Sherman's Food Adventures: August 2018

Davie Dosa

Davie Street from Yaletown all the way down to the West End boasts a wide selection of eateries.  You will find anything from higher-end establishments, like La Pentola, down to little dives, such as La Belle Patate (it is a dive to me, but a good one!).  There is also a limited range of ethnic cuisine available with some being represented better than others.  So that brings me to Indian food.  There are 3 along the Davie, but one of the newer joints can lay claim to being the only one of its kind.  Davie Dosa (on the same block as La Belle Patate) boasts that they are the sole representative of Southern Indian cuisine.  In fact, there is a general lack of Southern Indian food in the GVRD.

Joyce and I hit up the place since we were doing the judging for the Chicken Wing Challenge anyways.  Interestingly, they were only one of 3 participants for the challenge and all were Southern Asian...  Anyways, we were presented one each of their Cilantro Wings.  For those with gluten allergies or sensitivities, you can rejoice!  These were coated with rice flour instead of wheat flour.  I didn't really notice the difference as they were slathered in a tomato paste sauce that was tangy and slightly sweet with a noted spiciness.  I loved how the cilantro was there, but not at the forefront.  The meat itself was succulent and tender.  Of course we couldn't just have wings right?  So we also had their Lamb Curry Dosa served with the usual coconut and shallot chutney, tomato chutney and sambar.  I've had my fair share of dosas and I can definitively say that the one here was on point.  It was thin, crispy and light with a pleasant chewiness.  Inside, there was a generous portion of tender lamb and potatoes that was aromatic and lightly spiced.

We also got the Palak Paneer with rice and home-style dosa.  This was creamy and rich but not heavy.  It was nicely seasoned where I could make out a few spices including the usual cumin and garlic.  The spinach was properly prepared (as in blanched first) so that there was no bitterness nor iron finish.  I found the paneer to be soft and tender where it retained its texture.  Although we only tried 3 items at Davie Dosa, it was enough to warrant a return visit in the future.  Compared to the dosas I've had at other spots in the GVRD, the one here was quite good.  Nice to see something different on Davie and a good one at that.

*Food was complimentary*

The Good:
- Dosas on point
- Reasonable pricing considering it is in Downtown
- Well-portioned

The Bad:
- Menu fairly limited (but focused)
- A bit warm inside

Cocoru Beer & Chicken

After several attempts to eat at Cocoru Beer & Chicken, I decided that a wait for tables was not going to stop me.  Well, Emily wasn't super enthused about waiting, but others behind us were warned that it would be in excess of an hour and a half for a seat.  Even though we had just feasted on some of the best food at the Richmond Night Market, the eating continued (doing our best Mijune impersonation).  Why go for dessert when there is KFC?  We were luckily enough to snag a large table even though we were only a party of 2.

Our plan of attack was to go for half-and-half bone-in and boneless.  So we started with the Boneless Dakgangjeong and Yangnyeom.  After the plate hit the table, we noticed that it wasn't a great picture as both were the same shade of red.  Made sense when we ordered it, but no, not great for photos.  We found the batter to be somewhat thick and firmly crunchy.  It wasn't greasy, but there was a bit too much sauce for our liking.  The Dakgangjeong was the classic Korean sweet chili sauce and it was indeed sweet with some spice.  Again, good, but too much of it.  The Yangnyeom was similar but creamier and topped with peanuts rather than sesame seeds.  I enjoyed this one more as it was dialed down a bit from the sweet chili.  Maybe we should've ordered some rice.  For no other reason that more variety, we got an order of Korean Rice Cakes.  These were crispy on the outside and appealingly soft & chewy on the inside.

For our half-and-half bone-in, we got Original and Soy Garlic.  Okay, let's get this out-of-the-way first, bone-in rocked.  The whole pieces were moist, juicy and well-seasoned.  Best part of all was the skin as it was rendered and lightly crispy.  Even the breast meat was still moist.  The soy garlic had the usual sweet and salty elements as well as the aromatics of the garlic (and garlic chips).  As for the original, it was even more crunchy due to the lack of any sauce.  With that being said, there was still enough seasoning for it to stand on its own.  This was so good, I was thinking in my head when I could come back and eat it again.  Curse that lineup though!

The Good:
- Dat bone-in chicken!
- They were very friendly and even gave us a bigger table despite larger parties behind us
- Open late

The Bad:
- Endless lineup
- The boneless was too saucy (can ask for less though)

Food @ The Fair at PNE 2018

Bummer.  I was out-of-town for the media food day at the PNE this year!  That meant I would miss out trying some of the new, strange and plain weird eats available during The Fair from August 18th - September 3rd.  No matter, I was going to check it out for myself anyways on the same day as the Lost in the 80's concert.  However, I was still able to sample some of the more popular creations for this year along with a few classics.  I tried not to overlap things from the past few years though as I wanted to stick with the latest offerings.

Before I got to the sweet stuff, I got some savoury items (although this one was sweet too) first including something that on the surface, looked rather boring.   At the PNE-run Waffles with Benefits, I went for the Traditional Chicken & Waffles featuring a Southern fried chicken breast, whipped butter, syrup and gravy.  I'm not sure if the chicken was really a down-south version, but it was good nonetheless.  Fairly large and crunchy, the piece of chicken was moist and tender inside.  The side of gravy was a nice consistency and had a pleasant hit of sage.  As much as it appeared to be too much syrup, it was the right amount drizzled over the fluffy waffle.  Next up, I went for a Chicken Poutine at the Fry Guys.  This was pretty much a standard poutine with cheese curd and gravy plus chicken.  I thought the fries were fried enough so that they could stand up to all of the moisture.  Although a bit salty, the gravy was thick enough and definitely hot enough to melt the cheese curds.  I thought the chicken was tender and meaty, but a little plain.

Okay, let's get right down to it.  One of the more polarizing items to grace the PNE food lineup is the Cricket Caramel Apple.  Yup, it is a caramel apple coated with many many crickets.  I'm not afraid to admit that this was a bit daunting to try.  I've eaten grasshoppers before and all I can say about them is that they were crunchy and nutty.  And yes, the crickets weren't any different here.  However, the copious amount of caramel did hide the actual flavour of the cricket.  So it was mostly texture.  Not particularly scary if you weren't looking at the critters.  Over to something a bit more familiar, we made our way to the classic Those Little Donuts.  I'm sure most people have had this before, but did you know that this is their 50th year in operation?  From as long as I can remember, they were just as soft and fluffy as with every year.  Consistently delicious and a fair favourite.

Back to the new, we were treated to 2 flavours of Deep Fried Coffee including Coffee Crisp and After Eight.  Based on the past years of trying deep fried <insert liquid item>, these fritters or donuts were always a little lacking in texture.  However, these were on point being fluffy and light with only a bit of crispiness on the outside.  They weren't very sweet either and there was definitely a coffee flavour.  The sweetness was taken care of by the designated topping such as the Coffee Crisp and After Eight.  So these were pretty sweet, but the Kit Kat Fries (from Steve-O's) were even more sweet.  However, it was the inherent sweetness from the candy bar itself and not from the chocolate glaze drizzled on top.  In fact, the fluffy batter was not sweet at all.  So if you like Kit Kats, this is something that tastes like the candy bar, but just deep-fried.

Now for something that was pretty dramatic to look at.  So much so, everyone around us wanted a picture.  It was like the ice cream paparazzi!   Yes, the Smoking Charcoal Soft Serve was not only in a shade of black, the activated dry ice added a smoke show.  Gimmicky?   Absolutely, but what the hey, this is the PNE!  As for the soft-serve itself, we found it to be very creamy and not overly sweet.  There was very little charcoal flavour, but that was a good thing as we didn't feel a strong taste would be appealing.  Moving away from all the sweets, we took the walk up Miller Drive over to the Crazy Italian.  This year, they are offering up the 1lb Soprano-Sized Meatball made with pork and beef topped with their homemade tomato sauce.  This gigantic thing was moist and tender throughout.  It was mildly-spiced and plenty meaty.  The tomato sauce was mild as well with a light tang.  This was a meal in itself!

One of the more understated items at The Fair is the Pizza Corn Dog from Corn Dog King.  It didn't look much different than their classic corn dog, but it was very much unique.  Hidden within the Italian-herbed batter was melted mozzarella and of course, a hot dog wiener.  It came with a side of marinara sauce that really helped create the flavours of pizza.  We thought this was a well-executed concoction.  At first, we thought it was undercooked, but the melty cheese fooled us into thinking it was batter.  Our final food purchase of the night (before the concert) was the Vegetarian's Nightmare from Gator BBQ.  For $32.00, it included buttery potatoes, baked beans, beef brisket, pulled pork and pork ribs.  Always a good value since it consists of mostly meat and can feed more than 2 people.  We found the brisket to be a bit dry, but the pulled pork was on point.  The ribs were smoky and fatty while retaining an appealing chewiness.  This filled up any remaining room we had in our stomachs as we made our way over to the concert.

*Some items were complimentary*

The Good:
- As usual, some weird things such as the cricket caramel apple
- BBQ from Gator, Prairie and Misty Mountain are great values
- You won't have problems making your sweet tooth happy

The Bad:
- Not really a bad, don't be afraid to check out the PNE food stands, they are pretty good
- Do not buy the first thing you see, be sure to compare, not all are created equal

La Quercia (Veneto Menu)

I love La Quercia.  There I said it.  Yes, I have a personal bias for this place and no, I've never been invited for any tastings.  So this is purely based on my 5 visits here (including this one) where I've only blogged about 2 of them.  This time around, we ended up doing the Veneto Menu (similar to their now gone Alla Famiglia) that featured multi-courses somewhat shared by the table.  The "we" were some foodie buddies including Areta, Maggi, Hanson and Kristina.  It was great catching up with them dining on delicious food and some drinks as well.

As part of the Veneto Menu for $65.00 per person, we were started off with an array of little appies including Lardo Crostini, Pesce in Sour, Humpback Prawn, White Anchovy with roasted red pepper, Fava Bean & Mint, Egg in Endive and Chicken Liver Pate.  The highlights included the delicately sweet prawns.  They were buttery soft with a light rebound.  By virtue of being white anchovies, they were not as salty while exhibiting a wonderful brininess.  Everything was solid, but the real star of the show was the Morels stuffed with sausage atop grilled asparagus.  My word, these were frickin' delicious.  Exhibiting its classic appealing squishiness, the morels were woodsy and well-seasoned.  Add in the meaty sausage and these little bites were heaven.  I could've eaten the whole plate myself and then some.

Up next, we were each served a portion of the Squid Ink Risotto.  This was a departure from the alla famiglia-style dinners where we would have to portion each plate ourselves.  Despite the visuals (since anything squid ink is not photogenic), the risotto was firm and not overdone.  It was only lightly cheesy and in need of more salt.  It ate pretty plain and we surmised that some form of protein would've added something to the dish.  Our pasta course consisted of the Bigoli with anchovy and onion.  The pasta was firmly al dente which was perfect in my opinion.  There was a noted brininess from the anchovy as well as pleasant fishiness.  The onion added plenty of sweetness while the finish was pure umaminess.  This was simple, but good nonetheless.

Onto the protein, we had the Local Lamb with beets, cauliflower puree, cauliflower and jus.  Prepared a beautiful medium-rare, the lamb was lean and meaty.  However, I found it on the chewier side.  It wasn't very gamy as the natural flavour was subtle.  The jus was silky, gelatinous and full of umaminess.   Underneath the slices of lamb, we found the neck meat and it was fatty and tender.  It almost tasted like duck.  The beets were tender with a bite and a touch of woodsiness.  After the savoury items, we decided to go for the 3 most interesting desserts (we didn't think the fruit carpaccio nor strawberries & cream were worth it) including the Lemon Cream with orange segments on top.  This was thick, rich and creamy.  There was a nice balance between tangy and sweet which was super-refreshing.

Our other 2 desserts consisted of Rice Pudding with pears, caramel and meringue as well as the Chocolate Torte with quince.  Hidden underneath sheets of meringue, the rice pudding was topped with caramelized pears.  There was plenty of sweetness from the peaches which made up for the fairly flat-tasting rice pudding.  Lastly, the torte was full of dark chocolate flavour and slight bitterness.  It wasn't as sweet at all, but the side of tangy and boozy quince provided the punch the dessert needed.  Honestly, we had a great time catching up and chatting about random things, the food was secondary.  However, it was still up to the usual La Quercia standards.  I don't mind visiting the place over and over again.

The Good:
- Solid food as usual
- Great service as usual
- Focused menu

The Bad:
- Seating is tight as usual
- I miss the alla famiglia menu

New India Buffet

I'm sure most of you have heard about the new Tandoori Flame Indian buffet that has opened up on the North Delta/Surrey border.  With plenty of social media hype and advertising, it really isn't hard to not know about it.  I've been there and although I really enjoyed it, the distance for many doesn't make it practical to visit.  Furthermore, the pricing is a whole lot higher than what we've been used to for an Indian buffet.  However, there is an alternative that is sitting right there on Broadway in Vancouver.  New India Buffet boasts a wide range of dishes featuring both meat and vegetarian options.  I recently attended a tasting where I got to do a comparison with my visit to Tandoori Flame.

Of course in terms of physical space, New India Buffet is smaller, but the selection seemed to be pretty extensive.  It featured many different curries with no actual repetition of sauces  (in terms of meat vs. vegetarian).  There was also a salad bar to go with the nearly 2 full sections of savoury items and decent dessert options.  Seating was actually quite plentiful including an excellent patio in the front that was nicely shaded by the building next door.  I ended up sitting out there since it was a warm day and it was cooler outside.  For my first plate, I got Naan, Basmati Rice, Papadum, Tandoori Chicken, Aloo Gobi, Lamb Curry and Butter Chicken.  Well-charred, the naan was soft and had some good elasticity.  I would've preferred made-to-order though.  The butter chicken was flavourful with a balancing tang and spiciness while it finished up creamy.  Tender and exhibiting a good spice, the curry lamb had layers of flavour including the usual cumin.

For my second plate, I sampled the Oven Baked Veggies, Palak Paneer, Fish Curry, Chicken Curry and Beef Keema.  Of these, the chicken curry was my favourite as it sported tender nuggets of meat within hits of sweet spice and gingery notes.  The fish curry was good too with flaky fish in a mildly spicy sauce.  As for the beef keema, I could taste more of the tomato and garlic than the beef.  It was tender and still tasty though.  On the third go-around, I put as much as my plate could hold including the Egg Curry, Manchurian Chicken, Dal Makhani, Chana Masala, Eggplant, Tava Vegetables, Crispy Cauliflower, Spring Roll and Mini-Samosas.  Creamy while surprisingly not overdone, the Egg Curry was rather delicious.  I also thought the chickpeas were good being tender but not mushy.  Lots of sweetness from the onion combined with spice.  The lentils were also tender enough with a big hit of cumin and spiciness.  Tasting similar to the butter chicken, the tava veggies were bath in a balanced creamy tanginess.

Mid-meal, we were presented with a sizzling cast iron plate of Chicken Tikka.  Naturally, when compared to the bone-in Tandoori Chicken at the buffet station, this ate more hot and fresh.  It featured tender and moist large nuggets of breast meat.  It was nicely spiced and charred.  For dessert, I filled my plate with Saffron Sweet Rice, Carrot Halwa, Gulab Jamun, Sooji Kalwa, Fruit, Jello and Kheer.  Personally, I'm not a huge fan of these types of desserts since they are so sweet.  However, other than the gulab jamun, the rest weren't too extreme.  I particularly enjoyed the saffron rice as the texture was on point and it was aromatic.  Overall, I was surprised at the selection and overall quality of the food at New India Buffet.  Yes, there are compromises to be made when food is served in chaffing trays, but for the price, it is a good and cheaper alternative to Tandoori Flame especially if you want to stay in Vancouver.

*All food and beverages were complimentary*

The Good:
- Good selection of dishes
- Above-average eats especially for a buffet
- Food was always replenished

The Bad:
- Naan was okay but I would've preferred it to be prepared to order
- Restaurant was rather warm

Shipyards Night Market (Lower Lonsdale)

Somehow I knew the Shipyards Night Market existed, but for whatever reason, I never actually visited the place all Summer.  In my head, I envisioned it to be smaller and not very busy.  Boy did I get that wrong after being invited to check the place out.  In addition to being located next to Lonsdale Quay, which is reason enough to trek out to North Van, it is part of the bigger area now know as the Shipyards District located in Lower Lonsdale.  The development in the area has exploded with new hotels, apartment complexes, restaurants and other services.  So yes, the market was hopping and boasted a diverse selection of food trucks and stands.

We started off the tour at Lonsdale Quay where we made our way over past beautiful The Polygon Galley over to the Shipyards.  Our first order of business was to get corny.  Sorry for the pun, but we did get some fresh Roasted Corn on the Cob at JJ's Hot Cobs.  These were fantastic being large, plump and cooked to perfection.  Each niblet burst with sweetness accented by whatever we chose as our seasoning (10 options in all).  For me, I did a combo of pepper & garlic, lemon pepper and seasoning salt.  From there, we sauntered over to Disco Cheetah Korean Grill where all of us ordered a variety of things including Rice Bowls, Fries and Tacos.  All of them offered a choice of protein including fried chicken, pulled pork or tofu.  Surprisingly, my favourite of the bunch was the fried tofu as it was buttery soft while doused in a sweet and slightly spicy glaze.

By now, it was 6:00pm and the market was getting busy as we made it over to The Reef.  As much as I was tempted to get some classics from their menu including Johnny cakes and plantain chips, I went for the more photogenic Tobago Wrap with curry lime chicken, fresh salsa, greens and avocado lime yogurt.  Colourful and generally a healthier option at the market, the wrap was pretty filling.  Lots of chicken inside with a hint of acidity and plenty of fresh ingredients.  Personally, we could've used a bit more saltiness though.  Now eating all this food made it necessary for some beverages, so we made a pit stop at Kic's Lemonade. Viv and I went for some of their specialty flavours including the Blood Orange and Blackberry Lime.  At first I was concerned that it would be too sweet, but my fears were unwarranted as there was a nice tang to go with the advertised flavours.

At this point, we were looking for something sweet beyond the lemonade.  There were plenty of options available from the many food trucks (40+) and stalls within the market (100+ vendors offering food and products). We ended up going for the Salted Caramel Apple Crepe from Chou Chou Crepes.  However, I think one person got a savoury crepe, but they have an even amount of savoury and sweet options.  Okay, back to the salted caramel apple...  Oh boy, this was fantastic featuring a thin crepe which was crispy on the edges and soft everywhere else.  It still retained a certain elasticity so it didn't fall apart nor get overly soggy.  Inside, I got bit hits of butter, salted smoky caramel and apple.  Since this was served hot, all of the flavours were pronounced and aromatic.

We ended off the night at the Beer Garden where one could sit at a table, enjoy their food and bevvies while listening to live music.  Among the drink options were red & white wine, vodka & soda, gin & tonic, Deep Cove Lager, Black Kettle IPA, Cariboo Cider and Hey Y'all ice tea.  Prices were very reasonable with beer and cider costing only $5.00.  Viv and I settled on the cider in granny smith and sour cherry.  It was a great way to sit down and enjoy the great weather and the atmosphere around us.  The Shipyards Night Market runs until September 28th and there is no entry fee.

*All food and beverages were complimentary*

The Good:
- Scenic location
- No entry fee
- Reasonable pricing on alcohol

The Bad:
- Parking can be tricky if the lot is full

Pepino's Spaghetti House

I'll be blunt here - I wasn't the biggest fan of Nick's Spaghetti House.  Sure, I realized that it was ol' skool Italian-American, so no one could expect stuff found at Ask for Luigi or Savio Volpe.  However, for me at least, it wasn't prepared particularly well nor did I find it a very good value.  To many of the loyal clientele, I was completely wrong and should be struck by lightning for saying such blasphemous things. Well, it is a moot point now as Nick's has been replaced by a snazzier spot in Pepino's Spaghetti House.  However, they pay homage to Nick's keeping that particular style of Italian food alive with their simple, yet focused menu.

Jacqueline and I hit the place up on a busy Friday night to see if their version of Italian-American food was any better (although she had already tried the place out on her own).  Normally, complimentary Bread is not particularly exciting, but I had to include this in the blog post due to the side of butter.  Okay, the bread was soft and fluffy, but the creamy butter ensured we got a second helping.  It was appealingly salty and we ended up slathering it liberally.  We did end up with an appie being the Calamari with garlic sauce.  Although this didn't look particularly sexy, the thick strips of squid were super tender while retaining a chew.  Lightly crispy, the thin layer of batter was nicely seasoned and none too greasy.  What brought everything together (other than the lemon) was the creamy and extremely garlicky dip.

Naturally, the one dish we just had to order was the Spaghettoni, Meat Balls & Gravy.  They really should rename it meatballs with a bit of spaghetti because that would be a more fitting description.  Look at it!  Those baseball-sized meatballs were meaty while not dense.  They were mildly seasoned where the heavy lifting was left up to the tangy and just-salty-enough sauce (or gravy as the menu puts it).  The pasta itself was perfectly al dente while also properly seasoned.  My only wish was for more spaghetti to go with the ridiculous amount of meat.  On that note, the House Lasagna was equally robust with more than enough tender meat stuffed between each layer of pasta.  This was finished off with tart tomato sauce and plenty of melted mozzarella cheese on top.  Again, this was a very generous serving that we couldn't finish.

The best dish of the meal by far was the Chicken Piccata.  It really wasn't complex, but the execution was flawless.  Juicy and succulent, the deboned chicken leg featured rendered skin that was also very well-seasoned.  On that note, every bite of chicken was a literal smack in the face of tangy lemon and capers with a delicious saltiness.  Underneath, the crispy potatoes were exactly as advertised taking equal billing as the chicken.  So this was only a small taste of Pepino's and it was impressive enough that I would totally go back.  That wasn't even in my mindset before dining there.  Consider my mind changed.

The Good:
- Careful execution
- Food is just plain tasty
- That butter

The Bad:
- Although portion sizes are definitely fair, the prices are on the higher side
- Room is retro and snazzy, but very tight

Ban Chok Dee (Maple Ridge)

Early on in this blog's existence, I had visited the Langley location of Ban Chok Dee way before all of the social media hype.  We came away satisfied and surprised that good Thai food could be found way out in the burbs.  In more recent times, Ban Chok Dee has increased its social media presence and participated in challenges.  I've been back quite a few times since then and in fact, have been a judge for a few of the challenges.  With yet another judging of the Wing Challenge presented by Vanfoodster, I decided to head out to their Maple Ridge location to see if: a) the food is still good and b) how does it compare to the original restaurant.

In terms of distance, it really didn't make a difference for me driving out from Burnaby, but the new location is pretty convenient right on Lougheed Hwy and just off the Golden Ears Bridge.  We didn't drive all the way out for wings, so we ended up having a full dinner.   Since they were expecting us for the Wing Challenge, they started us off with 2 amuse bouche.  Whimsically-plated, we had the Fried Prawns doubling as little birds in a nest.  These were meaty with a moist snap.  Underneath, one of them was sweet mayo while the other was a mix of galangal, ginger, lemongrass, lime, peanut, palm sugar, chilis and coconut.  This was spicy and sharp from the ginger.  Next, we had a Mango Salad with crisps, kaffir lime leaves, chilis, fish sauce, galangal, lemongrass and red onion.  It resulted in a sweet and aromatic combination that was also tangy.

Onto the reason we were here, we were served 2 orders of the Boneless Wings Stuffed with Tom Yum.  On the side, it was served with tamarind strawberry sauce and taro chips.  This was certainly an interesting creation where the initially, the strawberry sauce concerned me.  However, it was completely balanced off by the tamarind being tangy, sweet and lightly spicy.  The wings themselves were succulent with a shrimp tom yum centre.  There was definite spice and the essence of kaffir lime leaves.  I also found the pickled cauliflower a nice touch as it added more acidity (which I personally love).

Onto the regular menu, I ordered a dish I've had before at the Langley location - Cured Dry Pork Ribs.  For $12.00, this was a healthy portion of appealingly chewy ribs that were meaty with little cartilage and fat.  Being salt-cured, there was plenty of flavour to go with the caramelized smokiness.  On the menu, it suggests you have a tall cool one to go with this and I completely agree, this would make a great bar snack.  For our curry, we went with something different in the BBQ Duck Lychee Curry.  Pictures doesn't really do this dish justice as it was rather large.  Contained within a deep bowl, there was a creamy coconut curry that was sweet with the essence of lychee and also lightly spicy.  With every ingredient in one bite (a bit hard to do, but necessary), there was the pop of lychees combined with the roasted duck and the crunch of the bamboo shoots.  We needed to get another bowl of rice to take advantage of all of the sauce.

The next 2 dishes could be considered standards on any Thai restaurant menu (in Vancouver) - Chicken Cashew Nut and Pad Thai Goong.  Generously portioned, the stir fry of chicken, cashews, pepper and onions was sweet, caramelized and mildly spicy.  As evidenced in the picture, the peppers were still vibrant and crisp.  If you thought this was a big plate of food, the Pad Thai was even bigger.  We would've preferred that the rice noodles were more chewy, but it didn't make or break the dish.  Although there was a pronounced sweetness, an equal amount of tamarind tang and spice balanced everything out.  All of the usual ingredients were there including meaty prawns in this case.  This last dish pretty much exemplifies what BDC is about - great-tasting and well-portioned Thai food at a reasonable price.  Considering its location, there aren't many other places that can make that claim.

*All food excluding gratuities was complimentary*

The Good:
- Huge portions, which means good value
- Tasty food
- Modern and spacious

The Bad:
- Flavours were on the sweeter side, but then again, you can ask for more spicy
- Pad Thai noodles could've been chewier

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