Thu Hien Deli

Thu Hien Deli is a Vietnamese deli/grocery shop located on Kingsway, right next to Knight. I’ve passed by the joint a number of times on my way to Famous Foods, and have recently decided to check the place out. In addition to various Vietnamese grocery items, they also have a small menu of sandwiches, rice noodles, and other items. I got their Shredded Chicken Sub and Cold Cuts Sub.

Shredded Chicken Sub ($6):


4/5
The pieces of chicken inside is actually chunks rather than “shredded”. There was quite a generous amount of meat present, which was tender, juicy and flavourful. I also quite enjoyed the pickled vegetables and condiments, which had a nice tanginess and creaminess.

Cold Cuts Sub ($5):


3.5/5
This was filled with various cold cut meats, as well as pickled vegetables and condiments. Again, there is a good amount of filling inside; I didn’t find the meat to be as flavourful as the chicken, however. I did really enjoy all of the pickled vegetables and condiments.

I’m glad to have finally visited Thu Hien Deli: the sandwiches there are quite decent; the prices are also very reasonable. While I haven’t tried any of the other items at the joint, I think the place is worth visiting for their sandwiches alone.

Summary:
Food: 3.5/5
Price: 4/5
Service: N/A
Overall: 3.5/5
Recommendations: Shredded Chicken Sub
Thu Hien Deli Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Maxim’s Bakery – Fraser

While returning home from a recent conference in Boston, I stopped by the Maxim’s Bakery on Fraser Street to grab some food. The latter is a Chinese/Asian bakery with several locations throughout Greater Vancouver. I’ve previously visited their location on Victoria Drive. While I was tempted by their sliced cakes, I was still carrying my luggage and thought it was going to be difficult to carry a box of cakes without wrecking them. Instead, I ended up getting their Chicken Steamed Bun, Mango Cake, Pineapple Taro Bun, Pineapple BBQ Pork Bun, Coconut Cream Bun, and Lotus Paste & Egg Yolk Pastry. I cannot remember the exact prices of the food, except that they’re all priced at around $1.5 to $2.

Chicken Steamed Bun


3/5
The bun did have a nice texture that was fluffy and slightly chewy. There was a fair amount of filling, which had quite a bit of vegetables mixed into it to provide texture; I wasn’t keen on its flavour, however.

Mango Triangle Cake


4/5
This consisted of layers of mango-flavoured sponge cake sandwiching a cream filling. The cake was light and fluffy, and not overly dry. It had a nice flavour of mango. The cream was sweet and sightly bit salty.

Pineapple Taro Bun


4/5
The bun itself was quite fluffy and soft. It had a wonderful, crispy topping that’s slightly bit crunchy. There was a good amount of taro paste inside, which was creamy and mildly sweet.

Pineapple BBQ Pork Bun


3.5/5
This is similar to the taro bun, but with BBQ pork instead of taro. The filling is a tad bit stingy in this case. The pork was quite tender and flavourful.

Coconut Cream Bun


3.5/5
The bun was soft and fluffy. I quite enjoyed the cream inside, which had a great hint of saltiness, although it was a tad greasy.

Lotus Paste & Egg Yolk Pastry


4/5
This is very similar to a mooncake. I really enjoyed the lotus paste inside, which was sweet and creamy. The egg yolk was salty, and provided a nice bit of oiliness. I also quite enjoyed the surrounding pastry, which was flaky.

I enjoyed my latest visit to Maxim’s Bakery. The food wasn’t mindblowing, but still solid. All in all, this is a good bakery that’s worth visiting.

Summary:
Food: 3.5/5
Price: 4/5
Service: N/A
Overall: 4/5
Recommendations: Mango Cake, Pineapple Taro Bun, Lotus Paste & Egg Yolk Pastry
Maxim's Bakery Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

La Grotta Del Formaggio

La Grotta del Formaggio is a small Italian deli/grocery that’s located on The Drive. While they sell a variety of different imported good, they are probably best known for their sandwiches. You pick your bread, fillings, and condiments, and they’ll make your sandwich for you. I had a Small Bun with Proscuitto and a Half Focaccia with Porchetta, at least I asked for porchetta. The lady behind the counter seemed to be a bit hard of hearing, however, and gave me mortadella for the latter instead of porchetta. Oh well.

Small Bun with Prosciutto ($7.75):


4/5
I had the sandwich with pesto mayo, olive oil and balsamic vinegar, red peppers, edam cheese, red peppers and spinach. There was a large amount of proscuitto inside the sandwich, which was very salty and savoury. The bread was also quite thin and toasted and crispy.

Half Focaccia with Mortadella ($9.95):


3/5
I had the sandwich with chipotle mayo, red peppers, gouda cheese, red peppers and spinach. I asked for porchetta in my sandwich, but the lady was a little hard of hearing and gave me mortella instead. That was fine though, because the mortella was still quite tasty. Unfortunately, I wasn’t a big fan of the bread, which was a little too grainy for my taste.

I quite enjoyed my visit to Le Grotta del Formaggio. While I wasn’t a bit fan of the focaccia, which I found to be a bit dry and grainy, I really enjoyed the bun. The prices are a bit on the expensive side, but they do come with a generous amount of fillings, so I think it’s worth the price.

Summary:
Food: 4/5
Price: 3.5/5
Service: N/A
Overall: 3.5/5
Recommendations: Sandwiches
La Grotta Del Formaggio Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Kam’s Bakery

During my recent visit to The Wallflower, I passed by Kam’s Bakery. They are a small Asian/Chinese bakery and restaurant located on Main Street. They are apparently closing down to move to a new location, so the restaurant is no longer operating, and the selection in the bakery area is quite limited. They have their usual buns and pastries, as well as a few cakes. I had their Curry Beef Bun, Lotus Pastry, Coconut Cream Bun, BBQ Pork Bun, “Chocolate” Cake and “Mango” Cake.

Curry Beef Bun ($1.80):


2.5/5
The bun was pretty soft, light and fluffy. There really wasn’t much filling inside at all. The bits of curry that I did get was at least flavourful, and had a nice bit of heat.

“Chocolate” Cake Slice ($2?):


3/5
This consisted of layers of sponge cake sandwiching a custard-like filling. The cake was quite tender and moist, with the cocoa on top providing a nice bit of bitterness. I wasn’t a big fan of the custard, which was a little bland for me.

Lotus Pastry ($2.25):


3.5/5
This is quite like a mooncake. Unlike the buns, this actually had a good amount of filling spread throughout, which was sweet and had a nice fragrance. It was a bit stiff, however.

“Mango” Cake Slice ($2?):


3.5/5
This consisted of a mango mousse on top of a sponge cake. The mango had a great fragrance of mango without tasting too artificial, and was sweet without being overly so. Not really certain if this is the “best” mango cake in Vancouver, but it is certainly pretty good.

BBQ Pork Bun ($1.80):


3.5/5
This consisted a considerably larger amount of filling compared to the curry beef bun. The pork was a little grisly, but was tender and had a nice bit of sweetness.

Coconut Cream Bun ($1.80):


4/5
This consisted of a hot-dog like bun that’s filled with cream and topped with coconut. The coconut on top provided a great fragrance. I thoroughly enjoyed the cream filling, which was sweet, with a slight bit of saltiness.

I enjoyed my visit to Kam’s Bakery. The food wasn’t the greatest, but not bad either; the prices are quite cheap. I don’t know where their new location will be, but I’d recommend checking this bakery out at wherever they will be.

Summary:
Food: 3.5/5
Price: 4.5/5
Service: N/A
Overall: 4/5
Recommendations: Coconut Cream Bun, Lotus Pastry, “Mango” Cake
Kam's Bakery & Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Marulilu Cafe

While I’m typically not the biggest fan of sushi, I do really like Japanese-Western style cafes. Recently, I had the opportunity to check out Marulilu Cafe, which is located on Broadway, right across from the skytrain station. They have a very large menu of various Japanese fare as well as Western food. You order at the front counter and they bring the food to your table. I had their Breakfast Plate C.

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Menu

Breakfast Plate C w/Waffle ($11.99):

3.5/5
This comes with 2 small waffles, 2 eggs, 2 hashbrowns, and your choice of either bacon, ham or sausage; I had the sausage. The waffles were served with syrup and whipped cream. I did find them to be a little too dry and dense for my liking. The eggs and sausage were standard. I really enjoyed the hashbrowns though, which were very crispy.

I’m very glad to have checked out Marulilu Cafe. While the food didn’t blow me away, it was still very good, and very reasonably priced. Even though there wasn’t really much service per se, the staff was also very friendly. I definitely recommend checking this place out. Just be warned: seating is limited, so you might need to wait if you go at peak hours.

Summary:
Food: 3.5/5
Price: 4.5/5
Service: N/A
Overall: 4/5
Recommendations: Breakfast Plates
Marulilu Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

I Hua Bakery

During my recent visit to Crepe & Cafe, I decided to check out I Hua Bakery, which was located just a few doors down. In spite of their name, they are actually more of a Chinese/Asian grocery shop, although they do also sell baked goods, dim sum, and apparently wonton soup as well. I had their Steamed Pork Bun, Steamed Chicken Bun, Custard Cream Bun, BBQ Pork Bun, Milk Powder Bun, and Red Bean Bun.

Steamed Pork Bun ($1.59):


3.5/5
The bun was a bit too hard and chewy for my liking. I also found the filling to be a little stingy. The meat was still tasty though, and was tender and juicy.

Steamed Chicken Bun ($1.59):


3.5/5
I had the same issues with this bun as I did with the steamed pork. The filling was still good though; I particularly enjoyed the vegetables, which provided a nice crunchy texture.

Custard Cream Bun ($1.49):


3.5/5
The bun had a strangely soft, almost cake-light texture. There was a great amount of custard filling inside however, which was creamy, sweet and had a really nice fragrance.

BBQ Pork Bun ($1.99):


3.5/5
The bun contained a fairly decent amount of pork inside, which was tender and had a nice bit of sweetness.

Milk Powder Bun ($1.75):


3/5
This contained a sweet, powdery paste. On this occasion, I found the filling to be a little stingy and not well distributed throughout the bun.

Red Bean Bun ($1.49):


3.5/5
This contained ribbons of red bean paste, which was sweet and creamy. There was a fairly good amount of filling distributed throughout.

I’m glad to have stopped by I Hua Bakery. Their baked goods weren’t the greatest, but still fairly good; the prices are very cheap. This isn’t the best bakery out there, but definitely still worth a visit for some very affordable food.

Summary:
Food: 3.5/5
Price: 5/5
Service: N/A
Overall: 4/5
Recommendations: Custard Cream Bun, BBQ Pork Bun, Red Bean Bun
I Hua Bakery Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Gia Minh

Giah Minh is a Vietnamese joint located on Fraser Street, a couple of blocks away from 49th Avenue. Their menu consists of the usual popular Vietnamese fare, along with a variety of drinks and desserts. I had their BBQ Chicken, Spring Rolls with Vermicelli and Mango Shake.

BBQ Chicken, Spring Rolls with Vermicelli ($10):


4/5
The spring roll was not exactly hot, but still quite crispy and flavourful. The chicken was tender and flavourful; I was missing a bit of charred flavour, however.

Mango Shake ($4.50):


4.5/5
The shake was creamy but not overly rich, and not all icy. It had a great fragrance of mango, and was sweet without being overly so.

I was very impressed with Giah Minh: the food was solid; I was especially impressed by their shakes. The prices were very affordable. The only criticism I have is the service, which can be a little lacking at times. All in all however, this is a solid Vietnamese joint that I’d highly recommend visiting.

Summary:
Food: 4/5
Price: 4.5/5
Service: 3/5
Overall: 4/5
Recommendations: Mango Shake
Gia Minh Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Our Town Cafe

While visiting Kafka’s Coffee + Tea recently, I passed by Our Town Cafe. They are a shop that’s located on the corner of Broadway and Kingsway. They serve coffees and various drinks, as well as baked goods and breakfast/lunch items. I had their Espresso Chocolate Cookie, Spinach and Blue Cheese Breakfast Scone, and Blueberry Lemon Almond Muffin.

Espresso Chocolate Cookie ($3):


4/5
The cookie was thick, soft and chewy. It had a great fragrance and mild bitterness from the espresso. There was a good amount of chocolate spread throughout.

Spinach and Blue Cheese Breakfast Scone ($6.5):


3.5/5
This contained cheese, tomatoes, eggs, and mayo. The scones were relatively tender and soft, with a nice savoury flavour; I did find them to be a tad dry. I quite enjoyed the filling inside, in particular the tomatoes, which lent a nice sweetness.

Blueberry Lemon Almond Muffin ($3.25):


4/5
The muffin was tender, albeit just a tad on the dry side. It had a good amount of fresh blueberries, and a wonderful fragrance from citrus. I really liked the almonds, which provided a great texture.

I quite enjoyed the food at Our Town Cafe. The staff was also friendly. Even though I haven’t tried any of their drinks, I think that this place is worth visiting for the food alone.

Summary:
Food: 4/5
Price: 4/5
Service: N/A
Overall: 4/5
Recommendations: Espresso Chocolate Cookie, Blueberry Lemon Almond Muffin
Our Town Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Kafka’s Coffee & Tea

Kafka’s Coffee & Tea is a small cafe located near the intersection of Main Street and Broadway. As the name of their shop implies, they specialize in various tea and coffees, although they do have some a small rotating menu of fresh baked goods. I had a Ham & Cheese Croissant and Chocolate Chip Sea Salt Cookie. I don’t know what the actual prices of their food is (they didn’t have it labelled), but the total was $8.

dav
Baked goods

Ham & Cheese Croissant (around $5):


4/5
The croissant was buttery and flaky. I liked that the ham was spread throughout the croissant so that I could get it from every bite. The cheese provided a nice creaminess.

Chocolate Chip Sea Salt Cookie (around $3):


4/5
The cookie was tender and chewy, and had a nice sweet fragrance. There was chocolate spread throughout the cookie. The sea salt on top provided a nice bit of saltiness to balance the sweetness.

Although I know that Kafka’s Tea & Cafe is probably best known for their drinks, I’m not a person who can tell the difference between a good cup of coffee or a bad one; they generally all taste the same to me. I did quite enjoy their baked goods however. If their food is any indication of their quality, I think this cafe is worth checking out.

Summary:
Food: 4/5
Price: 4/5
Service: N/A
Overall: 4/5
Recommendations: Ham & Cheese Croissant, Chocolate Chip Sea Salt Cookie
Kafka's Coffee and Tea Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Sakura Cafe

Sakura Cafe is a small Japanese/Asian-style cafe located on Burrard, just a short distance from Broadway. They have a menu of various breakfast and lunch items, as well as a large variety of drinks. I had a Matcha Latte and Breakfast B, which consists of pancakes, eggs, and sausage.

Matcha Latte ($4.35):

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Matcha Latte

4/5
The latte had a great fragrance from the matcha. It was smooth and creamy, and had a wonderful, slightly bitter flavour.

Breakfast B ($7.99):

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Breakfast B

3.5/5
This consisted of two pancakes, two scrambled eggs, and turkey sausage. The pancakes were relatively light and fluffy. The eggs were quite fluffy and creamy. The sausage was flavourful, and had a nice spice to it.

I enjoyed my visit to Sakura Cafe. The food was solid; the prices were also very reasonable. The service was minimal, but the staff was very friendly. All in all, this is a joint that I’d definitely recommend checking out. They do have quite a limited number of seats however, so catch them at a less busy time or have your food to go.

Summary:
Food: 4/5
Price: 4/5
Service: N/A
Overall: 4/5
Recommendations: Matcha Latte, Breakfast B
Sakura Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato