Before this year, the only media exposure I’d received was for playing the Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker at the age of 16. Now I’m a crazy famous celeb, hanging out with Justin Bieber (I call him JusB for short, he calls me LA), and demanding to be served only orchid-infused Siberian dew collected by fairies.
This is my life now.
Ok, even if that was true, even if I did only drink Siberian dew, it wouldn’t change the fact that before June 5th, 2012, I knew nothing about the interview process. Actually, make that April 26th, when Bob Nixon first interviewed me for the CBC; I was still a top 12 finalist, well before I’d actually gotten the job. We ate Portuguese custard tarts, talked about my #lindseatsrichmond campaign, and I got a glimpse into the unnatural process behind a natural-looking interview. There were hidden microphones, repeated ‘first-time’ interactions, and close-up shots of me eating. This latter part was done self-consciously, while thinking “Where do I usually put my other hand when I eat? Where d0 I look? How fast do I normally chew? Why is eating suddenly so hard?”
In addition to that, I feared every word that left my mouth would make me sound like an inarticulate goon. I now know I’m actually decent at interviews, but they still make me hyper-aware of everything I’m saying, looking at, eating, sitting on, standing next to, and/or touching.
Bob, his cameraman Chris, and I met-up yesterday for a 6 month ‘check-in.’ It was nice to see Bob again, and we talked about our mutual love of cheese for much of the ride to Steveston. We filmed the interview at two restaurants I’d already reviewed and really liked: Blue Canoe and Suhang.
We started in Steveston at Blue Canoe, which was resplendent in yesterday’s sunshine. We snacked on bbq pork ribs, mussels, fries, salmon, halibut, prawns, and tuna ceviche; I got to eat some of this off-camera, unselfconsciously dunking fries in ketchup and holding messy ribs, then ate some of it on-camera, morphing into hyper-polite mode and attempting to place small vegetables neatly into my mouth.
At one point, I so delicately stabbed a carrot it fell right off my fork as I tried to eat it. Would someone get me a pair of chopsticks already?! This fork is being so difficult.
Before we left, I ordered a piece tres leches cake to go, which is a dessert you must try if you haven’t already. It looks like soggy cake sitting in a puddle of cream, but it tastes like heaven itself. More on that later.
Next up was Suhang, where I ordered (on camera) some xiao long bao and fried rice cakes with preserved vegetables and pork. This was the first time Julia, a new Tourism Richmond colleague, or Bob had tried rice cakes. They both loved them, of course. Once we were finished, Bob and Chris dashed back to the CBC headquarters, Julia headed to the office, and I went to find more food. Blue Canoe and Suhang didn’t count for today’s post, after all!
After having already snacked on ribs, ceviche, prawns, halibut, salmon, xiao long bao, and rice cakes, I decided the best way to approach more food would be to utilize the KISS principle: Keep It Simple, Stupid.
I found a little shop called Jun Sushi on No. 3 Road, and decided to order vegetarian/vegan. Like Shikisai, Jun is another inexpensive sushi joint, perfect for a quick lunch and/or dinner on a busy night. The husband and wife owners were incredibly friendly, and I sat in a patch of sunshine next to the window. It was a quiet and relaxing mid-afternoon meal.
I ordered the miso soup, seaweed salad, vegetable roll, and avocado cone. The soup probably had dashi in it, but if the seaweed salad didn’t, then the latter three were probably all vegan. Don’t quote me on that, though!
I don’t know if my camera got intimidated by the fancy CBC equipment, but it died during my meal, and my replacement battery wouldn’t work either. When weird things like that happen, one must rely on their phone to capture food’s natural beauty instead. So just in case you’re wondering why everything seems a wee bit grainy, that’s why.
The avocado cone was simple and satisfying. It had rice, slices of perfectly-ripe avocado, and nori (seaweed). I umami’d it up with a bit of soy sauce, and loved every bite. What an ideal snack.
The miso soup was standard – salty and good.
I really liked the seaweed salad. Unlike gomaae, I don’t really find this dish varies much from restaurant to restaurant, and it’s always healthy-tasting, crunchy, and slimy in an oddly-appealing way.
The vegetable roll, filled with carrot and cabbage, was a little too plain for my liking. I would have liked a few more vegetables in there, please!
Jun Sushi doesn’t offer anything ground-breaking, but you can have a simple, healthy, mostly-vegetarian lunch for just $11. They have an all-you-can-eat option too, but I think it’s always best to avoid those.
I left Jun Sushi, and despite being rather full at this point, couldn’t wait any longer to try the tres leches cake I’d gotten at Blue Canoe. For anyone unfamiliar with this dairy-soaked Cake of Wonder, it’s a dessert that originated in Latin America and literally translates as “Three Milks Cake.” It starts with a white sponge cake, though Chef Danilo mixes things up by adding chocolate to his, a variation I fully support. The top of the cake is skewered multiple times before a mixture of evaporated milk, sweetened and condensed milk, and cream are poured evenly over-top. The cake is left to rest overnight so it can soak up all three milks, and the end result is soft, sweet, rich, creamy, wonderful, moist, splendiferous, magnificent, joyful, soul-assuring and life-affirming. Yes, this cake is all of these things.
I settled myself on a bench with leaves below my feet and my back to No. 3 Road. I watched as hundreds of seagulls circled around the south-west corner of Lansdowne Mall; I’m not sure what drew them there, but it might have been jealously over my dessert.
The poor piece of cake had been bashed and battered all the way from Steveston, so by the time I opened up the box, it wasn’t looking its best. That didn’t matter though, because taste is what ultimately counts.
And it tasted good, so so good. I give the tres leches dos pulgares hacia arriba.
Thanks to Bob and Chris from the CBC for making the interview process relaxing and fun; to Jim, Chef Danilo, and the staff at Blue Canoe for hosting us there; and to Amy and her staff for welcoming us into Suhang. If you’d like to watch the interview, it’ll air Sunday evening at 6pm on Chek TV (Channel 6 in Vancouver), or at 11pm on CBC. It’ll also be on the internet shortly thereafter, so I’ll share that, too.
Now would someone please go get me a bottle of Siberian dew?!!
Cash and cards accepted
Vegetarian and vegan options available