Tutto Bene's experienced chef blends Italian cuisine with French culinary influences to craft a menu of seafood, pasta and meat offerings made in-house. A crispy crab cake's cilantro-red-pepper tartar primes mouths for making conversation and playing the piccolo ($12) before teeth sink into a choice of first courses, including prawns, mushrooms, and crispy pancetta nestled between ravioli and topped with a smoked tomato sauce ($17). Chefs craft house-made black linguine, weaving the pasta between sautéed prawns and scallops, and then coating their tasty creation in a saffron sauce ($17). Taste buds stick around for second courses, including roasted duck breast served with madeira jus ($26) or sablefish marinated in grappa, a fermented schnapps, and dressed in the fashionable ensemble of crispy shallots, parsley-cilantro pesto, and tomato confit ($24). Large windows shine natural light across the cozy tables and hanging wall art that outline Tutto Bene's dining area, creating a perimeter penetrable only to salvos from meatball catapults.
Helmed by native Iranians, the chefs at Zeitoon Restaurant churn out a menu of Middle Eastern staples including kebabs and rice dishes made from local and halal ingredients such as hormone-free chicken, AAA-certified Angus beef, and wild British Columbian salmon. A classic Persian dish and favourite meal of sword fighters, the koobideh comprises two skewers of ground beef seasoned with onion and spices ($8.95)—diners may swap out one skewer for a chicken kebab ($12.95) or tenderloin kebab ($13.95). The Baghali Polo pairs marinated, slow-roasted lamb shank with a mix of basmati rice, dill, and lima beans ($9.95), or groups may snack upon torshi, a medley of pickled cauliflower, cabbage, celery, and eggplant spiced by garlic and herbs ($2.95). To enjoy postprandial bliss inside or on the patio, diners may indulge with a hunk of baklava ($2.95) while admiring the interior’s booths upholstered in arabesque patterns, vibrant green walls, and flying carpets.
Since its humble beginnings in Edmonton, Alberta in 1964, Boston Pizza has grown into Canada-wide franchise that serves up more than 20 gourmet pizzas. The menu boasts more than 100 items ranging from crispy chicken wings dressed in spicy to sweet sauces and rubs to succulent burgers and sandwiches. Big-screen TVs broadcast hockey or prime ministers' wrestling matches as guests dig into hearty pastas or dive into desserts such as sticky toffee pudding.
The warm aroma of freshly baked waffle cones envelops every nook and cranny of Marble Slab Creamery, revving up guests' senses with the promise of impending decadence. As the hand-rolled cones tan in their ovens, the store's staff bustles about the premises whipping up fresh batches of super-premium ice cream in the onsite creamery and helping patrons select a flavour from a list of more than 50 options. This chef-driven dedication to gourmet ice cream began in 1983 with the company's founding in Houston, Texas, when two French chefs were enlisted to create a recipe for Marble Slab Creamery's signature sweet-cream ice cream. Today, staffers utilize the frozen-slab technique of ice-cream architecture, scooping each customer's choice of ice cream and mixins onto a chilled marble slab to mix the separate elements into one customized mélange.
Though specializing in cone-based ice-cream treats, Marble Slab Creamery also offers other scream-worthy confections including cakes, shakes, and ice cream cupcakes. Catering is available at many locations.
Vera's Burger Shack handcrafts its meaty morsels using 6-ounce beef patties and any combination of 35 flavourful condiments, a recipe that has earned the title of Vancouver's Best Hamburger eight times. Diners can opt for the menu's classic Vera burger, topped with the usual fixings ($5.99), or adorn buns with more adventurous accessories such as fried salami ($1.79), feta cheese ($1.29), or a rakish porkpie hat. Burgers in lamb ($9.99) and veggie ($5.99) varietals offer alternatives to beef, and The Doug Special presents a double-decker, open-faced affair topped with cheese, fried onions, and chili ($10.99). A basket of frings, twice-fried fries and onion rings ($5.99), yearns for a dip in a bona fide ice-cream milkshake, which comes in varieties including strawberry, blackberry, and the most elusive berry of all, chocolate ($4.99).