeks. My boyfriend had the flat iron steak.

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And finally, dessert!

We shared the opera torte: hazelnut dacquoise, espresso ice cream, and the daily sweet bites: pear puree eclairs, in-house baked cookies and macarons.

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It was an amazing day and a wonderful meal. I would definitely come back again, they have a unique and creative menu that’s executed perfectly.

Have any of you tried any new restaurants lately?

Fable Kitchen on Urbanspoon