Review: MARKET by Jean-Georges

by pick on March 22, 2009

The following review is brought to you today by Pick, who was nice enough to review his recent visit to MARKET. This is on my list of places to try so I will probably write my own review in the near future but until that comes, keep on reading to see how Pick’s experience was. Thanks Pick for your review! :)


R, Kay and I decided to celebrate Kay’s belated birthday by doing dinner at Jean George’s new restaurant in Vancouver, Market. Market is located at the new Shangri-la Hotel in downtown Vancouver. The concept behind Market’s menu is that all of Jean George’s tried, tested and true recipes would amalgamate under one menu – which is why the selection at Market isn’t too vast. This is my second time dropping by the restaurant, and I must say I was just as impressed both times dining here. We were seated at the low bar and ordered literally everything on the menu.

Our first item was the steamed shrimp salad with tender greens, avocado, and champagne dressing. The waiter informed us that the shrimps were done in one dressing and the greens in another. The dressings blended well together and tasted brilliant. The shells, including tails, were completely removed from the shrimp to make it easier for eating.

shrimp salad

Next came the tuna tartare with avocado, spicy radish, and ginger dressing. This was probably the most unimpressive item we had the entire night; however, it was very true to its description. There was plenty of ginger taste, tuna, avocado, and spicy radish, with no particular taste really overpowering the other. A light item, but definitely nothing spectacular.

radish tuna tartare avocado and ginger sauce

Our third appetizer was the butternut squash soup with black trumpet mushrooms and chives. When it’s served, the waiter presents a small empty looking bowl with some mushrooms, squash, and chives in it. The first time I ordered this I thought there was some mistake with this item and that was the soup, but little did I know, our waiter pours the thick creamy soup from a vessel into the bowl shortly after. As a note for when you order this: don’t make a scene, the waiter will pour your soup. The soup is sweet, thick and rich. The mushrooms add a whole new dimension to it, while maple syrup in the soup lends to the sweetness. Probably the best butternut squash I’ve had in a long time.

butternut squash soup

Our waiter then brought our forth appetizer (we ordered a lot), rice cracker crusted tuna with citrus-sriracha emulsion. To my understanding, sriracha is typically red and quite spicy, but this was a little bit different. It had an almost mayonnaise texture to it and a muted spiciness. Although it wasn’t exactly what I expected, the tuna tasted excellent. The dichotomy of crunchy rice crackers and soft tuna went well together.

tuna coated in rice cracker

Our final appetizer was an individually baked black truffle and fontina cheese pizza with greens on top. The crust was a thin crust that was hardly soggy despite the truffle and cheese. The taste of truffles and cheese mixed well together and the greens offered additional texture to the pizza. This item was a recommendation of our waiters and one we were glad to have ordered.

black truffle pizza

For our entrees, we shared soy glazed short ribs with apple-jalapeno puree and rosemary crumbs and a side of truffle mash potatoes. The short ribs were done perfectly tender and the flavours of apple-jalapeno puree complimented the soy glazed short ribs. Kay wasn’t exactly a fan of the apple-jalapeno puree, saying it was kind of an awkward taste, but R and I thought it tasted fantastic. The mash was also quite good. On my first visit, I found that the truffle flavours didn’t stand out very much in the potatoes, but on my second visit, the truffle flavours seemed more apparent.

soy glazed short ribs

Our final entree was sablefish with a crust of almond and other nuts in a sweet and sour broth. Kay isn’t a very big fan of sweet and sour, but she enjoyed the sablefish quite a bit (along with the rest of us). The crust was unique and flavourful and the generous portion of fish was smooth and tender. I typically avoid ordering fish or chicken dishes at restaurants, finding them usually either done too rare or too well done, but I had no complaints about how this fish was done. It is worth noting that the sweet and sour flavours overpowered the flavour of the nuts, but compliment the fish well overall.


For dessert, we ordered the apple confit that came with a small scoop of green apple sorbet and poundcake. The apple confit was far too sweet (and I have quite a sweet tooth) and seemed almost out of place with the green apple sorbet and poundcake. Unfortunately, the three of us had a few drinks by that time, and I had forgotten to take pictures of the dessert.

Overall, I highly enjoyed my experience at Market. Both times visiting the restaurant exceeded my expectations in terms of food and service. Our waiter was engaging and offered plenty of suggestions. He also shared with us a secret on how to avoid the long reservation lists (currently reservations are booked for the next 2-3 weekends). Market is definitely a restaurant worth checking out.

1128 W. Georgia St, Vancouver
Tel: 604-695-1115

Food: [rating:4]
Service: [rating:4]
Price: $$$

Market By Jean-Georges on Urbanspoon

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Review: MARKET by Jean-Georges | Ho Yummy
May 18, 2009 at 10:19 pm

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