Gudrun Tasting Room

Restaurant: Gudrun Tasting Room
Cuisine: Tapas/Organic/Wine Bar/International
Last visited: September 1, 2010
Location: Richmond, BC (Steveston Village)
Address: 3500 Moncton Street
Price Range: $20-30

1: Poor 2: OK 3: Good 4: Very good 5: Excellent 6: Tres Excellent!!

Food: 4 (if you like meat & cheese)
Service: 4
Ambiance: 5
Overall: 4
Additional comments:

  • Locally owned
  • Meat and cheese platters
  • Domestic and imported cheese
  • Extensive wine bar
  • Local/organic
  • Fresh ingredients
  • Seasonal menu
  • Good for sharing
  • Contemporary/sophisticated/cozy
  • Popular to locals
  • Moderately priced
  • Casual fine dining
  • Great for picnics
  • Sunday brunch 11am-3pm
  • Tuesday-Sunday 5:30pm-midnight
  • Closed Monday
  • Outdoor seating available

**Recommendations: Salads – easily the highlight! Wild boar and the Global cheese platter was my favourite. Früli Strawberry beer is fantastic. They offer a large variety of cheeses and meats, but it’s really up to personal tastes for what platter to order.

Gudrun Tasting Room is a local gem tucked away in Steveston Village in Richmond, BC. It specializes in local and organic tapas with a focus on meat and cheese platters in a contemporary, sophisticated, cozy and quaint atmosphere.

The chalkboard menu, which always changes, is part of the decor and it features their daily and seasonal specials made with the freshest ingredients. Gudrun is really dedicated to supporting eateries with fresh, local and organic products and even the wines are from small-lot wineries that are either sustainable, organic, or bio-dynamic.

Gudrun Tasting Room has been on my radar for the last year, but I never really made it a priority. However, when it came to organizing my friend’s wedding rehearsal dinner, I found it the perfect opportunity. Not only was the restaurant limited to the Steveston area, but the atmosphere was very suitable and elegant for such an occasion.

I had met the owner and Steveston local, Patrick Tubajon, at the Vancouver Magazine Awards and he also hosted us for the evening. Originally we had discussed a customized menu for the occasion, but in the end Patrick suggested that he prepare something from the regular menu. I left it in his hands and he delivered.

I should start by saying that I’m not really a crudites, meat and cheese kind of person. I also appreciate wine a lot, but I can’t drink a lot of it (light weight). I just find this style of dining something I can easily prepare at home if I source from good meat and cheese suppliers. However Gudrun does use great suppliers and offers a solid selection if you’re into this kind of dining experience.

Overall I thought the food, atmosphere and service was great, but the value is hard to see for me. It was just hard to get full even after desserts and racking up a bill. We ended up having dessert #2 at Timothy’s Frozen Yogurt just up the street and considered Steveston Pizza next door as well. Meat and cheese and fondue can be filling, but I just need something more substantial, but the menu was a bit limited in that “entree” category. Gudrun Tasting Room is really for wine lovers and people who appreciate delicatessen meats and cheeses, so for what it is, it does do its job.

On the table:

**Früli (Strawberry Beer)5/6

  • Strawberry beer $8
  • It’s premium Belgium white fruit beer with about 4% alcohol. If you’ve never had it, it’s absolutely delicious. I not a beer girl and I’m still learning to appreciate it. So far I like it in the form of gelato (offered at Bella Gelateria) and now this way. This is a really girly beer, but even the guys liked it.
  • It’s Belgium white beer blended with real strawberry fruit juice.
  • It’s refreshing, light and sweet, but not too sweet and it still has the slight bitter taste and lots of strawberry flavour.

**Salad A 6/6

  • Fresh figs, blackberries, watercress and toasted pecans. (Individual order $8)
  • This was a salad for the table, so the portion is for 15.
  • This is likely one of the best salads I’ve ever had.

  • You can’t deny the freshness and quality of the ingredients used. Just look at the picture! Everything was just so ripe and whole. It was delicious!
  • I loved the sweet figs, crunchy sweet pecans, and sweet and tart plump blackberries throughout.
  • It had a light sweet and tangy lemon poppyseed dressing and it was simply delicious.
  • It would have been even better with some salty cheese though to bring it up a notch.

**Salad B6/6

  • Heirloom tomato, avocado, basil, arugula, granino, hard boiled egg and prosciutto. (Individual order $8)
  • I didn’t think it could get even better than the fig salad and it did!
  • This was even better than the fig salad and I thought I would like the fig one better. Again, the freshness and quality of the ingredients were obvious.
  • The heirloom tomatoes were big wedges of purple tomatoes and they were very plentiful along with everything else.
  • It was creamy from the avocado, rich from the perfectly soft-boiled egg, fresh from the basil and tomatoes with a salty bite of prosciutto and a tangy mustard seed vinaigrette. A truly memorable salad.

Charcuterie Sharing Platter 3.5/6

  • 5 meats: Rosette de Lyon, wild boar, Salpicao Salami, pork & duck rillette, Galantine d’Alsace (pate)  $29
  • All charcuterie plates come with cornichons, mustards and relishes. All platters come with Sfilatino (Italian wet bread baguette). The meats may vary according to availability.
  • The best from the cured meat platter was by far the wild boar (9 o’clock position in photo above). It was almost like jerky and it was so flavorful and meaty and just well rounded.
  • The Salpicao Salami was a bit tough, and a tad spicy and the Rosette de Lyon is a cured French sausage (3 o’clock position in photo above) made of selected fine meats. It’s a very pure sausage and it tastes like old fashioned cured pork meat with a very simple flavour that isn’t too memorable for me.
  • It comes with quite a few slices of each and the variety was nice but the pork and wild boar were the first ones gone.

  • I didn’t like the Galantine d’Alsace pate in the middle because it was too tendonous and jelly like, but I loved the pork & duck rillette. It was just so  juicy and moist with the sweetness of duck and savoriness of soft pulled pork. It was perfectly salty and so well flavoured.
  • I’m more of a pate person than a cured meat person, so I would rather have the pate platter at Tapenade Bistro, also at Steveston Village. The pate is excellent there!

France – Cheese Sharing Platter – 4/6

  • 4 cheeses: Beaufort, Ste. Maure de Terraine, Brie de Meaux, Maroilles $25
  • All cheeses are 1.5 ounces and come with fruits, nuts and preserves. All platters come with Sfilatino (Italian wet bread baguette).
  • I personally prefer cheese platters to meat platters and I like cow’s cheese more than goat’s cheese.
  • I also like French, Dutch and Swiss cheese so this platter worked for me.
  • All the cheeses on the “France” platter were quite rich and buttery and I liked the contrast of a mild creamy brie, with a strong blue, and harder Maroilles.
  • The cheeses were quite exotic, specific and not easily accessible at any grocery store, but I think $20 would have been a fair price.
  • They could have been more generous with the preserves because the plates looked too bare. I would have liked some grapes with this one actually.

**GlobalCheese Sharing Platter5/6

  • 3 cheeses: Brebiou (Goat, France), Piave (Italy), Manchego (Spain) $21
  • All cheeses are 1.5 ounces and come with fruits, nuts and preserves. All platters come with Sfilatino (Italian wet bread baguette).
  • Again, I’m totally biased and this “rating” as it’s completely based on personal preference.
  • The global cheese platter was my favourite because I like harder, stronger and saltier cheeses.
  • I still love creamy cheese which in this case was the Brebiou (3 o’clock position), and although I don’t like goat’s cheese very much, this one didn’t taste like it at all. It was not gamey, but almost like a tangy brie and I think it was sheep’s milk instead of goat because it was mild, but just well flavoured.
  • The Manchego is also a sheep’s milk cheese so again it was mild, but still very tart, crumbly and salty.
  • My favourite was the Piave because it was the strongest, hardest, saltiest and nuttiest of all the cheeses from both platters and it tastes like Parmesan cheese. I loved it!

  • All platters come with Sfilatino (Italian wet bread baguette). It’s quite chewy and dense and I can see why they would want a simple baguette so that it wouldn’t interfere with the flavours of the meats and cheeses etc.
  • However I would love to see Gudrun explore and offer more artisan breads. It would be great to have crostinis and just more options.

Cornichoins and a mixed variety of olives were also served.

Apricot Pate des Fruits and a raspberry preserve or jam.

After the salads, charcuterie and cheese platters, we had fondue. We were hoping for something more substantial.

Fondue 3/6 (4/6 for cheese fondue alone)

  • Appenzeller, Gruyere, Emmenthal with lots of wine & Kirsch
  • I’m not sure how much this was because it’s new to their menu and not on the chalkboard, but I’ll assume $20-25.
  • It was comparable to a Swiss fondue with a lot of quality cheeses and A LOT of wine. The wine was quite tangy and it’s the first thing you taste.
  • It gets better after the cheese heats up a bit and the wine cooks out a little more.
  • The texture is quite runny, but the flavour is strong, creamy, buttery and smooth. The wine makes it a bit sharper and the best part was the very end when the leftover cheese starts to toast, bubble and caramelize at the bottom. Everyone was waiting for that part.

  • What I wasn’t too pleased about was that the only thing the fondue was served with was cubes of bread.
  • There was no variety and it was really repetitive and we got sick of it before we finished the cheese.
  • It was a bit of a waste and I would have preferred the fondue to be served with veggies and some apples.

Dessert

They offer a wide selection of desserts that they actually order from Cake Art, a dessert shop located down the street also in Steveston Village. They carry about 8 of their desserts which vary according to availability. All desserts at Gudrun Tasting Room are $6 each. Funny thing is that the bride ordered her wedding cake from Cake Art as well.

Lemon Tart, Pecan Tart, Blueberry Tart

Dark Chocolate Pyramid Mousse, Tiramisu, Chocolate Hazelnut Dome

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Gudrun Tasting Room on Urbanspoon

18 Comments

  • KimHo says:

    Based on what is served and the price, I will have to agree with you: this is not a place for you to have dinner; rather, it sounds like a place where you go to hang with people and sip some drinks. Same concept as Salt Tasting Room? I guess that means it is not necessarily for me…

  • Mijune says:

    Yes! But people LOVE Salt and Gudrun… I’ve never been to Salt yet so I can’t compare… I know Sherman really likes it though.

  • Bow says:

    The cheese platters are just too small…there’s barely enough for one, let alone sharing it ! Try tasting at Au Petite Chauvignol.

  • Mijune says:

    Bow! Nice to see your comment! Yes the platters were quite small for the price, but they were quite exotic cheeses. I’m not huge on meat and cheese platters so to be honest I haven’t tried many in the city. If I do a meat and cheese platter I will usually prepare a spread myself.

  • Donna White says:

    I am trying to find some fresh figs for a dinner party that I am cooking for on Saturday Oct 28th . Can you tell me where I can find them today? I live in Surey and could sure use some help.
    Thanks,
    Donna

  • Mijune says:

    @Donna White – Oh I think you meant 29! That’s tomorrow! I think figs are almost out of season… you could try the Steveston Market in Richmond or maybe Whole Foods.. but you’ll get charged an arm and a leg since it’s out of season 🙁 In Surrey I don’t know any specialty stores that would be selling them.. maybe try substituting?

  • Dexter says:

    I have to recommend you to try Gudrun again! I went recently, and now that have their own desserts and entrées (the sticky toffee pudding is definite ‘must try’!), it is one of my favourite restaurants in Richmond now. It is -the- best for sharing since they have such a small menu of daily dishes, you can order pretty much one of everything if you ignore the cheese/charcuterie/fondue. Patrick usually posts the menu on facebook, so you can check that out before going. Treat it like a normal restaurant, and please give it a try sometime if you have the chance.

    PS. Love your blog, I think I’ve read every review you have of Richmond restaurants.

  • Mijune says:

    @Dexter 0 LOL!!! aw!! Thank YOU so much!!!!! I’m honoured!!! And yes, I totally agree with you.. I need to try Gudrun again. This is a severely dated post… from 3 years ago. Thanks for the reminder and taking the time to comment! I’ll go back!!! 🙂

  • LotusRapper says:

    I’ve been hearing about Gudrun for so long now. Now I have to try them out, given I’ve been to Salt Tasting Room, Judas Goat and Au Petite Chavignol (RIP !). All three aforementioned places Mrs. LR and I are able to “sup” and be satiated on what appears to be small portions (but big on taste, salt and fat ….. mmmm). Gudrun looks to be in the same genre. So if you’re still hungry after Gudrun, there’s always Steveston Pizza or Outpost, the new fancy mini donuts place 😉

  • LotusRapper says:

    @ Dexter: btw this blog (which sadly just completed its mission) likely has the most comprehensive coverage of all eating establishments and food purveyors in Richmond than any other site/blog …. period:

    http://www.365daysofdining.com/

  • Mijune says:

    @LR – Outpost has been around for a couple years now 🙂 Yes, Patrick’s brunch and wine selection is nice to try out too. You seem like a fan of charcuterie! I always feel full after all the salt and fat, but the type of full isn’t a satisfying full… does that make sense? It just feels like I ate a bunch of snacks for dinner. I would gladly revisit Gudrun though and I’m surprised you haven’t been!!

  • Mijune says:

    @LR – yes, I think you’re right. I have about 150 posts in Richmond, but she has 365!! Go Linds!

  • LotusRapper says:

    @Mijune – yeah it’s a different kind of full. Perhaps it’s how the food is presented (and with less carbs ?) that can affect our satiation, or perception of it ? Who knows, it’s different for everyone. But a few Outposts mini donuts ought to do the trick afterward, eh ?

    You’re absolutely right, Gudrun and Outpost are new-to-me because I rarely go to, and eat at Steveston Village. And only a couple of months ago have I finally eaten at The Hog Shack. Unfortunately it was not a great experience for me and I felt it’s overhyped (or at least have declined since the initial hype and better quality). But the village seems to be undergoing a revitalization with new condos on along the waterfront, a turnover of businesses etc. So I will endeavor to go there more often and check out the establishments I’ve not been yet, using yours and Richmond365 as guides. 🙂

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