I really need to get my crap in order... Seemingly, I'm encountering more and more fails in terms of restaurants being either closed or too busy for us to actually dine at. Okay, so it happened again as I dragged the whole fam out to BLVD Bistro in North Van, only to discover that there would be an hour wait. Could it be the great brunch they serve? Yes, that was partly the reason, but with only 3 tables for the entire restaurant, turnover could only be described as slow as a Corolla on #3 Road in Richmond.
So we went for a backup plan. Wait! There was no backup plan! Therefore, we ended up at the most unlikeliest of places in Two Lions Public House for lunch (not exactly the most kid-friendliest of places). But to make it more appealing for them, we got the Warm Kettle Chips and Fried Pickles to start. Only lightly greasy, the chips were thick-cut and firmly crunchy. They were seasoned enough while not being overly salty. The side of dill aioli was creamy and cooling. As much as the breading on the fried pickles was crunchy, it was rather hard. Inside, the thin sliver of tart pickle didn't stand up very well to the breading. Interestingly, I enjoyed dipping them into the dill aioli more than the accompanying parm and garlic dip. Maybe because of the dill on dill?
The kiddies ended up sharing the Mac n' Cheese baked with bacon and chicken. This was surprisingly good as the sharp aged white cheddar really came through. I wouldn't say that it was super creamy, but there was enough cheesiness to keep things moist without soaking the noodles. We noticed the bacon visually, but it didn't have much impact. There was a good amount of chicken which was meaty and tender. Viv ended up with the BBQ Chicken Pizza with banana peppers, red onion and mozzarella. This was definitely serviceable with a relatively thin and crunchy crust. There was probably a bit too much tangy BBQ sauce, but that meant the pizza wasn't bland. Combined with the peppers, there was plenty of the sweet and tart flavours going on.
For myself, I had the Short Rib Beef Dip with horseradish cream, crispy onions and house-cut fries. Hidden within the toasted baguette was a wealth of tender and fatty short rib. The sandwich ate fine on its own with a rich meatiness accented by a hint of sharpness from the horseradish. I only used the mild-tasting dip sparingly. As for the fries, they were good being fresh-cut and crispy albeit dense in texture. Interestingly, the one thing I was worried about was not actually that bad - the food. However, the service was another matter. Although not terrible, it wasn't super attentive nor helpful. I inquired about the VIP club (which allows for special pricing) and our server could've care less with explaining anything to me. I finally signed up online and she didn't seem overly impressed and didn't even charge me the VIP prices when I got the final bill. Wasn't impressed with the service in that regard.
- Serviceable eats
- Spacious, for a bar
- Expensive, even with the VIP membership
- Service was okay, but not super friendly nor helpful