Restaurant: The Irish Heather GastroPub – Long Table Series 2
Cuisine: Pub food/Irish/West Coast
Last visited: January 24, 2010
Area: Vancouver, BC (West End/Downtown)
210 Carrall Street
Price range: $10-20
1: Poor 2: OK 3: Good 4: Very good 5: Excellent 6: Tres Excellent!!
Food: n/a – only came for LTS
Service: 3.5 – for Long Table Series event
Ambiance: 5 – for Long Table Series event
Overall: 5 – for Long Table Series event
- Irish cooking in Irish house with Irish people working
- Sister restaurant to Salt Tasting Room, Shebeen, & Salty Tongue
- Since 1997
- Classy pub with affordable food
- Homemade comfort food w/twist
- Handmade sausages
- Some fusion items or globally inspired twists
- Sandwiches made with bread from Vancouver’s local Terra Bakery
- Fine tuned menu
- Extensive beer and wine list
- Very popular Long Table Series offered – reservations required
- Vegetarian options available
- Casual, yet sophisticated
- Lively atmosphere
- 2 rooms – one brighter lighting the other darker
- Serves lunch and dinner
Recommendation: Long Table Series
It was my first TwEAT-up for Follow Me Foodie and I decided to host it at The Irish Heather for their Long Table Series. The 1st time I tried the Long Table Series was back in Christmas for their Roast Duck Leg. The event and food made a lasting impression so it was no doubt I would come back for seconds.
This time I was joined by some close friends, new faces as well as Vancouver bloggers Kim (I’m Only Here for the Food), Nicole (Le Mode Du Jour), Kathy (Kathygko), Michelle (2010 Cheap Eats), Adela (On the Fringe) and Elaine and Chris (Parker Pages). Thank you for coming guys! Everyone is welcome to these TwEAT-ups so if you’re interested just e-mail me! (Check my About… page for contact information)
This time I wasn’t late and was able to see how the whole event goes down. While dinner starts promptly at 6pm, people are invited at 5pm-6pm for pre-dinner drinks in the Shebeen (a private room/lounge) in the back of the restaurant. At 6pm they open the doors to the dining room where there’s a mad rush of hungry people and a game of “musical chairs” at a 40 foot long wooden communal table. (I still felt like Oliver Twist getting a meal from the Upper East Side.) Next Chef Lee Humphries comes out and explains the menu and paired drink for the evening. All this happens for only $15 (tax + services included).
It’s good food, a fun time, and more than a fair deal so I have nothing to complain about. They also offer homemade desserts at $5 for those that are interested, but I wasn’t too impressed by them.
Note: The portions are a bit inconsistent and late arrivals tend to get bigger plates!
- Smoked Pork Chop with Bacon Braised Cabbage, Crisp Potatoes and Roasted Apple-Raisin Gastrique with 16 oz – Pint Orchard Hill Cider $15
- I liked the Roast Duck Leg better than this dish, although this one was still good.
- I was actually expecting a pork loin chop, but I guess at $15 I can’t expect that. I should have clued in when it said “smoked pork chop” because that means it was slowly cooked….which is usually a cheaper cut.
- The pork chop was I’m pretty sure a chump chop which tastes more like a ham than it does a pork chop. This was mainly due to the fact hat it was smoked as well. It was quite tender, relatively lean with some fat around the edges and cooked with the bone to retain juices and flavour.
- It’s a big slab of it and it’s a pretty cheap cut, but they didn’t do a bad job with it. By slowly smoking it they were able to get a nice smokey flavour with a slight sweetness throughout the meat.
- The apple-raisin gastrique was very hickory in flavour but they needed much more of it. The raisins needed to be cooked longer because they weren’t as plump and juicy as I would like. It matched the pork chop really well, I just wish there was more of it or even if it was a bit more saucy than compote like.
- The bacon braised cabbage was the best thing on the plate! I could have eaten a whole bowl of it. It was almost like creamy garlic mashed potato cole slaw. It was sweet, salty and tasted like a scallop potato mash with braised cabbage and carrots. They definitely thickened this braised cabbage with some creamy mashed potatoes, it was so excellent!
- I think it was braised with a touch of vinegar and maybe even sour cream because there was a savoury tang to it. I mixed my apple-raisin gastrique into it and it was even better! The only thing is the bacon wasn’t crispy or cooked to enhance all the flavour it had to offer.
- The crisp potatoes were very crisp and dry. They were almost like crackers and they could have used more salt. I dipped these into my braised cabbage and that worked really well.
- The cider was a great match for the dish. It really brought out the apple flavour and enhanced the sweetness of the meat and their was a slight bitterness that was welcoming and not overpowering.
- The available homemade desserts for the evening:
- Lemon Trifle
- Boston Cream Pie
- Chocolate Mousse
- To be honest, nothing seemed appealing except maybe the lemon trifle. I didn’t get to try it but I did get to try the Mud Pie.
Boston Cream Pie – 1.5/6
- It didn’t look good and it also didn’t taste good.
- It was a very dry Boston cream cake with a very light and thin custard layer.
- It was more sponge cake then cream and looked like it had been sitting there.
- The chocolate glaze was hard and looked/tasted artificial.
- Didn’t try it, bit Nicole liked it!