Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Provence Marinaside, Yaletown

I am not in the midst of lavenders in France, but in town, having a nice lunch to celebrate my son's 21st birthday. We are walking around Yaletown and have chosen this inviting patio.

To start, for drinks, I have ordered us each a pernod (may as well be authentic). Cuba has their rum, Mexico has their tequila, and Provence has Pernod Ricard.  We have both decided to get the prix fixe menu that starts with either an array of tempting antipasti or salad, mushroom ravioli or seafood spaghettini, and your choice from the many desserts. I am very excited to see that they had merguez (North African spicy sausage that is common in France because of the large Arabic population)  -- I've never seen it in local restaurants before. They have cooked it with fennel and tomato sauce -- it was a nice change from the usual. My son, to my surprise, have ordered the Trio of Smoked Fish (trout, mackerel, salmon, pearl onions, gherkins), -- silky texture, nicely smoked, also a very nice change. They serve the food with slices of fresh crusty bread and some herby (is that a word?) ones. My mushroom ravioli is good but sadly it's not as an, "omg, this is sooo good," as the ones I have had in Italy. My son have enjoyed his pasta with scallops and prawns. To end the meal, we have the clafoutie and lavender cheesecake. The clafoutie is not exactly as I am expecting it to be, but it is very fresh and lovely nonetheless. The cheesecake is quite good. We are surprise how large the portions are.

I think this place is a good place to go if you have been wanting to try French food. Most people are intimidated to go to a French restaurant because they see it as being too formal and a bit stuffy. This place feels casual. The menu is not strictly French, it has many Italian or Mediterranean items. Sitting in the patio will give you a nice view of the water. I can't wait to go back and try the other items (bouillabaisse) or maybe even their "afternoon tea." Judging from the other reviews about this place, it seems to be a good destination.

Provence Marinaside
1177 Marinaside Crescent
Vancouver, BC V6Z 2Y3