Sherman's Food Adventures: Published on Main

Published on Main

Sometimes, people will ask me what is my favourite restaurant in Vancouver.  More often than not, I come back with some questions of my own because that is far too general of inquiry.  However, it has become apparent to me that I do have an answer to that question now, regardless of price, cuisine or neighbourhood.  If one was to spend money eating out, I would point them in the direction of Published on Main.  Honestly, this place has some of the prettiest plates and the most consistent food.  No pretentious attitude here, just good food.   Recently re-visited the place to do a "Mijune-style" meal.

Starting with the seemingly simple Chips & Dip, we found house potato chips served with sour cream and onion dip with smoked fish.  This was so addictive where the chips were crunchy yet light at the same time.  Lightly salted, they were good on their own, yet the dip was addictively creamy, tangy and smoky (due to the fish).  Those little morsels of fish added more texture as well as the crunch from the onions.  Loved the dill garnish as it afforded some brightness.

Now that was a good start and while I was munching on the chips, the beautifully-plated Side Stripe Prawns arrived.  This featured cooked and chilled side stripe prawns with cucumber, apple and horseradish.  Those buttery prawns were delicate with a mild rebound texture.  They were sweet and lightly seafoody.  The freshness of cucumber and apple provided a non-conflicting compliment to the sweet prawns.  Horseradish was restrained.

Staying with things from the sea, we had the roasted Pacific Squid with bacon vinaigrette, castelvetrano olives and brown butter crumb.  One bite and there was an impactful fermented flavour from the olives that complimented the tangy and saltiness of the vinaigrette.  Texturally, the squid was tender, yet exhibiting a mild chew (in a good way).  To contrast, the crumb on top did its crunchy thing with the usual nuttiness of brown butter.

Now one might not consider the Black Garlic Caesar a must order with so many other great choices on the menu.  However, don't go sleeping on this salad as it was really good.  There was just enough dressing which was creamy, earthy and surprisingly bright.  The combination of romaine hearts and kale afforded 2 different textures.  An ample amount of pecorino and crunch on top meant we had plenty of tang and nuttiness.

One of the must order dishes in our opinion was the Wagyu carpaccio with pickled elderflower, ginger miso and malted barley cracker.  This did not disappoint as the beef was tender and full-flavoured.  It wasn't sliced as thin as one would expect, yet it still didn't require much chewing.  There was a bit more texture than thinner sliced versions, but that was a good thing.  On top, the combination of ingredients added acidity, fermented saltiness and crunch from the cracker.

Before we ordered, we were deciding between the smoked steelhead and Pickerel.  As you can see, the pickerel won with its potato and mushroom pinwheel, kelp and lemon sauce.  This was one of our favourite dishes where the fish was flaky and moist while the skin was crispy.  It was well-seasoned on its own, but that sauce was fantastic.  It had an appetizing acidity combined with the umaminess of the kelp.  Loved that soft potato in the middle.  It was earthy from the mushrooms while nicely caramelized.

Another veggie item of our meal was the roasted Winter Squash with koji butter sauce, candied pepita & currant.  The camamelized squash was definitely the star of the show (as it should be).  Richly sweet, the squash was tender while not mushy.  It was a touch smoky as well.  That koji butter was creamy, yet not heavy due to the balancing amount of tanginess.  Keeping with the fall/winter theme, the candied pepita provided some crunch.

One of the most appealing choices on the current menu is the Chanterelles with smoked celeriac, poached egg and fried bread.  Even though it was another veggie dish, it ate so decadent and meaty, we hardly noticed.  The beautiful flavour and texture of the mushroom was on full display.  Definitely buttery and properly seasoned.  The cafe au lait sauce was rich, yet slightly watered-down by the poached egg.  Underneath, the creamy smoked celeriac provided more depth.

We didn't stop with the beef carpaccio as we also had the Wagyu Bavette for good measure.  This was beautifully medium-rare with all of the fat activated.  As such, the meat was buttery tender while still meaty due to the cut.  Plenty of natural umaminess, but the roasted chanterelles and smoked potato dauphine added even more comforting flavours.  That potato was smoky and creamy.  There was also a side of spicy condiment, but it really wasn't that spicy.

Our last savoury item was an add-on (so that is why it seems out-of-order).  The Herbed Ricotta Manti also featured chanterelles (we weren't complaining) and a herb shallot cream sauce.  Thin and al dente, the manti were filled with a creamy and tangy ricotta filling. The herbs really came through in the form of dill and tarragon.  Cream sauce was aromatic and bordering on salty, hence it was flavourful and impactful.

Onto dessert, we had the
aerated Hay custard with green apple and chamomile.  This appeared to be a very large portion until we dug into it.  Pillowy light and fluffy, the hay custard was on semi-sweet and slightly earthy.  The combination of apple and chamomile was naturally complimentary adding sweetness and a refreshing tang.

Ending everything off, the Creamsicle featured
vanilla ice cream with mandarin granita and milk meringue.  Another refreshing dessert, this was up my alley.  Loved the fruitiness of the granita and the sourness of the raspberries.  The granita itself wasn't very sweet, but the ice cream did all the heavy lifting in that department.  Now as I post this the menu has already changed a bit with 4 new dishes replacing some of these ones.  That only means I have to go back - it won't be hard to convince me

The Good:
- Beautiful plates
- Consistent
- Good use of acidity

The Bad:
- Portion size is modest, so you'll have to order lots (upping the cost, but also more variety)


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