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Restaurant: Charlie’s Bar & Restaurant
Last visited: March 9, 2010
Area: Vancouver, BC (Yaletown/Downtown)
Address: 1265 Hamilton Street
Price range: $20-30
1: Poor 2: OK 3: Good 4: Very good 5: Excellent 6: Tres Excellent!!
- Chef Brian Ritchot
- Chef from Montreal, one from Spain
- DJ’s/live music on weekends
- Contemporary, sleek, posh atmosphere
- Great for drinks, appies
- Specializes in gourmet pizzas
- Mediterranean/Italian options
- Longue like atmosphere
- One large projection screen TV
- Open late
- Pizzas available for take out
- Dinner service only
Recommendation: Short Rib Pizza, prosciutto di Parma 18 Month, Duck Pizza, Banoffee Pie
I was invited to a media dinner at Charlie’s Bar & Restaurant so the food served this evening was complimentary. However there were no expectations from Charlie’s Bar & Restaurant and the review represents my true and honest opinions.
This review focuses on the dessert for the evening. All the desserts are made in house from scratch which I really appreciate it…and quite frankly expect from a restaurant like this. However I don’t think any dessert here should exceed $8-9 because I’d be paying the same for desserts at slightly more expensive restaurants like Lupo Restaurant + Vinoteca down the street.
I get confused between Charlie’s Restaurant and Bar being a gourmet pizza place and being a finer Mediterranean restaurant. The desserts got me more confused…some are traditional British and some seem more French…but it’s a Mediterranean/Italian/Pizza place…right?…regardless I’ll tell you what’s good…
The dinner & drink portion of the review.
On the table
Chocolate Ganache – 2/6
- Pistachio, chocolate wafer and mint sorbet $11
- A bit unusual to see at a restaurant/bar serving gourmet pizzas. It was a bit refined for the style and I couldn’t figure out how it fit in.
- The dessert was quite good and basically a twist on mint chocolate ice cream. It was a deconstructed version with gourmet execution.
- It was very rich dark chocolate ganache slices sprinkled with cocoa powder and topped with thin dark chocolate wafers.
- There was some pistachio and skor graham cracker crumbles around the plate that aided in the presentation rather than the flavour.
- The mint sorbet was refreshing but bitter. The after taste was significantly bitter.
- I wouldn’t want the whole thing to myself, but I’m not a big fan of chocolate mint ice cream. 1-2 of the small squares is enough.
- $11 for this portion I would feel ripped off…but apparently they usually serve it with another piece. (The size of the biggest one in the photo)
Banoffee Pie – 4.5/6
- Banana, dry caramel and coconut ice cream $10
- I really liked this! You don’t see this traditional British dessert served at many places so I enjoyed it here.
- I loved how they served it with coconut ice cream. A gourmet twist on traditional pub food…wait is Charlie’s a pub now?
- I don’t think the tart shell was made in house, but I’m not sure. It was a crumbly shortbread like cookie crust, but it didn’t taste homemade. It was filled with bananas, dry caramel and topped with cream.
- The “dry caramel” tastes like dulche de leche – it was like caramelized condensed milk and very thick.
- It was creamy and very sweet with lots of caramel so I’m glad there was ice cream to break it up.
- It was served with 3 warm caramelized bananas.
- I’d pay $10 for it, but I still think it’s reaching a bit. Especially since most people would be use to seeing it at pubs for half the price. I did like it more than the chocolate ganache.