ONE20 Public House – Consider Me Impressed

About a month ago I was invited to ONE20 Public House for a brewmaster’s dinner featuring Steel and Oak Brewing. Having never been to ONE20 I wasn’t sure what to expect. What I found was one of the best beer pairing dinners I’ve ever been to. Fantastic dishes, good pairings, great pacing, and top shelf service. I knew Steel and Oak was a fantastic brewery but the level of the food presented by ONE20 was above every other beer dinner I’ve been to except one. I would put this dinner on par with the now defunct Ensemble Tap and the Beerthirst dinner they put on a few years ago.

BEER!
BEER!

But here’s the thing. Beer pairing dinners aren’t usually a good indication of what the bar/restaurant does on a nightly basis. It’s a showcase for the chef and quite often the food is way above what is on the regular menu. So in the interest of accuracy I went back to ONE20 on my own time with my own money to see if reality matched a fantastic one night stand.

Albacore Tuna Tartare with house made BBQ chips
Albacore Tuna Tartare with house made BBQ chips

I started with Albacore Tuna Tartare with house made BBQ chips. The tuna was fresh, light, and properly seasoned. The BBQ chips were great. House made BBQ chips… That’s an easy way to make something simple become something people want to come back for.

Braised shortrib with horseradish mash, grilled scallions, and red wine demi-glace
Braised Shortrib with horseradish mash, grilled scallions, and red wine demi-glace

For my main I had Braised Shortrib with horseradish mash, grilled scallions, and red wine demi-glace. The portion is BIG. The beef was tender, juicy, flavourful, everything you can get out of a relatively low grade cut of meat. Shortrib done properly is magic and this was just right. The mash and scallions paired up well with the beef and the demi-glace tied everything together. This dish wouldn’t be out of place in Yaletown or Coal Harbour for 50% more money and you can get it at a pub on Scott Road in Delta!

The beer list is very good, 15 craft taps, and it’s overseen by Cicerone Ben Treen. Their wine list is extensive and their cocktail menu is equally deep. Executive Chef Ryan Praskey, who arrived at ONE20 in 2014 after stints at Momofuku, Terra, and Ferrovia, has brought a farm to table approach to the menu embracing local producers and fresh ingredients.

One20 Public House is a pretty special place in a sea of suburban mediocrity. You should go check it out for yourself.

I’ve posted a few pictures from the Steel and Oak dinner at the bottom of this post.

Twitter – @120publichouse

Instagram – one20publichouse

Facebook – One20Pub

Interwebz – one20pub.com

Scott.

Beer dinner - Chicken and smoked hefeweizen consumme, mushroom, chorizo, chicken dumpling, parmesan tuile, herb oil
Beer dinner – Chicken and smoked hefeweizen consumme, mushroom, chorizo, chicken dumpling, parmesan tuile, herb oil
Beer dinner - Red pilsner beer battered Halibut, sauce gribiche,  haystack potatoes
Beer dinner – Red pilsner beer battered Halibut, sauce gribiche, haystack potatoes
Beer dinner - Plated oyster
Beer dinner – Plated oyster
Beer dinner - Fried queso and crispy sausage
Beer dinner – Fried queso and crispy sausage
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Quick Bite – Estrella’s Montreal Deli and Cafe

The Montreal Smoked Meat sandwich, a Canadian icon. Greater Vancouver has a few places that make a decent version but there is one that stands above them all. Estrella’s in Langley is as close as it gets to being in Montreal. Hidden in plain sight on 200th street between Industrial Ave and Logan Ave, you’d drive right by Estrella’s if you didn’t know it existed. It is surrounded by automotive shops, industrial buildings and an oddly placed dentist office.

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Now that you know where it is open up your calender and make some time to check it out. The smoked meat sandwiches are the best around, by a wide margin. Most places in Vancouver make a sandwich with meat brought in from Montreal which tends to taste like it’s travelled in a truck across Canada. Other places make their own but it always comes out too salty. Estrella’s house made smoked meat is absolute perfection. Tender, juicy, flavourful without being too salty. You can order it lean (less fat) or marbled (more fat) just like they do it in Montreal. Obviously the full fat is tastier, the choice is yours.

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You can get poutine, grilled paninis, burgers, sandwiches, soups, espresso and speciality coffee. Nearly everything is house made from scratch. The poutine is outstanding.

Tired of mediocre smoked meat parading as the real thing? Go check out Estrella’s at 5932 200th street in Langley (There you go random Twitter guy who couldn’t Google the address yourself…)

Web – estrellasdeli.com

Scott.

Edith and Arthur Brewmasters Dinner with Central City

The Joseph Richard Group are really starting to establish themselves as a company that wants to be known for craft beer. Case in point the upcoming brewmasters dinner at Edith and Arthur in Fleetwood featuring Surrey’s own Central City Brewing on Wednesday November 20th at 6pm. 5 courses, each paired with one of Central City’s amazing local beers plus a welcome beer for $35. You can purchase tickets at Edith and Arthur starting Friday November 8th. This event is proudly supported by the South Fraser Beer Club.

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Scott.

 

Pho Tao Bay – Langley

Pho is a source of heated debate among those who love it. People will swear up and down that their favourite Pho place is better than your favourite Pho place and it quickly escalates into a “my dad can beat up your dad” school yard shouting match. Pho Tao Bay in Langley is probably one of those places I’m going to argue with people about. It’s a contender for top Fraser Valley Pho, right up there with Pho Tam in Whalley, one of the best Pho joints in the GVRD.

I realize this opens me up to great amounts of criticism from the Pho elitist community but I can take it, plus I had my Pho Jedi Master, Sheldon, with me to back me up. I had a large bowl of the rare beef/well done beef with the usual plate of bean sprouts and herbal goodness, I added a TON of hot sauce and chili oil, probably a bad move on the hottest day of the year (sweaty). The beef was tender and awesome, the broth is out of this world, it’s some damn fine Pho yo!

I also had a spring roll, pretty average to be honest but I’ve had way worse. The restaurant itself is that magical kind of “almost unclean” that makes you feel right at home, the service is pretty good for a Vietnamese place and the prices are average.

Go check it out and tell me I’m wrong, I dare you.

Scott.

Pho Tau Bay – 5790 203 Street, Langley