Warning: include_once(notifications.php): Failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /var/www/wptbox/wp-content/plugins/wp-content-copy-protector/preventer-index.php on line 18
Warning: include_once(): Failed opening 'notifications.php' for inclusion (include_path='.:/usr/local/lib/php') in /var/www/wptbox/wp-content/plugins/wp-content-copy-protector/preventer-index.php on line 18 Restaurant review – Nals and Kells Do:
K ordered Surf n Turf which was absolutely delightful. Steak was well seasoned, tender. Lobster tail was tenderly delectable.
N took cliffsnotes🔗 (haha) on an old phone. Unfortunately, the old phone died. And now the only menu available is the COVID-19🔗 #socialdistancing🔗 takeout menu. N can’t remember what she ordered, and none of the takeouts quite capture the dish.
The fish was perfectly cooked and well seasoned with amazing sides.
Friendly and attentive but not up in your grill.
Reminded us of an old-school mansion, some large round family-style tables, roomy.
¹We were tucking into our plates when this flashy dude walks into the restaurant with his mum and pops. K recognized him as Canadian magician Murray SawChuk, who has a residence in Vegas. (Of course we gave him a shout out on IG🇨🇦.)
I was craving seared scallops. When I ordered it, the staff said that this would burn the outside while leaving the inside dangerously raw. I usually eat seared scallops or sashimi-style so this was news to N (as well as K). Not sure if it was due to USA’s FDA guidelines¹? But I wasn’t going to argue.
I got the Hawaiian combo with salmon, jumbo shrimp and mahi mahi because it had a bit of everything. Kells got the Surf n Turf with lobster tail and steak. We also ordered a side of charbroiled² scallops. And of course a couple beers to wash it all down with.
The sides (rice pilaf, coleslaw) were nothing to write home about. The fish needed a bit more citrus but good. Shrimp was on this side of being rubbery. Scallops were okay. Lobster and steak were good.
Surf n Turf
Charbroiled scallops & Shock Top beers
Was friendly. Food came out in a timely manner. (Staff bring orders out to tables.)
This location was in a strip mall, so parking was a-plenty.
Not a destination eatery. But, if you’re in the area and hungry for a casual atmosphere… sure it’ll be fine.
Read about our other Palm Springs adventures and reviews here
We had no reservation and came at dinner time. We were seated outside the kitchen, but with a view of outside patio. This was a great vantage point for people-watching. Restaurant was dimly-lit restaurant. There was that comforting din of murmurs, cutlery clinking, busy-ery. Walls were decorated with pictures of crooners, The Godfather, other Italian ex-pats. There was also a piano player and singer. Our pony-tailed curliqued friend was really good!
Efficient, pleasant but not too chit-chatty. They were incredibly observant. As they were leaving or coming back into the kitchen, various staff picked up our excess dishes, or offered cutlery. I love when people work as a team. This makes me feel supported, and like anyone on the team can (& will) help.
Starter: Crab-stuffed Mushrooms. These were good but not stellar. All dinners also come with garlic toast. This was toast-tastically flavourful, crispy. We had to get a second basket.
Nals’s dish: Risotti Con Funghi. Nals isn’t into shiitake but this dish wasn’t shiitty at all. Risotto was delightfully toothy. “Sauce” was creamy and just coated the rice for perfect separation and flavour. And the con funghi flavour was bang on!
Kells’s dish: Ravioli d’Aragosta: delicious vodka horgonzola cream sauce with 3 large freshly-made ravioli. These monster ravioli were filled with mega lobster. Good flavour contrast of sauce and filling.
Dessert: Chocolate Lava Cake a la mode. Moist, flavourful and rich. Worth every bite.
Recommendation is 100%
Hands down, no question: if you are in Palm Springs and want a delicious Italian dinner: you must go to Castelli’s🔗.
It was hella busy in February due to skiing. So we had to wait for over an hour for a table. Either make reservations or be prepared to be placed on the wait list. Mozart will text you when your table is ready.
The ambience and service
Despite the fact that it is quite a large space, it felt quiet, rustic and cozy*. Service was good**. Note that you have to walk up steep-ish stairs. If there are folks with mobility issues, inquire ahead about alternative entry routes.
Varied meats and European fare. Some veggie options. Drinks menu contains typical beers, wines and mixers as well as other surprises.
Our food and drinks
Cutie T & I ordered flights (of beer), which were mostly delicious. For dinners, Kells ordered her usual spaetzle and schnitzel. Cutie T & I couldn’t decide. So, we ordered the Platter for Two. The meals were fantastically delicious with large American portions. The 3 of us were starving. We also have large appetites. And, we couldn’t finish our meals.
The Platter for 2
Schnitzel & Spaetzle
Protein of The Pf2
Yes you must definitely go! K has been here a few times and each time it has been wonderful.
If you need to kill time before your table is ready, take a boo at the varied boutique shops along Front Street.
Footnotes * “Cozy” is partially due to dim lighting. So, our photos aren’t crisp and fabulous.
**American and Canadian restaurant service is different. Canadians are a bit more doting. (Not annoyingly so.) However this was also the end of a busy day, near-ish to closing. Everyone must’ve been tired. We waited a bit long for our drinks and asked our server a couple times about it. Our meals also seemed to take a while. But definitely worth the wait!
Nals and the Mr felt like a spot of brunch one weekend. And, we happened upon Bruncheria Cafe … so in we went. And we were not disappointed.
Hey guess what?! N&K has a new contest starting later today. For more details on the “Win a $50 Bruncheria Cafe Meal” Contest Rules, just click here.
Casual seating, some areas have wooden benches with comfy cushions. It’s a large airy warmly lit space. Kitchen area is blocked off by a waist-high counter but you can watch the cooks prepare your meal. The service is easy going and friendly. Their inspiration is to have a family-style brunch atmosphere with a European twist.
The menu has changed since we were last there. Besides the usual delicious fare like Bacon & Eggs and Berry Cream Pancakes, they offer a Yo-conut Yogurt Fruit parfait, Sweet Toast Trio and Pulled Pork Pancakes. The Sweet and Spicy sounds fascinating.
Bruncheria Menu has delightfully unusual items and combinations. And the menu itself is laid out well: pictures with clear descriptions
They have a bevy of beverages: made-to-order espresso drinks, teas and cold drinks.
We both ordered Bacon & Sausage Omelette with a side Greek Salad.
Food was delicious. Plates were well seasoned with fresh ingredients. They were simple but complimentary flavours. I loved their Chimichurri Toast – mmm garlic green goodness on crispy toast!
On our next visit, I’ll order one of the following: Probably The Best Brunch Sandwich Ever, Brunch Bowl with Hollandaise and the Build Your Own Brunch.
Best brunch sandwich ever – photo credit: Bruncheria Cafe
Location & Parking
Located on Columbia with paid street parking and easy access to transit.
Bruncheria Cafe just finished their first year in business. To celebrate, they’ll be posting an IG contest, with a delicious prize.
After brunch, go window shopping along Columbia, explore the Quay then take a stroll along the water. Or, just head down to the casino for a bit of blackjack.
A very special thank you to Dan and his team at Bruncheria for collaborating with us! He provided us with these beautiful pictures, and the Giveaway opportunity. Click here for entry details later today.
Uli’s is a delightful restaurant on waterfront in White Rock.
Nals & Missy R went there for brunch in early February for our 16th Friend-a-versary Celebration. As it was wintertime, it was cool. But that usually-shy sun was shining brightly. And I could easily see where the pier was nipped off in the storm a few weeks prior.
We were the first or second customers so it was wonderfully quiet. Restaurant was filled with wooden tables & chairs, minimalist beachy feel. This went well with the laid back feel of Marine Drive & Pier. Our server was lovely – helpful, attentive but not intrusive.
We had Baked Brie (carmelized garlic, blueberries and homemade crostini) to start. Missy R had the Schnitzel (Vienna style with rock salt & lemon). I had the Cuban Croquette Eggs Benedict (with fabulous bursts of pepper jelly).
Cuban Croquette Benedict
And drum roll…
All dishes tasted delicious. Coffee was tasty strong. Missy R had the perfect Bloody Caesar, extra spicy.
The dishes could’ve been warmer, especially Brie. Apparently, TripAdvisor (TA) diners have observed this before. TAers also observed that portions were small. We both have healthy appetites and we thought they were a good size. But we also had drinks and Brie.
We love scratch kitchens!
Parking can be a bit of a pain so take time or carpool. And also take time to stroll along the waterfront. Enjoy the view, salt air, maybe get an ice cream or window shop. And remember: do not get close to or feed the wildlife. Watching Marine Life: safely. What could happen if you: don’t.
Do N&K recommend Uli’s?
Missy R has been here before & enjoyed it. And, yes we both would recommend this place.
Both Kells & I have been to Havana (Cuban Restaurant on Commercial Drive) several times. And, since we were having out-of-towners join us, we wanted to take them somewheres new!
Because we were going to a show, we were hoping to make reservations. I checked online 2 weeks before. Son of a buggerball: no reservations during peak times, such as Friday & Saturday after 6 pm. Open Table was right on their site so I tried to book anyways. It wouldn’t allow me to book after 4:45 pm. Our show was at 9 pm so 4:45 would be way too early. I also went to the Open Table app, thinking it might be different. And, nope. Grrr.
Nope 6 pm res on Sat isn’t possible
Check for Saturday evening
The Waiting Game
Half of our party got there before 6 & told that it would be an hour wait to sit inside. So they were seated outside, waiting for us. K&I joined and the 4 of us planned our drink orders (mojitos, V&T, margarita). Things were going ok.
As per the timeline above, we had 20 minutes left to wait for a table inside… but were told by staff that it’d actually be another 40. And apparently, once we ordered patio-side, we’d have to stay put.
The patio seating was assembled-to-order and so it wasn’t 100% comfortable. 2 of us felt that we were in the walkway. But our waiter assured us that we weren’t. And the heaters were keeping us warm. And we were hungry pups. So we figured we’d stay.
However, after another few minutes, our bottoms got cold. Our Gentleman Out-of-Towner got up to speak with the inside folks. He asked for our table listing back. We were told it’d be 1.5 hours. So he reminded them that we were already on the list, just a few minutes prior. Then they said 40 minutes.
When our waiter returned, we again inquired. She checked and told us 1.5 hour wait, even though at this point we were there over an hour. She said once we had ordered the food, inside folks assumed we’d just stay outside and took us off the list… and plus the restaurant had full reservations. Hmmm…
Eat Drink Man Woman
Drink and food service was slow. We ordered appies and said we would all share. Kells hates cilantro, so the waiter made suggestions. I ordered poblano & corn dip. K ordered the avocado tostones. And, the tostones came with cilantro. The waiter apologized and sent it back. Our out-of-towners got mussels, which were fab.
Our Gentleman Out-of-Towner ordered a 3rd beef taco, which never came. Me n Lady Out-of-Towner ordered the flat iron steaks, which were salty but good. The side was a fantastic cauliflower number. K ordered the prawn tacos, which were good with tasty sides.
Poblano Corn dip
Mains came 10 mins after appies – which was poor timing. Seemed like we waiting forever for our drinks… then our appies… then it all came spilling out on small table. (For comparison: There were other folks on the patio as well, and they received their food & drinks in a timely manner. One of the tables had 7 or 8 people.)
Flat iron steak
Money shot of 1 hawt prawn taco
Would we recommend this restaurant?
K&I have been here before and it was an enjoyable experience. My last time was years ago, just before the fire. Kells’s last time was more recent: after the renos and change in ownership. So, this experience was different and not 100% positive.
But if you’ve never tried Cubano food, definitely go – especially for brunch. And if it’s peak dinner time, we would recommend making an early reservation. That way you’ll get a seat inside, and hopefully your food in a timely manner. If 4:45 is too early for dinner, go anyways. Then take an after-dinner stroll through The Drive, and get yourself a delicious Italian espresso or gelato… or do some window shopping and people-watching.
I was invited to a work dinner last month. When the organizer mentioned it was at Glowbal, I was sure I misheard. Never heard of Glowbal. Was it a dinner at Global TV studios? Or…? Apparently, Glowbal has won some awards and is ‘fusion cuisine’ that is ‘stripped down to North American’ roots. It is in downtown Vancouver’s Telus Garden building. Parking is on the street or in a lot. Or, take transit. Menu is available right at the door … which is convenient if you’re waiting in line. They have a couple of specials – lunch, cocktails hours, wine dinners.
So, we were herded off to a cosy private room upstairs. Menu was closed but it was a 3 course affair.
For starters: We could choose the Mushroom Truffle Cream soup or Caesar salad. We all ordered salad. This was crispy, bacon-y, dressed in the garlic creamery and topped with delightful curls of parm. I love a good Caesar salad. However, I find that most restaurants drench gorgeous green romaine hearts in some awful glue-like dressing. And I end up forking off the dressing to try to eat the now-wilted romaine. Second course: I chose the Wild BC Salmon. Most others chose the short ribs. Portions were huge and hot. Seasoning was spot-on. Third course was a deconstructed berry cheesecake. This was the bit of sweet to end the night. Each table also had assorted macaroons and other too-sweet crunchies. A thin slice of dark chocolate cake and an espresso would’ve ended the meal perfectly. After we ordered, wait staff brought out the surprise appies – skewers of protein like satay chicken, grilled shrimp, etc. Defo delicious but also a bit odd to eat without side plates.
Wait staff were whisper quiet and quickly filled our wines and waters without asking. Their area to move around was a little cramped with 3 round tables, with half the room carved out for the slides and presenter. It was Christmas party time so whenever the doors were kept open, we could hear the din outside. I’m not sure what they could have done about the noise besides keeping the doors closed. (But during service, this is not possible.) Ok… but what about the rest of the restaurant? Hardwood floors, vaulted ceilings, muted lighting, dark wood walls made for an intimate feel, without the cramped space. There are various dining areas: outside, lounge, bar side, mezzanine and private rooms.
Kells has been here before and enjoyed it. Like me, she also thinks this is reminiscent of Purple Café. Our review is here. Recommendation: if you like traipsing into downtown Vancouver, eating in a busy trendy North American restaurant, then Glowbal should be on your list.
So finding good fried chicken in the Pacific Northwest is like trying to find fresh seafood in the desert. Its hard to find. I’m still searching for an amazing chicken and waffles in Vancouver.
But there’s this local joint in the heart of gastown that’s pumping out some amazing fried chicken and other great bbq’d meats.
I highly recommend peck in pah for their chicken fried sandwich. And if you are anything like me, I order it sans cilantro.
To me, this has got to be one of the best fried sandwiches I have ever tried. So much yum. And really its so simple. But the fact that their chicken is juicy and fried makes it a win.
Fried chicken not your jam? Well don’t cha worry your lil self about that. There’s much more in this tiny joint. I strongly recommend the fried pickles. Again, they are the best I’ve had.
Don’t want fried. No prob. Try their mac and cheese. The portion is huge. But if you are bold enough and enjoy meat I would suggest adding the pulled pork to the mac and cheese. Its amazing.
Peck in pah also gives each table a few of their house made sauces. Honestly, I havent tried them yet. Not that I don’t think they will be good. But I just haven’t felt my meal needs the extra sauce.
I also like the location and great big windows on this restaurant. Grabbing a window seat isn’t hard since the whole place is windows over looking the brick streets of Gastown.
Oh! I almost forgot. The beers! They have a good beer selection of local beers. Unfortunately I’ve mainly been here for lunch. So I haven’t had the opportunity to drink my way through their beer menu. But I’ve noticed it and plan to try more of it when I can.
Have you been here yet? Or know of the best chicken and waffles in town? Please send us an email or leave a comment below.