Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Pink Peppercorn Seafood House


I will not act like I know much about Pink Peppercorn Seafood House and from reading some reviews, a man named Eddy who previously worked at the Cannery, is the owner. Apparently he brought most of the same employees, dishes, and decor. This is what I pictured at Pink Peppercorn... cute decor, overly friendly servers, a cheerful positive atmosphere, and I assumed it was a fine dining restaurant because of "$$$$" on Urbanspoon.

Some people have mentioned that the interior of the restaurant has no fine dining feel to it and it looks tacky. I find it cute, interesting, entertaining, and the only restaurant in Vancouver that has something like this. We came around 6:50pm on a Monday and there was about five seated tables. After a short five minute wait, we were seated and waited around fifteen minutes for water. When the server brought some water we asked if we could order, he asked us to hold on and another fifteen minutes later, we were able to order. I think they may have been short staffed because I felt bad asking for features of the day and when he said "hold on," I felt like I was a nuisance. Throughout the dinner it was hard to track down the server and he did not ask if we enjoyed any of the dishes until the very end -- I guess they really were short staffed but they only had five tables? Anyways not a big deal, I think because I feel like I bothered him that is why I felt awkward or, maybe I expected a different vibe because of the decor.


MANILLA CLAM CHOWDER, LOBSTER BISQUE, COMPLIMENTARY BREAD AND LOBSTER OIL, BEEF TENDERLOIN STEAK, SCALLOPS, AND NEW YORK STEAK.




COMPLIEMNTARY BREAD, AND BALSAMIC VINEGAR AND LOBSTER OIL. The bread tastes soft, fresh and is not toasted. The lobster oil is tasty and not overly rich or powerful. 


MANILLA CLAM CHOWDER ($7.95). The chowder tastes rich and creamy but has a weird after taste of burnt plastic (I know it isn't burnt plastic but it tastes like that). The clams are diced finely and I love manilla clams, yum.


LOBSTER BISQUE, GARNISH WITH BABY SHRIMP ($11.95). The lobster bisque has a rich creamy blend of lobster taste and a hint of cognac. I feel like the cognac is overly strong but BF enjoyed it (and I am sure most people do). The lobster bisque here and at Top of Vancouver are probably the best ones in Vancouver (uhh remember Fraiche's?).


SAN FRANCISCO STYLE MUSSELS, LEEK, CONCASSE AND BASIL, CRACKED BLACK PEPPER IN A WHITE WINE GARLIC SAUCE ($14.95). They were sold out of mussels and offered to make the same dish with clams, but I passed because I did not really want a whole plate of clams. The server then came back and mentioned that they can do a mix of mussels, and clams. The mussels and clams taste fresh, and the broth has a light tomatoey chicken broth taste with a hint of peppercorn. There were three dead mussels so I think we should have stuck with all clams, not a big deal. The dish also came with sliced chorizo (nice gesture because a full order of mussels was not available?) which was not too salty since it was in the broth.

I know I mention this frequently but never at a fine dining restaurant (I think I would've mentioned it at Joe Fortes but we deliberately did not order many appetizers to prevent the small table issue). From all the fine dining restaurants I have been to, none have ever brought appetizers all at once. At both Gotham and Hy's, we were able to finish our soups before the second round of appetizers came. Usually I do not mind if I am at a casual restaurant and order four appetizers (since I probably didn't order any entrees) but at a fine dining restaurant it sort of bothers me because I rush to finish dishes so the other ones do not get cold. Cold dishes were not my biggest concern this time, it was more like I do not even have room for a side plate. I quickly snapped this photo because I was thinking why is BF trying to finish the soup so fast until I realized it is because the dishes are going to get cold. Another issue is that the soup bowls were not cleared until the entrees came (again, not a big deal but needed table space! Plus I thought the restaurant was fine dining).

JUMBO SCALLOPS COATED WITH LEMON PEPPER AND CHAI BUTTER SAUCE ($16.95). The jumbo scallops dish is an appetizer of the day kind of thing. Without having room for side plates, we ate from the entree plate. The scallops are medium rare, tender, not overcooked, and tastes good but was served luke warm, it would have been nice if they were more hot. The lemon pepper and chai butter sauce was a bit too lemony, sour and overwhelming. Thankfully the sauce was not drizzled on the scallops and it was not too sour to make eyes twitch. I like that the scallops are sprinkled with sea salt as well as the sauce because of the nice random crunches. I just feel like there is so much sauce and it is kind of a waste that there is not much use for it. 

AGED ALBERTA BEEF TENDERLOIN SERVED WITH YUKON GOLD MASHED POTATOES, MARKET VEGETABLES AND THYME JUS ($38.95). The filet mignon is medium rare and tastes tender, I think it is 7oz? The thyme jus tastes like a red wine peppercorn beef gravy with shallots. The market vegetables are broccoli, red pepper, asparagus, and a carrot which are perfectly cooked (technically slightly undercooked but I prefer that). The mashed potatoes taste strangely sweet and I think it is because they mix potatoes with powder mashed potato mix, I am not a fan.

10oz NEW YORK STEAK SERVED WITH MASHED POTATOES, MARKET VEGETABLES AND PEPPERCORN SAUCE ($31.95). His steak is medium rare and tender as well. Neither of us prefer the new york steak or sirloin in general as we both find them chewy, but the steak tastes tender. The peppercorn sauce tastes slightly salty and we did not like it. The sides are the same as the beef tenderloin entree. The steaks are pretty much a personal preference and I am positive that the sauce would be lovely for people who prefer sauce over, just a plain steak.

POSITIVES
- Interior is cutely decorated
- One of the few restaurants with lobster oil in Vancouver
- Steaks are not over or undercooked
- Cook came out to ask how things were (would be nicer if he introduced himself)

NEGATIVES
- Not really fine dining but prices are somewhat high?
- Appetizers came all at once, if we did not order soup I wouldn't have minded

LITTLE THINGS
- Can't speak for the seafood entrees since we didn't try any (they are probably better than the steaks for sure though)
- The dinner took only 56 minutes to finish after we ordered, usually at a restaurant like "this," a dinner should take an hour and fifteen minutes or less. What I personally think it should be below...
  • Soup 15 minutes
  • Wait time 5-10 minutes for second appetizers
  • Second appetizers 15 minutes
  • Wait time 10-15 minutes for entrees
  • Entrees 25-30 minutes

- Dinner was more like all four appetizers and 15-20 minutes later the entrees came
- By the way, not hating on the restaurant!

Food: 2.5/5
Service: 2.5/5

Pink Peppercorn Seafood House on Urbanspoon

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