The other night, I went to Gastropod, the winner of the 18th Annual Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Award for Best New Fine Dining. It also made a strong showing in Urban Diner’s Worst Restaurant Name poll (in this case, yielding the prize to the far more deserving Whineo’s). And, I dare suspect, that if they were ever going to award a prize for Unhappiest-Looking Wait Staff, Gastropod would surely make a strong showing as well. Not that the service was bad on the evening we went. It was polite and fairly prompt – but disquietingly reserved, as if the entire staff was in mourning. Far be it for me to go in expecting the animated affability of a Claude from Chow’s or a Daniel from Quattro or a Dragon from Tojo‘s, or the homey warmth of a Bistrot Bistro or a Long’s Noodle House, or even the amiable hospitality of a Fuel, Don Francesco, Yuji’s, or Caffe de Medici. Still, the occasional smile would probably go a long way toward ensuring repeat business – although, from the looks of things that night, they were doing quite well, thank you very much.

It was 6:00 p.m. and the place was packed. As we settled in, we were informed of the changes to the menu. The frog legs beignet and beef cheeks were out. The salmon tartar and sautéed sweetbread and barley were in. I ordered the sweetbread addition while Robert Cooper went with the foie gras. I also ordered the “silver fish and congee” for the table. Our wives, meanwhile, elected to start with the mixed organic green salads – which they enjoyed. At most any other restaurant, we’d have been sampling one another’s appetizers but given Gastropod’s anemic portions, it wasn’t something we did on this night. I had the sweetbread all to myself – two excellent albeit tiny morsels of the golden sweetbread sitting atop a bed of barley, flanked by a partial romaine leaf. The congee was also very good, served with a pineapple mayo and crowned with crispy silver fish that lent the dish a wonderful contrast in both texture and flavor – crisp and creamy, sweet and salty. Unfortunately, because of the size and curvature of the bowls in which the appies had been served, accessing the last few portions of rice and barley proved all but impossible given the fork I was working with. Eventually, I admitted defeat and set my cutlery down. My knife slid off the bowl and clattered noisily onto the table.

For my main, I went with the Salmon Gastropod – two gorgeous pieces of nori-wrapped salmon, cooked medium-rare, served with a not-too spicy wasabi sabayon, some wonderfully flavorful pea shoots, and a warm citrus bulgar salad that proved all too tart on this visit. Everyone else adored their choices: Rob, his venison sous-vide served with raspberry ketchup and shitake mushroom, Fondy, her tender duck sous-vide accompanied by house made pasta au jus, oyster mushrooms, and broccoli rabe.

For dessert, Rob and his wife decided to get separate orders of the Gastropod Cheesecake rather than share one between the two of them. And they were glad they did. The cheesecake was that good; the serving that small. Fondy loved her chocolate pancetta a la Toblerone which was served with lemon thyme ice milk. Finally, my chocolate fondant with its dark chocolate liquid center, served atop a pool of Earl Grey syrup, proved a divinely decadent three forkfuls.

Overall, an excellent meal, nary a misstep in the some twelve dishes we were served. Fondy’s duck sous-vide was all she could talk about as we hopped in the car and headed over to Steeps for a second dessert. In retrospect, I suppose one of the nice things about going to Gastropod is that you’ll never leave feeling over-stuffed.

What’s on your minds?

Anonymous #1 writes: “Are we going to see any McKay/Katie moments in Season 4?”

Answer: Yup.

Allison writes: “Can David Nykl really kick your butt at chess or are you the poker/Parcheesi sort?”

Answer: I’m really more of a Clue/Monopoly guy.

Chris writes: “What is your favorite dessert?”

Answer: I’m also a sticky toffee pudding guy.

Zabadoo writes: “1.)Any groundbreaking battles in the future? 2.)Do you know if there will be a lot of shoot ’em up in Ark or Contiuum or the fourth season of Atlantis?

Answer: 1) As a matter of fact, we’re in the process of talking to the visual effects department about one particularly groundbreaking battle sequence. So, yes. 2) Some shoot ‘em up in both eppies.

Amy writes: “What do you think, dessert first or keep it at the end?”

Answer: How about both?

Bluemoon 927 a ecrit: “Qu’en pensez vous ? Ce sont vraiment des plats que l’on pourrait manger au Québec ?”

Answer: Il me semble que oui, ce sont des plats typiquement Quebecois.

Phibi writes: “Was it because the story wouldn’t have fit in the storylines for the second half of season 4 so far, or because of schedule conflicts with Paul?”

Answer: The former, not the latter.

Flying Fig writes: “How long does it take a writer, from beginning to end, to pem an SGA script?”

Answer: It depends. From concept to shooting draft, it can take anywhere from a couple of weeks to a month.

Cheek Lil Devil writes: “When you pen a script who decides on the title?”

Answer: Either the writer will come up with a title for his episode or we’ll trawl the writers’ room for suggestions. Cooler heads usually prevail. I’m still bitter I never got to name one of my SG-1 scripts Fool’s Goa’uld.

Carolina writes: “So if you had a restaurant, what type of food would you serve?”

Answer: Probably Italian.

39 thoughts on “May 16, 2007

  1. I’m still bitter I never got to name one of my SG-1 scripts Fool’s Goa’uld.

    Darn. Now I’m bitter too, cos that woulda been cool! 😀

    So I gotta ask, who was the freaky old-looking guy in the make-up chair really? Please tell me it wasn’t really Pretty Boy Gero, still pursuing his “dream”? 😉

  2. I love sticky toffee pudding too! You know, Scotland makes some wonderful versions of that dessert, you should come over some time and try it 😉

  3. Hey Joe!
    Been hearing distrubing rumors that there might not be a season 5 of atlantis? Is the true or not?

    On another note; will we be seeing or hearing anything about the nox?? They have been quite since around season4 of sg1


  4. B…b…big battle you say? Groundbreaking?! Joe, you horrible horrible tease!

    Any hints? Or better yet, is it appearing in any of the episodes that we know of so far (everything from Adrift to Spoils of War)?

  5. So I take it no mention of Beckett until he just shows up? Why would that mimic real life if nobody misses him? Apparently no real impact on his fellow colleagues except Keller? Why bring him back at all? People did miss Daniel.

  6. What ep would ‘Fool’s Goa’uld’ have been? I’d have loved an ep to have been called that! 😀

    If you ever open an Italian restaurant, I’m there…I love Italian food 🙂

  7. If you had an Italian restaurant, would your mother eat there or would it go against her ‘No Italian Restaurants’ rule?

  8. I read that there was an episode for season one called “Human Error,” but wasn’t materialized. Will it show up in season 4?

  9. Answer: Either the writer will come up with a title for his episode or we’ll trawl the writers’ room for suggestions. Cooler heads usually prevail. I’m still bitter I never got to name one of my SG-1 scripts Fool’s Goa’uld.

    “Fool’s Goa’uld”? What episode was that going to be, or did it never actually make it into the series?

  10. If you had to recomend tourist sites in Vancouver, what would be your top five? (excluding restaurants)

  11. What Monopoly piece do you usually go for? Personally, I always went for the horse.

  12. Beef cheeks? Okay, that sounds just…yuk. But sticky toffee pudding sounds interesting. Our sausage dinner was kind of fun. The potato sausage did actually taste like potatoes, which sounds weird but tasted good. The Italian sausage was best, in my opinion. GeekBoy lamented that there were no hot dogs but contented himself with four polish sausages.

    And holey moley, I finished the gigantic job application with 12 hours to spare! Now I have to figure out what to wear to the interview.

  13. Fool’s Goa’uld.
    That physically hurt ;D.

    I was always the bank person in Monopoly. Of course, I just wanted all the multi-colored money and didn’t care about getting property. Let’s just say there was some pretty fancy accounting going on ^^;. And somehow, my person in Clue was always guilty >->…

  14. This blog is funny. How long was Vala hostess to a gould? You did not answer and that same person seems kind of freaky about it so I figure I would help out and jump in to and see how many times you post the same question. Maybe Miss Alipeeps can answer it for you, what do you think? How do you stand it, these posts?

    Who do you like to be in Clue? I really do not care but it seemed like a question that would fit in compared to what else I see when I read here and I like Clue so when in Rome. Thanks.
    N. Konowalchak, OC, Calif.

  15. I’m not quite sure how these questions came to mind, but I just had to ask:

    1) Out of all the cast & crew members of both SG-1 & Atlantis, who would have the most interesting biopic? 2) Would it do well?

  16. I’ve recently learned not to read your blog too early in the morning. For today’s blog Q&A I thought ‘Fool’s Goa’uld.’ – What’s wrong with that, that’s a great name for an episode. Then read the next question as “So if you had a restaurant, what type of blood would you serve?”

    Answer: Probably Italian.

    I thought – His mum is really NOT going to like this blog!

  17. I created a account the other day and just added you in this morning as one of my links. The place comes up with a popular tag suggestion and besides the normal SGA and blog, yours came up with rootofallevil.

    I thought you might be pleased 😉

  18. salut!!
    1)pouvez vous nous révélé une petite new sur la saison 4 de Stargate Atlantis qui n a pas encors etais dit?…s il vous plais… 🙂
    2)Comment faite vous pour restez osssi mince?

  19. Hi Mr Mallozzi,

    Iv read your blog with intrest expecially the food reviews. Have you ever visited Doolin’s on Granville. I was over in Vancouver for a month and found that to be the pub that was closest to the kind of atmosphere you get in UK and Irish pubs. Not only that they serve some good food too, well for the kind of establishment and market its aiming for. The service is very friendly. Well the waitresses are to an English guy who finds himself quids in because of the exchange rate.

    On a side note, what is your opinion on letting someone else write up a concept that I have created. Since im no words smith myself.
    Check out my blogs you can see for yourself.

  20. I’m feeling rather pedestrian today because, for the first time, you ate a meal that held no appeal to me, whatsoever. (Well, until you got to the desserts.)

    Bummer about “Fool’s Goa’uld.” But at least you all make an effort to name your episodes. I always laugh at those shows that stick with just numbers.

    And although it wasn’t one of my favorite shows ever, I did enjoy the Friends titles. They just went with how most people usually refer to shows: “the one where….”

  21. Hey Joe!
    Just a quick question: Would you be able to tell us if Adria (Morena Baccarin) will be in the Ark of Truth?

  22. salut, à quand la diffusion de la saison 4? Avez vous une date precise?
    weir sera t-elle presente à la seconde partie de la saison 4?… MERCI

  23. Joe –

    Road Tasted – good show – those Deen boys are amusing to watch. Another good one is Feasting on Asphalt with Alton Brown. It is not a recurring show, it was a short-run series. So, not even sure it’s in rotation anymore – but a good watch, nonetheless. Of course Alton’s Good Eats is also a good show to check out.

    And by the way, this Weir fan truly hopes the “possibility” Weir will be back with the show turns into reality. The character’s got great potential and Torri does a fabulous job taking the character on the page and bringing her to life. Her return, I realize, is not solely up to you, but hey – you’re an important guy with a lot of power on the SGA team, so I figure I’ll start with you and work my way down! Please, please, reconsider.

    There, I asked nice. =)


  24. Hi! I really like to know if we´ll see a Season 4 episode that revolve around the “relationship” between Teyla and McKay?
    Also like to know, do you watch TV shows like “Monk” Or “The Dead Zone”?

  25. 1. Noxious Odor Advisory System (N.O.A.S.)for Doppelganger? 2. Is Rachel Luttrell pregnant and it’s being incorporated, or was it just a direction the writers decided to take Teyla? 3. How are the Nielsen ratings calculated? Are their Nielsen families that have cable boxes from the company, or are people randomly selected and don’t know?

  26. What style of Italian would you offer? Something from the provinces, Rome inner city, etc or would you go the ‘franchise’ route?

    If you are ever in Bend OR there’s a restaurant NW of there called the Tumalo Feed Company. It took awhile to get over the name but if you like really good ranch style cooking they’re one of the best places I’ve ever been to.

  27. Hi Joe,

    the same question as yesterday, the day before and 2 days ago now: how long EXACTLY Vala was a host to Goa’uld Qetesh?

    And two more things: I’ve just seen the supposed to be cover for season 10 DVDs. Please tell me it’s some kind of frelling joke and MGM will not go with this shit. Where the frell is Vala???

    And the second matter. Thinking again about Bounty episode the question has to be asked: why famous Grandma wasn’t even mentioned in this episode? Mitchell is talking about her in almost every episode!

  28. Farscapefan said…

    the same question as yesterday, the day before and 2 days ago now: how long EXACTLY Vala was a host to Goa’uld Qetesh?

    Anonymous said…

    One of the favorite techniques of teenagers, after their parents have said “No” to something, is to keep asking for the same thing over and over again hoping it will cause them to give up and grant their request. If that doesn’t work they try asking for the same thing in different ways.

    Sometimes it takes a long time to grow out of these techniques, especially if they worked well with their parents.

    That Anonymous post was right on the mark.

    I wonder .. age or parental experience?

  29. Oh oh I see you speak french ?!! good !! Euh question > il me reste une semaine à Vancouver, j’aimerais manger chez un bon japonais … lequel vous me conseillez ? Je sais qu’il y en a un sur la 4ème avenue à Kitsilano, qui a l’air pas mal mais bon je veux l’avis d’un expert ^^ …
    Question about Stargate … When we will have a french guy in Atlantis ?!! :p

  30. I have almost zero knowledge of the French language, so it amazes me that I can understand the French posts because of a few key words that set them in context.

    The language of Stargate truly is universal.

  31. Hi Joe,

    I was curious if you have seen the season 10 box cover set. I know that you have nothing to do with it but since I need to rant….

    1. Vala isn’t on the cover
    2. The team is wearing those awful black t-shirts instead of complete uniforms. They have never just been in t-shirts on the cover.
    3. Sam,Daniel,Teal’c and Mitchell are all looking in different directions. It gives the appearance,to me, that they aren’t unified.
    4. Airbrushing!!! The actors do not need to be airbrushed. They are all a great looking group of people. Ben looks like he has been airbrushed to the age of 19.
    5. Sam’s chest! Seriously Joe what and insult to Amanda.

    It just seems to me that whoever put this together,as poorly done as it is,would want to appeal to as many fans as possible. If the pictures were brought in closer you could easily get 5 team members on the cover. I mean really how hard can it be….five team members,uniforms,looking the same direction and not airbrushed.

    On the bright side the background color is nice.


  32. One thing more about the lack of Vala/Claudia Black on the season 10 DVD cover. It’s definitely a huge slap in the fact towards Claudia and her fans. I hope MGM/Fox are going to say “sorry” and give us the proper cover. This one is just wrong.

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