Nordstrom, as many Vancouverites know, is the city's newest place to be downtown as we have finally been blessed with our own American designer department store. Amongst the designer brands and crowds of anxious shoppers sits Bistro Verde, Nordstrom's very own restaurant which is located on the third floor of the store. Bistro Verde has an upscale (Nordstrom-ish) aura as its interior is sleek and surrounded by big windowed-walls which overlook downtown Howe Street. Knowing Nordstrom's reputation for quality, I was curious to see how their restaurant would turn out so I grabbed a few friends to try it out with me.
tito's vodka, rose wine, fresh lime juice, muddled grapes, mint, prosecco splash @ 12
3.5/5 - A very refreshing drink as the lime juice and mint really stand out. There's a moderately strong vodka flavour and has a somewhat dry finish. Not exactly memorable but a good light drink for vodka lovers.
ahi tuna poke
seaweed salad, seasoned wontons, soy sauce, wasabi @ 14.95
4.5/5 - This one was recommended by our server and I'm glad we didn't pass on it. I liked the flavour of the marinated tuna as well as the soft yet firm texture of it which went really well with the slightly salty wonton chips. I don't really think the plate of soy sauce added any more for the dish but I did like the additional wakame seaweed to add texture and flavour to the combination of fish+chip. I do wish they gave us more wonton chips though - the topping to chip ratio was a bit off.
sautéed chicken + angel hair pasta
baby spinach, oyster mushroom, roasted garlic tomato sauce, rosemary beurre blanc @18.95
3/5 - This was quite a plain dish accompanied by sub-par plating. The flavours are exactly what you would expect from reading the ingredients but although the chicken lacked flavour, I was impressed at how soft and moist the chicken was.
grilled wild salmon filet
roasted butternut squash, seasonal mushroom risotto, micro greens, beurre blanc @23.95
2.75-3/5 - As with the chicken pasta dish, I also found this salmon filet risotto to be a bit lackluster. The salmon was more on the dry side and the risotto was slightly more watery than I would've liked.
bone in rib eye steak
crispy smashed potatoes, baby carrots, brussels sprouts @38
4.5/5 - For someone who doesn't really enjoy slabs of meat, I was certainly surprised when I caught myself eating quite a bit of this steak. Not only was it cooked to a perfect medium rare, the flavour and size of this rib eye are spot on for the price of $38. The mini potatoes are crispy and seasoned well but I would've liked it much more if the carrots were glazed to add a complimentary flavour to the plate. Oh and to add, when you order the steak, you get this really badass knife which cuts through the meat like nothing. Shout out to the knife.
chocolate paradise cake
moist chocolate cake, semi-sweet chocolate frosting, english toffee, caramel sauce @7.95
4.75/5 - Another server recommendation here that I don't regret. This cake is ridiculous, but ridiculous in a good way. I was initially skeptical of this cake as it just sounded too overwhelmingly sweet but after taking a bite covered in caramel sauce, it was actually very enjoyable. The cake is definitely moist and is so good when eaten with a bit of the toffee crust on the side. Although this cake is mouthwatering-ly addictive, I recommend sharing this with at least one more person.
So Nordstrom is great but I can't say the same for all their food. I understand that lots of things are still undergoing changes as the restaurant is very new but as of my visit last week, I feel like the food has a lot of room for improvement especially considering the price on many of the menu items. Service however, is very attentive and friendly and although the restaurant is quite loud, the overall atmosphere is comfortable. Maybe I'll pay another visit to Bistro Verde in a few weeks.
R E V I E W.
+ food quality: 7/10
+ service: 9/10
+ price/affordability: 7/10
+ atmosphere: 8.5/10
+ overall: 7/10