Cameilla Tea & Coffee

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When I first heard that they have opened a cafe near Royal Oak I was so excited. The daughter and son of Accord House has open a dessert cafe next to Royal Oak Skytrain station, as you have read in my previous Accord House posts how much I love their tea and dessert.

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They opened about couple months ago. Big spacious space  (looks like two stores combined into one), lots of seats and not too close to each other. I visited twice so far since their opening, and I really love this place. They have relatively long hours for cafes in Burnaby, which is one factor I love.

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Almond croissant, crispy croissant with slices of almonds and sprinkled with icing sugar. They also will reheat/double bake it for you to enjoy it hot. I love hot croissant, such an indulgence.

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Carrot Pineapple Cupcake – full piece of pineapple in the center of this carrot cake. Gave it moisture, away from the traditional dry carrot cake.

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Berry Creme Cake – bits of sour berries on top on a creamy pie/cake with flaky pie pastry. My favourite so far.

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Hazelnut Almond chocolate – this tastes like Ferroro Roche in a cake, oh I loved it! If you are into Ferror Roche, you should try this. This is my favourite next to the Berry Creme Cake (yes I have two favourites. :P)

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Chocolate Ganache Tart – think heavy chocolate gananche centre on a cripsy tart base, but you’ll be surprise how it is not super hard to poke through like most chocolate gananche tart.

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They have a decent size of tea selection and many of them which you can make into tea latte. Try their tea latte! By using different types of herbal, black and green tea, their tea latte won’t disappoint you. I have tried many many different flavours from them, ask them to recommend. 🙂

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Parfait – the very first dessert I had at their original Accord House. Then it made me return again and again to try out their different dessert. Light custard at the bottom topped with fruits and cream and cake bits, they are famous for this. You really need to dig in.

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Yes this was shared between two girls, but hey dessert is a different stomach right? :p

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New York Cheesecake – class New York Cheesecake, quite dense but really I like Cheesecake etc. so I am bias. 😛
Exif_JPEG_PICTUREPassion fruit soda with mint – bits of sour berries and sweet passion fruit bubbled up by soda, a very delicious summer drink.

Their desserts did not disappoint me, maybe it is just that they all fit my Asian taste bud. Not too sweet, light and fluffy for the most part. I know their desserts are house made, so if you are unsure of an ingredient you can always ask. Their menu changes once in a while, so there will be always new things to try (which I have yet to discover.) This is a self serve cafe, you order and find a seat and grab your order when it’s ready. I am just so glad that they have opened a cafe! I will visit often like a crazy dessert lady. XD

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Beautiful Island 風信子台式料理

I have been to this bubble tea place numerous of times, from before they have renovated until now. I think this place has been around for almost ten plus years and still going. Reason? I believe good food and great value. They are a Taiwanese owned family business, used to be very homey with the older decor. Right now the interior looks much more modern and sleek. Their menu has also changed after the renovation, it sells mainly meal combos much like any other Taiwanese bubble tea places. Exif_JPEG_PICTURE Their combo usually comes with a small cup of black tea (lightly sweeten), a bowl of rice, and three small side dishes (vegetables two hot and one cold) – soy sauce braised tofu  (I find this one quite salty for my liking, need to remove it from the sauce to prevent further soaking of the sauce), stir fried cabbage and picked cucumbers.Exif_JPEG_PICTURE Simmer-fried fish steak – deep fried fish steak then topped with sweet soy sauce. When this was eaten fresh, you get to taste the crunch and crisp of the fish. But need to eat the moment they serve it because the sauce will deflate the crisp really fast and turns into not so good fish. Exif_JPEG_PICTURE Exif_JPEG_PICTURE BI Flame Grilled Chicken – house made sauce marinated chicken then flame grilled. There is a special aroma and somewhat close to teriyaki sauce but it is not. Exif_JPEG_PICTURE Buttered mushrooms. I find this one a little too casual, I know this is a family run restaurant but this mushroom was watering like crazy plus I think they’ve chopped everything up way too much made it very hard to pick up with all the water. Exif_JPEG_PICTUREScallion Ginger Chicken – steamed boneless chicken topped with onion and ginger sauce served chilled. This is my favourite so far out of all the ones I’ve tried so far. Delicious ginger onion sauce on top of cold boneless tender chicken, the texture and the flavour is so perfect together. And yes reminds me of home. Exif_JPEG_PICTURE Grass Jelly Milk – okay I don’t know where I’ve been but obviously I had been missing out. How come I never noticed they have this? Lightly sweeten grass jelly in sweet milk, the grass jelly I believe are also house made because they’re very soft and can be sucked through a straw. I couldn’t stop myself from drinking this and got full really fast. :p This place have always have good food, but do not expect service. I consider this an easy quiet bubble tea place I often visit to avoid crowd so I can talk to the people I share food with.

 

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Basho Cafe

It was one heavy rain afternoon, my girlfriends and I came out to meet for a Saturday afternoon catch up. This place gets pretty packed on weekend afternoon, so we had to come back later (an hour before they close up). Then I return for a early brunch visit with my family.

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This is such an adorable restaurant, every corner of this place shouts cute. This cafe is ran by a friendly Japanese family. Their decor reminds me greatly of Cafe de L’Organerie near Granville. 🙂

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Pot of loose leaf tea, they only have small collection of tea (I would say around 5-7 types). Served with black sesame butter cookies. They have a variety of cookies, small cakes, scones and other baked goods displayed.

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Tuna Tataki (seared tuna) lunch set – similar to the grilled vegetables lunch sets comes with salad, baked good, soup and tea. Delicious tuna tataki with yuzu(?), which brought the flavour of the tuna out lightly without overpowering it.

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Soy milk matcha latte – for almost any drink you order I notice they always give you a small piece of cookie. This matcha latte is smooth and not too sweet, very delicious.Exif_JPEG_PICTURE

Eat-In Lunch Set – comes with a few cookies as sweets, grilled vegetables on rice, salad, soup and a cup of tea. The colourful vegetables presented on a tray along with other colourful small cups and bowls. The vegetables were fresh and I especially loved the pumpkin mash – oh so tasty.

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For the baked goods, we got matcha cranberry cookie, mochi brownie. I LOVED the mochi brownie, I don’t know if this already existed long time ago but it was my first time discovering it. It was rich in chocolate but with a mochi texture, very chewy and bouncy. I am in love, it even made me attempt to make it at home later too! So much fun. 🙂Exif_JPEG_PICTURE
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Black sesame cookie and miso madeleine – the miso madeleine was very strong in miso flavour therefore is salty. It was very interesting, I wouldn’t say I love or hate it. Though I think many will find this kind of odd. Black sesame cookies were delicious, I had to order another piece. :pExif_JPEG_PICTURE

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Breakfast Scone Sandwich – basically what it looks like. A scone cut open with an egg and a slice of tomatoe (similar to the BLT concept.)


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Another thing that I have noticed is that there are lot of home made textile pieces in this restaurant, from coaster to pot warmer all either knitted or stitch patches. Gives you the feeling of grandma’s place. :3

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Overall I really like this place, although I think might be a tad bit (tad bit) hyped. It is cute and cozy with friendly staff service and great place to sit and chat with some friends. (Hard to get to without a vehicle in my opinion.) Everything they serve are done with delicacy and care which I really give props for that. I would revisit for sure!

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Marutama Ramen

Now I know this place is already being hyped up and I just keep forgetting to write the review for it since I visited it when it first opened in the summer. After which I have been there at least three to four times I cannot recall. But every time I go I was not disappointed.

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On the Bidwell off Robson (relatively close to McDonald’s), it might take a bit to find. Just look for McDonalds and park you’ll see a bright door front shinning out form the dark. The entrance shouts Come In! It’s beautiful, made of wood and full of Japan. 🙂

As I enter, I notice how the whole store is just plain wood. Lots of wood everywhere, gave it a nice pleasant feeling. Service is really good; staffs are very friendly and tentative. They often make sure that you have tea or water in your cup.

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The first thing I noticed is that their noodles are not the typical ramen noodle you see everywhere in Vancouver. They are thinner, and softer I would say. They sort of remind me of Chinese egg noodle in wonton soup. It’s different; I’ve never eaten ramen with this type of noodle before. They are softer and less chewy.

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Definitely their broth is much lighter than most ramen store. I actually quite like it because they are lighter and soup base is made with chicken instead of pork so it went great with their thin noodle. Because of the chicken broth, you don’t feel the pork oil staying on your lips from eating the noodle.

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I know they make their noodle in-house, they have a noodle machine at the corner of the restaurant. You can hear them make their noodles when they operate the machine when you are dining.

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Overall I really liked this ramen place but if you into traditional kind of ramen noodle then this is not the place for you. But if you want to try something different then go and check this place out.

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Yuu Japanese Tapas 優

I was here, a long time ago (like couple years ago) when it first opened. I remember long long time ago it was Chinese sweet soup place, then when it first got switched over to Yuu I gave it a try. Food was good and it was the first place I would say during that time with wide variety of Japanese dessert. After couple years I came here with lunch with a friend.

The place has changed, renovated and furnished. I also believe the owner is different? Though that I cannot be sure.

When I got the menu I noticed right away a lot of their items have changed. But they still have matcha latte with black sugar! So of course I ordered it. :3

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It was tad sweet, but just a little bit. I believe for most people it will be just right. Smooth and hot, I find this one hotter than most places I have been to. Which means it will stay warm while I am enjoying it through the meal. *happy* Because just like coffee, who likes it cooled? 😐

My friend ordered burger patty in curry sauce with rice. If you haven’t tried a dish like this, you should. This is not regular patty since it is usually hand made by the restaurant, therefore the meat tend to be looser and more tender and more juice. It also is a very popular home made dish in Japan, lots of Japanese moms would know how to make this and children usually loves it. I tried a small bit, it is similar to the one I have tried to downtown two years ago. (The restaurant is now gone and was owned by authentic Japanese.) I missed this! It was tasty, I almost wanted to trade my friend for it. 😛

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For myself I ordered teppanyaki chicken with vegetables, I didn’t feel like carb so I just had chicken and vegetables. I would say other than the chicken the vegetables are quite bland. Now as I recall eating teppankyaki in Japan there should be some sauce (or at least soy sauce) fried with ingredients first. But don’t get me wrong, it is fine cooked just right but just lack flavour.

I wouldn’t mind returning.
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Mosaic Grille & Bar

Sorry this really should have been posted three months ago, but I got really busy with vacation and the holidays so now I am trying to post some old posts and get caught up. :3 When it was early fall, I noticed that Mosaic is doing a coupon for $27.00 which they call “Harvest Dining Pass”. The pass includes one set menu with a few selections
similar to the Dine Out Vancouver. I thought it was a great deal, so I invited a bunch of friends to go with me.

Yes, we are a very very large party (of 16). We were seated originally at the end of the restaurant in two separate tables but I asked to switch to one long table and they did that for us. 🙂  My friends all chose different variety of the items so I was able to try out almost everything.

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You may choose from the following with the dining pass:
A.      Your choice of appie:
Fall Salad, baby carrots, beets, Tokyo turnips, fennel, pumpkins, tangerines dressing
The salad looks gorgeous, the beets were cut very thin. Almost like carpacio thin, but is beet suppose to be bitter and hard? You all should know from reading my other posts how much I love beet, but this wasn’t what I was expecting at all.

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A la Minute Smoked Skuna Bay Salmon, kale nori, wasabi cauliflower puree
It was served on a marble plate and a glass dome lid. They will place it in front of you and open the lid, then smoke will come out! I still do not understand how they were able to do that. The salmon is good, with it lightly smoked and the visual presentation made it better. (Trust me, presentation matters.)

smoked salmon
Apple Lane Orchards Apples Bisque, roasted chestnut, spiced brandy cream
I have never had warm apple bisque (soup) and this was yummy, nice and creamy with fragrant apple. I think the apple did the trick of cutting through the cream. It was surely yum.

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B.      Your choice of entree:
Seared Baja Ocean Wise Scallops, sweet potato, figs, prosciutto
All I can remember is how salty this is. Like seriously salty, all I
can taste was salt and nothing else. If there were not figs to clear
out, I don’t think I can finish this. I had to keep drinking water.

scallop

Sous Vide Lamb, broccoli rabe, butternut squash, spiced walnutslamb
Grilled Curried Cauliflower Steak, baby carrots, dates
C.      Your choice of dessert:
Pumpkin and Nutmeg Creme Brulee
Pumpkin, yes I can taste the pumpkin. It is so strong and rich, quite heavy to finish the whole thing. But if you like pumpkin you will probably love this. The flavour is amazing. (But of course I only took one bit, most of my friends cannot finish it because it is too heavy.)pumpkin creme brulee
Mosaic Chocolate Cake, signature triple layer cake
I know this is a triple layer cake, but was I served triple layer triple slices?!! The cake was so big it’s unbelievable. I was so shocked at how large the cake is. I couldn’t finish, had to take it home and ate it for breakfast for two days. XD Yes, it’s seriously that big. Another rice and heavy dessert, I felt I was filled up from the dessert instead of entrée.chocolate cake
In my personal opinion, I think $27 is acceptable for this quality of food. If I were to pay full price, I probably would not be so satisfied. But having said that, you should go and try it out yourself because a few of them are pretty amazing. They have great service, good location and a beautiful restaurant; but kitchen needs work. They are almost there, almost!

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Cafe L’Organerie

A Japanese café ran by Japanese, used to be on Grandville but now they have moved in just a little bit away from the big street. I have been to the old location, which you always see if you drive down Grandville. This time my friend suggested couple of us going and I was delighted to visit again at their new location (because I tried to visit last time for dessert but they were closed already).

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Rustic is the decoration theme, everything looks and feel like children and things were simple. Wood, handmade, cozy are the feelings that I got when I stepped in. The restaurant gave out a warming home feeling, which is just so adorable.
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They have lots of typical Japanese home style dishes such as Japanese style spaghetti, Japanese curry rice, Japanese rice bowls and lots of Japanese desserts such as parfaits and puddings.
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Wafu Spaghetti – this is the most Japanese style spaghetti in the menu, I remember eating something similar in Japan and just thought I would try it here again.
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Indeed, it was delicious; served in a clean clear sauce (most likely soy sauce) base with bonito and mushrooms, vegetables. I fell in love with this style in Japan and I am so glad I found the flavour again here in Vancouver so I can have it again! :9

Japanese Style Neapolitan Spaghetti– made with ketchup and tomatoe sauce. But unlike other Italian restaurant it is lighter in flavour with less cheese.
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Masago de Creamy Spaghetti – creamy tomato sauce with a little bits of masago that gave it a little ‘pop’ to the texture and other seafood.
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Curry with Fried Prawn served with Rice
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Matcha Greentea Pudding Parfait – my friend thought it’ll be a parfait, but it turned out to be a house made green tea pudding with some mocha and ice cream. But nevertheless it is still very good! The matcha pudding is so rich and smooth!
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Black sesame dango parfait – black sesame with chewy mocha and soft café pieces topped with whipping cream. Greatest thing? Not too sweet, my kind of dessert. :3 But mind you the mocha does fill you up, so many save some stomach space during entrée.
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Should really try this place out, it was good then and is still good now. You won’t be disappointed and it is definitively something different!

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Memory Corner

My friend first recommended me to go try out their ‘plant’ dessert. I know this sounds a little confusing, but you will see when you get there and order it yourself. It is named “Potted Style” on their menu. She told me how adorable they look, so I said to her sure we will go and give it a try.

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This newly opened bubble tea place across of Richmond City Hall named Memory Corner has very interesting décor inside. Heard from a friend who knows the owner that original owner is from Taiwan, they ran a small noodle place in Taiwan and now their children and grand child opens this one to continue the flavor from the past. The first thing I noticed about the store is the two giant dolls at the back. (Which I did not take photos of, but go see yourself!) They looked beautiful! There are also small little doll and authentic Japanese and Taiwanese décor throughout the restaurant. I liked the simple rustic feeling it gives.

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It was early dinner time for me, was going to order the potted style dessert (which is ice cream at the bottom with Oreo cookie crumbs on top and a little basil leaf on top to make it look like a potted plant) but the sea salt milk cap tea caught my eye. I ended up ordering the fresh fruits sea salt milk cap tea with a bowl of Taiwan style minced meat on rice.

Fresh Fruits Sea Salt Milk Cap Tea – made with fresh fruits (bits) black tea with a layer of foam on top. Let me introduce you to milk ca: this is brought over from Taiwan, very very popular new drink over taking bubble tea already couple years ago. It is made from whipping cream and sea salt. It is very interesting, they will always provide you with a straw but you should try to drink it without. So you can get the flavor of the sweet tea and a bit of the foaming milk cap along with sea salt after taste. I know it sounds weird but it is a very good combination. Try it, any flavor you like.

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My minced meat on rice took a very very long time, because they forgot my order. But the waitress was very apologetic about forgetting my mail and delivered it right away after I asked her about it. This is a very classic Taiwanese dish, easy and fast. But I like how this one isn’t too fat or oily and also has a little bit of over cooked rice bits (if you had rice cooked in clay pots by any Cantonese restaurant you will know this is gold).

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This restaurant sells authentic Taiwanese food, I would say their food is good. (I also get to try a bit of my friend’s sesame oil chicken noodle soup.) Maybe I little salty I would say but I would say all Taiwanese food is on the salty side. However if you are looking for a quick bite I would suggest some where else. Because the kitchen is ran by one lady and the food does not come out fast. You need to wait…. For a while….

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Next time try out that ice cream in pot! 🙂

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Chocolate Arts Cafe

Snowball's Chance in Hell's Fire

I am back again for their hot chocolate this year.  Last year I got to try the Amour (raspberry drinking chocolate), then I said to myself I will revisit again next year for chocolate festival so here I am again.

Their hot chocolate name caught my eye when I was browsing through the hot chocolate festival website: A Snowball’s Chance in Hell’s Fire. Wow what a dramatic name then I wondered what it was so I had to order it.

It was served in a bowl, yes in a bowl which is a little big bigger than a Chinese rice bowl. In the center there is a cold cold chocolate ice cream ball with a little bit of hot chocolate they pour for you and also provide some on the side. In comparison to the Thierry’s ice cream hot chocolate I felt this is much better. Reason? It stays hot! The hot chocolate they serve is pipping hot, which is great!

The ice cream is stayed intact unless you went to stir it. But I loved the spicy chili powder that comes at the end! Just a little bit (but at the bottom and you drink up then it’ll hit you).

Maybe it is time to switch over from Thierry…. 😛

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Euro Bagel Cafe

It was a Saturday morning looking for a brunch place for coffee and sandwiches, so we ended up on Commercial Drive. With the name of little Italy, Commercial Drive is full of cafes that sells delicious sandwiches and coffee. Then I found this place, nothing special about the entrance and looks a little outdated. But I am so happy I walked into and gave it a try.

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What a cute café, mimicking an European café with different flags and signs and lamp posts in the restaurants. With lots of vintage look oil canvas, chalk board menu etc, their decoration gave the name Euro Bagel Café its true meaning.

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At first I thought it was those you order first then you take a seat type of self serve café but the owner came out and asked us to sit down and gave us a menu. Then we ordered:

 

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Bagelwich Florentine – Two eggs, spinach, tomato & cream cheese

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Bagels are soft!!! Nothing very stiff and hard to tear (similar to Timmy’s bagel) but this one is so soft! Almost like bread. Delicious egg, spinach and tomato combination and of course the magic of cream cheese. 🙂 But I just cannot get over the soft bagel, after the first bite I told myself, I am coming back here. I am.

Crepe Turkey, Mushroom & Swiss

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Chewy crepe, similar to the Japanese convenient store in Downtown Robson. The crepe is good, I liked the perfect tender and chewiness. However I find this one salty. I know it’s not the crepe, it’s something in the filling – perhaps the cheese or turkey?? I would say overly salty.

As I was enjoying my breakfast, I notice they are quite busy. Lots of to go orders and you can also sit outside (on a sunny day).  I truly like this place, aside from the very salty ham or cheese. But it’s the atmosphere it gives when I am there. I for a slight moment felt Europe. 😉 (But of course, I can’t say because I have never been. 😥 ) I need to come back and try their sweet crepe perhaps with a cappuccino for an afternoon chat.

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