We were on our way back from Fraserview Golf Course and decided to make a slight detour for a lunch stop. Since we rarely drive down Commercial Drive we did not realize how busy it would be (even on a Monday at 1pm) and how hard it would be to find a place to park. We ended up with a spot a few streets back from Commercial on Parker. We have spent very little time on The Drive since moving to Vancouver, but we know we should make time to visit more. There is a multitude of little shops and restaurants worth checking out. We do plan to make a day of it sometime soon and bike over from Coal Harbour for the day.
In the first block we past three or four other restaurants before our destination – The Reef. A friend has been recommending it since we moved to Vancouver three years ago so it was about time we made it. There were a few tables on the small patio available but we choose one inside instead to get a little shade. We sat just inside the large garage style doors that opened onto the patio making us feel like we were outside anyway. The lunch menu is not overly large but had lots of good options for both of us. In the end we decided on sharing a few appetizers, or ‘small tings’ as the menu says, so we could try more than one thing. We selected an order of Plantain Chips served with Jerk Mayo and an order of Coco Prawns with minted avocado yoghurt. Our server told us that a Plantain was like a cross between a banana and a potato and used as a vegetable or for chips. Once served, the fried ‘slices’ were long and thin, were less starchy than a potato and had a hint of banana flavor. Some were more fried than others so we would have preferred them to be more evenly cooked but otherwise they were quite good and we both thought that the jerk mayo was great for dipping. The Coco Prawns were rolled in a good amount of coconut, not over fried and cooked perfectly. They were delicious. Neither of us liked the yogurt dip but chose to eat them plain anyway because they were so good.
Ginger beer, Portions, Service
The drink special of the day was a Shandy made with in-house made ginger beer which we tried. The ginger was a bit strong at first but grew on us. The portions of the starters were quite large so even though we intended to try more than two we were too full afterward. Our server was all alone and seemed a bit overwhelmed but was friendly when she did make it to the table and did know the menu well and was able to answer our questions. There are some other great starters and mains that we want to try so we will have to try to get back sooner this time.