Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Dine out Vancouver 2011: Sanafir....."it was just okay"

It's Dine Out Vancouver time and myself and three girlfriends from the North Shore who had surprisingly awesome dine out meal last year at YBC (amazing duck confit!) and wanted to all hit this city-wide event again as a foursome. After perusing the menus (we've got a picky eater in the group, although I won't name names), we narrowed it down to a few and then sanafir was selected since none of us had been there before and the menu sounded tasty.
This Granville strip restaurant/lounge is a part of the Glowbal group and has a middle eastern upscale cavern feel. It's decor is all about extremely high ceilings,a ceiling jam-packed with chandeliers and an upper level that seats customers on moroccan-style beds. This restaurant is extremely dark and there was a single tea light on each table (that explains the crappy photos- sorry!)
The regular menu consists of small tapas-style plates prepared with the flavours of the North Africa, Asia and Middle East...but we were there for DOV so we didn't even glance at the menu.
The $18 menu featured three choices for appies, three choices for mains, and one dessert.

Chicken, Chorizo and Poached Egg Salad caramelized onions, paprika honey vinaigrette. This was the meaty salad was hearty and filling with a rich, smoky taste. The chorizo had an awesome flavour and the paprika dressing was packed with flavour that made the spinach sing.

Jayme and Alana got the Grilled Tandoori Prawn Skewer chickpea and pea shoot salad, roast garlic and lemon vinaigrette. They really enjoyed it....Fresh Pea Shoots and savoury prawns of a decent size.
Tricia selected the Roast Root Vegetable and Quinoa Salad balsamic and dijon vinaigrette. Aside from discarding the crispy fried onion topping, Tricia enjoyed this dish and dug the dressing.

Jayme and I selected the
Seared Coho Salmon fingerling potato, braised greens, coconut yellow curry for our mains. I loved the crisp texture on the spice-rubbed salmon but I found the fish itself pretty bland. I found the braised beet greens and fingerling potatoes a bit over-done and mushy. Jayme didn't dig the coconut curry sauce- I thought it was okay, but a bit bland.
Alana and Tricia ordered the
Punjabi Butter Chicken mango chutney, raita, and papadum. Neither were blown away and found the flavour good, but not great. Both missed the usual naan bread on the side and felt the papadum was a disppointment.
There was only one dessert (a bit disappointing because I like options) a Five Spice Chocolate Cake cardamom yogurt, berry compote. It was a bit of a yawn. Pretty much a standard chocolate brownie.....but I did like the cardamon yogurt topping.
Overall, everything was just okay (we agreed the appetizers were the highlight) and I was a bit disappointed with this Dine Out Experience, although it was good company and nice to hang out with old friends.
Check out Tourism Vancouver's Website to view all of the participating restaurants.
Sanafir Restaurant and Lounge
1026 Granville Street / 604-678-1049

Sanafir Restaurant and Lounge on Urbanspoon

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