Friday, February 19, 2010

Olympic Bites - LiveCity Yaletown

LiveCity Yaletown is proving one of the most popular and exciting party venues for the Vancouver Olympics. I made it there for the first time on Wednesday and cheered along with hundreds of other Canadians as we took the silver medal for speed skating. But all that cheering makes a fan hungry. What was the food like?

The venue: LiveCity Yaletown, near David Lam Park.
The meal: Bison burger, shrimp dumplings
The price: $13 ($8 for the burger, $5 for the dumplings)

The impression: I was expecting the same kind of food at LiveCity Yaletown as LiveCity Vancouver,  so imagine my surprise when the concessions featured a variety of international cuisine! Separate windows offered food from Greece (gyros and donairs), India (mostly curries), Italy (pizzas and calzones), China (noodles, fried rice and dim sum items), Jamaica (jerk chicken and patties) and Canada (hot dogs, burgers etc). I really appreciated the nod to Canada's multi-cultural background (but what, no Japanese?!) as well as the attempt to offer some variety. I decided to try the bison burger from the Canadian booth and the shrimp dumplings from the Chinese.

First things first... the bison burger was a big disappointment. I had high hopes as I love both beef and burgers and thought it would be something really cool and unusual, but the taste was underwhelming and the presentation was very bad. The burger patty was simply cut in half and shoved into a hot dog bun. It was very awkward to hold and eat, doubly so when I tried to add toppings as well. The patty itself was interesting, with a slightly saltier, gamier taste than regular beef burgers, but it wasn't worth what I paid for it. All in all, I was very let down.

Luckily, the shrimp dumplings were there to save the day, and save it they did in fine fashion. Initially I was concerned as the "skin" seemed a bit rubbery, but as soon as I bit into the shrimp insides I was in heaven. Sweet, moist and tender, the dumplings were set off to perfection with a tangy soy sauce (you can also ask for spicy sauce). An experienced dim sum expert might not be impressed, but I certainly was, and would happily order these again. Not only that, but they seemed remarkably well priced compared to other overpriced options.

The verdict: I much prefer the food here to that at LiveCity Vancouver; there's more variety, and there really are some gems here. Next time I come back, I want to try more of the Chinese food, or perhaps try some Jamaican, Greek or Italian dishes. Having said that, I do recommend giving the bison burger a miss; there's a lot better food to spend your money on.


Post a Comment