Got a late start again and arrived at Medina around 11:15am where Grayelf had been waiting on us for a while. We would have been on time, but we had difficulty spotting Medina and drove right past it. The signage for both Medina and Chambar are almost nonexistent, so for those who have never been, both restaurants are across the street from a brick multi-floor parking structure.
We parked our car at a meter down the street, but I think parking is available in the garage across the street for $1 per half hour or down the street at Costco’s parking garage (entrance on Beatty) for $2 for 2 hours.
We were surprised to find Medina totally packed that late on a Tuesday morning. Thankfully, we had much to discuss with Grayelf because we didn’t get seated until almost 11:45am. Medina serves breakfast until noon and switches to their lunch menu precisely at noon.
Hubby and Grayelf ordered the tagine (2 poached eggs in a spicy tomato stew with roasted red pepper, merguez sausage, Moroccan olives and cilantro served with fried pita bread) and cassoulet (2 fried eggs with baked beans, duck sausage, bacon and andouille sausage served with grilled foccacia) from Medina’s breakfast menu.
I ordered a waffle with two toppings - lavender milk chocolate and fig orange marmalade. I also ordered the les merguez (flat bread wrapped roasted merguez sausage, baba ganoush, haloumi cheese and grilled eggplant served with tabbouleh and tomato cucumber salad) from their lunch menu.
Our kind waiter warned me the kitchen wouldn’t start my dish until noon. That allowed me time to enjoy my half of the waffle while hubby and Grayelf enjoyed their breakfast dishes. Total after tax and tip for two Americanos, one small lavender mocha and one large lavender mocha plus our breakfast dishes was $75.
Suffice to say, hubby and I contemplated returning to Medina for breakfast the very next day! Hubby’s tagine wasn’t the most attractive dish, but he wolfed it down. His only quibble was that his dish included exactly two extremely delicious olives. I ate one of those two olives and totally agree! I tasted a small bite of Grayelf’s cassoulet and thought it tasted too strongly of vinegar. I also thought hubby’s fried pita bread looked identical to the grilled foccacia that came with Grayelf’s cassoulet.
I loved the tabbouleh and tomato cucumber salad that came with my wrap and thought they totally made the dish. However, I wish my haloumi had been cooked longer, so it was crispier on the outside and more “melty” inside. Also, the baba ganoush inside my wrap was almost nonexistent. The merguez was also fattier than what I’ve had in the past.
However, I was literally rolling my eyes with delight over the fig orange marmalade and lavender milk chocolate toppings that I ordered for my waffle. I was tempted to order another waffle, but hubby knew better and said we should stop at one. We agreed Medina was the best food we’d had to date in Vancouver. For those familiar with San Francisco, Medina is similar to Aziza, but with even better presentation and probably an edge on taste. Hubby and I preferred Medina to Aziza.
After we dropped Grayelf off at her next stop, hubby and I made a quick Costco run to purchase a few items and then headed to Canada Place. Parking under Canada Place was a steep $20 for about 3 hours. We took a quick walk around the Pan Pacific’s outdoor bar area and then headed downstairs for more photo ops. Next stop, seabus to Lonsdale Quay to check out Screaming Mimi’s.
I should have known when the Vancouver Chowhounds tried to gently steer me away from Screaming Mimi’s. Hubby had a small bowl of Manhattan clam chowder with a roll. He normally orders regular clam chowder, but they don’t serve any chowders without tomato. The live crabs in their tank looked anything but lively. Definitely not worth the trek. What was worth the trek, however, was the neat Irish store inside the marketplace and the Salmon Shop which I think I also saw at the Granville Island Public Market.
We purchased a small bag of spicy smoked salmon jerky and a small bag of sweet salmon candy for a fraction of what we usually pay at Capt’n Mike’s at the Ferry Building Saturday market in San Francisco. I wish we had purchased more of the spicy salmon jerky which was a new taste for me. Totally recommend. It tastes a bit sweet at first, but then it surprises you with a subtle kick at the end. Saw a Salmon Shop at GI Market, but didn’t see any spicy jerky there. :-(
Dinner was at Peaceful with Grayelf. We had the potato roll, XLB, thousand chili chicken and sizzling noodles with chili oil. Loved loved loved the potato roll, but the skin on the XLB was way too thick and the noodle dish definitely didn’t sizzle. The noodles were hand cut, but were gummy and soft, not the chewy al dente texture that I crave. The famous chicken dish didn’t rock my world, but I’m generally not a fan of dark meat. Total after tax and tip was $40.
After dropping Grayelf, hubby and I headed to Stanley Park to enjoy a beautiful sunset. We then headed to the Teahouse in the park where we enjoyed a refreshing sorbet trio (kiwi, mango and lemon) while sitting on a very comfy sofa in the bar area. I had a lovely glass of BC ice wine (Mason Hill?) which tasted of honey while hubby had a Baileys with vanilla ice cream. Total after tax and tip was $40. Hubby liked the place a lot and would like to return for a real meal. Sigh... so many restaurants, so little time!