I can only speak for this small corner of the world, but in Richmond and the Lower Mainland, everyone’s a-flutter with spring. It seems to have all hit at once –it’s bright by 7:30am, birds are chirping, crocuses are sprouting, and there’s even the occasional spray of cherry blossoms on a tree. Of course, there are still plenty of rainy days left, but if you catch a sunny one and spend it in Steveston, your cheeks will hurt from smiling.
Yesterday, before checking into the Executive Airport Plaza Hotel for a staycation, Dana and I did just that; we drove south to Steveston for a proper dose of fresh, springtime sea air, and a few cuddles with this adorable dog on the sidewalk.
As it always is on a nice day, the village was bustling, and we strolled around before getting a late afternoon tea from Rocanini and a coconut macaroon from The Sweet Spot. In case I haven’t been clear enough in the past, their macaroons are the best thing to ever happened to coconut, and my belly.
When we left Steveston, the harbour looked unbelievably picturesque.
The water was glassy calm, and the sky – oh the sky! It was rippled with dark clouds and streaked with pink.
I took dozens of photos, all while (loudly) declaring my love for the landscape. What a gorgeous evening.
It’s always fun to have a pal with me on a staycation, not only because can we lounge together in white robes and watch movies, but because I get to try more at dinner!
Dana and I dined at Carver’s, an American-style steakhouse in the hotel led by Chef Boban Kovachevich. We shared a good selection of dishes (totaling $85 with tax), and first nibbled on some roasted garlic bread with oil and vinegar. To start, we had a Caesar salad and the beef carpaccio.
The Caesar salad was dressed just right, with plenty of grated cheese, crostini, and little crispy, fried capers, which I find addicting.
The paper-thin slices of carpaccio were wonderfully tender, and the salsa with them was a nice addition. The beef was so soft, it cut like butter.
For mains, we split the Fraser Valley chicken breast, and the 7oz medium-rare filet mignon. Without a doubt, the steak was the highlight of our meal; it was aged well, beautifully cooked, and juicy but lean. It came with a lovely rich demi-glace, sautéed vegetables, and soft, cheesy gratin potatoes.
The Fraser Valley chicken was stuffed with pistachios, Okanagan goat cheese, and mozzarella, and came with a sundried fig reduction, vegetables, and garlic mashed potatoes. The portion of chicken was quite small, but very well-prepared, and I loved the tangy cheese. I’d recommend getting the gratin potatoes over the mash, which weren’t quite creamy (read: unhealthy!) enough for me.
For dessert, we each had an order of the Organic Pressed Dark Chocolate Hazelnut Praline. It was made with hazelnuts harvested in Chilliwack, which was yet another local ingredient on the menu I appreciated the use of. I’ve visited a BC hazelnut grove, and they’re pretty magical places.
The dessert was small but utterly satisfying, with a spoonful of refreshing minted mango strawberry salsa, an almost bitter mandarin brandy glaze, and strawberry coulis.
The triangular slice of praline had a dark chocolate layer of ganache on top, and the smooth hazelnut puree was riddled with layers of crunchy wafer. Creamy, crunchy, chocolately, but not too sweet – c’est parfait!
Carver’s is a great place to go for a classic steak dinner, and we could not have been happier as we headed back up to the room (dessert to-go in hand). Thanks to everyone at the restaurant for a wonderful meal.
Today is another beautiful one in Richmond, so it’s time to have breakfast and get out into the sun! Happy Sunday.
Cash and cards accepted
A few vegetarian menu items available (as well as some Ocean Wise-certified seafood), but obviously the menu is quite meat heavy