Restaurant: Chambar Restaurant – Dessert
Last visited: February 12, 2010
Area: Vancouver, BC (Gastown/Downtown)
Address: 562 Beatty Street
Price range: $30-50 (Closer to $50)
1: Poor 2: OK 3: Good 4: Very good 5: Excellent 6: Tres Excellent!!
- Specializes in Belgium/French food – fusion
- Innovative/exotic/creative menu
- Going on 6th year
- Casual fine dining
- Lively atmosphere
- Busy on weekends/late nights
- Husband and wife owners
- Chef Nico Schuermans and his wife Karri
- Parent to Cafe Medina next door
- Just opened Dirty Apron Cooking school (couple stores down)
- Fixed menu available
- Event nights
- Extensive wine list
- Great for drinks/cocktails/appetizers
- 18% gratuity for groups of 8+
- Ocean Wise
- Open 5-12am daily
- Reservations recommended
Recommendation: Mushroom Soup, Mussels & Frites, Le Canard aux Epices, if you can order Stilton croquettes as a side – do it! Vanilla Pear Cake for dessert.
Chambar has always been one of my favourite restaurants…and it still is one of my favourites. I rarely ever say I have a “favourite restaurant” but this one has yet to disappointment me. I usually have certain dishes I like and that’s what I will recommend rather than the restaurant itself…however everything here is more or less amazing.
It is a Belgian restaurant, but the food is more contemporary with slight French and West Coast influences. It is more or less a fusion restaurant.
A bit steep in terms of price, but in the category of casual fine dining. The portions are reasonable although they look smaller until you start eating them.
They really let the ingredients speak for themselves here and they don’t go overboard by trying to enhance every single item with seasonings and spices. It’s simple, but tastes so complex. That’s the magic of Chambar.
To see my dinner post for Chambar Restaurant here.
On the table:
Dessert Sampler – La degustation des desserts – 4/6
- Dessert Sampler: Chef’s selection tasting platter $20
Vanilla Bean Pot de Cream – 5/6
- This was the best of the sampler.
- The vanilla was very strong and the texture was very rich and creamy.
- The bottom layer of this is almost pure vanilla bean seed puree.
- It was delicious, but they all sank to the bottom and I don’t think the custard was viscous enough to hold them.
- The bowl was square so it was hard to scrape up too.
Espresso and Kaluah Ice Cream – 3.5/6
- This was a very icy ice cream so it was almost lighter than regular ice cream.
- It was very refreshing and not too strong in flavour.
- It wasn’t too sweet and it was quite simple, but still good.
- No surprises here, except for it being icy in texture.
Sour Cherry Phyllo Purse – 2/6
- I’m not sure if that was the exact name, but that’s how I remember it. It’s the triangle between the chocolate mousse and the pot de creme.
- There was too much phyllo and too little cherry. It was very crispy and flaky with a sweetness and tang, but the phyllo was distracting.
- It was topped with a whipped mascarpone cheese I think… or goat’s cheese? (I don’t quite remember) It was very mild in flavour and added a creaminess that offset the tang of the cherry… I just wish they had given more cherry.
Chocolate Mousse – 4/6
- This looks A LOT sweeter than it really is. It’s not that sweet at all actually… and that’s because they’re using a dark and good quality chocolate.
- The texture is actually quite rich yet still frothy but the sweetness is very natural so it doesn’t taste too heavy.
- The decor they used was a thin chocolate brittle that tastes like there was quite a bit of espresso in it. I liked it!
Truffles – 3/6
- Dark chocolate truffle – 4.5/6
- Amazing. I love dark chocolate. This was like a homemade Ferraro Rocher.
- There were nice big pieces of hazelnuts on the outside and then the inside was a chocolate ganache.
- It wasn’t that creamy and was actually quite thick.
- White chocolate truffle – 1.5/6
- I’m not a fan of white chocolate so this was much too sweet.
- Even if I did like white chocolate I still think it was too sweet.
Plateau de trois fromages – Plate of 3 Cheeses – 5/6
- Trio cheese platter with spiced blueberry compote, fruit & nut bread. $18
- Brie, Aged White Cheddar and Stilton or Blue Cheese?
- The bread is fantastic! It’s house made hazelnut and raisin bread and they give you a lot! There’s huge pieces of hazelnuts and lots of them!
- They toast them up so it’s nice and nutty.
- They serve it with a spiced blueberry jam/compote with real whole blueberries in it. It’s actually noticeably spicy and I think it’s from ginger and maybe some cinnamon.
- The cheese are generous servings and this is definitely worth it. I like the added pear and apple slices as well. It went great with the compote.
Le Gateau Poire – Vanilla Pear Cake – 6/6
- Vanilla cake baked on top of pear compote served with raspberry creme anglaise & lemongrass ice cream. $11
- I had to save the best for last. Well the best out of what we ordered.
- Delish! They changed the raspberry cream anglaise to a coffee espresso cream anglaise. I think the raspberry cream would have been even better although this was still good. You pour the coffee espresso (centre glass) in the middle of this soufflé and eat it together.
- It’s soft, warm, sweet, slightly bitter from the espresso, not too sweet and just the perfect flavour of everything. I was surprised the espresso didn’t overpower the pears.
- The pear is so ripe and yet not overcooked so you can still taste the pieces and bite into them. I loved this!
- They served it with ice cream and a little brown sugar decor… and drool I want it right now!
- I don’t recall it being lemongrass though, so they either changed the recipe for that or the lemongrass flavour wasn’t as distinct and overpowered by the espresso and pears. Now I want to go back and try it again!
To see my dinner post for Chambar, see here.