Last night, we went to dinner at a place many consider a Vancouver institution: Bishop’s Restaurant.  It had been a year since my last visit and I was eager to see if it was still as great as I remember it.  Our meal went something like this –

The amuse bouche
Bishop's bakes its own bread, two kinds of every day. On this day, it was a light wheat and a brown sugar bread.

Locally produced butter.

Oysters on the half-shell. Tiny but tasty.

Akemi's appetizer: Dungeness Crab and Spotted Shrimp kimchee dumplings in shrimp broth with daikon radish sprouts.

Berkshire Pork Terrine with candied quince and hazelnuts, served with sourdough toast. I dispensed with the toast and greatly enjoyed the terrine.

My main: Sloping Hills Pork Loin, braised pork cheek ragout, almond and date cake, birch syrup, and rosemary just. Loin good. Almond cake very good. Pork cheek fantastic.

Akeimi's main: Qualicum Bay Scallops with salt cod and salsify croquettes, celeriac puree, and pickled horseradish vinaigrette. She adored the scallops but wasn't enamored of the croquettes.

I followed by usual M.O. when it came to dessert.  One for me, one for my guest, and one for the table…

For her: The house ice creams and sorbets.

For me: Chocolate chip date cake with toffee sauce and brown sugar and date ice cream.

For the table: Pear and cherry galette with sour cream ice cream. Okay, as much as I tend to avoid mixing fruit with dessert, I decided to go off-book here. And, boy, am I glad I did. It was perfection. The best dessert I've had since Tokyo.

I wind down from a most satisfying meal.

I’ve yet to be disappointed in Bishop’s.  Last night’s dinner reaffirmed it’s spot in my Vancouver Dining Top 10.

Today, we headed back downtown to finally check out the Art Gallery.  Well, that was my intention anyway.

Akemi lounges as I get ready to head out - checking the meal, loading the dishwasher, and reassuring the dogs that we will be back later.

Akemi models my sunglasses. Despite her down-filled coat, she is always cold. But very cool here anyway.

But first – lunch!  Akemi had a hankering for sushi so…

Sushi lunch at Aki Restaurant. Akemi loved the salmon and hamachi. The toro, not so much.

Ready to eat.

After lunch we walked over to the Art Gallery – only to discover a line-up that stretched around the block!  As we strolled by, I was distracted by a woman in a mini-skirt who inadvertently flashed me – causing me to walk into a pole (see yesterday’s blog re: my sense of looming foreboding.  Maybe this was fate getting payback).

Robson Square was pretty damn crowded.

We skipped the Art Gallery and walked around, then headed over to Granville Island to check out an exhibition at the Emily Carr Center.  Among the, uh, unique pieces on display: a dress that lights up when you blow into a special handheld device, two jackets sporting LED displays, another jacket that emits the sound of a barking dog when approached, and something called a tornado dress that required one aim a flashlight up through the bottom to trigger.  After a full minute of crouching/flashing, passersby starting giving me strange looks and I decided to abandon the effort in favor of checking out the screening of a short experimental film.  We sat in a darkened room and donned headphones.  As the movie played, I was distracted by a late arrival, an annoying cellphone conversation, and hushed voices – that I quickly realized were part of the show.  Or, at least I assumed they were part of the show because the woman behind me kept whispering into my ear, undaunted by the fact that I ignored her up until she got up and left – although her constant worrying about whether or not she’d remembered to turn the stove off led me to start worrying as well.

We stopped off to pick up some anime dvds, then headed back home where I phoned up mom while Akemi decided to make the most of her vacation – by doing some of the household chores.  I told her to sit back and relax.  The dogs told me to shut the fuck up and mind my own business.

Dinner time for the doggies! Akemi does the honors.

24 thoughts on “February 19, 2010: Dinner at Bishop’s! Sushi at Aki’s! Checking out the art scene!

  1. hi, joe,

    are you afraid, joe, that by the time these stargate movies (sg1 and atlantis) come out, a significant amount of fans will have moved on? i know *i’ll* still be interested, but…

    your feelings on this?

  2. ahahah you might be married but you’re not deeed yet. Reminds you that you’re still a hormonal man!!

    That food looks sumptuous…I don’t know how you do it. I went to Sydney on a food fest and walked around a lot…still came home to my jeans being thaaaaaaat much tighter.

  3. P.S what’s that locally produced butter like compared to store bought butter? Taste etc….

  4. I am loving your visit with Akemi. Sounds like a wonderful time.

    But Joe, you really should do something about that deck. What if it were Akemi who stepped out there and fell? That would have been terrible. Get it fixed. (Not to sound like your mother.)

    @Michael A. Burstein – Congratulations!! Quite an honor!

  5. when i went to the art gallery the other day the line up was halfway around the block as well, but it actually seemed to move fairly quickly. although i guess it depends what your patience for line ups is and what time of day you go. it was maybe a 1/2 hour wait to get in. (we lined up at around 11:30am-ish). the Visceral bodies exhibit is pretty cool.

    also, i was at the Colbert Report taping near science world and after, we went to the quebec house which, despite it’s seemingly enormous size, it was really small inside and there was virtually nothing to do except buy overpriced (in my opinion) food. no wonder there was absolutely no line up to get in.

    i’m kind of curious about what Sochi World has to offer though. seems like lots of people want to see it (line up is several hours long)

  6. Oh man…the fooood. Was trying to ignore all the yummy stuff but, cannot. Now I can’t wait to visit Vancouver to check out a few places and enjoy a wonderful repast.

    Cool to see the babies patiently awaiting Akemi’s efforts to serve them.

    You, sir look absolutely dashing in your “wind down” photo. You have found inner peace or at least are very sated with your food selections or both!

    Thanks for the recap.

    Now to find some food cause I R hungry, again!

  7. The food looks heavenly.

    Loved the pole story!

    Akemi will be loved by the dogs forever after feeding them.

    I’m always cold, too. Must be a girl thing?

    Thanks for sharing Mr. M.!!! I’m glad you are having a nice visit.

    Michael A. Burstein : Congrats!

  8. You have excellent taste in house guests. I like and admire someone who takes the polite saying “make yoruself at home” literally enough to jump in on the chores. Glad to see you’re having fun and that the dogs know to keep you in your place. Thanks for sharing your misadventures and adventures with us.

  9. Have you checked out the zip lines that I have seen on TV? Several broadcasters have gone on the ziplines they say are all over downtown and Granville Island. I wonder if these are temporary for the Olympics or a permanent fixture? That would be a fun outing. Boy, your dogs have taken quite a shine to your guest. They obviously are a good judge of character. Or just hungry.

  10. Just a quickie!

    1. Joe, I’m convinced you won’t be happy in life until you’re completely surrounded by a harem of Asian slave girls to do your every bidding. Someone should warn Akemi…

    2. Congrats, Michael A. Burstein!

    3. *Note to self: Eating a lot of beets makes you pee red…it does NOT mean you need a kidney transplant. 😛 (See?! It’s for reasons like this that I don’t watch House!)

    Take care, all!


  11. I had an exhausting day today!!Received good and bad news. Got into a big argument with the same person twice . Saw 2 big accidents that felt unusual and spectacular at the same time.
    The first involved one of these huge big truck. It was upside down in the crevasse on the side road highway 20 , right after the tunnel. The second one involved a city bus who ran into a building. Lot of ambulances and police cars going back and forth !
    oh yeh! my page is up!!!ouh! ouh! 😀 Still working on little details. Not quite what it’s supposed to be yet.

  12. I hope your mom’s hip surgery recovery is coming along nicely.

    Akemi is lovely and thanks to her for letting her photos be posted during her visit to Canada. I am enjoying her visit a lot and look forward to tomorrow’s activities.

  13. Is it just me, or is there a “dreamy” filter on those photos? Time to clean that camera’s lens! Or…is that your way of telling us that you find Akemi dreamy, Joe? 😛

    So anyway, just dropping by to say that I’m leaving for LA tomorrow to visit CalTech! As usual, I will most likely not have any Internet access during the trip, so I will catch up on the blog when I get back on the 1st of March, the 1st day of SGU Season 2 Productions! Wooo!!

    Enjoy the rest of the Olympics! 😉

    Oh, and the fact that Carl Binder agrees with me on something is still Awesome. I’m such a fan. Haha.

    @ das: LOL! Thanks for the comparison! It would be a dream come true to be as quick-witted and funny as Stephen Colbert is, but alas, I am not…well, not yet. 😀

  14. hey Joe.

    on the radio, a few dutch guys had gone to Vancouver.

    their top-3 restaurant list:

    3: a canadian-chinese restaurant
    2: a chinese-canadian restaurant.
    1: a japanese-chinese-canadian restaurant with korean influences.

    laughed myself to death 😀

  15. @Michael A. Burstein -Congratulations and good luck!
    Joe, ok, am loving the desserts pictures as usual, thanks for sharing. yum.
    -How is mom? *waves to sis and mom*and Felix and Baby.
    -I know you will be happier when olympics does a mass exodus, like it kinda is here in fl when snowbirds depart…less crowded for sure.
    -@das I hope your color is better.(pee)(*snicker*),
    at least you know it is not staying with you.
    –Enjoy the day!!

  16. Akemi does seem to be enjoying herself as the dogs seem to be enjoying her attention as well.

    Darn, sorry the line at the art gallery was to long, I hoping for some really cool art pics.

  17. That was I was hoping for some really cool art pics, too early for posting, need more caffeine.

  18. Progress with Cricket the cat: Can now distinguish “I’m hungry” meow from “I’m lonely” cry.

  19. Its lovely to see Akemi has got over being camera shy, she really is beautiful:)
    I’d love to read her version of staying with you and the dogs. What does she think of your blogging and us hangers-on? Does she read your blog?

    Sorry if you’re reading this Akemi, enquiring minds want to know:)

  20. I finished watching SGU on DVD last night. I don’t have cable or satellite because I’m weird, so this is the first I’ve seen of the series.

    Initial thoughts (and I know full well that my opinion means nothing, but seeing as how I already know how to type and stuff):

    It is deliciously delightful to dislike Rush so much. Do NOT change him. We all want him to change and become an agreeable sort of fellow, but never give us the payoff for that. But then, you already know that.
    The stones: get rid of them or use them more sparingly
    The countdown to FTL: brilliant idea, naturally creates suspense because there is a literal ticking clock
    Eli: character with the most growth potential–he has the liberty to change over time because of his relatively young age and unstructured life prior to recent events; his progression will seem natural
    Chloe: I don’t care about her. Something is missing there.
    Military vs. IOA vs. Scientists vs. Others: I need to see the Others do something. I know these are probably your regular extras or supporting staff, but we’ve seen the other 3 groups at odds before in the other series, and it’s a bit blah-blah-blah to see them at it again.

    I was entertained, so you folks succeeded. Thank you!

  21. yep! like I was saying earlier Joe … had a huge fight with someone yesterday. I’ve only known that person for 1 week 1/2 and that person is making it an habit of either lie or omit crucial information that I end up learning about from a third party much, much later. The problematic thing with that person’s behaviour, is that for every lie or omission, it not only has an important impact on me but also on several people directly involved with me. The most frustrating part is that this person plus or less seems to care about the consequences of his action. So yesterday that person reached a new peek in his 3rd lie/omission in a week. That one was huge!… and I got really mad until a solution was finally found to solve his mistake. So much energy wasted when that person could have just been honest with me in the first place, my decision would have been different; it’s probably the reason why he lied in the first place.

  22. Hey Joe,

    I would forget the broken arm story and go with the the “mini-skirt & pole” one. Too funny…you are killing me.

    I can’t stop laughing…sorry! Okay..hopeless I know. Moving on…

    Best to you Joe,
    Cheryl 🙂

  23. I’m assuming you shot all the displayed pix? I’m impressed. Getting food to look good on camera is a non-trivial skill.

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