We were invited to Prestons’ tasting event on Monday evening where we sampled a variety of Mediterranean and Asian influenced dishes off the restaurant’s new fall menu. Located in the Coast Coal Harbour Hotel on West Pender in downtown Vancouver, Prestons is a sleek and modern bar, lounge & dining room.
Attendees were welcomed at the entrance with a taste of Italy – Venetian Spritzers consisting of Aperol herb liqueur & brut, served over crushed rocks. Granville Island Beer and Therapy Vineyards Wine stations were on hand, along with an open-bar: Beverages such as dessert-esque Lemon Meringue Pie Martini and “punchy” Chuck Norris were big hits of the evening.
A diverse selection of ten different dishes were served throughout the night, including tastings of appys, mains and dessert. Firstly, we sampled the Thai Red Curry: A spicy coconut curry with chicken, eggplant, peppers, red onion and steamed jasmine rice. This dish was a really solid, fragrant and flavourful curry. Chef Vianello wasn’t afraid to kick it up a notch with an adequate amount heat. The curry was followed by some mini Pulled Pork Poutine that consisted of Quebec cheese curds and crispy French fries, topped with Rickard’s Red gravy and tender pulled pork.
After those, we enjoyed a few Dungeness Crab Cakes topped with tomato vinaigrette and fried capers, followed by Braised BBQ Pork Sliders - perfect little mini-burgers, including homemade barbecue sauce, slow cooked pork, and Gorgonzola coleslaw. Eggplant Parmesan Sliders were also provided and they had stewed red peppers, basil pesto and feta cheese. Crispy Chicken Karaage was served in little take-out containers and had flash fried garlic sake marinated chicken, served with spicy lime ailoi and miso cabbage slaw. Tomato & Bocconcini Crostinis consisted of artichoke and basil pestro puree, grape tomatoes, marinated mozzarella. Prestons even showcased a Gyoza “action station” where cooks created seared shrimp and vegetable dumplings with miso vinaigrette. For dessert, Mini Match Creme Brule was an instant success, and a unique fusion of French and Japanese cuisines.
Hong Kong Baby Back Ribs - Hoisin and ginger glazed pork ribs were so moist and tender that the meat fell right off the bone. These little sweet ‘n’ savory bites were our favorite dish of the evening.
With top-notch food, drinks and service, Prestons is the kind of place everyone should experience for themselves — which you can all do so for a limited time — “like” Prestons on Facebook and receive a $20 gift card! FYI: Prestons is open for breakfast, lunch & dinner, offers daily alcoholic beverage specials, and provides complimentary wi-fi. Also, the restaurant participates in a QR code based loyalty rewards program, so you can earn points towards free dining.