I was very excited to read that Le Burger Week was coming and that, "This year, we encouraged restaurants to create plant-based burgers." So just as I was moaning about not being able to participate in foodie events (please see my previous post), Sysco (what happened to Saputo?) came to my rescue! However, I realized almost immediately that many restaurants don't really understand what is meant by a plant-based burger. To me and probably most people who choose to follow plant-based diets, a plant-based burger means that there are no animal products on the plate and it's not just about an Impossible patty with bacon and dairy cheese. Still, it's a step in the right direction that many folks are making the effort and I just did my research!
Cavu Kitchen Bar - Le Burger Week - Vegan Edition!
Cavu Kitchen Bar is located in the Hilton Vancouver Airport in Richmond and even before tasting their contribution to Le Burger Week, I knew it was going to be a winner! We arrived around 6pm having made a totally unnecessary reservation and were seated immediately by our very friendly hosts.
There is not a lot on the menu at Cavu that is vegan or even vegan friendly but we came for the burger so it wasn't a problem. We started with the Sweet Potato Fries and these were amazing! Why do I always screw them up so badly when I make them at home? These were crispy and hot with a substantial meaty centre. I guess with SPF, bigger is better for starters. We passed on the aioli and kimchi-ketchup (while intriguing, kimchi is one of those things that can have anchovy or other fish bits).
The Vegan Messy Portabello Burger comes from the mind of executive sous chef Jason and is brilliant. While I would have guessed that we were talking about a portabello patty, it was the bun that was the mushroom! Amazing!
I should have worn a rain poncho as messy is an understatement. I started off trying to adopt the usual burger stance but eventually resorted to deconstructing this work of art! The mushroom cheese sauce, tomato chutney and caramelized onion mayo were all delicious on their own but perfect when combined with the Impossible patty and portobello crispy bun! And this was all vegan in the truest sense of the definition!
The only other item on Cavu's menu labelled vegan was the Vegan Spaghettini Bolognaise and when you ask for them to hold the Grana Padano, then it actually is vegan. This was an excellent dish, indistinguishable from the meat version. Very tasty with some lovely cherry tomatoes and basil. Nicely done!
CKB is a very comfortable space. if a little sparse. but the staff were very friendly and efficient. Our host even helped me out by extending my parking when it was about to run out. We feel like, with the creative talent in the kitchen, these folks could lean a little more into the plant-based thing! Presumably, many travellers (they are located in an airport hotel) would be appreciative of that.
We're going to see if we can try another PBB or two during Le Burger Week but it's hard to imagine doing better than this one!
Food 4 1/2 out of 5
Vegan options 3 out of 5
Service 4 1/2 out of 5
Comfort 4 out of 5
Value 4 out of 5
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