Sherman's Food Adventures: Ancora Waterfront Dining & Patio (Dine Out 2024)

Ancora Waterfront Dining & Patio (Dine Out 2024)

It has been quite some time since I've been back to the False Creek location of Ancora.  Hey, it wasn't because I didn't like the place, in fact, it was pretty good.  With all of the new restaurants I need to try and also being out-of-town on many occasions, doing a revisit just never happened.  This time around, I was invited to sample their Dine Out Vancouver menus (for lunch & dinner) including some cocktails and wine pairings.  3-course for lunch is $45.00 and for dinner it is $59.00.

For the lunch menu, there are 2 choices for starters, and for me, I was served the Chicharron Sushi Roll consisting of sous-vide and fried pork belly, miso sauce and black pepper.  This ate really well with chewy and seasoned sushi rice.  The pork belly was aromatic and had a nice crunch.  Nice textural contrast from the ripe avocado.  Appealingly offering up a fermented saltiness, the miso provided the savouriness while the slice of jalapeno on top added some spice.

The next course also had 2 options including a Shrimp Risotto or a Sushi Pizza.  As you can see, I was served the pizza and it was very good.  The "crust" was fried sushi rice and I found it to be perfect.  It was uniformly crispy on the outside while the rice was warm, chewy and moist on the inside.  On top, there was dungeness crab, avocado cream, unagi sauce, tuna and sockeye salmon.  I found the fish to be good quality and exhibiting a fresh sheen.  They were buttery and soft with a natural sweetness.

For dinner, we find 3 options for starters including the Soft Shell Crab Tacos with ikura and mango salsa.  This was a fairly large appetizer with a gigantic soft shell crab.  It was delicate and creamy as expected, but the batter was just a touch thick.  This was still good though as it had a nice crunch and the accompanying salsa provided some sweetness.  There was also some nice spice from the mayo as well as the spice-rubbed lime.

There are also 3 choices for mains and in this case, I was served 2 of them.  The first was the Solterito Salad with red and white organic quinoa, queso fresco, chulpi corn, edamame, huacatay & seasonal vegetables.  Sure, a salad may not be the most filling option, but believe me, this was pretty delicious and surprisingly satisfying.  The 3 large prawns were crispy on the outside while exhibiting a meaty snap on the inside.  The combination of ingredients including some root veggies and the quinoa made this more than just a salad.

The other main dish was the Beef Stir Fry featuring sautéed striploin, red onions, scallions, saltado sauce and 
a rice.  I really enjoyed this dish even though I was skeptical at first.  The beef was far more tender than I would've imagined and it was cooked perfectly.  Just into the medium-rare zone, the meat was juicy and nicely caramelized on the outside.  There was some really good flavours going on with saltiness, tang and sweetness.  The al dente rice was well-seasoned and nutty while being an excellent compliment to the stir-fry.

For both lunch and dinner, the Picarones are an option for dessert.  These little squash & yam donuts came with pecans, spiced syrup and lucuma ice-cream.  Absolutely loved them as the outside was lightly crispy while the inside had a pleasant chewiness.  They were not dense while still having some robustness.  Although sweet, the syrup was not overly so, rather being aromatic and smoky. 

Of course a meal isn't complete (for some people that is) without cocktails and/or wine pairings.  Naturally, being a Peruvian-Japanese restaurant, there is also selection of Sake.  I tried their most popular cocktail in the Pisco Sour and it was well-balanced with the classic sweet and sour elements.  Since I was driving, I stuck with the mocktails in the Pineapple Soda and Inca Elixr for my other drinks.  Particularly enjoyed the refreshing fruitiness of both.  Wine pairings are available at $29.00 for lunch and $39.00 for dinner.  Overall, the Dine Out offerings at Ancora feature quality ingredients that are well-prepared.  Pricing is fair for the food as well as the wine pairings.

*All food and beverages were complimentary for this post*

The Good:
- Quality ingreidents
- Well-prepared
- Lovely location

The Bad:
- Batter on the soft-shell crab could've been lighter


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