Where did I eat?
Bao Down Snackbar at 221 Carrall Street in Vancouver.
What do they specialize in?
Filipino inspired bar food and cocktails.
What was the vibe?
Cool, urban, fun.
What did I eat?
Bagyo (left) and Taka (right)
- The Bagyo is made with dark, white, and overproof rum, passionfruit syrup, agave syrup, fresh lemon juice.
- This is the perfect sweet and fruity cocktail if you enjoy something that doesn’t taste overly boozy that has tropical elements.
- The Taka is made with Suntory Toki japanese whiskey, taylor fladgate white port, shoju, angostura bitters.
- I also really liked the Taka. It was the complete opposite of the other drink as it was much boozier and less sweet. It reminded me of a Manhattan with an Asian twist.
- This was an interesting and unique dish that I have never seen before. The fried yams are sliced super thin almost like onion straws and were addictive to snack on.
- There were several shrimp dispersed throughout the pile of yam fritters and they tasted very good when dipped in the tangy sauce
Empanada Bao – fried bao buns with lechon paksiw, chicharon, onions, and garlic
- This was my first time having deep fried bao and it was my favourite dish of the night. I like regular bao, however it doesn’t offer much in the way of taste or texture. The deep fried version were the complete opposite and had a crispy golden crust on the outside while the inside was still pillowy soft. I could eat several of these.
- I also loved the pork filling and would recommend trying it.
Eggplant Torta – roast eggplant omelette, tamarind, charred tomato
- The eggplant omelette had a texture like a very thin frittata and had a deep smokey flavour to it.
- The charred tomato added some freshness and the tamarind sauce was a little tangy and sweet
Adobo Fried Chicken – gluten free flour, buttermilk marinade, adobo glaze, and banana sauce
- This was my other favourite dish of the night as the fried chicken was done perfectly. It was very crunchy while being tender on the inside.
- I loved the sauces drizzled on the plate and thought it took the fried chicken to another level. There was a tangy adobo glaze which has a vinegar taste that was balanced out by the mayo and the sweet banana sauce.
Lumpia – crispy eggrolls filled with local pork and garlic and served with sweet chili sauce and plum sauce
- I liked the filling inside these lumpia because it wasn’t overcooked and the pork was still tender.
Pork Belly Lechon – slow roasted crispy skin pork belly with sarsa
- This was the most impressive looking dish of the night. The portion of pork belly is massive and requires a big knife to cut through the super crispy skin.
- The sauce was quite sweet and I wish it was tangier and less sweet as it became overwhelming when eating a large portion.
Charcuterie Plate – tocino, longanisa, chorizo, fried quail eggs, garlic mayo
- This little assortment of snacks was super cute and I appreciated how it was so different from traditional charcuterie plates.
- I loved the crispy little quail egg and the tocino, which is a sweet filipino cured bacon and the spiced longanisa sausage. The chorizo was too peppery for my taste and I’m not a fan of drier sausage.
Disclosure: I did not pay for my meal.
Bao Down Snackbar is a cool little spot worth checking out for their cocktails, fried chicken, and empanada bao.