Posted July 28, 2009 by Adam Toren in Blogs

Sanafir Restaurant Review

Untitled-1The space at 1026 Granville Street is hauntingly beautiful. Minimal, spacious and worldly. Adorned by silk draperies, lanterns, dark wood and exotic blooms, Sanafir, part of Vancouver’s Glowbal Group, is on the Granville strip in the heart of Vancouver. Taking inspiration from the silk trading route, Sanafir’s cuisine hails from three distinct regions; India, Asia and the Mediterranean.

The appetizers offered consist of Chicken, Lamb, Beef, Calamari, Halibut or Prawns. Each appetizer ordered is prepared three different ways, representing the respective regions.

The calamari was our choice; Mediterranean style: herb breaded with fattoush salad and preserved lemon aioli, Indian inspired: grilled and served in a spiced yellow curry, and finally, Asian influenced: spicy salt and pepper with wok fried peppers and green onions. I would have to say my favorite of the trio was the Asian style. It was flavourful and the batter was not oily and the squid not rubbery in the least, it was extremely delicious. Each trio is well priced at $14.00.

Cocktails are a journey all unto themselves. With ingredients such as rose water, muddled oranges, yuzu puree and fresh passion fruit, they are exotic and original.

There are several main entrées ranging from Milk Braised Leg of Lamb with basmati rice and grilled papadum for $15.00, Togorashi Seared Ahi Tuna accompanied by crispy Asian salad and ginger soy for $19.00 and the Pistachio Crusted Halibut with filo wrapped puy lentil and summer vegetables for $21.00.

The philosophy at Sanafir is all about sharing and experiencing different flavours, so for our main course we decided to stay adventurous and have the share plate for two at $19.00 per person. Served on a large platter, there was an abundance of flavourful dishes. The Korean style baby back ribs marinated and topped with toasted peanuts and green onion were grilled perfectly, packed full of flavour and the meat fell off the bone. The Punjabi butter chicken was generously spiced with lots of depth, a change from the watery and flavourless butter chicken a lot of places are serving these days. The kanafa wrapped tiger prawns with watercress crème fraiche were plump and juicy. Personally I found the goat cheese stuffed lamb kibbah with pistachio caramelized onion, orchid beans and baby spinach very salty, it was a nice idea, but less salt so that more of the flavour could come through would have been good. The bowl of house fried rice with pork, shrimp, egg and chicken complimented all the dishes perfectly.

Sharing dessert is always a good idea. Sanafir offers three for $11.00, or each for $4.50. Go for three. Choices are: flourless Chinese 5 spice chocolate cake with sweet red bean sauce, banana and mango spring rolls with plum wine chocolate ganache, moghlie Persian rice pudding, cardamom baked yogurt with Okanagan fruit compote, burnt orange baklava, and Turkish Coffee pot de creme. All are splendid.

For reservations call: 604-678-1049
For directions and menu’s: www.sanafir.ca

Adam Toren

Adam Toren
Adam Toren is born and raised in Vancouver BC and loves everything Vancouver BC has to offer. He loves traveling and exploring new and unique restaurants and places around the world.