Senses Inspired: DB Bistro Moderne


This is a guest blog post written by Teresa Lee (@_teelee_). It was originally published on her Senses Inspired blog in 2010.

Since the controversial ‘changing of the guards’ at this well known Kits location, I haven’t been to this neighborhood for awhile. My friend and fellow lifestyle blogger Vancouver Social Spot organized a dinner at DB Bistro for us group of foodie friends. I haven’t really seen my blogging yield any special powers but I sure witnessed some that night.

My friend had casually mentioned to Chris, general manager of DB Bistro, that there was a couple of bloggers in the group and he said he follows my friend’s blog… boy did he bring out customer service big guns.

I haven’t tried a lot of French cuisine in this city so it was a treat to experience it at this highly acclaimed restaurant… even though they did have a shaky start.

To set the tone of the night, Chris treated us to complimentary glass of bubbly and one of the Tartes Flambees.

Tartes Flambees

The tartes flambees served was crisp Alsatian Flat Bread with wild mushrooms. The flat bread was light and crispy but not too tough.  I think the mushrooms were morels?  Even though the ingredients were simple, the delicious flavours of the mushrooms were enough.

All of us picked items from the 3 course prix fixe menu… because it was easier to do than trying to struggle what to order a la cart.  For my starter, I chose the Spring Salad.

Spring Salad

It’s the probably one of the tastiest spring mix salad of mesclun, carrots, beets, peas and fava Beans, and Hazelnut Dressing.  Each forkful was a different texture because of the many vegetables packed into this plate.  The hazelnut dressing was surprisingly light and creamy.

Everyone at the table ordered the barely pronounceable Bouillabaisse Provencal (like to mention I did get an A in French 12).

Bouillabaisse Provencal

It was a dish of Herb-crusted Halibut, Squid, Mussels, Garlic Rouille with the tomato saffron sauce freshly poured at the table.  The citrus tangyness of the tomatoes was nicely mellowed out to complement the seafood.  The halibut was very tender and yet flaky.  The dish was also served with a side toasted baquette slices and aioli which you can put in the sauce.  It was like a posh version of Ritz crackers and tomato soup.

For dessert, I had sunshine and summer on a plate… or also known as lemon meringue with a scoop of homemade blackberry sorbet.

Sunshine and Summer on a plate

It was too pretty to eat but I ate it so fast I don’t remember chewing.  The lemon meringue had this really nice custard like quality with the top meringue tasting like marshmallows.  Before our desserts were brought out, we also had a complimentary cute pail of fresh madeleines.

Chris worked the room but paid extra attention to us.  He even made a point to mention to our waiter that he had to leave early and couldn’t properly say farewell to us.  I rarely experience this type of VIP service in Vancouver aside from the great folks at Pourhouse and Boneta.

The cuisine here was excellent and what a great room to hold a special event.  Now just waiting until I flex some of my blogging muscles… or not 😉

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Last modified: January 13, 2011

5 Responses to " Senses Inspired: DB Bistro Moderne "

  1. C7 says:

    I’d be impressed if you experienced VIP service and none of you had mentioned you were bloggers. As it is, what your review tells me is that I, as a non-blogging peon, can probably expect surly or indifferent service.

    Honestly, what do you expect when you tell a restaurant you’re about to “review” that you’re a blogger – free stuff? VIP treatment? Score on both counts.

    What I’m interested in as a reader is what the average paying customer can expect when s/he does business in these establishments. Anything else is just an infomercial.

  2. Bill Barilko says:

    Very much agree with C7-the whole food blogger/gimme-a-freebee-and-I’ll-gush movement is nauseating.

    A whore by any another name…..

  3. Teresa says:

    C7 and Bill,

    I’ve blogged for over a year now and only a few times have I ever revealed that I was a food blogger while dining at a restaurant. And it was revealed because
    1) the staff figured it out on their own
    2) friend unintentionally brings it up
    3) I just wanted to say hi to the owner/staff and usually happens after a meal

    When I was at DB Bistro, I didn’t even explicitly mention to the manager that I had a food blog and which one it was. My friend mentioned it as a FYI and had no intentions of getting VIP treatment. Another time was at Kits Daily and all I wanted to do was be friendly and introduce myself to Stephen because we chatted over twitter.

    Other times, if a friend accidentally mentions that I was a food blogger in front of a wait staff, I immediately say ‘I’m off duty tonight’ in hopes that I don’t get preferential treatment.

    Nowadays, if staff notices that you take your camera out, start taking pictures of your food, tweet/foursquare/facebook about it instantaneously and write notes that they can connect the dots and figure you out.

    Like me, there are many food bloggers who blog purely out of the enjoyment of eating and sharing experiences. I have paid for all of my meals with tip. And whether I’m qualified or not do so, I have no qualms providing criticism.

    If you do want to get a true sense of a restaurant, it’s best that you review the comments on sites like Yelp. Also Urbanspoon/Vancouver is a great resource of other local food bloggers, many of whom blog for the love of food and not for freebies and VIP treatments.

  4. Bill Barilko says:

    If one wants a true sense of a restaurant one dines there on one’s own dime without drawing attention in any way.

    Urbanspoon is awash with blogger parasites who are lining up @ the trough-of-the-month, Yelp is a social network site with little to recommend it in terms of constructive criticism it’s all about other’s approval.