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Banana Leaf: The Broadway location is great
This Malaysian restaurant has mixed reviews, which I suspect is the result of there being two locations. I've never been to the Denman one, as I was advised against it. However, the Broadway location has provided at least a few great meal memories.
The service isn't ideal, but was friendly enough when I went. We had a bit of a wait for a table, but that can be par for the course at many good restaurants in Vancouver. I didn't wait long, though, and my food was well worth the wait.
Favorite Dish: The chili crab is wonderful with a side of coconut rice. The real standout here, though, are the sambal green beans. Crisp, fresh, and coated in a delicious spicy paste-like sauce, I could hardly get enough. That they outshone the crab, which is my favourite food, is quite a feat.
Banana Leaf: Large Rocks in food - Caution
Found a very large rock in our meal between the size of a walnut and gold ball. this is not the first time found rocks in our food at the place, but this was by far the largest. The staff does not seem to care, nor offers any replacement dishes. They seemed to blame us for making a fuss about it. Stay away from this place if you don't enjoy chewing on rocks!!!
Banana Leaf on Denman: My first taste of Malaysia
I happened on the Banana Leaf while strolling along Denman Street, and the prix fixe tasting menu sounded like an ideal way to be introduced to Malaysian cuisine. The ambience won't make you swoon, but some of the offerings might; they aren't just kidding when they say dishes can be "extremely hot." For my westernized palate, the helpful staff suggested no more than a hint of spice and that was enough for me -- I could taste the heat. For a very reasonable cost, I enjoyed a feast and will certainly welcome another opportunity to try this cuisine.
Banana Leaf also has restaurants at 820 West Broadway and 3005 West Broadway in Kitsilano.
Favorite Dish: The tasting menu the day I was there included steamed mussels in a cumin and ginger sauce, a salad of papaya and pineapple which was outstanding, prawns in a black peppercorn garlic sauce, and roti -- delicious flaky bread served with a curry dip.
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- Family Travel
Coast Restaurant: Best Seafood Downtown
This restaurant is 5-star on all fronts. Beautiful restaurant with excellent food and service from start to finish. I had the crab cake to start, the arctic char for an entree, and finished with the peanut butter bar and chocolate fondue. Service was impeccable.
Banana Leaf: Good Malaysian Food
I have mixed feelings about this pair of restaurants (one on West Broadway, one downtown on Denman). The West Broadway location has consistently provided great food and good ambience.
But the Denman Street location is another matter altogether. I thought the food was very average - small portions and no particularly memorable flavours. Plus, they had this endless synchro music that was just so out of place.
- Food and Dining
The Banana Leaf: Just Like it should be......Delicious!
The Banana Leaf on Broadway is excellent. Having been to Malaysia I was happy to find the food was pretty authentic and tasted wonderful. Prices are reasonable and this place is not surprisingly busy.
Favorite Dish: All the favourites are on the menu including my favourite beef satay and redang beef.
- Budget Travel
Banana Leaf Malaysian...
Banana Leaf Malaysian Restaurant: We celebrated Carmen and Winnie's birthdays here...
It USED to be my favorite Malay restaurant in Vancouver...the food is still good. Make sure that you reserve in advance is it still is the MOST POPULAR restaurant in Vancouver. However, the owner/manager is RUDE and only concerned about making money... I went with my parents and we ordered all of the seafood and stuff (when I'm with the parents...I can eat well...) and we even ordered dessert...which is not something we normally do...but we were enjoying our meal. Well, the bill came about a minute after the second dessert came...(It took a while for my ice kachang to appear...and when it did...it was a solid block of ice...which for those of you who don't know...should have been shaved ice...) So my parents paid...no issue... BIG MISTAKE. I'm STILL eating the ice kachang and the waiter (who we later discover is the owner/manager) comes with this NASTY Chinatown towel (you know, the kind that has a blue lining and red chinese letters) and starts mopping the table. Nothing said...just like we were in HK in some little shack of a restaurant or something... I lifted my ice kachang to let the man do his thing since it seemed like the table needed to be cleaned on his LIFE or something...and he takes it...I'm like...I'm still eating....hello? So he gives it back to me. Everything is really abrupt. So he finally leaves and I pick up the pace on eating the ice kachang (which CAME LATE and was in a BLOCK of ice so I had to chunk it up myself)... Then ANOTHER waiter comes with another Chinatown towel and starts wiping...I laugh and tell him that our table has already been wiped down so well that you can eat off it... Now normally, a person would just say...ok...and leave... But not this waiter...he's like, you've been sitting here too long and we need to clear the table...very accusing tone... I was no longer impressed. He throws the towel at the bar behind us and storms off... We are left speechless... So after the stun wore off...I called the waiter that took our order (who was really nice and nothing like the two who came to clean) to speak to the manager about the other two... Well...surprise, surprise...the manager was the first waiter and the OWNER...which he emphasized in his first line. He spent ten minutes telling us how half an hour was more than enough time to finish dessert (I'm thinking...the dessert didn't come in a timely fashion...) and that we'd been sitting there for almost two hours and it was time to go. (And we hadn't been there for two hours of yet...but fine...) After this huge tirade implying how INCORRECT we were in overstaying our welcome at the restaurant...he then expressed the problem that other were waiting for our table and had reservations...they were at the bar...and that explained why the second waiter was a ball of nerves and was short with us... I suggested that if they were in such a rush that they shouldn't have offered us the dessert menu. And he says 'But that would be rude.' (I'm thinking...what planet are you from?) No sense of 'I'm sorry about the CRAP treatment that you've received...' Just that HE was in the right... Unbelievable. I felt so bad because I had specifically requested my parents to go to this restaurant because it was one of my favorites...my favorite Malay restaurant...lots of good memories there... So the owner...who appears to be from Hong Kong...not from Malaysia...so I wonder if maybe there has been a change of ownership/management...believes that if you are going to be priviledged to eat at his restaurant...do it in a timely manner and get the hell out of there before the next wave hits...because the OWNER IS ALWAYS RIGHT!
Favorite Dish: Tea Teleh (Still my favorite...)
BEWARE: The shrimp is not always deveined properly and don't order the ice desserts...I don't know how long they keep them sitting in the freezer...but they come out as a lump of ice...it should be shaved loose ice...
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