Chef Andrew Fung heads the kitchen team of this restaurant, which emphasizes upscale dining with casual ambiance. The kitchen is very visible from the dining area where the chef puts the final touches on each individual plate that comes out.
Chef Vinod pre-ordered for us and we had our choice of red or white wine to start with. The starter, tuna with asian noodles was mildly flavored, just enough to tease the palate. A healthy salad of fresh greens, berries, and cashews came next. For the main course, the chef chose to serve a “surf and turf” plate with hoisin-glazed Alberta short rib, beef tenderloin and spiced prawns, with a giant onion ring, and baby carrots. It was a bit heavy but very satisfying. To cap off the meal, a cardamom pannacotta with brandy snap and lemon curd was served.
After the meal, we were taken inside the kitchen and saw that everything, even the stocks, is made from scratch. The kitchen is well-organized and very clean since it is in plain view of the guests. The flow of food, from cooking to plating to serving, was very much orchestrated so there was no hustle and noise from the kitchen.
As for food trends, fusion was evident since Chef Andrew has Chinese roots. Healthier options are also offered, as in the case of Mrs. Varshney who is vegetarian.
NAIT’S training restaurant was named after the father of a couple who donated a million dollars to the school. We had a two-course lunch, with a very light salad with prosciutto chips and pears, and short rib with baby carrots and potato mash. The salad was okay but the serving of the entrée was huge. I assumed that since it was lunch, it was a smaller portion. Apparently, it’s not.
Food offered was fusion, highlighting local produce as in the case of BC hazelnuts. The server offered the healthy menu for the day which was a quinoa salad. The only fault I noticed in the menu was they didn’t have a seafood main course for those who wanted a lighter meal. But according to Chef Vinod, the students were on their first day so they didn’t want to offer an elaborate menu. The prices are very reasonable for such an upscale menu since they only need to hit 50% food cost.
UNDERGROUND TAP AND GRILL
It is the nearest non-fast food restaurant in our hotel and we usually have dinner. They have specials on Mondays to Thursdays, 3pm onwards, both for food and drinks.
For a typical drinking place, they have a good variety of menu items which I think has a better offering than other fine dining places. The food, honestly speaking, is better than hotel food in terms of taste, temperature, presentation and doneness.
We usually go here every Monday night for the $10 steak dinner, which includes AAA grade Alberta steak, and salad and potato all you can. I’ve also tried the wings, the bison burger, even the scallops with Asian slaw and so far, all the dishes I’ve ordered were good, freshly prepared, and reasonably priced.