Cactus Club Cafe has come out with a new drink called the Frozen Blood Orange Margarita. We were invited to come check it out and try some of the appetizers on the menu.
It’s made with real Italian blood orange, Jose Cuervo Gold tequila, triple sec, lime and orange salt. The margarita is a frozen slush and although the weather may say otherwise, it is a welcome addition to their cocktail menu. The cocktail is a good balance of sweet and spicy with a nice, smooth aftertaste. The margarita is also served as a double.
We ordered a couple of appetizers to go with our drinks: Szechuan Chicken Lettuce wraps, Tuna Stack, Ceviche, Beef Carpaccio and the Truffle Fries.
The Szechuan Chicken Lettuce wraps are served in a sweet and spicy Szechuan glaze, peanuts, wontons, Korean chili sauce and spicy yogurt. This was my favourite appetizer of the evening. There’s a nice balance of salty and sweet – not too spicy as you would find in Szechuan cuisine, but still very enjoyable. I love lettuce wraps in Chinese cuisine and to see it done well here at Cactus Club is a big plus in my books.
The Tuna Stack is made with Ocean wise Albacore tuna, citrus tamari vinaigrette, nori, sesame, avocado, cilantro and wonton chips. The citrus tamari helped cut the tuna taste and brighten the dish over all while the avocado and wonton chips gave it more weight.
The Ceviche is made with Lois Lake Steelhead, sustainaby harvested prawns, red onions, Thai basil, mint, cilantro and nuoc cham (a sweet and spicy Vietnamese dipping sauce). I enjoyed the tartness of the ceviche, along with the subtle plating details (the cilantro spots in the picture). Great, refreshing dish.
Beef Carpaccio is created with peppercorn, dijon aioli, capers, grana padano and served with crostini. Plated nicely, I would’ve like to see the grana padano cut up a bit more, but overall a nice and subtle combination of flavours.
Finally, the Truffle Fries. These are tossed with truffle, herbs, grana padano and served with garlic aioli. The fries themselves were cooked to a nice crisp, not too greasy and had a nice hint of the truffle and cheese to them. The garlic aioli kicked up the flavour quite a bit, so I do suggest dipping the fries into it!
Overall, I was very surprised at the calibre of food here at Cactus Club Cafe. It’s been a very long time since I’ve been to one and I always thought that their food was solid, but more so for travellers tastes or for a big group that can’t decide what type of cuisine they want. Like I mentioned, I was fairly surprised at the quality and different parts of the menu I have never really tried. The view at the Coal Harbour location is spectacular (much like their English Bay location as well). It does seem to be very busy at the Coal Harbour location often, so be sure to make reservations. I will definitely be back to try their dinner menu.
For more information and their menu, check out the website here: https://www.cactusclubcafe.com/menus/
Disclosure: I was invited by Cactus Club Cafe to try their new drink and have some appetizers, my meal was comp’d but I was not expected or paid to write a review. As always, my opinions are my own.