Monk McQueens

Last night I visited Monks for dinner as they provided complimentary valet parking and shuttle to and from Cavalia. Their valet service is normally $8, so it was a really good deal. The decor of the restaurant is quite casual and reminded me of The Keg because of the open kitchen.

The restaurant is famous for its location on the southern bank of False Creek and its large patio overlooking the waterfront.

The meal started with the usual bread and butter. The bread was not warm, but it was soft and fresh.

The fish tacos ($16) were delicious with salmon, halibut and scallops wrapped in a soft warm flour tortilla with lettuce shreds, red onions and corn salsa. I especially enjoyed the kiwi sauce served on the side, which added a sweet-tart fruitiness to the tacos.

The pan seared arctic char ($24) was a lot smaller than I had expected. A thin square fillet was served on a bed of braised purple cabbage with a small scoop of fragrant coconut rice. The arctic char was similar to salmon but had a milder flavour and flakier texture. The best part of the dish was the braised cabbage in sweet and sour sauce.

The seafood platter ($29) came with 3 each of clams, mussels, scallops, prawns and fish, along with assorted vegetables and a scoop of rice. The 3 types of fish were grilled salmon, tuna and whitefish. In my opinion, the tuna was comparable to a raw steak with its soft red centre and rich flavour. All of the seafood were very fresh, especially the scallops and prawns. But the mussels and clams were very small and not juicy enough.

The meal concluded with the banana ($8) dessert: 2 slices of homemade banana bread with gelato and fried banana. The dish didn't look like anything out of the ordinary, but looks turned out to be deceiving. The banana bread was soft and moist with a just-out-of-the-oven freshness. The gelato flavour was a unique combination of chocolate and peanut butter. I don't even like peanut butter, but still enjoyed the rich and creamy gelato. The deep fried banana was crusted with coconut shreds which added to the tropical flavour.

The dessert and fish tacos were the highlight of the night. Both were decently portioned for the price. Overall the food quality was very good, and service was friendly but slow. We had to flag down the waitress every time we wanted our water glasses refilled, and she never came by to ask if we wanted more bread after we finished our basket. For the fine dining prices they charge, I would consider the service quite poor.

Monk McQueens on Urbanspoon

After dinner, we took the shuttle to the White Big Top of Cavalia and enjoyed a splendid show!


  1. Do they still have $1 oysters promotion?

  2. @Ching: I think the buck-a-shuck promotion ended on March 31. There are lots of other places that offer buck-a-shuck oysters like Coast, Boathouse, Relish, etc.


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