Thursday, January 3, 2013

Quiet evening at Heirloom Vegetarian on New Years Day

Heirloom Vegetarian on UrbanspoonMy vegetarian friend from the US had just the one day to run around with me in Vancouver, and somehow it ended up being New Years Day. The day when everyone's waking up late from hangovers and darn near everything is closed. Fortunately, not Heirloom so we actually had someone to go for dinner. They were open 10.30am to 3.30pm for brunch, and 5pm to 10pm for dinner. When we walked in at around 6pm, it was pretty quiet, but gradually the table side (on the right; bar seating spillover side on the left) filled up by around 6.15pm.
Last time I went to Heirloom, it was pretty full so we ended up at the smaller tall tables with the tall bar stools. Not my favourite type of seating, I'd have to say, so I was happy I got a proper sit-down table this time.

The menu had changed since the last time I was there, but a few items survived, such as the "Dips", although the "sangak chips" weren't so salty this time. My dining companion agonized over the menu choices and almost settled on the tempeh, but finally went with the safer Dips as I had had them before and it was quite good.
There's coarse salt and pepper at the table. USE IT. Especially the salt. Yes, it feels like cheating or that the kitchen didn't compose things properly.

  • Flatbread ($16)
    • The orange-coloured pancake like "flatbread" really wasn't a winner with me, especially with how dry it seemed. If you let this sit for a while, it can soak up a bit of the moisture from the toppings, but still it was a grind to get through. I was honestly tempted to just scrape off the top.
    • The topping had apple, flakes of cheese, and other stuff. Mostly I tasted the apple. Somehow the cheese flavour got lost even though you could clearly see the large flakes of cheese. I hit this with the salt but it wasn't a great combo, or maybe I used just a bit too much.
    • Sorry to say, but I think this one is interesting for the use of apple, but interesting doesn't always translate to tasty. And at $16, you're better off looking for a proper vegetarian pizza.
  • Pappardelle Pasta ($17)
    • Basically this is a sort of spaghetti dish, except much less savoury, to the point of being bland. Sad to say, another "pass". Go to an Italian restaurant for your tomato-sauce-based pasta.
    • Price seemed steep for a mound of pasta that was basically about one large bowl's worth.
  • Dips (beetroot tapenade, lentil homous, sangak chips; $14)
    • I had this before and it's still good value at $14. And of the three things we tried, it was the most flavourful and it didn't need salt or pepper.
    • Chips weren't as salty this time, which was okay since it's supposed to go with the dips anyway.
    • Something odd happens when you have both dips together at the same time. The sweetness of the beetroot cancels the curry-like cumin in the homous for an entirely different taste experience. Try it!
    • Quite a good amount of carrot on the plate as well, adding to the overall mass here. It's a full meal all on its own if you count pounds per dollar.
    • There are thin slices of pear and apple. I would pace these out throughout your experience of the dips to break up the monotony of taste. You can alternate dips, but there's still so much of it (especially for one person), that it'll be nicer to have intervals of fresh fruit.
  • Jasmine Green Dragon Tea (small pot; $3.75)
    • Nothing really special here. It's green tea, and cheaper than getting it at Starbucks.

Three plates and the two of us were so full we didn't finish the dips. Needless to say, no room for dessert, sadly.
Bill came out to $50.75, almost $70 after tax and tip.

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