For 5 long years, I've been promising Pops that I would make an effort to eat at Giraffe in White Rock. But my promises have been empty - as hollow as a honest politician. Wait, is that an oxymoron? Anyways, it was finally the time. We organized a day that Mrs. Spraybottle, Hot Mama and I would meet up with Pops at Giraffe. Like the Ross Rifle (google it if you don't know), our plans ended before it began as Giraffe wasn't open for lunch. Seeing that there are more restaurants on Marine Drive than all of a small town, we walked down to nearby Cielos for some tapas.
We started with the Calamari tossed in house spice with Parmesan shred, a lemon wedge and garlic peppercorn aioli. At first, it looked like an enormous portion, but it was significantly bouyed by the ample greens underneath. The squid was tender with a somewhat firm batter which was crispy and nicely spiced. Although the aioli was pleasant enough, I would've liked to see even more peppercorn and garlic. Next up, we tried the Macadamia Scallops with bacon jam and citrus fennel slaw. With a crunchy, nutty exterior, the scallops themselves were a touch past perfect. They were not rubbery though maintaining their natural sweetness. Although the fennel slaw was a bit underwhelming (needed more acidity), the bacon jam was fantastic adding both a rich sweetness and of course the saltiness of bacon.
Onto some bigger plates, we had the Tenderloin Poutine with cheese curds and wild mushroom demi. It was well-portioned with lots of crispy fries which were not overly greasy. There was no shortage of moist and tender braised tenderloin atop the fries. However, the main draw here was the impactful wild mushroom demi-glace. It had body with a pleasing red-wine hit as well as the Earthiness of the mushrooms. Since it was properly reduced, the demi coated the fries without making them too soggy. The cheese curds were mostly melted so we couldn't tell if they were squeaky or not. Bubbling hot, the Lobster Thermidor Tortellini (with Atlantic lobster, herb cheese tortellini, roast garlic, sherry cream and herb bread) was quite flavourful. From the garlic to the herb cheese, there was no shortage of impactful elements to ensure that the dish wasn't bland. It was a bit watery though.
Lastly, we tried the Australian Lamb Pops with fenugreek curry sauce and fry bread. Somewhat similar to Vij's, the lamb pops were tender and peppery. The curry sauce was mild with the familiar flavours including the nuttiness of the fenugreek. With the ample amount of sauce at the bottom of the bowl, we could've used a few more pieces of fry bread to soak it up. From the items we tried, Cielos offered up decent eats along Marine Drive in White Rock. Seeing how many of the restaurants are merely average (relying on their location only), Cielos is not a bad choice.
- Decent eats
- Killer location
- Attentive service
- Super small tables on the patio (all the room they got though)