Sunday, June 20, 2010

Italian Day on Commercial Drive

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Italian Day on Commercial Drive was actually 2 week ago (June 6th), but I been so busy, I almost forgot about it. As this is my first time attending this event, I didn't know what to expect.
This event was a combination of cultural performances and food fest. The section of Commercial Drive between Broadway and 1st Avenue were completely blocked off, so that people can freely roam the streets and enjoy everything. I saw people dancing on the street and enjoying different types of cuisine, despite being Italian Day.
I was expecting many Italian cuisine to be featured, but in fact, it was more of a multicultural theme going on. This is one many stand that sold the Italian sausage in a bun. I didn't particularly liked the bun, as I find it dry and tasteless. The sausage on the other hand was meaty and juicy. When I first arrived, Fratelli's Bakery had a only a few people lining up, but by the time I was about to leave (2pm), the place had a line up that was around the corner. The only thing I have to say is, always buy whatever you want right away instead of waiting till the end. I guess I will have to save the bakery for another trip.

Stix Noodle & Grill (903 Commercial Drive)
Stix Noodle & Grill on UrbanspoonObviously, a sausage and bun won't fill me up, so when I smelled some really good BBQ, I immediately got in line. These pork and chicken skewers were from Stix restaurant. I wanted to try both, but they were out of porkwhen it was finally my turn. The chicken as very tender and juicy, and full of flavor. Now I wish I waited around for the pork, but there was no way I want to get back in line and wait it out.

Libra Room (1608 Commercial Drive)
Libra Room on UrbanspoonWe actually passed by the Libra Room food stand, when walking down Commercial, but we wanted to see what else the event had to offer. Unfortunately by the time we decided we wanted to try it, the line up was almost half a block. After 20 min, I finally got to the front, only to find out they were out of the sausage cream sauce pasta, so I settled for the seafood tomato sauce pasta ($5). These pasta was cooked to the perfectly (imo). The sauce was great with huge pieces of seafood. The prawn and squid were both well done, but the scallop was over cooked.

Belgian Fries (1885 Commercial Drive)
Belgian Fries on UrbanspoonThe weather started not so bad, but that it didn't hold out and thus changed to pouring rain, so we decided to head indoors. I been meaning to check out Belgian Fries, so we decided now would be the perfect time. At this point, I was pretty full, so R chose a medium Deluxe poutine to share for $7.69. This was loaded with delicious mushroom, red pepper and real bacon. Since the bowl was over flowing, there was no way to mix it, so I am really glad they loaded gravy in the middle before topping it off with more fries. The poutine was really good and huge, the only complaint I have is that the fries were relatively skinny, so it soaked up the gravy fast, and thus led to some soggy fries near the bottom.

The event was a success, as the place was packed by about 1:30pm. I only have 2 pieces of advice for anyone who wants to go next year. 1. Go early and 2. don't hesitate when you want to buy something. This is because by the time you checked out the whole event and finally decide on what you want, the line up will be huge and the many will be out of items by then. At least that was true for the food related restaurants/stands.

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