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Mar 9, 2012 01:14 PM

Quick Takes on Visits to La Quercia, Abattoir, Ensemble and La Brasserie

I spent a few days at our second home in Vancouver last week and four evenings visiting new and old restaurant venues, to wit:

La Quercia -- I am a big fan and never miss the opportunity to dine at this bistro when I can get a reservation (which can be a challenge). I won't lose faith, but this was not a particularly successful visit. A crispy sweetbread appetizer was just okay and a fresh pasta dish sauced with clams and mussels did not work at all. Still, the service is excellent and the welcome as good as anywhere in town.

La Brasserie -- Again, I am a regular here. This time I sat at the kitchen bar, which is a blast (how do they keep all the fried onions from falling off their pyramidal hamburgers?). The German charcuterie platter was terrific as was a scallop dish served in a slightly Asian style broth with a saute of wild mushrooms. One of the best meals I've had at this Davie Street place.

Abattoir -- My first visit. The restaurant has a lot of buzz. Good house-made bread, an interesting warm steelhead trout and crisp potato salad; then a solid, if not exciting version of steak diane. All in all, worth another visit. First class cocktail to start, and the wine list is solid.

Ensemble -- This restaurant also was new to me. I tried the lobster caesar salad -- a super starter -- and then the pulled pork sandwich with a side of fries, both of which were excellent as well. The plates are fairly small, but two were enough for a light dinner.

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  1. Thanks for you reviews.

    1. I'm going to La Quercia tonight for diner with family so I'll report back.

      I've had the Warm Steelhead Salad at L'Abattoir and it blew me away, totally unexpected as I thought the combo would be just ok when I ordered it.

      1 Reply
      1. re: eatrustic

        Yeah, great reports PR! I've been jonesing to try that salad, will put it top of list now for next nice meal out.