Wednesday, February 22, 2012
A couple of years ago I bought the Re-Bar cookbook for my wife. We are not vegetarians, but absolutely loved most of the recipes we tried. My favorite being the Three Sisters Burritos. So, after much anticipation we decided it was time to experience their food first hand.
Last night I took my wife to Re-Bar for a belated Valentines dinner. We arrived about 5:45pm and the restaurant was already starting to fill up. I was actually quite surprised at how busy it got for a blustery Tuesday night.
For a restaurant that has such a large and diverse cookbook; their menu is relatively limited. In fact, I am certain that they offer more house made drinks and smoothies then they do food. One other thing that boggled my mind was that they don't have any appetizers listed on their menu, or maybe I am just blind.
After perusing the menu for a while we finally settled on our food. I ordered the Shitake Mushroom and Tofu Posticker Bowl ($13) and my wife the Huevos Rancheros ($13) with baked fries. My wife also had an Atomic Glow smoothie and I had a Blue Bridge smoothie both ($5.50). The food arrived quickly - which I guess is a benefit of not having to cook meat. I quite enjoyed the postickers; especially, with the spicy soy lime sauce they were served with. However, I found my wok fried veggies and rice to be quite bland - boring if you will. My wife enjoyed her Rancheros, but seemed slightly disappointed that it was no better than the ones she makes at home. I think of this as a testimate to either my wife's cooking or the Re-Bar cookbook; however, for the purposes of this I will say my wife's cooking.
One downfall I did notice about Re-Bar is that their servers either have too many tables or aren't very experienced - as ours had a tough time keeping up. It took her quite a while to clear our dirty plates and even longer to come back to offer us our bill or a dessert menu. We did decide on dessert which by the way is made by outside bakeries; one of which is my favorite - Pure Vanilla.
We shared a piece of the Coconut Carrot cake ($6.75) which was very rich, but a little on the dry side.
Overall, Re-Bar has creative vegetarian menu with both vegan and celiac options. Of course this makes it a popular restaurant downtown Victoria. Even if you are a meatatarian you will be pleasantly surprised that there might just be food that you enjoy. Their staff are friendly, but the busyness of the restaurant can cause the service to be slow. I did enjoy my meal, but feel that with the help of their cookbook I can make it all myself and it will taste just as good. I would not rave to my friends about Re-Bar but would suggest it to skeptics of vegetarian food. Well, I might return, but not after I sample more of what the city has to offer.