658 Herald St
Phone: (250) 590-9251
ES: Tasty morsels can be found at Saveur Restaurant, located not too far from the cosmopolitan Victoria Chinatown. The location is not really off the beaten path, but is tucked within the same block where Brasserie L’Ecole is also located. My guess is that the city blocks around this former Asian area may well be our city’s answer to an “International District.”
DK: The extent to which Saveur fits into a real or imagined “International District” is seen in some of their menu items over the years. A menu from 2017 showcases “Pakora Battered Broccoli” with Ponzu. A previous version of the house chicken wings was served with “Louisiana Style Remoulade.” The house wings are now “Korean BBQ Wings.”
Viewing the menu as a marketing tool, what remains constant from the earlier years of Saveur to now is “local” items sitting next to “international” flavours (would you like “Chilled Soba Noodles” with miso for lunch? Or perhaps just a salad made with “Mason Street Greens”). What has changed is tourist-pleaser type fare (fish tacos, a burger and a pork belly sandwich) replacing multi-course tasting menus.
509 Fisgard St.
There are weeks where I go solo because James is broke, and OLO moves to the top of my hit list since a certain buddy prefers to eat on a budget and I’ve been moving towards the sky’s the limit. At least we agree on one thing: hitting operations who prefer to source all their ingredients locally. And they love sustainability! This establishment used to be known as Ulla (with a similar mandate) and just following what they offered made me wish I was making more money to afford eating here. The offerings are delectable and reasonably well-priced, but I rarely haunt Chinatown (real spirits notwithstanding). When I heard they (as OLO) were one of the six establishments working in concert with bringing Bugs on the Menu, I knew this was a restaurant to finally hit.
I was visiting to specifically try their caramel cricket crunch sorbet. But that’s a dessert item, and since I was here, I pondered hard over what I could have that would classify as a light lunch instead of a dinner-sized meal.
For sheer comfort and relaxation, this place is excellent! I loved the decor, food and ambience (and hopefully they will still have the Squid Ink Chitarra when I decide to return). The menu varies every few months, and I’ve been waiting long until they offered something I was after. Just when I want to visit requires me to keep tabs. I love restaurants that offer dishes to challenge the taste buds.