Tastiness Factor: 9/10
Locavore Approved? YES- "Sustainable, seasonal and fresh. We're proud to represent our local farmers & fishers and we strive to use the best local produce, seafood, and meats we can get our hands on." This line, front and centre on their homepage, says it all. Why there are not more restaurants around Vancouver that focus on seafood I cannot understand, since we are surrounded by such plentiful waters. Fortunately, Supermarine has recognized the void and is showing off all of our all that our region has to offer, from land to sea.
I was very sad to hear of the passing of one of our favourite brunch spots (RIP Abigail's Party).
In this case though, change has been been good, with the birth of Supekrmarine.
We had the great pleasure of visiting Supekrmarine back in July, just 3 weeks after it opened its doors. One always takes their chances when they visit so close to opening, knowing that there may still be a few kinks that need to be worked out.
But Supermarine defied the odds, and in all aspects, from the food to the service to the ambience, there was hardly a kink to be found.
Lets start with the atmosphere, which is Vancouver through and through- relaxed and comfortable, with a dash of hipster thrown in for good measure. The room is very reminiscent of its previous life as Abigail's Party (why mess with a good thing?) except for a bit of a different seating scheme with a few booths thrown in against the far wall. They have a small patio out front to also increase capacity. I am quite partial to the cute little bar in the back where there is seating for a few more eager customers.
As for service, I really enjoyed being served by the charming and down to earth wait staff that we encountered throughout the evening. A truly gracious crew. There was a bit of a long wait between courses and they forgot to bring one of the dishes we ordered but their overall positive attitudes more than made up for these small blunders and we left feeling very well hosted.
Although the menu is not set up in a sharing-plates format, I would highly recommend going this route instead of the typical appetizer and main (although I sure this would be enjoyable as well). The secret here is to try as many dishes as possible as there are so many great ones to choose from. Hubby and I chose to share a bunch of the "snacks" and "starter" items since they appealed to us more than the "mains" but the mains being delivered to the tables next to us looked amazing as well. The great thing about this place is that you will find whatever suits you, from a little bite with a cocktail to a full-on three course meal. For those with don't eat/dislike seafood, there are also a few meat and veg options thrown in.
Also, be sure to check out the cocktail menu, which offers a very nice selection of diverse cocktails, from salty to sweet to bitter. Our server gave us a succinct rundown of the list when we arrived so we knew exactly what flavours to expect and allowing me to choose one that suited my tastes to a tee.
Here are the great dishes that Hubby and I shared the night of our visit:
Octopus chips- A nice crispy treat to start off the meal, or to pair with a cocktail (or two).
Citrus Cured Trout- This rich and buttery fish was given a light summer twist using the juice from pea pods (I did not even these made juice?!).
Confit Herring- This is a dish for true fish lovers, as the herring has a very forward "fishy" flavour. The use of accompaniments is really smart, as the romesco helps take an edge off the strong flavour of the fish, while the hazelnuts and sourdough crumbs added a nice contrasting texture.
Steak and Oyster Tartare- Hubby was itching for a little meat with all of that seafood and this dish was right up his alley. The hanger steak was combined with oysters from nearby Cortes Island, and topped with shaved jerky (a carnivore's dream!).
Seared Humboldt Squid- This was my favourite dish of the evening. Squid (one of my new favourites) ran throughout the whole dish, with thin pieces on top of a chickpea fricassee that contained little cubes of squid "chorizo". The textures and flavours just knocked it right out of the park!
Kale, Honey, Garlic, Rosemary- Because of my obsession with kale, I had to order this side and thought I would have it all to myself. To my surprise, Hubby dove right in once he took one bite of its honey-infused sweetness and the crispy little garlic slivers overtop. Thank goodness for the generous portion!
Welcome to Kitsilano Supermarine! Everything about you, from your stellar cocktail menu to your expertly-prepared local seafood to your down-to-earth service and atmosphere, make us so happy to call you neighbour! We will definitely be swinging by again in the near future:)