After a short weekend in Seattle, Meep and I had ourselves a little lunch date since during the majority of our vacation we were spending time w family and friends. I made reservations to Market by Jean Georges in Shangri-La. I wanted to try Market because I had such a good meal at Jean Georges in NYC and noticed that the Market’s menu had some similar dishes and offered a couple of the “classics” as well.
When we got there, I didn’t know we had to walk up two flight of stairs to get to the restaurant, we actually walked right pass the stairs that were hidden behind the sign from the street.
Once up the stairs, we first get to the terrace/patio seating before the main dining room. The patio was pretty inviting, ignoring the giant plastic tarps draping over the opening to protect from constant rain – it was elegant and simplistic.
Massive bar in between two dining areas. There is a total of 3 dining areas (2 inside and the terrace).
The main dining area was less than 1/3 full at 1 pm on a Monday~ Reminds me a lot of Nougatine at Jean Georges in NYC.
Second private dining area. The chairs look too corporate for a restaurant (to me at least). It was disjointed with the rest of the restaurant.
Menu a simple 2 pager. There is the regular lunch menu and the Lunch Prix Fixe Menu for $35.
The menu features some Jean Georges’ “classics”~
In house made sodas were very appealing!
From the regular lunch menu:
Truffle Pizza $19
Black truffle with Fontina Cheese
Great pizza. Amazingly thin crispy crust and generously topped with chopped up truffles and cheese. Savoury, rich and quite addictive. The greens were tossed in a light vinaigrette that gave a nice acidity and freshness to the rich pizza.
When I inquired about the size, I was told it was small but it turned out to be the size of entree plate.
Grilled Lamb Chop $36
w Mushroom Bolognese, Rapini & Pecorino
Two thick generous cuts of lamb chops, that were the size of my fists! The aroma was intoxicating the moment the dish hit the tabler.
Lamb done a bit more than I expected but it was still juicy and delicious. Seasoned very well and oh so tender. There was barely an ounce of fat and yet the meat was rich and moist. The mushroom bolognese was a huge surprise. It was savoury, earthy and complex.. I was even more impressed when the server told me it was totally vegetarian because there were little bits that had the same texture as minced meat and the flavours were so rich and developed that it was hard to believe that it was mushrooms and more mushrooms.
I did not care much for the rapini. It was bland and had specks of chili flakes but had no seasoning whatsoever. It tasted mostly of the water it was blanched in. Quite disappointing and I did not even bother with it. Resulted in a quite heavy entree, with no fresh or nice greens to complement the meat and rich bolognese.
From the Lunch Prix Fixe @$35
w quail egg & french fries
Pretty good tartare but a little too heavily salted. Meep has a higher salt tolerance than I do and yet he thinks it was salty. That being said, great flavours and evenly cut chunks of raw beef slightly cooked from some kinda citrus. There was a hint of heat from some red chili flakes and the quail egg and lime pulled the whole dish together well.
The fries were quite mediocre. Soggy, greasy and did not look very appetising.
with nut & Seed crust, vegetables in a sweet and sour broth
Fish was cooked well and flaked off nicely with a great crunchy crust. I found that I am not a fan of ling cod because it is not as delicate as other white fish and quite stringy. The broth was not as developed as I liked but was rich & buttery with hints of sweet and sour as promised. The vegetables were all individually cooked well, fresh and complemented the fish really well. The seasoning of the whole dish was pretty spot on.
w softly whipped cream, crystallised Violets & chocolate cake (hidden surprise)
We were first skeptical about this, thinking it was just soft pudding with soft cream till we hit the bottom of the glass where there was a nice chunk of decadent chocolate cake. Simple but a pretty good way to end the meal. I didn’t care much for the crystallised Violets… too perfume-y for consumption.
Blueberry Soda $6
The soda was delicious, refreshing and so fresh tasting. It was not sweet at all, but had such intense blueberry flavours and carbonated.
Coffee $4 – Nothing much but the average cup of drip coffee.
Total Damage: 130.32 (including tax & tip)
Personal Rating: 3.5 out of 5 (Pretty darn good)
Although a little uninspiring, the food is very good. Nothing was short of tasty (even if they were salty). Although I ordered off the regular menu (because not many dishes in the prix fixe appealed to me), the lunch prix fixe is an amazing deal especially for the calibre of the dishes.
Service was pretty good. Our server was very knowledgeable on the menu items, although she was not very accurate in describing the size of the dishes. I asked her how big was the pizza, and she said they were appetizer size and approximate the size of her hand as the size of the pizza but it turned out to be the size of a dinner plate. Then I asked her how big were the lamb chop portions, she said two small chops but they were of substantial size. Needless to say, I ended up with too much food and was stuffed to the brim so had no room for dessert.
Note: Do not compare the food to the Jean Georges in NYC (it is proably comparable to Nougatine at Jean Georges in NYC but not the 3 Michelin starred Jean Georges). Although there are a couple items that were the “Classics”, which is offered in all 3 venues, in Vancouver it was just not as sophisticated. Mind you, it was still tasty food but just lacking a little finesse.
Shangri La hotel
1115 Alberni Street
(604) 695 1115