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vancouver, British Columbia
July 5, 2007
From journal Living in Kitsilano
by Mr. Wonka
Brooklyn, New York
June 17, 2003
I showed up on the scene at 6pm on a Saturday night, and was greeted by a line that flooded out the door and wrapped around the front of the building. It seemed that this was the norm, as nobody was too surprised or worried about it. After a little internal deliberation, I decided that it’d probably be worth the wait, and about 30 or 40 minutes later I was pining to see if my gamble would pay off. Based on the the Naam’s numerous awards posted near the front door, it certainly seemed it wasn't bluffing when it came to showing its hand.
I took a quick glance over the menu, and immediately two thoughts popped in my head: the first was "how am I going to pick only one dish?" and the second was of Rod Roddy, all decked out in purple and pink sequins, booming, "the price is right!" That’s right--not only did the food range from Oaxacan Quesadillas (red and yellow organic corn tortillas with chili, red onions, cilantro, jalapenos, and cheese) to sesame fries with miso gravy, but none of the entrees were priced over C$11. Put it this way--if the Naam were in the Showcase Showdown, it would have bid more closely to my actual dining-out tastes than any other restaurant challenger in Vancouver (okay, I know that’s a way cheesy analogy, but I had to tie in the Rod Roddy mention).
Knowing that no matter what I ordered I couldn’t go wrong, I started with the small Naam salad (with the famous Naam dressing) and moved on to the Gold Dragon, a mix of Naam fries, cheese, miso gravy, steamed veggies, sprouts, carrots, and deep-fried tofu. The salad rocked (and the dressing was fantastic--make sure you try it if you go for a salad). My entree was served in a portion befitting a starved Jerry Falwell, and was strastopherically stacked with bean sprouts and red cabbage, with a long pair of chopsticks stuck in the side. I knocked out as much as I could stomach, and relished the fondue-like taste of the cheese that brought the whole dish together.
I briefly entertained the idea of trying the famous apple crisp, but took one look at the heaping portion and thought otherwise. For a salad, entree, and pint, my tab was C$20--now get down on it like Kool and the Gang, you won’t be disappointed.
From journal ". . .and then the clouds lifted"