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By Jaclyn Hayward Dry rubbed, smoked, slow cooked, and sweet and saucy aren’t seasonal flavours – so if that carnivorous craving hits this autumn, scope out one of these places to eat in or DIY at home. Sharky’s Chophouse & Eatery North Vancouver | Lonsdale Quay Seabus Terminal If you’re in or around the Lonsdale Quay area, pop in to pick up a hot meal from Sharky’s Chophouse & Eatery. They’ve got fresh meats and a hot deli with all kinds of sides and menu options to choose from. Grab a fresh slice of smoked ham with fried perogies and steamed veggies on the side and enjoy a tasty comfort meal on a cold day. You can eat in at the Quay and enjoy a seaside view, or take it to go and enjoy it in front of your favourite show. Butcher’s Block BBQ Burnaby | Hastings St. @ Gilmore…

Fiorino, Chinatown’s newest Italian eatery opens next week, so it’s time to set the table. We joined the three co-owners, Giovanni Mascagni, Mario Ruiz, and Mitchell Clark for stories of how their menu of Florence-inspired street food came together, and how the pandemic fast-tracked the ambitions of the three roommates. For a bit of context, see our previous chapter about how owner-operator Giovanni Mascagni studied under a bread master in Italy to get his schiacciata sandwiches just right. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4sU8WnXJ1Fo

By Kristi Alexandra The pandemic has many online workers a little Zoom fatigued, and co-working spaces aren’t as bustling as they once were pre-COVID. Luckily, for those who are used to the digital nomad life or who just miss seeing other folks “around the office,” there are a few spots in New Westminster where one can flip open a laptop and treat themselves to better-than-homebrewed beverages. Check out our favourites here. Old Crow Coffee Co. Art and industrial aesthetics meet at this Front Street café, where you’ll find rotating art from new artists hanging on the walls on a regular basis amid tables made from pipes. This spot caters to vegetarians and vegans alike, offering up fresh-made sandwiches, pastries, and occasionally, a delivery from Plates By Payts which serves plant-based sourdough doughnuts. Find a spot to get to work at one of the many tables available, including couch space to…

Photos by Michele Mateus Autumn harvest season is marked by celebrations around the world for a season of sharing with friends, family, and the community. Dig into abundance at one of the many Fraser Valley farms where your family can pick your own pumpkins out of a vast field, gather a bushel of crisp apples right from the trees, and take home a feast of local foods for around your own table. Fraser Valley Farms with Autumn Markets Krause Berry Farms 6179 248th Street Langley, BC 604.856.5757 www.krauseberryfarms.com Dave’s Orchard 5910 – 216 Street Langley, BC 604.532.5265 www.bcfarmfresh.com/farms/daves-orchard Aldor Acres Family Farm 24990 – 84th Ave. Langley, BC aldoracresfamilyfarm.ca Maan Farms 790 McKenzie Road Abbotsford, BC 604.864.5723 www.maanfarms.com Taves Family Farm 333 Gladwin Rd Abbotsford, BC 604.853.3108 www.tavesfamilyfarms.com Willow View Farms 288 McCallum Road Abbotsford, BC 604.854.8710 www.willowviewfarms.com Fantasy Farms Inc. 9423 Gibson Rd Chilliwack, BC www.fantasyfarmsinc.ca Words by…

By Kristi Alexandra While autumn marks the end of the u-pick berry season, it doesn’t mean local harvesting is over. From pumpkin patches to cranberries to organic greens, here are a selection of working farms in Metro Vancouver and beyond that have markets where you can purchase seasonal produce this fall. Riverside Cranberry Farm Riverside Cranberry Farm boasts a picturesque harvest season perfect for scooping up fresh cranberries and taking selfies. On your visit, you can snap photos around Riverside’s cranberry bog, learn about cranberry farming, and bring home some freshly harvested cranberries and other goodies from the new onsite Farm Store. If getting it all for the ‘gram is your motivation, we suggest adding the “Cranberry Plunge,” where you can plunge into the bog of berries to do some harvesting yourself. Don’t worry–the farm provides the waders so you don’t actually get wet. Open Sept 30–Oct 7, Thurs–Sat 26885…

by Catherine Dunwoody When it comes to outdoor activities geared to get you into the spirit of the changing seasons, it doesn’t get much more autumnal than this. Fall is most definitely here, and getting lost in a zigzagging corn maze or choosing which big orange beauty to take with you from a pumpkin patch is part of the fun when it comes to living in or visiting BC – and especially in Surrey. The city boasts 3 different mazes and patches, each unique and fun for the entire family. The Hazelmere Pumpkin Patch 18507 20th Ave, Surrey The Hazelmere Pumpkin Patch (aka Gabriel Farms)  is open throughout October and offers all the autumn fun you can handle. On weekdays from 1pm to 5pm, and weekends 10am to 5pm, you can partake in a petting zoo, a mini corn maze, face painting, and a concession. U-pick pumpkins in many…

We’re into the swing of autumn now, and that means one thing. You have at least six months before you have to hear anyone talk about their “summer bod” again. So with that in mind, it’s time to feast. It’s pure foodie serendipity that this yearly milestone should occur just on the cusp of Thanksgiving arriving. So let’s get to it, here are our picks for fantastic places to book your turkey, pie, stuffing etc. Now let’s celebrate the autumn bod! Dinner Packages White Rock The Boathouse One of the longest-running restaurants on the White Rock strip, The Boathouse has been a part of the foodie landscape for decades. It only fits then that they should be serving up one of the biggest feasts of the year as well. Their to-go packages come with sliced turkey, roasted garlic mashed potatoes, cranberry sage stuffing, roasted autumn vegetables, cranberry sauce,…

By Dan Olson, chef/owner, Railtown Catering We use a tenderizing brine of honey, lemon, herbs, garlic, salt and spices for maximum moisture retention and flavour.  INGREDIENTS Organic Tom Turkey (15-lb) Kosher salt (4 cups, plus more to taste) Honey (1 cup) Whole black peppercorn (¼ cup) Lemons (5, halved) Bay leaves (2) Garlic (2 heads, halved and smashed) Parsley (1 bunch) Sage (1 bunch) Thyme (1 bunch) Clarified butter for brushing (¼ cup) Carrots (2, quartered) Small leek (1, halved) Small yellow onion (1, halved) Turkey stock (8 cups) Flour (1 cup) DIRECTIONS  For the brine: 1. In a large stockpot, boil salt, honey, lemons, peppercorns, bay leaves, garlic heads, parsley, thyme in 8 liters of water. 2. Reserve the neck bones and giblets from the turkey. Let brine cool, add the turkey, then cover and refrigerate overnight. To roast the turkey: 1. Heat the oven to 425°F. 2. Remove…

By Brittany Tiplady What comes to mind when you think about the fall season? Changing leaves, crisp air, shorter days, lots of rain, and of course…cranberries. Cranberry desserts, cranberry sauce, cranberry scented candles, oh my! We’re lucky in Metro Vancouver to have access to some of the best cranberry products, harvested right from the source. Here’s a list of where you can enjoy cranberry season in the Fraser Valley. Fort Wine Co. 26151 84 Ave, Langley, BC Run, don’t walk! Fort Wine Co.’s Cranberry Wine varietals are a fan favourite for cranberry lovers–their stock sells out quickly. Still available is their flagship Cranberry Wine: “With its beautiful blush colour and tart taste, Cranberry Wine is the perfect wine to accompany festive meals include  turkey, duck, pork or lamb.” Fort Langley Cranberry Festival Glover Road, Fort Langley Transit: The closest bus is the 562 Langley Ctr, get off at EB 96…

By Avneet Takhar Located inside Seaside Hotel on Vancouver’s North Shore is Seaside Provisions, a restaurant with the freshest seafood and a raw fish bar propped up against the chef quarters so you can see your meal getting prepped in real-time! With chef Peter Kim overseeing the menu and creating a quality palette experience for guests, we took some time to digest his journey as a food connoisseur. How did you come up with the menu? Looks like there’s something for everyone, with choices! I’ve always wanted to cook what I love to eat, which is Asian-inspired, West Coast cuisine. Turning a dish that is traditional to its own country/ region into something that is approachable, yet adventurous is the continuous goal with my menus. What was your first job in the industry and how’d that get you to Seaside Provisions? My first job, like many people in the industry,…

By Avneet Takhar Renamed in 2008 in homage to the Fraser River, the River Market has been a popular spot for foodies since 1986. With community and sustainability (not to mention stunning views!) at the centre of its Food 360 Vision, the market remains one of the best spots to enjoy a meal in New West. Located just one block away from New Westminster Skytrain station, it’s highly accessible for anyone who needs to satisfy their cravings ASAP. So with no further ado, these are our top 3 market locales for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Breakfast: Angelina’s Dutch Corner Made with fresh ingredients from the market, their signature waffles here are a must. We will always stand by the topping any meal with mixed berries, whipped cream and compote sauce. Add a fresh OJ to complete the morning glory!   Lunch: Pamola Bakery  The name Pamola comes from a small…

By Kristi Alexandra The pandemic has left many online workers feeling a little Zoom-fatigued, and at the moment, co-working spaces aren’t quite as bustling as they were pre-COVID. Luckily for those getting sick of the “digital-nomad” life, and miss seeing other folks around the watercooler, there are a few “Out of Office” spots in Vancouver where one can flip open a laptop while sipping better-than-homebrewed beverages. Here are our favourite YVR places to do work away from work. The Birds & The Beets Transit: Ten minute walk from Waterfront station Due to it being such a tech hub, Gastown has some of the best bandwidth in the city! And now that Microsoft will be opening offices there soon, it’s about to get even better. Located on Powell and Columbia, The Birds & The Beets is nestled comfortably in Vancover’s oldest neighbourhood. Every morning, this community favourite serves up breakfast and…

By Brittany Tiplady Picnic and patio weather is almost behind us. Soak up the last few weeks of warm weather with some takeout and a picnic blanket. The Richmond area is a perfect place to explore on a nice day — we rounded up some great spots that pair well with the outdoors. LA Chicken 11780 Thorpe Rd Transit: 410 Bus 22nd St Stn. Get off at Cambie at No. 5 Road, walk three minutes A trip to LA Chicken has been on my list for some time so this article was the perfect excuse to finally try it out. For research, of course. We ordered the 2 piece chicken dinner meal — fries, coleslaw and gravy included for $13.50 — and headed across the street to King George Park for a fried chicken picnic. King George Park is great for kids and family gatherings — on this particular Saturday…

By Jackie Dives  The Central Valley Greenway is a great way to explore on a bicycle. It’s a relatively flat bike path that runs all the way from Vancouver to New Westminster, and one of our favourite ways to work up an appetite for a day of exploring the amazing food and drink in New Westminster. Our first stop in New Westminster along the Central Valley Greenway on our bike ride from Vancouver was Old Crow Café for a much-needed caffeine dose, where I ordered a flat white and Dan got an americano. You can enjoy coffee and breakfast here, watching the trains go by, or grab a croissant to-go and head to the water. The River Market is a great place to visit, especially every Saturday, where Rain City Games hosts an open board game day where you can crack open a game and try it out. A welcome…

By Jackie Dives The Central Valley Greenway is an all-levels ride that takes you from Vancouver all the way to New Westminster. It’s mostly flat, separated from most vehicle traffic, and it’s easy to detour off for some hidden food gems. The more experienced you are, the more leisurely your food (and beer) stops will be along the way! Starting at Olympic Village in Vancouver, the food options are plentiful. Tractor is a fresh, healthy, leafy, crispy, hot or cold flavourful option at a good price point. They have salads and sandwich combos that are actually worth buying for both components full of favourites like grilled avocado, various protein options of the veggie and non-veggie variety, nuts, seeds, and cheeses. They are licensed, and also have kombucha on tap.   Alternatively, Terra Breads is nearby if you just need a snack. Hit up Tap and Barrel for beers with a view,…

By Jaclyn Hayward Autumn may be nearing, but lavender season is still in full bloom, so relish and enjoy the sensory experience offered by this captivating and locally-grown herb. Lavenderland opened earlier this summer in Richmond, providing an excellent opportunity to take friends and family on a scented journey exploring endless photo-taking moments and exclusive products and treats. Purple-flavoured anything is delightful, and that goes without saying for this summer’s newest favourite food pairings available exclusively at Lavenderland: lavender-infused gelato, and lavender-infused tea. View this post on Instagram A post shared by Richmond Lavenderland (@richmondlavenderland) Blackball Tea has really captured the flower’s essence and colours with their magnificent purple display of new tea flavours created especially for Lavenderland. Try the Lavender Meet Yogurt drink and be ready to wander the fields refreshed. View this post on Instagram A post shared by Richmond Lavenderland (@richmondlavenderland) Steveston’s Mr.…

By Avneet Takhar Metro Vancouver summer and fall is made for food soirees outdoors, so here are some locations to get the views and bites in as we continue to be blessed by the sun’s Vitamin D! The Fried Chicken Works near Waterfront Park 144-123 Carrie Cates Ct, North Vancouver (Lonsdale Quay Market) Transit: Lonsdale Quay Seabus Terminal There’s nothing better than fried chicken and this joint has a flavourful, Korean twist! The Fried Chicken Works’ 4 piece chicken combo, with fries and a pot of Korean sauce is a winner. Top it off with a side of pickled radish! Then get yourself down to Waterfront Park, and make sure you hold out for the sunset. Covert Cafe and Market near Deep Cove Park 4387 Gallant Ave, North Vancouver Transit: Buses R2, 212, 215 It doesn’t get more west coast than Covert Cafe and Market, with its signature blue…

By Brittany Tiplady If you’re like me, living in an apartment sans air conditioning, cool-down treats are a must for summer sanity. And lucky for dairy-free and plant-based folks, there are plenty of options available that accommodate all kinds of dietary restrictions and preferences. Get outta the heat and check out this curated list of dairy-free treats available in Metro Vancouver from Fort Langley to the North Shore. New Westminster The Hive Cafe Transit: New Westminster SkyTrain station A quick six-minute walk from the New Westminster SkyTrain will take you to the Hive Cafe: a delightful spot for all things refreshment. Coffee, espresso, thirst-quenching iced teas are kinda their thing. Grab a Pear + Mango Shaken Tea, or a Lavender Lemonade and take a stroll down New West’s Pier Park, which happens to be right next door. Vancouver Innocent Ice Cream Transit: Take the the the Expo Line to Main…

By Kristi Alexandra It’s no secret that this little coastal city by the sea sees several more visitors during the summer. Chalk it up to a vibrant dining scene set among breathtaking views of the ocean. Here are just a few summer diet staples and the landmarks to enjoy them at. Fish & Chips (and more) at White Rock Pier Is there anything more iconic than fish and chips by the sea? Marine Drive’s Moby Dick has been a kitschy beachfront family eatery serving up burgers, fried seafood and more since 1975, so you won’t want to miss out on this legendary spot. Their staple fish and chips boasts fresh Alaskan cod and Yukon Gold fries. Grab a takeout order, and then pop across the street toward the equally iconic White Rock Pier. Get here: Ride the Millennium Line to its end in Surrey: King George Station, and take the…

By Avneet Takhar We’ve been lucky to have an abundance of patios to choose from this summer, with restaurants adapting to COVID restrictions. Seeing as a seat in the sunshine only adds to a culinary experience, these are our top 3 spots to check out while the weather’s still blazing. Cold Tea Restaurant Cold Tea is the Chinese-Vietnamese fusion new kid on the Granville Street block. Their 40-seat patio at the back of the restaurant is made extra cozy with candle lanterns, heaters, and potted plants dotted around. Plus, the high-top tables are perfect for small groups or a special date! Their all-day dim sum has become a neighbourhood hit, particularly the BBQ pork buns – a must-try. To get there: Grab the Canada Line to Yaletown-Roundhouse station. Head upwards to Mainland Street, then walk up Davie for 7 minutes until you hit 1193 Granville Street. Then you’re there! …

Chapter 1, A Kernel of Truth By Wade Kinley Fiorino is a new restaurant concept in Vancouver’s Chinatown neighbourhood slated for opening in the fall. In this series, we’ll follow along to meet the people, hear the stories and get an on-the-ground sense of what it takes to open a new restaurant in the city. I meet up with Fiorino’s owner-operator Giovanni Mascagni at the new space at the bottom of the London Hotel on Georgia Street. Recently gutted, it bears little resemblance to its former life as Wheat & Barley, or the Brixton Café before that. Dust hangs in the air as we carefully step around the tilers installing the rustic white and orange squares bringing the room back to life from the ground up. He shows me where they’ll build the bar so it will bask in natural light from the windows above, and where the individual…

Running a small business is tough in the best of times, never mind having to deal with a pandemic. But at the family-run Surrey restaurant Afghan Kitchen, they’ve sadly had to deal with even more hurdles recently. This past week, owner Hassib Sarwari came to work to find that a vandal had caused more than $5,000 worth of damage to the restaurants’ patio and outdoor heaters. To make matters worse, the window on Sarwari’s car had been smashed in. Footage of the incident was captured here.   Thankfully no one was hurt, but it’s just a disheartening reminder that good people can still be struck with bad luck. This isn’t the first time that Afghan Kitchen was the target of similar incidents either. Last year, thieves stole potted plants from the patio on two separate occasions. We don’t usually write articles about news items like this, but what better opportunity to…

You might not be able to travel just yet, but that shouldn’t stop your palate from doing a little culinary globetrotting! Lucky for you, you’ve got an atlas of food possibilities not far off. The Langley City International Taste Bud Trail is a celebration of all the delicious restaurants that make up this Lower Mainland foodie destination. It doesn’t matter which cuisine you’re looking to stamp on your passport, this self guided tour will get you there in in time for dinner. Craving a little Latin kick? The famously generous portions at Adelicia’s Mexican Restaurante will have you reaching for a margarita to cool down with. Looking to celebrate the end of your carb cleanse? Then a visit to Olivo Pasta is the ideal spot to show off your pro pasta twirling. Avishan Middle East Grill for Barg (grilled lamb tenderloin) with fresh homemade Barbary bread? Or a vegan strawberry…

By Jaclyn Hayward Nestled at the corner of Commercial Street, close to the Victoria Diversion, lies a little Café that brings so much joy to the Kensington Cedar-Cottage neighbourhood. In 2017, Corina Li had a vision to turn the small corner-shaped building into a hub that serves tasty food and drinks to the community that surrounds it. Four years later, Chance Café stands vibrant and strong with an inviting menu of eats. “My vision revolves around togetherness with my family, specifically my brother. Growing up, my brother and I roamed the streets of East Van like our backyard, especially in the Trout Lake area. We looked out for each other so when the opportunity came up for us to open a café, we put our heads together to come up with the idea. My dream is to recreate the positive experience we had growing up and create a community where…

So… you say you like spicy food, do ya? Well, let’s see if you can withstand.. THE SPICE TRAIL! (thunder clap) Ok, you can come out from under your napkin now, there’s no need to be scared. The spice in this case, is more about full flavours and celebrating international tastes, than causing any culinary trauma. Naturally, Surrey is the perfect backdrop for such an event, as it’s neighbourhoods are brimming with vibrant recipes. Spread across 6 neighbourhoods and over 30 restaurants, this celebration of world cuisine is a fantastic escape from any bland food routine. Try authentic Colombia fare at Union Latino’s Food (North Surrey), a home-styled Nepalese feast at Taste of Himalayas (Newton) or an upscale Indian spread at My Shanti (South Surrey). There are just about as many flavour possibilities here as there are on your palate, so get out and do a little plate hopping! You…

By Jaclyn Hayward  We’re spending a lot of time catching up with friends and family outside, which means ordering takeout is a must. Richmond has so many delicious places to eat, here are some food options to try near great community parks. Chef’s Playground Eatery at Steveston Community Park 12420 No 1 Rd Transit: #170 bus to Moncton St @ No. 1 Rd Seize the day and take your brunch to go, at this gem located just around the corner from Steveston Community Park. Mushroom lovers will enjoy the Avo Mushroom Benny on focaccia, served with a little crunch and great hollandaise. Steveston Community Park has off-leash dog areas, a water park and playground for the kids, and lots of trails to roam, so there’s plenty to keep you occupied after you’ve finished your bennies. @chefsplaygroundsteveston chefsplayground.ca John 3:16 Malaysian and Minoru Park 6838 No. 3 Rd Transit:…

By Kristi Alexandra Though many of us hope that COVID is nearly in the rearview, BCers should be fairly experienced patio diners by now because of former restrictions—and that’s not a bad thing! Many restaurants, bars and eateries have spruced up or expanded their existing patio spaces, and diners are reaping the benefits. Beat the heat and try out these new-and-improved patio spots in Vancouver this summer. Innocent Ice Cream Ice cream will certainly cool you down on a hot day! This gluten-free ice cream parlour boasts “the best ice cream sandwiches in Vancouver,” and you’ll know it’s true when you visit the Main Street Shop (4895 Main Street, Vancouver). Their cozy back patio (seats 8) also flaunts its solar-powered ice cream truck aptly named “Sunshine”, which is perfect for ‘gram-worthy snaps. Snap up a scoop of ice cream (vegan options available) pressed between two of their signature gluten-free cookies,…

By Lenée Son Under the sweltering summer heat, there’s nothing better than cooling down with a walk on the White Rock pier and an ice cold treat. Whether it’s gelato, frozen yogurt, or traditional ice cream you’re craving, this beachside city is a haven for icy desserts. Here are four must-try places. Sandcastle Sea Shoppe Located at the east beach in White Rock, Sandcastle Sea Shoppe has the largest selection of ice cream in the city. They carry fifty flavours at all times and nearly seventy during the peak season in the summer. Take your pick from gelato, ice cream, milk shakes, smoothies, or old fashioned frozen yogurt. The Sandcastle Sea Shoppe is home to the twin cone, a cone with a platform for two ice cream flavours side-by-side rather than on top of each other, which you won’t find anywhere else on the beach. They also carry an assortment…

If this ridiculous heatwave has taught us anything, it’s that fans simply do not get the job done. And if you’ve tried to buy an air conditioner in the last week, you’ve also likely met with a dead end. Therefore, it’s our civic duty to try and cool you down from within! By district, these are our emergency picks for when the air is thick with humidity. One sip from any of these craft cocktails and you’ll be breathing out a frosty cloud in no time. New Westminster El Santo: Andina Verde 680 Columbia St Transit:  New Westminster Station There’s no quench quite like a cuke. With sparkling wine, Campo de Encanto Pisco, house-made ginger syrup, fresh lemon, and plenty of muddled cucumber, this tipple will take the edge off even the highest temps. @elsantonewwest elsanto.ca Vancouver Bells & Whistles: Thug Passion Slushy 3296…

If you’ve ever tried to run a zoom call full of kids, you’d likely need a little something to take the edge off too. This year has been a crazy one for our teachers, and while they may be back in classes with their students, the last 18 months have been a huge stress for the people in this important position. So of all the years to get a solid gift for them, this is the one you should be upping your budget a bit, and flexing your generosity. As a good rule of thumb, you should be giving one of two types of gifts: food (sweet tooth, savoury snacks, gift cards for dinner) or, alcohol (see: booze). Speaking as the son of a teacher, nobody wants to come home with a new set of pencils, an oven mitt, or a hand-crafted wall tapestry. These are all your best bets.…

Father’s Day doesn’t get the love that it deserves. Sure, Mother’s Day is the more momentous occasion, one of the busiest days of the year in the hospitality industry, and a fitting tribute to the woman who carried you for nine months… But what about a day for the man who taught you the fine art of lame jokes, the guy who informed what your definition of terrible music is, that king whose famously frugal lifestyle could squeeze a nickel from a penny? If any of those hit home for you, then Father’s Day is a wonderful occasion to show him that despite his best intentions, you still grew up with an excellent taste for the finer things. So, when the day arrives (June 20!), pick any of these outstanding spots to prove to the man that not skimping on a good meal is always worth it. Langley Tourism…

I’ve eaten a lot of cookies in my day. But, if I’ve learned anything in my travels it’s that secret of making a good one, depends on two things: An outstanding cookie should always be slightly underdone. While it may look impossibly gooey out of the oven, once that baby cools, you’re going to have a perpetually soft biscuit no matter what temperature it’s at. And that is the sweet spot for diving into those nostalgic bites from when you were no taller than a Keebler. Boosting that savoury flavour. Anybody can dump sugar in flour, chuck a stick of butter in and call it a day. But for a cookie to transcend, there should be full palate engagement, not just the tip of the tongue.    I wanted to outline these rules first because the “Best Ever Chocolate Chip Cookie” from Flourist Bakery takes these criteria and pushes them…

It’s high time it came back! One of the city’s best tea services has returned and, we’re ready to toast to the occasion. Starting June 7, Fairmont Hotel Vancouver’s Tea in the Window will be back for its third year of sipping and pinnacle people watching. From Monday to Friday through the summer, the hotel will host one 2 pm exclusive seating in their front window for lucky (tea) partygoers. Surrounded by gorgeous custom art from fashion illustrator Mandy Lau, this is another luxurious reason to dress up from one of YVR’s oldest institutions. But with one seating per day, you’d best make a reservation, as space is extremely limited (reservations in 2019 and 2020 sold out quickly!). Book your spot here, and perhaps we’ll see you in the window! fairmont.com/hotel-vancouver

In case you haven’t heard the news, restaurants are reopening their doors and allowing indoor seating once again! And all we can say is, *sigh of relief*. While all the new patios across the city have added so much to the feeling of community, we can’t wait to get back to the full dining experience, you know, without being exposed to the elements.  So here’s the rundown,  -Restaurants are open as soon as they’re able to. -You can dine in groups of up to 6 people (can be from outside your household) – Masks are still required when you’re not at your table -Liquor service ends at 10 pm -Restaurants will still be required to have a COVID-safety plan That’s the long and short of it! Foodies rejoice! We’re already compiling a list of places that we’re planning to hit in the coming weeks. Just off the top of our…

As someone who talks to restaurant owners and hospitality workers regularly, it’s tough to see how much the last year has negatively affected them. But it’s also been inspiring to see so many of them do their best to thrive, and at the same time, have the community rally around the businesses they love.  It’s been a long year, but thankfully, there’s a lot of positivity coming out of the struggle. President of The BC Restaurant and Foodservices Association, Ian Tsotenson, shares the outlook that with the continued dedication so many have already shown, we’ll get through the final stages of this, and the industry will be back stronger than ever. The Tourism Industry Association of BC’s new video series, “Know Before You Go” is a great resource for how restaurants are ensuring the safety of their guests and staff.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uX-woHWJAAo Here’s hoping that we’ll be back to making reservations…

On a recent rainy Saturday afternoon, a crowd of umbrellas and slickers began to form outside Como Taperia in Vancouver’s Mount Pleasant. A line stretched around the block while the patio outside was as full as it could get as hungry folks sipped cava and… waited, some for up to an hour. But it wasn’t patatas brava or jamon croquetas they braved the weather for — this time. This time, it was all about las burguesas. For the last couple of weeks, Instagram stories were abuzz, tweets were tweeting, and phones were generally pinging all over that one of the most beloved tapas joints in the city was doing something special. The word was out and that word was: “Damn-that’s-a-tasty-burger.” When indoor dining was banned at the end of April (I still can’t write that without taking a forlorn look out my window), restaurants without a sizable patio — which…

Depending on when you’re reading this, you’ve either got plenty of time before the big day (May 9), or you’re cutting it way too close. So, in the tradition of Choose Your Own Adventure books, we’re letting you pick the tone of how you should be reading the following Mother’s Day guide. May 2-5th: You’re golden, any of these picks will fit the bill for a meaningful maternal gesture. And you’ll have time to spare to fill a card with touching sentiments or perhaps a tender anecdote. May 5-8th: Getting down to the wire, but you’re probably still fine. While you may have missed the pre-order window on some of these, you can still pull something together and act like you’ve had it in the works all along. It’s all dependent on your acting chops.  May 9th: WHAT ARE YOU DOING. This poor woman carried you in her womb for…

Food delivery is nothing new. From Queen Margherita demanding her namesake pizza be brought to her on a visit to Naples, to the legendary milkman of 19th century America, the world over has been “ordering in” for centuries.  2020, though, changed the story. Only a few years into their mass popularity, third-party delivery apps exploded as we all were forced to stay home, and local restaurants began shutting their doors. We could demand almost anything we wanted without even getting up from the couch. But as it always does, convenience comes with a price. And it goes beyond just those pesky service fees. As many restaurants over the past year came to rely on national and multinational companies such as Skip the Dishes, DoorDash and Uber, some also saw their bottom line shrink. Commissions charged by these companies can be 30% or more, meaning that some small…

We’re all about random National Days and using them as reasons to eat, but how can we go about celebrating an occasion that actually holds a lot of weight, like Earth Day? Aside from reducing emissions and being smart about waste, there are food-centric ways to help out, as we’ve learned through some local restaurants. A visit to any of these businesses will do your part to lighten your footprint every time you visit. Whether it’s because of compostable containers, a farm-to-table model that reduces transport and packaging, or by going vegan, you can make a positive change on the earth and eat great food while you’re at it. Coquitlam  The Yoga Chef  Family-owned, wholesome food with compostable containers, The Yoga Chef is feel-good food on so many levels. With a plant-forward menu (and hormone-free protein add ons for meat eaters), this Port Coquitlam cafe/ meal prep…

Easter is one of those holidays that creeps up out of nowhere. You’re sittin there, minding your business, when suddenly the day has arrived, and someone close to you is dropping hints that they got YOU something for the occasion. Remain calm! We can be proactive about this. Simply go through this handy guide, pick one of the delicious Easter offerings listed, and sprint like you’ve never sprunt before!  Gem Chocolates With an emphasis on natural ingredients and no preservatives, every treat at this Kerrisdale cocoa destination is more tantalizing than the last. Receiving worldwide chocolate acclaim, Gem has been recognized by countless honours: The Top Truffle Artistry Awards, The Luxury Caramel Awards, The International Chocolate Salon (if you can’t tell, we love all of these names). Their resume speaks for itself, but you should absolutely stop by their store and workshop to try for yourself. Always…

After the birth of our daughter last year, it soon became clear that dairy did not agree with her (a common issue with newborns, we came to learn). As my wife continued to breastfeed, what she ate, baby ate, so my wife had to give up the goods as well. So my baby is dairy-free, and now my wife is dairy-free, so to paraphrase Jules in Pulp Fiction, that pretty much makes me dairy-free too. But we’ve always been a cheesy household, we like the finer things in life*, after all. So for the past year, we’ve been on the hunt for the specific delight and comfort only cheese provides, without getting cows involved.  We also love our wine (see above*) and there have been many nights when dinner was a bottle of Montepulciano and a cheeseboard. Back when we could entertain, a pile of cheese was always at the centre…

When it comes to Vancouverites naming their favourite YVR district, typically, it ends up being where they’d direct tourists to. But while those areas all have their charms, Cambie Street Village has something distinctly singular about it. Of all the neighbourhoods in the city, Cambie is one that exudes a sense of community. While it could be chalked up to it being a bit more localized than most YVR districts, for us, it’s because it’s built around community niches. Whether you’re looking to take in a comedy show at the Kino Cafe or rent a flick at one of the city’s last video/DVD businesses, it would seem like there are countless niche communities served by this little stretch of road.You can’t walk 10 feet without being drawn into one of the small businesses here, be it via outstanding gift ideas, or the tantalizing smells from each restaurant or bakery.…

Alright, one more before 2021 officially sinks in! With the last year having been such a bleak discourse, we figured we were entitled to stretch the merriment of the holidays a little further. Our Season of Giving campaign is wrapping up this week, but before we go, here are a few of our fave spots to dine out with your household crew. Valentine’s is coming up after all; a list like this certainly could come in handy when you’re stressing about making plans with someone special. Go get em! White Rock: Taka’s Sushi This unassuming little spot, for our money, has the best sushi across several municipalities. Premium seafood handled with care by expert chefs is really the secret here (who would’ve thought!). The level of quality in every roll and piece of sashimi is so high, it will make a connoisseur out of anyone.…

2021 has finally arrived! While we’re relieved to have put the final nail in the previous year, we could definitely use a little wide-eyed optimism to carry forward. What better way to make this happen than with a little kick of caffeine. We might not have shaken off all of the dust from 2020 just yet, but these roasters, cafes, tea houses, and java joints will keep us alert, nimble and ready for anything that 2021 tosses our way! Surrey Black Tiger Coffee Some schools of thought think that coffee is only as good as what you dunk in it. By that metric, Black Tiger is a must-visit for any self-respecting connoisseur. While their beans are sourced from the finest local roasters, it’s their donuts that bring the taste sensations full circle. Quickly becoming a cult favourite for pastry hounds, their flavours range from Maple Brownie, to Peanut Butter…

Who says just because Christmas is over we need to snap back to that old 2020 feeling. We’re just glad it’s the end of the year, so our Season of Giving campaign can keep the gifts coming. This week, it’s all about getting countdown-ready with some of our favourite bottles and cans to pop. If you can’t be around your preferred company when the ball drops this year, then you can surely send them a long-distance cheers (or a gift card) from any of these outstanding BC beverage businesses. Langley Township 7 One of our fave places to pick up a bottle for dinner, this Langley winery also has a sister location in the Okanagan. With reasonable prices on big reds, aromatic whites and delightful sparkling, their straight to your door subscription service will keep you well-stocked through the colder months, so you don’t have to brave the…

The holidays are in full swing now, and thank GOODNESS. If we were to describe this year as a food metaphor (and why wouldn’t we?), then 2020 has been a long, arduous meal with marathon chewing, and nothing to wash it down. So it’s only fitting that as it comes to a close, the last few weeks should be spent indulging in the sweet spirit of the season. That’s what our Spirit of Giving campaign is all about, spreading the good cheer around like a thick layer of homemade marmalade. Ok, we’ve got our appetite back now. And what better way to kick off this final course than with a hit list of lower mainland spots for you to indulge at? Whether for yourself, buying as a gift for a friend, or going back for seconds, we’re indebted to these locales for giving us something sweet to finish the year…

Christmas is only a couple of weeks away, so you probably think you have plenty of time to snag all your gifts in a roundabout fashion. That’s why West Coast Food is pitching in, so you have a gift resource when you finally come to your senses and realize you’ve completely wasted your head start! Today, we’re starting with the coffee aficionados on your list. To be fair, we had a little help with this one, courtesy of the good people over at Burnaby’s best new craft coffee roaster, Heights Coffee Co. Heights was created by Rob and Garnet – two longtime North Burnaby locals – as a way to celebrate their passion for coffee roasting and pay tribute to their community. If you’ve never been, North Burnaby feels a bit like a small town. It has a long history, incredibly diverse residents, and the merchants that live there take a…

Thank you L’abattoir. Being cooped up for the bulk of a year has shown us the true colours of our cravings. Surprisingly, it’s not always the main courses, the featured protein or the house specials that have us longingly pawing at the rain-soaked window pane. Today, we’re pining for a bowl of carbs, and not just any garden variety: The most exquisite bread service in the city. You’re likely now asking yourself, is this seriously an article about a bowl of bread. Why yes it is, and we don’t care. Judgement be damned, this is the article! If you’ve visited L’abattoir in Gastown, you know they’re well known for outstanding Westcoast/French fusion, and impeccable service. But for us, the MVP in the whole operation is the complimentary bread service. Worth the visit alone, and all housemade here’s what’s in it: Bacon Brioche Warm, fluffy and savoury, these little bundles…

Author’s Note: Before I start this article with the impression that I’m any authority on healthy living, let me first say that I’m currently writing this from atop a pile of fun-sized Snickers wrappers. Consider this list as more of a self-affirmation that I will one day escape from the frosted-coated clutches of sugar and finally kick the habit… At least until eggnog goes on sale, of course. As we’re currently in between feasting holidays on the calendar, it’s a good time as any to finally make some progress on that new year’s resolution from 10 months ago! You’ve still got a chance to turn things around on some of those healthy promises you made. Here’s an entry-level guide for healthy spots to visit, seeing as time, much like the waistband in my sweatpants, is fading away. Turf Turf is a meeting space, a sweat studio, and home to…

There are certain tried and tested ways to get yourself into the spirit of Halloween quickly: Accidentally walk through a cobweb while exploring a shadowy attic. Use a Oujia board to contact a restless spirit only to have it to run amok while you flee from your home. Eat spooky-themed treats! While the first two we don’t recommend, the third is our bread and butter!  Fair warning though, we know there are a few of these lists on other Vancouver sites, so to differentiate with SEO, we will be using absolutely NO Halloween-related puns. That’s right, this is a hard-hitting look at the Vancouver snack scene, so forgive us if we’re all business. Here’s our list of essential YVR spooky eats, without further a-BOO! Ok but seriously, no puns starting now. Temper Chocolate & Pastry This off the beaten path bakery keeps West Vancouver well stocked with spooky delights. Whether…

Seeing as it’s World Food Day, a yearly reflection on world hunger and poverty, we thought we’d take it as a chance to feature some YVR restaurants who are giving back through their menus. 2020 has been hard on everyone, especially in the service industry, but these businesses continue to show empathy, even when their own livelihood isn’t always looking so lively. For their continued contributions to Mealshare, these restaurants deserve an extra order from us. In case you don’t know, Mealshare is a Canadian non-profit that gives restaurants the chance to donate a meal to local and international youth in need. When you see a Mealshare logo beside a menu item, it means that when that item is ordered, the restaurant then donates a simple, healthy meal to a youth in need. So let’s follow their lead and give back a little; that’s what World Food Day is…

If you still haven’t made plans for the looming turkey tradition on October 12, you better get your tail feather in gear! Seeing as 2020 has broken ground on the new trend of hoarding supplies, the threat of being gravy-less on the big day is very real. This is why you should take stress out of the equation and sign up for a pre-made dinner from one of your favourite Vancouver restaurants. You can finally do away with peeling, oven times, and basters, and instead relax with a glass of wine. Get your order in quickly for one of these pre-made Thanksgiving dinners, as the demand is only going to go up! You don’t want to be solely relying on a wishbone to make it all happen. Railtown Catering One of Vancouver’s premier suppliers of event and private catering, there’s a reason why Railtown’s reputation is unmatched. Catering…

You’re an adult now, and while you may not still be trick or treating (hopefully), it’s time to have a serious talk about candy. If you’re one to commit to cheat days, then it’s worth doing it right. If you’re going to cheat, then cheat well. With Halloween a month away, it’s a fitting time to up our candy game, instead of waiting until Nov 1, to pillage the dollar stores for discounted leftovers. If nothing else, these options will introduce you to a whole new world of snacking that is worth circling a few more days on your calendar. Karameller Nobody does sweets like the Swedes, and this Yaletown spot is a destination for confectionary connoisseurs. Specializing in candy from Sweden, you’ll be dazzled and jealous in equal measure that Canada didn’t get these treats sooner. With hundreds of bite-sized reasons to fill your goodie bag, and a…

If someone told you five years ago that grocery stores would soon start selling fermented tea made with a live yeast culture, you’d likely raise an eyebrow or two. But this is exactly what has happened with Kombucha. While it’s by no means new (it’s believed Kombucha first originated in 221 BC), the probiotic-rich drink has gone from specialty niche to mainstream markets seemingly overnight.  The Kombucha boom of the last five years rivals Vancouver’s craft brewery scene about ten years ago. There are so many brands popping up now that it seems like just about everyone is getting into the fermenting business. It’s a rise to prominence boosted by reported benefits for gut health and immunity, as well as more and more people drinking less and less alcohol. While there isn’t quite a craft-beer-level snobbery to it yet, give it time, and we’re sure Kombucha hipsters will sprout up…

We all have our favourite restaurants. Visiting them feels like getting together with a good friend. And right now, our friends are facing hard times. So what do we do when we see a friend in need? We help, of course, in any way we can. Here are some ways to support our incredible restaurants so they can make it through the newly announced restrictions. Take Out/Patio Service Let’s get the obvious out of the way first — Let them cook for you! Seeing as indoor dining has been suspended again, it’s time to put in a little leg work and repay the hustle that our food workers have shown us over the years. Stop by to get pick up, or order delivery, both options help keep a business afloat. Of course, if they have patio seating then obviously you should be out there catching some sun, working on…

Seeing as 2020 has been a year like no other, Dine Out Vancouver has decided to follow suit! We noticed the new patios popping up all over the city, and took it as our cue to open things up a bit. Welcome to Dine OutSide, the same high standard of fantastic food, all served in a safe, socially-distanced environment. It hasn’t been easy hearing the low rumbling of Vancouver appetites yearning for a night out, so from Aug 21 to Sept 21, we’ve put together an impressive roster of restaurants to help curb all that growling. Before you go wading into the possibilities of your next meal though, we thought we might share a few of our most anticipated orders. Start here with a hit list of things to try, so you can cut right to the chase in planning your reservation or Picnic-2-Go. If 2020 has given us anything, it’s…

By Gail Johnson You may be baking bread and craving comfort foods these past few weeks, but with spring upon us, now’s a good time to seek out healthy bowls abundant in veggies and greens. With hundreds of restaurants in the region offering takeout, delivery, and curbside pickup, here are a few hearty salads to seek out. Cardero’s Vancouver Kale and quinoa are nutritional powerhouses. In the Coal Harbour restaurant’s dish, grains and baby kale are jumbled with bright strawberries, creamy avocado, crunchy almonds, fresh goat’s cheese. Add grilled chicken for some extra protein. Chickpea Vancouver All things green rule at the popular plant-based restaurant. Treat yourself to the Cauliflower of Life Platter: Gluten free, it boasts roasted cauliflower drizzled with fresh parsley, mint, tomatoes, red onions, all drizzled with tahini and lemon-garlic sauce. COVID-19 bonus: spend $100 and get a free roll of toilet paper. Field & Social Vancouver…

By Gail Johnson North Vancouver’s Lower Lonsdale neighbourhood has seen massive growth and development lately, but when Shallaw Kadir opened Fishworks (91 Lonsdale) eleven years ago, he was an outlier: there was no other seafood restaurant in the community anchored by the SeaBus terminal and Lonsdale Quay. Focusing on sustainable, locally sourced ingredients, Fishworks has been earning accolades ever since, and Kadir still thrives in the heat of the kitchen. (In fact, he wears shorts year-round, even on the most miserable of days, his apron over top.) Here, he dishes on life as a North Shore chef. Due to COVID-19, Fishworks’ dining room is currently closed, but you can sample some of their best dishes, along with some wine, though their take-out service. How did you get your start in the restaurant biz? I moved to Vancouver in 1999 from Eastern Turkey as a teen. My first job in my…

By Brittany Tiplady Now more than ever it’s important to support and showcase local business. Although we are in the midst of a trying and complicated time, food businesses are still trying to operate within the recommended guidelines the best they can, offering takeout and delivery to feed hungry customers weathering the outbreak. The Raving Gamer in Langley is one of them. The Raving Gamer is a retail space and board game restaurant, “serving up food and fun in a funky, family-friendly full-service environment.” They have an impressive selection of over 600 table-top games for guests to play, while offering a robust and locally-sourced lunch and dinner menu, including a full-service bar. The bistro is a family affair: Kenneth Nishidate is the co-founder, owner and chef and his daughter Miyoko also helms the kitchen. Kathy Nishidate is the Raving Gamer’s administrator and Ken’s longtime friend Daniel Szukalow is the game…

Now is the time to stay home and practice social distancing. But it can be had to find a selection of new foods to try while limiting your grocery time. Vancouver Foodie Tours have paused their live experience, and are now bringing a little bit of their delicious surprise and delight tours into your home. “Since people can’t get out to enjoy our local food scene, we wanted to bring the Public Market foodie experience to them,” says Vancouver Foodie Tours Founder Michelle Ng, “It’s a way to practice self-care, support our hardworking Granville Island Public Market Merchants and reconnect people with some local foodie favourites.” You have three choices: The Starter Pack $49: A little culinary pick-me-up for your mouth. Sharing Pack $99: A treat for two foodies. Family Pack $249: Perfect for feeding the whole household. Build Your Own: Not seeing what you want? You can choose the…

By Gail Johnson With the closure of B.C. restaurants amid the spread of COVID-19, more and more eateries are getting creative when it comes to take-out and delivery. Here’s a bunch on the North Shore and in Vancouver to check out so you can indulge at home while social distancing. [For take-out in Burnaby, New Westminster and Richmond, click here.] [For take-out in Coquitlam, Surrey, Langley and White Rock, click here.] Vancouver’s North Shore CC’s Chinese Restaurant 5020 Capilano Rd Singapore-style noodles chow mein, bean cakes, lemon chicken, beef and broccoli and other Chinese classics are all available for delivery. Olive & Anchor 6418 Bay St The Horseshoe Bay restaurant specializes in comfort food made of international flavours with a West Coast flair. Co-owner Lisa Kim is the chef, while her husband, Rick, handles operations. In the era of coronavirus, that means he’s personally delivering orders within a certain radius. Otherwise,…

By Kristi Alexandra We’re living in uncertain times, and local businesses and eateries are taking hits as people rush to grocery stores to stock up for the future. Never fear, your fix of comfort food or things you just can’t make at home is just a phone call or online order away. Here are some restaurants in Burnaby, New Westminster and Richmond that are open for pick-up, take-out or delivery. [For take-out in Surrey, Coquitlam, Langley and White Rock, click here.] [For take-out in Vancouver and the North Shore, click here.] New Westminster Kozak Ukranian Eatery 444 Sixth Street Homestyle Ukrainian food such as cabbage rolls and borscht, with vegan options available. Open from 9 am to 9 pm for takeout and delivery only. Visit Kozakeatery.ca to place your order for pickup, or get scheduled delivery Tuesday and Saturday. Pacific Breeze Winery 320 Stewardson Way New Westminster’s only garagiste winery…

By Jenni Sheppard As we adjust to the social distancing and self-isolation required due to COVID-19, many of us are no longer able to venture out to our favourite restaurants. For local restaurant owners, this drop in custom can be tough, but thankfully, there is a way you can help—by ordering takeout or delivery! Happily, many great restaurants in the region have been able to pivot to takeout and delivery services, instead of opening to the public. So to help you show your support for your local restaurants, we’ve put together this list of the best takeout and delivery options across Coquitlam, Surrey, Langley, Langley City and White Rock. Enjoy! [For take-out in Burnaby, New Westminster and Richmond, click here.] [For take-out in Vancouver and the North Shore, click here.] Surrey Dominion Bar + Kitchen (13475 Central Avenue | 604 330 0229) This downtown hub’s mash-up menu aims to reflect…

By Catherine Dunwoody Classic French cuisine is not particularly easy to find in BC, let alone in the outlying areas of Metro Vancouver. Perhaps that’s why Langley’s Bacchus Bistro in the Chaberton Winery is such a hidden gem, authentic dishes served in a beautiful setting  – with dedicated customers who return regularly. West Coast Food regular contributor Catherine Dunwoody had the opportunity to chat with Chef Ashley Chisham over classic dishes including French onion soup and duck confit, that did not disappoint. Where were you born?  Vancouver BC, born and raised. What was food like in your growing up household?  My mom is an excellent cook! Most everything was made from scratch and with a lot of care. Homemade pierogies and cabbage rolls were always a favourite, as well as pasta, tacos. Roasts with all the traditional sides like Yorkshire pudding etc. on special occasions. And there was almost always…

By Brittany Tiplady Despite what the groundhog said, winter is still hangin’ around, with chilly nights for another couple months. Lucky for us, Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley are brimming with Indian restaurants serving up dishes that are perfect for cool weather. Not too sure where to go? We’ve compiled a list of popular Indian Restaurants in Vancouver, Surrey, Langley, New Westminster, and North Vancouver. Warm up and fill your belly with a bowl of butter chicken, daal or paneer and soak up the sauce with hot, fresh naan. Bombay Kitchen + Bar 1018 Commercial Dr, Vancouver Vegetarians, vegans, and carnivores are all welcome here. We recommend making Bombay your next destination for a filling lunch: their $12.99 all you can eat lunch special is truly dynamite. Warm up with the palak paneer (gluten-free) made with home-made cheese cooked with spinach and garlic or the daal tarka (vegan and…

By Sonu Purhar Situated at the Delta Hotels Vancouver Downtown Suites, the newly opened restaurant, Stock & Supply, is already buzzing with the happy hum of satiated guests. Offering a tantalizing array of pre-set and build-your-own board possibilities for any time of the day, the space cultivates connection and intimacy – an ideal spot for date night, family gatherings and teambuilding dinners alike. Charcuterie, cheese and veggie boards have seen a sharp spike in popularity thanks to the recent abundance of board-focused cookbooks hitting the market. Stock & Supply’s dazzling array is certain to rack up your Instagram likes, with rich colours and flavourful combinations taking centre stage – better still, you can design your own to ensure the board holds all of your favourites. The brunch boards are particularly appealing with sizeable portions catering to all palates, including a board for vegetarians. The Garden Board is a lovely assortment…

By Gail Johnson Meet Shiva Reddy, the executive wine director of Osteria Savio Volpe, Pepino’s Spaghetti House, and Caffè La Tana. She doesn’t go by the title of “sommelier” by choice, and if there’s a stereotypical image of the person who comes to your table to recommend wine—say, a white male in a suit—she’s smashing it. Here, Reddy dishes on her career path and what she loves about working with wine. How did you end up working in the food and wine industry? It was not natural and unplanned. My mom was a single mom, so I had to start working young. I worked at the Point Grey Golf and Country Club at 18. I took it so seriously, and I really enjoyed it. I met a sommelier there. He was very dapper, he knew his stuff, and he was able to romance history and geography. There’s a magical side…

by Catherine Dunwoody Friday, March 6th kicks off the annual Francophone festival and you don’t want to miss out. Musical artists, family cultural activities and of course fabulous food bring the big heated tents at Mackin Park in Maillardville, Coquitlam to life in celebration of the festival’s 31st anniversary. Festival du Bois is the largest festival of its kind in BC, bringing a little bit of Québécois culture to the west coast. Friday’s kick-off includes the Friday Night Contra Dance in the Grand Chapiteau (big tent), featuring live music from The Celtic Lasses and The Sybaritic String Band, Vancouver’s premier contradance band. What’s that exactly? Contra dancing is social dancing done in lines of couples to live traditional music. There’s a dance caller who teaches easy “figures” on the spot, like in square dancing, and prompts you during the dance. Fun! But since we are all about the food here…

By Sabrine Dhaliwal, Bar Manager, UVA Wine & Cocktail Bar Sweetly spiced and with a dreamy pink hue, UVA’s “In Between Cupid” cocktail will have you falling for bar manager Sabrine Dhaliwal this Valentine’s Day. The bright, citrusy cocktail features gin, Campari, lemon juice, homemade spiced pineapple syrup and Bittered Sling Denman bitters which add complexity and an aromatic kick to this swoon-worthy sipper. INGREDIENTS Tanqueray  (1.5 oz) Campari (0.5 oz) Spiced Pineapple Syrup (0.5 oz) (The syrup is a blend of vanilla, cinnamon, green cardamom, star anise, peppercorns, pineapple juice and sugar) Lemon Juice (0.5 oz) Bittered Sling Denman Bitters (two dashes) INSTRUCTIONS Combine all ingredients into a cocktail tin, add ice and shake vigorously for 7 to 10 seconds. Strain into a chilled coupe glass. Garnish with a lemon twist with a heart cutout.

By Brittany Tiplady “Born from opportunity, in the year of the monkey,” the folks at Monkey 9 Brewing are eager to show their community a good time, preferably with a beer in hand. Tucked away on Entertainment Boulevard, just a stones throw from the SilverCity Cinemas, Watermania and the Richmond Ice Centre, Monkey 9 Brewing offers their guests a robust menu, a generous happy hour, award winning beer, and on the premises, Lucky9 lanes bowling alley. If you’re wondering why the number nine, “nine represents positivity, gratification, togetherness, magic and wisdom.” “Everything is very superstitious. We opened up during the year of the Monkey [2016] and 9s are very, very lucky. With Lucky 9, Monkey 9 (monkeys are very lucky as well) it’s lucky right across the board. We work hand-in hand, which is really fun in my opinion,” says Monkey9 general manager, Martin O’Hara. The brewery is helmed by…

By Chef Alessandro Fairmont Hotel Waterfront This soup has been a favorite with guests in ARC since Chef Alessandro put it on the menu – with its rich creamy texture it isn’t hard to see (or taste) why. The mushrooms are foraged on Vancouver Island while their culinary apprentices hand-picked the hazelnuts in nearby Agassiz. INGREDIENTS Portobello mushrooms (500g) White button mushrooms (1kg) Garlic (30g) Carrots (250g) White Onion (500g) Rosemary (2g) Tarragon (2g) Lemon juice Miso paste (60g) Dried Porcini mushroom, in hot water (60g) Vegetable stock (2L) Salt and pepper to taste Sherry vinegar (15mL) Butter (60g) Cream (250mL) Hazelnuts (200g) DIRECTIONS 1. Sweat the onions, carrots, garlic and the rosemary in the butter. 2. Once translucent, add the button and porcini mushrooms, and sweat for about 10 minutes. 3. Add the miso, vegetable stock, cream, porcini mushrooms and the soaking water. 4. Add the hazelnuts and simmer…

By Gail Johnson Katarina Edwards grew up on a farm in 100 Mile House and was plucking chickens by the time she was a teen. These days, she’s a butcher at Two Rivers Specialty Meats. The North Vancouver-based eatery and butcher shop works with small farms across B.C. and Alberta–like Brant Lake Wagyu, Peace Country Lamb, and Pemberton Meadows Natural Beef–that produce sustainable, ethically raised meat. Here, Edwards shares a glimpse into a day in the life behind the chopping block. What was it like growing up on a farm? My mom comes from a family of 11 children from Germany. They had a farm, restaurant, and butcher shop in New Brunswick. She passed all that knowledge along to me and my two younger sisters. We had a variety of animals: pigs, goats, chickens… We always had our own meat in the freezer. We would milk the goats and we…

By Gail Johnson After more than 25 years in business, Vij’s has become a Vancouver icon, one of those standout restaurants that forever changed the city’s culinary landscape. Early on, co-owners Vikram Vij and Meeru Dhalwala (who were formerly married and have two grown daughters) established what roles suited them best: Vij, with his ability to connect with customers, would handle front of house operations. Dhalwala, who has a knack for coming up with new, inventive Indian dishes despite no formal culinary training, would handle the cooking. It’s been a recipe for success ever since. When the restaurant first opened in 1994 as a 14-seat space, Amarjeet Gill, whom Vij had met through a mutual acquaintance, was his part-time dishwasher. She had come to Canada in her 20s in a happy arranged marriage and spoke no English. Within weeks, Gill was right by Dhalwala’s side, chopping, slicing, and stirring. She…

By Kristi Alexandra This Lunar New Year rings in the Year of the Rat, with celebrations taking place all over Metro Vancouver. Lunar New Year is celebrated in several Asian diasporic communities, including Taiwanese, Vietnamese and Chinese. On January 25, expect to see paper lanterns, lion dances and fireworks across Vancouver and surrounding areas–but most delectable of all these ancient and vibrant traditions are the treats that help celebrate the occasion. Here are some classic Lunar New Year goodies from a few different traditions and where to find them as the holiday approaches. Dumplings Galore! It’s no secret that people love to gather together and share dumplings on any given day–just ask any dim sum restaurateur. Dumplings are especially significant during Lunar New Year as they can denote families spending time together and, even more auspiciously, resemble ancient Chinese money known as gold ingot. There will be tons of regular…

By Gail Johnson House of Funk Brewing is funky indeed: the small-batch Vancouver’s North Shore brewery specializes in beer that has been fermented, exposed to wild yeast, or spent time in wood. Located at 350 East Esplanade in Lower Lonsdale’s burgeoning Shipyards Brewery District—with a view of Vancouver Harbour—the brewery is a family affair. Darren and Jody Hollett, a husband-and-wife team with a newborn and a toddler, run it with his brother, mom, dad, uncle, and a few dear friends. Darren, formerly of Mission Springs Craft Brewery and Hearthstone Brewery, among others, fills us in on what House of Funk is all about. What exactly do you mean by “funky” beer? The name House of Funk comes from the style of beer we’re after, using a lot of wild yeasts, a lot of bacteria and bugs. They make beer taste funky, so it has a barnyard funk and rustic character…

By Kristi Alexandra If Ali Wong’s character in Always Be My Maybe had been inspired by a real-life restaurateur, it would be Langley’s Parinya Loptson. Known as “Chef Parinya” to those who watched her on Get Cooking With The Stars, Lopston is the owner, executive chef and manager of Ban Chok Dee, an award-winning Thai restaurant known for its authentic Thai flavours and its just-as-appetizing artistic presentation. The restaurateur, who’s been at the helm of Ban Chok Dee since 2009, is part-chef, part artist, part business owner and part master teacher. With two locations—one in Langley, and another in Maple Ridge—Parinya’s meals are served seven days a week in the Lower Mainland. If you find yourself inside one of the 120-seat fine dining eateries, you won’t want to miss out on the restaurant’s specialties. Try the Crying Tiger Salad, made with BBQ steak, sliced in Thai spicy sauce with a…

by Tourism Vancouver Take your taste buds abroad at Dine Out Vancouver Festival’s most anticipated culinary event. The fifth annual Vancouver World Chef Exchange, will bring award-winning chefs from global culinary hubs to Vancouver for a series of four collaborative  dinners, featuring flavours from Toronto, Cork, Monterrey, and a cross-Pacific Indigenous Nations collaboration with chefs from Edmonton and Auckland. During each event, the visiting and local chefs will join forces to produce an incredible multi-course dinner at the Vancouver chef’s restaurant, taking inspiration from their respective restaurants’ most popular dishes; their own cultural influences and favourite fare; and local and seasonal ingredients. Here are this year’s pairings: All-Canadian Toronto’s Chef Charlotte Langley & Vancouver’s Chef Shelome Bouvette Where: Chicha Restaurant When: January 21 at 7:00 PM Details: An all-female, all star east coast meets west coast seafood dinner and wine pairings. Chef Charlotte Langley (East Coast) and Chef Shelome Bouvette…

By Kathy Mak Walk into Sabà Café and Bistro and it’s immediately apparent that the place and food are special. Situated in an unhurried corner of Fort Langley, Sabà is very much a gathering place that nourishes and anchors people. It’s one of those eateries – cozy ambiance, feel-good food, wonderfully convivial – in which, immediately, you feel right at home. Afterall, this café-bistro is a family affair, passionately owned and led by husband-and-wife team Enrico Campani and Simone Hurwitz, and assisted by their daughters Laura, Dannielle and Emma. Hurwitz mainly works on the food while Campani handles logistics and front of house hospitality, including performing on live music nights. The girls pitch in between their studies, from marketing to serving.  Danielle, a budding photographer, is usually behind the lens of their beautiful Sabàgram images. From living in Italy, the family moved to Fort Langley about 10 years ago. “We…

By Brittany Tiplady Richmond has a lot to offer. Most notably, the beautiful Steveston village and boardwalk and, recently, a burgeoning craft beer community. Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks recently took home some serious hardware at the BC Beer Awards, which means, you now have no excuse not to visit their tasting room, and tack on a few others too. Check out the seasonal goodies pouring this fall and winter in Richmond. Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks 11220 Horseshoe Way #103, Richmond Bean Me Up Espresso Milk Stout, 5.7% Coffee, meet beer. We think you’ll get along perfectly, and so do the follks at Fuggles & Warlock. This delightful, winter-friendly stout made in collaboration with Notch Coffee is extra creamy and sweet from the added lactose. Enjoy it on tap, or in cans. Britannia Brewing Brewery: #110-12500 Horseshoe Way, Richmond Brewpub: 12240 Second Ave, Richmond, Steveston  Sirens Chai Saison, 5.75 Basically just…

By Joyce Chua, Vancouver Foodie Tours It’s the last “sprint to the finish line” to find a unique and thoughtful gift for everyone on that Christmas list. Luckily, here in Vancouver, we’re blessed with Granville Island – an area filled with Canadian artisans, one-of-a-kind goods, and delicious wares. The best part? It’s all at your fingertips – no shipping required. Check out these 6 expert tips on how you can find awesome last-minute gifts at Granville Island: 1. Arrive early or late Granville Island is a hub for Christmas activity, especially in and around the Public Market. If you’re able to shop the Island before 11:00am or after 4:00pm, you’ll avoid the masses and have a chance to chat with the bakers, chefs, artisans and makers. 2. Start at Make Vancouver Start at Make for a dose of gift inspiration. Start with a Canadiana t-shirt printed with images of Justin Trudeau,…

By Gail Johnson It’s looking a lot like Christmas, and for those who prefer to dine out rather than eat in during the holidays, local restaurants have got you covered. Here are a few that will do the cooking for you. Vancouver YEW Seafood + Bar at the Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver (791 West Georgia Street) Christmas eve dinner, Christmas day brunch buffet, and Christmas day dinner are all on extravagant offer. This is the last time you’ll be able to celebrate the holidays at the Four Seasons: the luxury property is closing on January 30, 2020. Bombay Kitchen and Bar (1018 Commercial Drive; open December 24 and 25) Authentic Indian dishes will warm you up when the weather outside is frightful.  On the menu are tandoori chicken, prawns, veggies, lamb chops, and goat chops alongside vegetarian dishes like tofu tikka masala, eggplant bharta, and paneer vindaloo. Juke Fried Chicken…

By Brittany Tiplady Not much of a baker? Neither am I, but that doesn’t mean you can pull up to the party empty-handed. We’ve rounded up six Metro Vancouver bakeries and pie shops that are serving up decadent and unique cakes, tarts, cookies, and more. Catering to an array of dietary restrictions? We’ve sourced some gluten-free and dairy-free options for you as well! Pop in to your next holiday gathering with a bounty of holiday treats courtesy of one of the locations listed below. Cakes n Sweets 2773 Barnet Hwy, Coquitlam Near Coquitlam Centre SkyTrain station. This holiday season, Cakes n Sweets in Coquitlam will be offering gingerbread people cookies, gingerbread cupcakes, chocolate orange cupcakes, chocolate mint christmas tree cupcakes, christmas sugar cookies, red and green meringues, biscotti and ginger snap cookies. Find Cakes n Sweets just two  blocks west of Coquitlam Centre Mall, pop in for your holiday sweets…

By Kristi Alexandra There’s no time like the present to fill up on presents! While you’re leisurely taking in the lights, sounds and smells of holiday markets around Metro Vancouver, don’t forget there’s also a bounty of food-based stocking stuffers from local artisans all over. There’s something for everyone, from your chocolate-loving neice to your gourmand grandmother. Check out the assortment of preserves, gluten-free treats and more, and which markets you can find them at, below. Vancouver Christmas Market Jack Poole Plaza – 1055 Canada Place, Vancouver Candy Meister at Vancouver Christmas Market invites you to the sweet side of life, offering a selection of colourful, all-natural, gluten-, dairy-, and corn-free candies from Germany! West Coast Wild Foods takes a walk on the wild side. As one of Canada’s leading wild mushroom companies, they bring wild mushrooms such as Chanterelle, Morel, Porcini, Pine and many others for the ultimate stocking…

By Sonu Purhar Everyone knows Christmas calories don’t count (right?) – and that’s why you’ll find us embarking on pilgrimages throughout the holiday season in search of desserts that even Santa would approve. Read on for our top picks, and be sure to post your own so we can expand our horizons and waistlines. Let’s get this sugarfest started! Clever Cupcakes 109-2985 Northern Avenue, Coquitlam 2 minute walk from Lincoln SkyTrain station. This cute cupcake shop was founded by Juan and Elsa Escobedo, who started the company after searching fruitlessly for tasty, allergy-friendly treats for their kids. Their cupcakes are certainly clever, boasting half the sugar of standard cakes, absolutely no peanuts or nuts, and exquisite designs holding bold flavours of double chocolate, vanilla and caramel. There are also vegan, sugar-free, gluten-free and dairy-free alternatives, which means everyone can find a sweet treat that satisfies. View this post on…

By Brittany Tiplady If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the holidays, why not take a stroll through a gorgeous display of lights? Treat your family, your significant other, or maybe just yourself to some Yuletide cheer! Metro Vancouver sure knows how to get into the holiday spirit with a vast selection of holiday light festivals popping up from Vancouver’s North Shore all the way to Langley. The artistry and brilliance of these events are bound to dissolve any Grinch-like feelings. The holidays are for feasting and you know that here at WestCoastFood we’ve got you covered in the food department. Grab a bite before or after with one of our recommendations below. Happy Holidays to you and yours! Vancouver Festival of Lights at the VanDusen Botanical Garden 5251 Oak St, Vancouver The annual Festival of Lights at the VanDusen Garden is arguably one of the most beloved holiday events in Vancouver…

by Catherine Dunwoody Imagine 28,000 square feet of Christmas entertaining ideas, delectable gift shopping, and décor all under one roof. The Christmas Store at Potters Nurseries in South Surrey is open now until Christmas Eve, and you have never seen a thing like it. The foodie on your list will love the thought you put into creating your own culinary gift basket, delicious hostess gift, or stocking stuffers for them. Think hot chocolate packs, dips, soups, crackers, sauces, jellies, British biscuits, and preserves from local wineries. Bacon candy canes? Why not. Ornaments with a food theme? How do a burger and fries grab you? And nutcrackers? Imagine an entire section dedicated to a jaw-dropping display and variety of options that make fabulous gifts. The Gourmet Food area offers thousands of products you won’t easily find elsewhere, including popcorn in at least 10 fun flavours, a staggering 30 flavours of hot…

By Brittany Tiplady ‘Tis the season for ubiquitous social media photos, Instagram stories, and Snapchats of holiday parties, outings, and events. Amongst the many options to get into the festive spirit in Metro Vancouver is the Lights at Lafarge. Conveniently located only 140 metres from the Lafarge Lake-Douglas Evergreen line station, the Lights at Lafarge the largest free outdoor lights display in the lower mainland. Free, being the operative word. Enjoy the display after dusk while going for a light stroll around the LaFarge Lake – a suitable and lovely outing for families, couples, and dog owners. As we enter the winter months, and temperatures drop, warming up after your walk through the Lights at Lafarge is essential. Browse through this selection of restaurants, cafes, and watering holes nearby. Pappa Roti Unit 100 – 1196 Pinetree Way If you haven’t given these fluffy, decadent, Malaysian style buns a chance-now is…

By Gail Johnson The Fraser Valley might be best known for produce like corn, berries and apples, but the region is increasingly gaining recognition for its wine. New and more established wineries are making the area a draw for those who like to sip red, white, rosé—or walnut. Walnut wine is indeed a thing. It’s the signature wine, in fact, of Langley City’s Vista D’oro Farms & Winery. That’s not to say that Patrick and Lee Murphy’s 10-acre farm overlooking the Golden Ears mountains doesn’t produce grapes; it grows many different types of vinifera grapes. But it’s walnuts that got really got the entire operation off the ground over a decade ago. The winery’s flagship 2008 D’oro, a fortified port-style wine, is a blend of Marechal Foch and Merlot, B.C. brandy, and fresh green walnuts. The walnuts grow on three mature trees that the original homesteader planted on the property…

By Gail Johnson For the food lover on your holiday gift list, North Vancouver’s Lonsdale Quay Public Market makes for one-stop shopping. Besides having a slew of locally made goods, the market by the water’s edge is a world away from echoey malls with panoramic outdoor views of downtown Vancouver. Here are a few take-home delights that will impress your discerning foodie friends. Giant Lollipops and Candy Canes from Olde World Confections These oversize treats will transport you straight to Dr. Seuss’s Whoville. Not your drugstore version, handmade peppermint candy canes are a full five feet long. Lollies large enough to make a Christmas stocking burst are wrapped with a ribbon and available in tutti fruity, lemonade, raspberry, strawberry, and cherry. Pickles from Kaylin & Hobbs Started by two Vancouver buddies who couldn’t find a New York style pickle in town, Kaylin & Hobbs makes multiple flavours of the crispy,…

By Kristi Alexandra Carousel rides, mulled wine, live trees, hand-crafted ornaments, and one-of-a-kind gifts can all be found at the Vancouver Christmas Market. Modelled after the European “Christkindlmarkts” of the old world, this Vancouver tradition draws hordes of locals to its home at the Jack Poole Plaza every holiday season. And those who frequent the market come for the biggest attraction: the food. Housed in huts that recall a true Bavarian experience, here are a few treats to try, from traditional German fare to modern Vancouver flare. Pretzel from Mr Pretzels No trip to a German Christmas Market (or anything German-themed, that is) is complete without a big, doughy pretzel. Twisted, braided, salted: whatever you choose, this wheat-filled treat goes best with spiced mustard and washes down well with a beer. Hurricane Potatoes from Das Kartoffelhaus Known sometimes as “tornado potatoes” or “hurricane fries,” this food originated on the streets…

By Brittany Tiplady You don’t have to be a Yeast Van resident to enjoy great seasonal beer. Lauded as the next brewery boom town, Langley and Langley City are now home to some pretty sweet, ultra-cozy, breweries, with two more on the way. Check out the seasonal goodies pouring this fall and winter in Langley. Dead Frog Brewery #105 – 8860 201 Street, Langley City Nutty Uncle Peanut Butter Stout, 7.1 % Brewed with eight choice malts, roasted cocoa beans, and of course, copious amounts of peanut butter. This creamy milk stout boasts smooth, peanut butte notes with an ever-so-sweet finish. Frostbite Winter IPA, 6.5% Don’t let the name fool you: this one will keep you nice and toasty. This hazy, “snow-white” IPA has delightfully hoppy and juicy flavours of orange, and spices. Winter Beeracle, 7% Winter Ale’s are one of the best parts of the season for obvious reasons.…

By Gail Johnson Chef Dawn Doucette has finally come home—home being the recently opened retro Douce Diner she runs with her husband, Nino Giangrande, at 1490 Pemberton Avenue in North Vancouver. With its chrome napkin holders, swivel bar stools, ’50s colours (think lotus yellow, vintage pink, and mint green), and Motown soundtrack, Douce Diner is a slick throwback to another era, albeit with a refreshed, modern-day menu. Doucette, a former Top Chef Canada competitor, is inspired by the likes of Berkeley, California chef Alice Waters, a pioneer of the slow-food, farm-to-plate movement. For her classic diner dishes, Doucette uses premium ingredients and a purist’s touch. The meat in the Double Douce Burger, for instance, is organic; the omelet is made with cage-free eggs; old-fashioned floats have vanilla gelato; and the banana split comes with freshly made strawberry compote. Hand-spun milkshakes can be spiked with liqueurs, the diner using North Van…

By Jenni Sheppard As the chilly nights draw in, Metro Vancouver still has plenty of warm and welcoming foodie hubs to keep you filled up this winter—including the inimitable Kozak Eatery & Bakery. This Ukrainian bakery, run by Irina Karpenko and her husband Sergiy Kuznietsov, serves up homemade breakfast, lunch, dinner, and baked goods just like grandma used to make. The couple originally began serving their tasty treats at farmers markets under the name Solodko Bakery, but soon became popular enough to open their first eatery. Renamed Kozak Bakery, their business has gone from strength to strength, and now boasts two locations, in New Westminster and East Vancouver, with a third coming to Gastown. To find out more, we spoke to Irina about the family history of this delicious bakery, where she and Sergiy get their inspiration, and what makes Ukrainian food so good. How did you first become interested…