Friday, April 30, 2010

No Food Blog Should Ever Exist Without The Mention of Phnom Penh

#35 at Phnom Penh and an order of their famous chicken wings. Filet Beef on Rice with an Egg - you HAVE to order it with a runny egg. Every man and woman needs to try this dish before they die. It will never be duplicated. The sweet beef sauce smothered with rice, fresh veggies, mixed with the egg, drenched in the fish sauce, I will never get sick of it. This night, we ordered 5 #35's and a plate of chicken wings to share. Oh and their awesome lime soda (darnit, forgot to take a pic!). My friend KL made a NY resolution to try everything on the menu in 2010 so I will be sure to update you on his flavorful findings. Also a quick shout out to my pal EM who helps me to 'broaden my horizons' when ordering. You just can't go wrong with this place!

Phnom Penh on Urbanspoon

Thursday, April 29, 2010


Who doesn't enjoy a great snack or two once in a while? Yummy, I devoured this very bag of chips yesterday after going on a snack binge at Daiso last week with some gal pals. These okonomiyaki flavored Calbee chips are so good! They taste almost exactly like the real thing! My recommendation would be to go to Ma's Clubhouse for a good authentic okonomiyaki and stay very far away from them at The Eatery.

Now watching a movie wouldn't be complete without a good ol' bag of popcorn. With butter. Layer the butter - even better (a tip that my friend MA taught me). And when the butter runs out, make sure you ask for a free package of seasoning at the counter! White Cheddar is my favorite. Plus with a Scene card, get 10% off on all concession goods! Check out the butter stains on the bag, haha.

My all time favorite office snack. Having a bag of rice crackers around, sure is handy. These are the gigantic sized ones that I purchase from London Drugs around the corner. One negative, they're super crunchy and loud so be aware of your neighbors!

And yes, this IS a snack. We actually had this for a 'snack and dessert' after a meal at our beloved Phnom Penh! We all ordered the #35, filet beef on rice with an egg, ate half of the dish, saved the rest for lunch the next day and drove to McDonald's for sundaes, and in my case, shared fries and a cheeseburger with my piggy sisters. I just can't eat the fudge sundaes without dipping their salty fries into it! A perfect post-clubbing-drinking snack fosho!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Let's Just Face It Y'all, I Ain't Cut Out To Be A Vegetarian

The Foundation Veggie Burger. The 2nd time I've had a no meat burger (1st time from Urban Fare). I'm sorry but I think I just fooled myself. Every time I bit into the burger, I expected a moist, juicy chunk of meat. Beef, chicken fish, anything! And that's why I think I was disappointed. I even tried to coat it with cheese, but refrained from adding the veggie bacon. It ain't just for me and I'm not afraid to admit it. However, their fresh salad with homemade mango/papaya (?) dressing and sunflower seeds was really yummy!

We also shared the Hummous and Yam dips. Generously served in mountainfuls, the yam dip (which tasted like it was straight up pureed) is a must try - Give it a whirl!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Freakin' Fantastic Flavors at Flying Tiger!

I have to admit that I'm always a bit hesitant going into a new tapas style restaurant because I never know if I'm going to be full at the end of the meal. I understand that the purpose of these restaurants is to go with friends, share a couple plates to get a taste of each item but when I'm paying way more than I planned AND walk out wanting to get some McNuggets, there's something wrong with that picture. On the contrary, The Flying Tiger served its justice. It was one of the best 'new restaurant experiences' that I've had in a while. Talk about ample portions, plenty of flavors from all over the Asia grid, and of course the factor that sealed the deal -the Entertainment Book coupons. You're going to see the word flavor a lot here, becasue really, it's all about the flavors!
We started off with the Crisp Thai Squid, up top served with a succulent dipping sauce.
Next we had crispy but soft Roti Canai (2 pieces each) dipped in Malaysian yellow curry. SO flavorful!

Have you ever had Filipino pork skewers before? My first experience was at the annual Salmon Festival in Steveston and they are just bursting with flavor and excellent marinade. A close competition for my mom's own bbq marinade. Yum, a must try.

And here I go, gaping over the juiciness of beef short ribs - again. Here you see the Grilled Korean Kalbi Ribs served with kimchi. There were probably at least 10 ribs piled on top of each other, but were quickly inhaled, mainly by yours truly. The tender, moist and fatty combination is a 10/10 for me. A definite highlight of my night.

For our 'entrees', we shared the Panang Curry with tofu and veggies and the Hawker Street Noodles. Both dishes were dynamite in their flavors and plentiful for sharing. The Flying Tiger is definitely not asian fusion food gone wrong.

For dessert, we shared the flourless chocolate cake and the green tea panna cotta. Both bursting with decadent flavors. A great way to end the evening ineed-y.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Cheese Will Keep Us Together, Mozzarella and Cheddar (Love that Commercial!)

Cheese makes the world go 'round. I love cheese with a passion. I can almost add it to every meal I have. Everything just tastes so much better! Pasta, rice, burgers, bread. Sprinkled cheese, melted, grated, toasted. MMmmMmM. Above is the four cheese burger at Milestone's - DELISH! So dang good with Cheddar, Mozza, Feta and Goat. You also MUST pair your meal with their Miami Ice drink, iced tea with mango puree and mint - super refreshing! Also, keep your receipt, fill out a quick survey and get a free appe with your next meal! (You can also do this at Swiss Chalet)

Had to sneak in a picture of my 'chicken nacho bake'. Simply baked with crushed tortilla chips, salsa, sour cream and marble cheese. Of course served with Uncle Ben's wild rice, chicken flavored. (No comment on someone's KD mac n' cheese, haha)

My first time having fondue at Au Petit Chavignol and I was a little disappointed. I am a bit biased however, because I am not a fan of Gruyere, especially cave aged gruyere, ugh. The cheese was extremely strong and potent and I can't rave too much about the accompaniments either. We had it with onions, cornichons, potatoes and tons of bread. BUT, when we turned off the heat and the cheese hardened, it suddenly became 100 times tastier! And, I did enjoy the mac n cheese a lot (despite the small portion). We also had the duo of dips (indian spiced eggplant and white bean with olive oil) - definitely forgettable. In conclusion, I much prefer my cheese fondue experiences at AfterGlow.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Always and Forever a Pig at Heart ... Even at Work!

Let me tell you about the night where I almost passed out at dinner because the beef short rib was SO delicious. It was at the new Vancouver Convention Centre for the Life Sciences BC Awards Gala and when the entree was served, I was in food heaven. Talk about love at first bite - literally. I love my beef extremely tender and the fattier the better (I know that may gross some people out). It just soaks up the juice so well!! I couldn't stop talking about this dish to everyone that night. I was obsessed with the flavor. Honestly, it was so amazing that I would pay big bucks to eat it again. If you ever get the chance, DO IT UP at VCC.

I must say that 1 perk from my job is that I get to try foods at hotels, convention centres or events that I wouldn't normally get the opportunity to. It's strange when I pull out my camera to take a shot, but I just have to sneak at least 1 to remember the goodness. Above, we got to dine at the Image Group luncheon provided at the TOPS show, also at the Vancouver Convention Centre. It was all you can eat featuring mustard crusted lamb and sesame coated salmon. Yum! I don't know what it is, but free bread and butter is always so satisfying.

This recent Indian Food Coma was had on Friday with a few of the gals from work. We took a short stroll to Salam Bombay on Thurlow street and gabbed over fresh naan bread, butter chicken, tandoori chicken, seafood curry, lamb curry, saag paneer and my favorite, eggplant dip. All you can eat for $15.00 - what a steal!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Doggie Treats and Something Sweet

My friend MR adopted the sweetest and buffest doggie just a year ago and she decided to throw him a 1 year celebration! (There's always an occasion to have a Dairy Queen ice cream cake!)

Here he is, sporting his brand new muscle tee from his momma.

A party ain't a party until we all don some Otis party hats.

Here is where the food comes in. Lovely MR baked Otis a birthday carrot cake!!! Check out those peanut butter paws!

Yummy, I had to throw this in. This treat was actually from our Thai night a few days ago. A caramel apple coated with English Toffee and almonds, seriously to DIE for. $9 full of goodness from The Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory on Robson.

And here is Otis' long lost son, I swear. Cute 'lil Rocco wearing a baby sweater from Value Village. His only doggie friend at the doggie party.

Pumpkins Aren't Just for Carving, They're for CURRY!!!

Man oh man, I go cuckoo for this curry! My friends MR and JG introduced me to this amazing pumpkin red curry from Take Thai Home on Commercial Drive. I am a regular fan of red curry but made with pumpkin? It's heaven I tell you. Moist, flavorful melt in your mouth consistency. Poured over some healthy quinoa, with a side of pad thai and tofu veggies, WOW. We were in a food coma that night.

The dinner host MR never, EVER, disappoints with her alcoholic beverages. That night we had coconut pineapple martinis. Dangerous because it tastes like juice but hits you hard.

MR also introduced quinoa into my life. A great substitute for rice, this seed is a healthy replacement and I hear it makes you quite regular. Not that I need help in that department anyway, haha. It's a staple at our weekly get-togethers. That and a special song we sing into the intercom as we buzz in. Thanks to KL, MR and JG, the '4 best friends' sure know how to do it up with our food adventures!!!

Friday, April 23, 2010

A Shout Out to Sushi

I am definitely no sushi expert but Sushi Town, Sushi Garden, Sushi California, you name the time and place, and I'm there! Talk about really affordable, giant rolls and speedy service. I likey. Above, is their coveted Alaska Roll drizzled with that finger lickin' good 'miso sauce'.

I also love me some spicy salmon sashimi everytime I'm there as well. For me, there is a huge difference between plain sashimi and when it's marinated in that sweet/spicy sauce tossed with cucumbers and radish. It's THAT much better. Now it would be rude of me to post these pictures up and not mention my pals SC and JY who are so madly in love with sushi, it's crazy! So here I am, giving you some sushi love.

Yummy, I much prefer my dynamite 'roll' in cone form. Can't get enough of that prawn tempura ... everyone should give it a whirl. As for that unagi nigiri - barf. I hate the taste of eels and always think of Ursula's comrades as I bite into it. Poor Ariel.

Another recent sushi adventure I had was at The Eatery. While I love their wide selection and funky as hell decor, their sushi is just okay. Their famous 'Captain Crunch' roll is above, deep fried and all, but it just doesn't hit the spot.

However, that night, we went for it. We ordered the deep fried Mars bar with ice cream and boy, did it not disappoint. MmmmMmm, I'd do it again. Yes I would.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Phancouver is Born

The inception of Phancouver. How did it all begin, you ask? It all started on a stormy night at an old all girl's school - literally. We sat around, talking about food for 2 hours, writing down a list of must-eat-at-restaurants in Vancouver and something hit me. My friends have been urging me to start a food blog for some time now, but it was an inexplicable rush that took over me right then and there. It was as if the stars aligned for me as I sat across from my good friend SC (fellow foodie but mostly a fashionista) who helped me in launching this blog, and my other dear friend RW who broke the silence with the ingenious name 'Phancouver'. So here is my official shout out to them for inspiring me, to inspire you ... with food!!! PS - check out that huge tray of roasted veggies that we devoured that evening. Also the same night we had the Grapples. =)

Linda (Phan) is the Man

The best part about my sister moving out (sniff sniff), is going over to her place for dinner! Now let me tell ya, she sure knows how to satisfy your stomach. Always prepared with healthy portions (and a healthy salad of course), plenty of sides to choose from, awesome beverages and to top it off, she uses her finest china on us. We are treated like kings and queens. Above, you will find her noted salmon with dill, lemon, S&P topped with tomato pesto, steak, Uncle Ben's rice (our fave), corn, fried rice (my mom had to bring that of course) and a salad. MmmMmmm, it's no wonder my brother-in-law gained a few pounds since meeting her. =)

The picture above features her yummy-looking (and I say this because I wasn't invited over for this dinner so she took a picture of it on my camera to rub it in) pork tenderloin with lemon sauce, roasted potatoes and buttered baby carrots. DROOL.

Another family dinner with Linda's braised short ribs, Uncle Ben's wild rice (chicken flavored) and my famous 'beets 'n' sweets' (sweets meaning sweet potatoes).

Last but not least, an amazing mac 'n' cheese coupled with fried farmer's sausage and onions. Plus a tiny greek salad at the top left. More from the kitchen of Linda Chau to come...

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Pay the Price, for the Nice ... Fresh Fruit!

Working downtown has many perks. Good shopping, great restaurants, and having Urban Fare on the same block. Although their prices are a bit steep, some of their items are well worth it. 4 Grapples for $5.99 = a price my mom would complain about. However, the juicy grape aroma that breathes from these grapples are heaven. I put them right on my desk, just so that I can catch a whiff of these babies. I also need to point out that I don't even usually like eating apples, but I love apple juice. Paired with raspberry/blackberry fruit tarts (also from Urban Fare), this light treat is perfect for a summer dessert.
PS - The grapples were also featured in my homemade salad below in the Swiss Chalet post. It was divine.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Just Can't Get Enough of That Good Ol' Swiss Chalet

So I have to dedicate my very first blog post to Swiss Chalet. It just never lets me down. The portions, the flavors, the tenderness of the chicken. I get excited every, single, time. I know it's considered to be 'old people's food' but I just can't get enough of it. The best deal EVER is to order a family pack amongst 4 people. (Or like we used to do in daycamp, between 2 people, haha.) You get 1 whole chicken, cut into quarters, 4 sides, 4 buns, and of course, substitute the Chalet Sauce for gravy (unless you enjoy the taste of feet). It's only $24.99!!! Swiss Chalet will always have a special place in my heart - I even ordered it for my birthday dinner once. That's how much I love it.