Vancouver-trained chef Makoto Ono opens PiDGiN restaurant

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      Canadian chef Makoto Ono’s highly anticipated PiDGiN (350 Carrall Street) opened this week in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. The restaurant, which was originally planned for a 2012 opening, brings together Japanese, Korean, and French flavours, with a focus on seafood and shared plates.

      Ono received his culinary training at the Art Institute of Vancouver’s Dubrelle Culinary School. He won the Canadian Culinary Championships in 2007, and helmed the kitchen at Winnipeg’s Gluttons Bistro, Beijing’s Makoto, and Hong Kong’s Liberty Private Works, before returning home to Winnipeg to guest chef at his father’s Edohei Japanese restaurant before it closed in February 2012.

      Rounding out the team at PiDGiN is pastry chef Amanda Cheng, who was born and raised in Vancouver and graduated from the Culinary Institute of America, and bar manager Robyn Gray, who previously worked at Revel Room, Calabash Bistro, and the Rosewood Hotel Georgia.

      PiDGiN is the first Vancouver restaurant to offer sake on tap from Granville Island’s Artisan Sake Maker. Menu items are priced between $6 and $26.


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      Feb 8, 2013 at 2:52pm


      Mr. Resistor

      Feb 9, 2013 at 8:48am

      How does the view of residential school survivors, rape survivors and abused mentally ill people make the food taste?
      If people get pushed into the margins because of this place people will die, some will even be murdered and their blood will be on your hands.
      Shame on you.

      Rich City

      Feb 9, 2013 at 7:57pm

      Another blatant bourgeois incursion into the Downtown Eastside, where you can sip your $15 cocktail and have Pigeon Park on full display. It should come as no surprise then that developers are partners in this gentrification enterprise. Get the yuppie restaurants in, make the neighbourhood feel 'safe', and then get those condos built. It's that easy!

      Scott, the Comfortable, Liberal, Westender

      Feb 9, 2013 at 9:58pm

      What the hell are your points ("murder"). The DTES is an abomination - BC and Canada's shame. Do you think these peoples' success, in and of itself, changes anything? Their presence in the DTES brings more attention to the area.

      Accept the project on its merits. Perhaps some good will come of it. Get off your sanctimonious asses and work for your own goals, and allow these folks to work on there's.

      Same guy

      Feb 9, 2013 at 9:59pm


      This is native land

      Feb 10, 2013 at 10:19am

      This is what colonialism looks like. The rich kids are moving in to push out out. They want us to go back to hiding in alleys. They don't care what happens. If people die because of this, blood is on your hands.
      Please have a heart. My people have suffered enough. Tear down this abomination and build some decent housing for people in need. Enough is enough.


      Feb 10, 2013 at 2:24pm

      Save the Pigeons!

      Mr Resistor

      Feb 10, 2013 at 9:03pm

      @Scott wrote that DTES is an abomination.
      Why? Because of First Nations? Because of victims of your country's genocides?
      Are you not aware of the worst serial killing in Canadian history? One of the women was taken a few steps from this spot. Those women were from this neighborhood
      Do you understand the history or do you choose to believe the poor and homeless chose their fate?

      Smarten up. What happened was genocide. Pidgin better not be part of more of the same.

      Smarten up and show some respect.

      Jack Ying

      Feb 10, 2013 at 11:04pm

      I believe that it is an eventuality that the Gastown and Chinatown areas will be redeveloped. We are running out of room downtown and projects such as Woodward's,not forgetting the marketing genius of Bob Rennie, have made it profitable and attractive for developers to consider that area. Think of this, I currently have 6 assignments in the 2 Woodward's buildings. The prices range from almost $700/sqft with a 10 year leased parking to over $1000/sqft. Developers see this kind of money in an area where they can buy properties to develop at a lower cost and they cannot resist. More and more developments will come up and guess what, the 'undesirable elements' will move away. Why? Not because they will be dragged away by cops but because they shun attention. They live in the shadows of society and when a big spotlight is pointed at them, they will move. And good riddance.

      Jeff Ke

      Feb 11, 2013 at 9:53pm

      No matter how much money, many of them are completely mentally ill and have no chance of recovery. It’s a losing investment. They'll never change, and so you're better off not helping the hopeless, I mean homeless.

      Single occupancy hotel rooms is a positively-notated term for cheap dirty housing for druggies and near-homeless people and other losers surrounded by barrages of homeless people who cannot even afford that.

      It’s like uncovering the ash-ridden lungs of a cancer patient – he may look perfectly fine on the skin and what not, but when you get to the depths of this, the hideous and low-class segments of the city are barren and wasted – adding a black spot to the elegance and the beauty of the city.

      These buildings are being removed, because real estate development corporations want to rip them out, re-develop the sectors of the city and revive it into more beautiful neighbourhood that meets the standards of the rest of the city.

      Essentially: We have to take away the last resort of living from the druggies and near-homeless people, re-zone it, and give more affordable living space to the rest of the citizens, and expand the horizons of the city – the good clean city, that is. And the real estate developers, who have rightfully earned the money through ambition and drive, why should they have to miss out on opportunities to increase their net worth from $2 billion to $4 billion? They deserve it fully. I don’t see why the rest of the good citizens, who are hard-working and goal-oriented, should run out of space downtown because there are these hideous, drug-ridden motels so close to our beautiful downtown. I don’t see why these people who clearly don’t deserve this, should be protected any more. They already get food stamps – that’s more than enough actually. The city, pressured by hippie activists, currently have a re-zoning penalty that is charged to developers.
      Essentially: We take away the last resort of living from the druggies and near-homeless people, re-zone it, and give more affordable living space to the rest of the citizens, and expand the horizons of the city – the good clean city, that is. And I’m in full agreement with that.
      Who cares what happens to them? Who cares about missing women? Who really cares about some dead hookers? What kind of life is that anyway? You can't save someone that far gone. They're like zombies.