Meh Files – A Mix Bag at Indochine

Pan Asian Menu,
Diverse crowd in a small space
Meh at Indochine
I didn’t know what to expect when I picked Indochine for a catch-up dinner with Speedy.  After my meal, I’m still not sure what to make of the eatery.
Is it a sit down causal restaurant, sports bar, or pit stop for clubbers pre club?  There were families with small babies, guys watching the game, and people barely dressed for a night out, dining together on my visit.
The menu like its clientele that night is just as diverse; it’s best described as pan-Asian.

Speedy and I split the Garlic Butter Chicken Wings, Crispy Tofu, Singaporean Laksa and Hainanese Chicken.
The chicken wings were good. Coated and topped with aromatics like garlic, chili peppers and green onions, the non-greasy and crispy flats and drumettes were flavourful.

 

The lip puckering tart lemon juice & pepper dip helped provide a contrasting flavour.  Even better was that Speedy and I happened to come on Wings Wednesday, which meant this dish was 50% off its regular price.
Our next appy, the crispy tofu was less successful.  The cubes of tofu were not very crispy and became soggy under all the hot sauce.  The tofu itself was soft and had a silken texture.

 

Unfortunately, this dish relied solely on the abundant red sauce for flavour, making this dish monotone and a bit boring to eat.  We would have loved it if the crispy tofu was prepared like the chicken wings we had.
The Laksa had ample toppings.  Prawns, tofu puffs, fish balls, fish slices, a hardboiled egg, bean sprouts and basil floated in very fragrant coconut curry broth.

 

It was savoury, sweet and creamy from the coconut milk, and had a slight spiciness, which probably wouldn’t register for those that like it hot.  The Lai Fun (thicker, silkier rice noodle) like noodles were firm to start but did get rapidly mushy as the meal progressed.

 

The Hainanese Chicken was mediocre.  The rice was seasoned and had a strong umami flavour.  The ginger onion dip was also very good.  However the chicken was bland.  The meat itself was soft, definitely not free range chicken.
Perhaps it was the cheap chicken wings that drew the varied crowd but I found the food was also a mix bag.  The meal was uneven with good dishes, like the chicken wings and poor dishes, crispy tofu.
Another negative was the extreme thirstiness I experience after my meal.  For this reason, I probably would not return to Indochine.
Indochine Kitchen
1 E Broadway
Vancouver, BC V5T 1V4
604 568 0828

3 Comments Add yours

  1. grayelf says:

    Did you think the wings were the same as at Phnom Penh? I've been tempted to try Indochine to compare the signature dishes at these two related restos but haven't got around to it.

    Like

  2. Moyen Chow says:

    You know I was thinking about that too. Unfortunately, it's been a while since I had Phnom Penh's wing so all I remember about them were they made me extremely happy. So I can't do an accurate comparison, but it would make for good chicken wing crawl: PP to Congee Noodle House (salt & chill pepper wings) to Indochine.

    Like

  3. grayelf says:

    Maybe throw Hai Phong into the mix. Their Chinatown outpost is not that far away and their wings reign supreme for me though I usually go to the Kingsway one as it is larger and has free parking 🙂

    Like

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