Zibetto Espresso Bar & Manhattan Gourmet 56 – New York, NY


Zibetto Espresso Bar
1385 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY

&

Manhattan Gourmet 56
1377 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY
(212) 246-4410

A sunny 86F day in NYC with nothing to do in the morning.  A perfect setup for a casual walk in Manhattan and to grab a simple breakfast to enjoy on the benches of Central Park.  As a die-hard addict in need of a stiff cup of coffee in the morning, my first stop after bypassing those dreadful Starbucks outlets was Zibetto.  Essentially a long narrow space that couldn’t be more than eight feet wide and anchored by a sleek looking, white tiled and similarly colored marble counter-top bar accented with some metallic touches, it fit with my mental image of an Italian espresso bar.

Staffed with some slick looking, white shirted gents efficiently buzzing around behind the bar, there was already a strong lineup in place, as well as some other customers enjoying their cups of hot liquid at the tiny armrest like shelves jutting out from the walls.  Clearly, its a place to have your drink in a jiffy, no lounging around here sucking up free wi-fi or anything and generally disrupting the business need of turnover on the part of the proprietors.

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Abdul’s BBQ – Burnaby, BC & Paradise Donair – New Westminster, BC


Abdul’s BBQ
4500 Kingsway
Burnaby, BC
(604) 431-9498

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Paradise Donair
723 12th St, #3
New Westminster, BC
(604) 522-0789

I’ll come out and say it.  I’m struggling to find a truly amazing and tasty shawarma/gyro/döner kebab/donair here in the GVRD that I’m really happy with and a place that makes it that I would frequent regularly if it blew me away.  If anyone can help me by directing me to one that is at the top of the class, please, please, please let me know.

As any visitor to Crystal Mall in Burnaby can attest, it is heavily East Asian in context.  Walking inside you feel like you are transported across the Pacific, both in terms of the kinds of shops and eateries and the people packed inside.  So stepping just outside to Abdul’s was a refreshing change to get away from the sea of black hair.  🙂  My experience on this visit was completed by the pack of about fifteen Persians who suddenly came into the store when I was ordering, complete with traditional dress on the part of the females in the contingent.   Pretty amazing and a boost to my expectations of what I could get from this place.

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Chicken Party – Burnaby, BC


Chicken Party
205 – 3355 North Road
Burnaby, BC
(604) 444-1188

As alluded to at the end of this previous post, the meal journey of that day was far from over.  In fact, it continued along the same chicken wing theme, as we ventured along the streets towards the Burnaby-Coquitlam border.  After being rebuffed at Mexican Chicken Hof and Honey’s Bistro since they were both not open for the day, we decided on a longer journey out to Port Moody to check out Rehanah’s Roti.

But suddenly out of the corner of our eye we saw the humorous signage for Chicken Party.

A quick lane change and entry into the parking lot where this business was housed.  Was it some kind of party house stocked with poultry-themed costumes?  An exclusive entertainment club for chicken farmers?

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Guu in Aberdeen – Richmond, BC


Guu in Aberdeen
4151 Hazelbridge Way
Richmond, BC
(604) 295-6612

I’ve come out and said it before but my personal desire to explore the full realm of the Vancouver izakaya scene is not exactly the strongest.  Again, its not that they are bad or a terrible bastardization of this unique genre of dining out found in Japan, but that the context is lost on me and my memories of many izakaya outings overseas has ruined me and thus nothing will ever compare.  I’m sure I’d say the same for other specific segments of popular national food from around the globe if I had the similar depth and breadth of experience such as say in the diverse Liguria regional cuisine of Italy or the so called ‘rainbow cuisine’ that is reputed to be available in Southern Africa.  Any transplanted replica outside of those regions would just seem, well, how can I put it… “off”?

I suppose I should relax this hesitation I feel whenever I hear the names of well known joints such as Hapa, Kingyo, and so on.  Believe me I’ve tried.  And a pair of visits to the Guu chain should be proof that I’m not all that stubborn in my beliefs.  This particular post is about the Aberdeen location, found in that shopping mall in Richmond best known for drivers in the parking lot who feel that there is nothing wrong with holding up a long line of cars just to secure a precious parking spot near one of the mall entrances.

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Triple O’s – Burnaby, BC


Triple O’s
6038 Kingsway
Burnaby, BC
(604) 568-4538

I can imagine the instantaneous reaction this post will receive. So I’ll come out and say it.

The fast food burger that I’m enjoying of late is from Triple O’s.

Having not grown up in British Columbia, I don’t harbour the long lasting childhood memories of others, who have had the food from White Spot and the like that seems to be true of many Vancouverites, from their very early days (and perhaps teenage years?).

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Georgio’s Cafe & Pizzeria – Burnaby, BC


Georgio’s Cafe & Pizzeria
5236 Rumble Street
Burnaby, BC
(604) 568-6061

Situated practically across the street from Burnaby South Secondary School means a couple of things for places to eat in the area, of which there are a handful.  The lunch hour can be a mad hectic time for non-students to try and get in for a bite to eat.  As well, the eateries seem to make the wise decision of having special menu items which are priced and portioned accordingly for this hungry younger market.  Thankfully, they aren’t limited to the kids and us adults can indulge in these quick, cheap eats too.  One of these places is called Georgio’s Cafe & Pizzeria.

Despite the rather convoluted smattering of text and listing of offerings in their windows that seem rather mundane, a quick glance at the makeshift sign was what drew me in.  “Filipino style BBQ”?  What’s that I thought.  Sitting inside was a pair of teenage girls apparently killing time on a break between classes perhaps.  A man was behind the counter and I could hear some others in the back kitchen.  As I was scanning the photo-included menu board, I quickly spotted the pork and chicken skewered barbecue items, thus answering my call to action.

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Itshoni – Coquitlam, BC


Itshoni Restaurant
505-329 North Road
Coquitlam, BC
(604) 931-8460

Itshoni (in my eyes, a misspelling of the romaji for the Japanese word ‘together’) emerged from the space previously occupied by the Blue Sea Seafood Restaurant, and is serving up a mix of Korean and Japanese cuisine. It is conveniently located in this high traffic shopping complex that is home to many other places where one can a meal – many of which reported on here at foodosophy.

The interior has received a noticeable makeover with most of the former enclosed spaces and booths removed and replaced with dark wooden tables and chairs.  The floor looked re-done as well, in addition to the similarly colored wall treatments and refreshed with new art hanging on the walls.  The mural on one of the side walls (not pictured here) really stands out.  The place was filled well with both Asian and non-Asian customers (this table of nine got filled up by a big group of women minutes after we were seated nearby).

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