Mia Stainsby Reviews Mission Restaurant

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Image: Ben Nelms

The Vancouver Sun made their way to Mission. Mia Stainsby gave it a rave. Here is what they had to say about the new restaurant by chef-owner Curtis Luk. Or check out our culled excerpts below.

In some restaurants, dishes are visually arresting or stunning but you’re not panting to eat it. Luk’s food is not only elegant, your mouth waters.

When I think of Mission, ‘cauliflower porridge’ photo-bombs my mind’s eye. Cooked cauliflower is blitzed into a luscious pudding with crème fraîche. Grated raw cauliflower and farro add some crunch. It’s topped with charred ‘brassicas’ and ribbons of kohlrabi. Fresh kale sauce circles it. It’s wonderful.

“I wanted to upend expectations,” says Luk. “It’s creating greatness from humble ingredients. It doesn’t matter what you’re using, it should taste good.” So long cauliflower gratin!

He doesn’t run a vegetarian kitchen by any means. There’s fish and meat on his tasting and à la carte menus but it’s a democracy of vegetable and meat and I think that pleases a lot of folks these days.

He offers two tasting menus (one is vegetarian and one, not) and you can choose four courses ($45) or six courses ($65).

On the vegetarian tasting menu, roasted squash (roll-ups of zucchini strips, darkly roasted), puffed wild rice, shaved celery is bathed in corn and peach veloute. Torpedo-shaped Walla Walla onion with charred onion butter is stuffed with rice, fennel and celery.   And that gorgeous cauliflower porridge just had me at hello. For dessert, a goat milk ice cream with hazelnuts, beet sauce and caramel. Seems there’s an affinity to goats here, given the large graphic of a goat on one wall.

Previous restaurants in this location have come and gone without a lot of fanfare. Mission deserves a big welcome and neighbourhood devotees.

2042 West Fourth Ave., 604-739-2042. Missionkits.ca.

Last modified: September 8, 2015

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