As with every April, I needed to find a restaurant that would accommodate the kiddies for my mom's birthday. Ruling out chain restaurants and Asian joints, it got a bit tough. Of course there were the usual Downtown hotel restaurants, but we were thinking more along the lines of something local (that is, in the burbs). We already checked out Tivoli's in the Executive Plaza near Brentwood Mall, so might as well do the Copper Club at the Executive Plaza in Burquitlam right? Ya, not the most sexist of choices, but it fit the criteria of being kid-friendly without being a chain restaurant. And besides, who needs sexy when you got the whole family with you? Wait. Did that come out right???
Sitting down in the dimly lit dining room reminiscent of a stuffy steakhouse, this was as far from sexy as a place could get. Definitely not the most modern of establishments, yet still classy in their own way. Whatever the case, we were comfortable and the kiddies had a menu to order off of. As for us, we got a bunch of appies to share beginning with the Lamb Lollipops. These were bathed in yellow mustard, pepper, paprika, lemon, garlic and turmeric. When I first laid eyes on the lollipops, I thought "Vij's". Now, these were not as tasty as Vij's (and I didn't expect them to be either), but were good with all things considering. The lamb was tender and perfectly cooked medium-rare. There was a nice char that added a nuttiness as well as a pleasing appearance. I thought it was a bit heavy on the yellow mustard, which made the flavour profile a touch too tart. Next up were the Salt & Pepper Tiger Prawns with chili, garlic, salt and pepper. Served on the side was a mango chutney. The prawns had a nice snap texture while there was no absence of flavour. It was spicy and of course salty-peppery. Maybe it is the Chinese in me, but personally, I would've liked a crunch of some sort on the exterior of the prawns as they were a little wet.
The most disappointing item we had for the entire meal was the Crab & Shrimp Cakes. They were served with a balsamic reduction, chipotle lime aioli, pea sprouts and cherry tomato. One bite into the cakes and it had the texture of tuna. It was mushy, fishy and stale tasting. Obviously, this was not made with fresh ingredients. Furthermore, the exterior was not crisp at all and the whole thing was too salty. Other than a few lines on the plate, there wasn't enough aioli nor balsamic vinegar to make any impact. Lastly, we had the Honey Garlic Chicken Drummettes which were quite good. The drummettes were fried up crispy while the meat was moist and tender. There was just enough glaze for a good honey garlic hit without softening up the crispy wings.
For my main, I went for the Seafood Spaghettini with prawns, mussels and tomato. Not sure if these 2 items constituted a "seafood" pasta (maybe some fish too?). Anyways, the pasta was slightly pasta al dente while the prawns and mussels were cooked nicely. The flavours were mild yet there was an obvious garlic, white wine, Parmesan and olive oil hit to it. I would've preferred Roma tomatoes, but that is nitpicking. My mom had her favourite (which is mine as well) in the Lamb Shank. It was prepared beautifully as the meat fell off the bone. It was moist, fatty and flavourful. The demi-glace (with red Zinfandel) was silky and rich with plenty of depth. The asparagus tips were done nicely retaining some crunch. However, the double-cooked potato was not good. It was stiff and dense.
My dad opted for the Prime Rib which was almost perfectly prepared. The large cut of meat was a nice medium-rare and was very tender. The sauce added a proper amount of saltiness to the fatty meat. Although it didn't make or break the dish, the Yorkshire pudding was terribly overbaked and was burnt and hard. It was mostly inedible. The side of roast potatoes and veggies were good. Viv went for something lighter with the Steamed PEI Mussels. They were neatly arranged in a circular pattern and every one of them were fully opened. The meat was plump and naturally sweet. The broth consisting of BC Chardonnay, tomato, garlic, shallot, butter and basil was fairly weak as it didn't offer much additional flavour. Again, we would've preferred a stronger tasting tomato in this dish.
As for the kiddies, my son (drum roll please...) had the... Grilled Cheese. Yes, he has the eating diversity of a Yak. Then again, Yaks eat grass... He has an adverse reaction to anything green... Anyways, the grilled cheese made with real cheddar on multigrain bread. The whole thing was crisp without being completely soaked with butter. It came with a pile of fries. He ate it. It did the job. For my daughter, she had the Fish n' Chips. I'm sorry to say that the batter on the fish was no good. It was doughy and far too dense. Hence it didn't even really cook all the way through. The lack of colour was not that appealing either. However, the fish was okay being flaky and just done.
Lastly, we shared a few desserts including the Duo of Vanilla Bean & Ginger and Chocolate Crème Brule. First, the good news: the sugar topping was the right thickness where it was present without overwhelming the dessert. It was mostly torched on the top for that burnt sugar flavour. The ginger vanilla brulee wasn't too sweet and we could definitely taste the ginger. Now for the bad news: the custard was on the watery side. Furthermore, the chocolate creme brulee was not all that chocolaty. For our second dessert, we got the Warm Okanagan Apple Tart Tatin. Okay, if you are familiar with a tart tatin, you might be wondering what was in the picture. Merely a pile of cooked apples on top of a crust of some sort served with ice cream. We didn't like this. What amounts to essentially an apple upside down tart, a tart tatin should not look like a pile of stuff. Furthermore, there was a serious lack of moisture and overall flavour. Now with this dessert withstanding, there were some decent dishes in this meal. Considering the price point and the portion size, we found it to be reasonable. However, the not-so-decent dishes were complete flops. Therefore, a meal at the Copper Club would truly depend on what you order.
- Good service
- When there was a flop, it was a colossal failure
- Stale ambiance (but good if you didn't want any noise)