Dine out Vancouver is one of the huge foodie events in Vancouver that held every year between January to February. During Dine out period, a lot of famous restaurant offers their dishes for special price course menu and people are busy to book and line up the famous restaurants. We, the group number 1, booked the restaurant called Trattoria.
The word Trattoria means Italian Kitchen. Obviously, the restaurant Trattoria serves authentic Italian food with the promise of the fine dining experience. It is more of a premium casual restaurant like Cactus Club, Earl’s Kitchen. Trattoria operates in three locations in the city of Vancouver which are Kitsilano, Park Royal, and Burnaby. Our group visited Burnaby’s location that is on Kingsway near the Metrotown station and it takes only 8 minutes walking to reach there. The restaurant is huge and there is even a party room on the 2nd floor. When we entered the restaurant, we felt a welcoming atmosphere. The restaurant was clean and with all table covers set as per industry standards. In the middle of the restaurant, they had a huge round bar where a guest can eat individually. There was a tall glass material wine cellar on the left that had almost every collection of red wines. As per current industry trends, they had a live kitchen concept in the center of the restaurant which consisted of a huge oven and around that was the bar counter.
We felt the service was not as good as we expected because the server never came back to our table after we sat down. She ghosted us! This means we were waiting for more than 30 minutes each time for ordering, asking more water, and getting a bill. The most annoying point was she visited almost every other customers’ table but not our table. That made us think ‘Because we order cheap dine out menu, she doesn’t want to serve for us?’ Like this. Seugjae said, “I felt a little bit of discrimination between Dine out Vancouver customers and normal customers.” Some table wear were not really clean too.
Their menu was written in Italian. They use the word “Antipasti”, “Principali”, and “Dolce” instead of aperitif, entree, and dessert, which was cool to show their authentic Italian style of food and service. They offered three different dishes for each category except for desserts. Therefore, our each members, Hyemin, SeungJae, and Yuvraj chose different dishes from the menu.
First, Seunjae decided to try Prosciutto and Pear for Antipasti, Chicken Milanese for Principali, and he made additional order from the drink menu that was cocktail called Mojito. Interestingly, it was Seung Jae’s first-time drink Mojito. Seung Jae was really impressed by the taste. Mojito was fresh, cold and sweet. He could barely taste the alcohol. After some sip of his Mojito Seung Jae got his appetizer called Prosciutto and Pear. He said the appetizer that he had was big and thin ham, which was laid down, and on the top of the ham, there were walnuts, vegetables, and pear. The combination of salty ham and sweet pear were amazing. However, because it was big and tough to cut into one bite-size, he had to open his mouth as big as almost got the cut edge of his lips and it made his whole face so dirty by the sauce. Overall, Seugnjae said that it was good to have to start his main dish. It really worked up an appetite.
After the server took his appetizer dish, he finally got the main dish that he was waiting for, which was Chicken Milanese. At first, he thought it was cooked rice cake. Because it looks exactly the same as Korean traditional rice cake. There were vegetables with nuts and orange on top. The taste of the chicken was a little bit sour due to charred lemon. However, the chicken was tendered well and juicy and the combination with orange, nuts and vegetables were amazing like dancing on my tongue. He said, “It was the best combination that I had today.” Lastly, the dessert was called smashed berry pavlova. Seung-Jae does not like too much sweetness and unfortunately, pavlova is so much sweet dessert that makes him disappointed. He said, “This is too sweet! I could not taste strawberries, and blueberries neither!” But he also said that the texture was soft that he could rest his masseter muscle after chewing a lot of meat, and he would enjoy the pavlova if it was a cold dessert.
Hyemin chose the Tuscan Onion Soup, Grilled Veal T-Bone, Smashed Berry Pavlova, and campaign for her dine-out menu. All foods were looks pretty good for the price, but the taste was not. She usually loves to enjoy the soup, especially onion or cream soup, for the appetizer to makes her tongue being ready for the main dish. Every time it works, except this time. The soup was too sour and salty for her. She almost drops the spoon after one sip. She said, “This is not the onion soup! This is an insult to onion soup!” and left whole soup.
The main steak was too tough that couldn’t even bite and chewing. When we discussed the experience of restaurant, she said “The meat is too tough that makes me cannot be swallowed! I just spit out the whole steak!” However, dessert was fine for her because she loves sweet foods. So, she finished only dessert plate while the other member SeungJae left all his dessert except the appetizer and main dishes. Hyemin Said, “I feel like because of price, they might offer so low-quality foods.” Hyemin also ordered a cocktail for herself to have with her meal and when it was served, the cocktail almost overflowed everywhere from the glass that made the table and the glass too sticky. When Hyemin explained her experience of the restaurant, “I could not touch the cocktail glass. Even didn’t want to touch it! Everything is too dirty in here!” she said. The taste of cocktail also made her feel bad. She wanted a sweet cocktail and asked to the server to get recommend and she ordered their recommendation cocktail. However, the cocktail was not as sweet as she expected. It was too bitter and had a strong alcohol smell for her. Therefore, she couldn’t drink the cocktail at all.
Yuvraj ordered the appetizer was Warm Mushroom Salad which consisted of baked wild mushrooms, arugula, toasted breadcrumbs and aged balsamic and pecorino. Its taste was a little bit smoky sour and the texture was too dry. He asked to the server for adding some blue cheese to enhance the flavour which worked out well. Overall, it was a light appetizer that was absolutely a good start for the meal, he thinks.
After he finished having his appetizer salad, the server brought him his main dish, which was Forno Baked Gnocchi that has potato gnocchi with vegetable Bolognese crème Fraiche and basil. This Italian main course is one of the famous dishes that he always wanted to try, and it came out to be wonderful as he expected. Technically a dumpling and tastes like pasta, with a sauce of butter, sage and parmesan cheese. This was served on a hot iron dish taken out from the bake directly to the table. That was an amazing style to show their customers that the dish is fresh and hot, and it also enhances the customer’s dining experience. The server also informed us to be careful with the temperature of the dish. It was slightly heavy compared to the other pasta maybe because it is made from potatoes. It melted in the mouth as it was so tender and soft like a pillow. That was such an awesome dish and it made in less than 15 minutes after he ordered. Yuvraj tried some parmesan cheese on the top with some portion and he said, “That really tastes great!”
Yuvraj was also extremely satisfied with the dessert. Who will not like the Smashed Berry Pavlova which had puffy whipped cream, a tart, berries and lots of cut fruits? Who will hate these perfect sweets? For sure except SeugJae tho. He said that the texture of this dessert is like a big puffy cloud with a slightly crispy exterior that literally melts in your mouth with the perfect sugary finish. It was an explosion of flavour in every single bite. There is nothing more to be adding in this dessert to make it more stunning. It was worth waiting for 15 mins for this so great piece of art.
Yuvraj also ordered a Funghi Pizza off the Dine out menu which turn out to be a big hit! The taste and quality were really good and it consisted of smoked pancetta, mushrooms, creamed leeks, sprouts and provolone. “Why not order a pizza when you are sitting in an authentic Italian restaurant?” Well baked and the presentation was as per standards. “I would have rather liked it more if there were more sprouts and mushrooms added,” he said.
The ambience was not so great that we would like in a fine dining restaurant. we could barely listen to the restaurant music and the location of the table offered to our had view of the service area. The wrongest part of the whole thing was Yuvraj was given an unclean (may be unwashed) dessert spoon to have his dessert. He did not waste a second to excuse the server for an exchange. Also, He did not find the server sorry about it which is too little to expect from a restaurant server. We found the service to have very slow and less cared for staff. We had to excuse our table server to fill water in our glasses that clearly showed less eye for detail. This thing maybe was understandable if the restaurant was too busy in operations but unexpected treatment from fine dining when half of the tables were empty.
The other parts of the services were fine as they asked us about how we feel the food taste, and do we need something else more. “All of this for 25 dollars is worth it,” SeungJae said. He also said that the foods that we got served looks at least for 50 dollars! So even we felt little of discrimination between normal customers and Dine out Vancouver customers, all these foods for 25 dollars is worth it.
Smashed Mixed Berry Pavlova. (2020, February 18). Retrieved from https://www.cakenknife.com/smashed-mixed-berry-pavlova/
Trattoria. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.glowbalgroup.com/trattoria/
Trattoria Meaning. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/trattoria
Dine Out Vancouver Festival 2020. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.dineoutvancouver.com/