A week or two ago, I went for dinner with Patricia and another friend. Periodically, we get together, grab a bite and try to catch up on all the latest news in each others’ lives. This time, our friend picked Trattoria Italian Kitchen on West 4th Avenue in Vancouver.
Over the years, I’ve been to a few of the Glowbal Group Restaurants: Sanafir, Coast, Italian Kitchen. I know there are a few more under their umbrella but I have not visited those places yet. In fact, this was my first visit to Trattoria Italian Kitchen on 4th Avenue. As I was heading over after work and was unsure of the parking situation in the area, I called the restaurant in advance. I was told that there is a parking lot behind the restaurant but with limited spots. At 5 pm, there really shouldn’t be any problem. My difficulty was that I couldn’t find the entrance to the parking so I resorted to street parking. Luckily there was ample street parking in the area.
I parked at a meter on West 5th Avenue and fed it more than enough coins in case dinner started late or we stayed late. As I was walking along W 4th Avenue to Trattoria, I realized there were quite a few spots immediately outside the restaurant. *shrug* Oh well, I am sure the after-dinner hike back to the car would count as exercise. I took a quick peek at the W 4th Ave meter. Thankfully it was a higher rate than the one that I was parked at less than a block away. Reassuring to know that not only do I get to work off the food after dinner but I also paid less for parking.
As is habit, I like to arrive early. Trattoria said they don’t allow reservations at dinner time so I arrived early enough to be able to have my pick of tables. It also gave me time to study the surroundings. In comparison to the downtown Italian Kitchen and Coast restaurants both on Alberni Street, it seems as though the Trattoria lay-out is more spacious. I’m not sure if it was because I arrived early and less than half the place was seated or because that truly is the case, but I definitely felt more comfortable at Trattoria than at the other two locations. At least when I was getting in and out of the table, I wasn’t worried about knocking someone’s drink into their lap.
For reasons that I can no longer remember, I had to skip lunch that day. Needless to say, I was starving by the time I was seated at the table. It didn’t take long for my eyes to zero in on the word “prawns” in the menu and I knew what I wanted to order — Linguine Gamberi. The menu description mentioned tiger prawns, capers… and then I didn’t care what else followed. By the time my friends arrived, I was keen on ordering an appetizer to share (I could have eaten the menu page by then). We ordered the Crispy Fried Calamari.
Of course, these two photos don’t do the tasty food any justice. However, given that the lighting from my seat was bad (my back to the windows) and I was starving, I’m lucky to have been able to even get these two photos. Let’s just say that the food didn’t stay on the plate for very long.
On another note, it was nice to find out that Trattoria has a special on Tuesday nights — all pasta $11. I think my friend knew when he suggested going there, but I was pleasantly surprised that my meal was delicious and not too expensive. I wonder if there is an end date for that Trattoria Tuesday special… I wouldn’t mind going back for more pasta.