My Dine Out adventures continue and this time, it's at Granville Island Hotel's Dockside Restaurant which overlooks False Creek and Yaletown. It's located near the end of Granville Island and has a decent amount of parking (since it's part of the hotel). Because Dockside IS part of the hotel, it's appropriate to dress as least smart casual - so bring out those collared shirts / summer dresses and don't miss the opportunity to grab a patio spot to enjoy the amazing view outside.
Upon arriving, we jumped straight to the mains, mine being the Dockside Cioppino ($34) - salmon, halibut, prawn, mussels, clams, dungeness crab, and scallop doused in san marzano tomato broth, topped with fennel and caper, and finished with a petite baguette. All the seafood on this plate was fresh from the Granville Island Market and it definitely shows through every bite - all the seafood is juicy, soft, and has a hint of that fresh-ocean-water taste. The broth is not too thick or heavy, very aromatic due to the herbs included and is a great compliment to the seafood that is soaked in it. I found the baguette to be a great pairing for this dish since it not only provides the carbs to satisfy the stomach, but gives you an opportunity to really clean the dish after you have enjoyed the meat (I mean who doesn't like dipping their bread in soup?). Jokes aside, the baguette was nice and firm/crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. This is a great hands-on dish which is surprisingly filling and provides what I believe to be a good taste of what Granville Island seafood has to offer.
Our second main was the Duck Breast ($32) which came with grilled king oyster mushrooms, fingerling potatoes, red pearl onions, radishes, and petite peppers, natural jus with charred orange, fennel, and smoked farmers sausage. The duck meat was very tender and juicy to our delight and the vegetables on the side were definitely fresh. Good balance on the plate but the potatoes were not filling enough to finish it all off. Unlike the cioppino, I can't exactly rave about this dish since nothing really impressed us when eating other than the texture of the meat. Between the two mains we had (which were only $2 different, the cioppino defintely reigns supreme since it provides much more variety and bang-for-your-back on the plate.
We finished off with a mouthwatering dessert which was the Gala Deep Fried Pie ($10) which was topped with vanilla bean ice cream (instead of Irish Dubliner). It arrived piping hot with a nice globe of creamy sweetness on top. The shell of the pie was moderately thick, crisp, and flaky while the gala apples inside were soft, sweetly fruity and yet still had enough crunch to it. The contrast within the pie was then further contrasted with the cold sweetness of the ice cream and the fruit jam on the plate. Hot, crispy, juicy, fruity, sweet, cold, and creamy all wrapped up nicely on a single plate; both my sweet tooth and stomach were happy.
Thought I should also talk a bit about the service/atmosphere here! Service is definitely not shabby - our hostess and server were attentive, polite, and didn't hesitate to create small talk with us when possible. Unfortunately during our dinner on the patio, it started to drizzle and there was a bit of commotion from other guests (as well as us) about wet tables, people, and food. The staff were quick to put up umbrellas for the guests but I feel like they forgot about us in the open-ceiling pagoda for a bit as we got mini rained on for 5-10 mins. When we did get noticed, our server was quick to make sure we still had a nice window seat indoors to enjoy the water view outside. The patio (when it's not raining) is quite beautiful - it's modern, with both cushioned couches/chairs, wooden tables, and a modern elongated fireplace. It really is a great place to sit back with friends with cocktails/wines/beers in hand.
R E V I E W.
+ food quality: 8.5/10
+ service: 9.5/10
+ price/affordability: 7.5-8/10 (It's hotel food!)
+ atmosphere: 9.5/10
+ overall: a solid 8.75/10 at least