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.
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.
Started by two Vancouver buddies who couldn’t find a New York style pickle in town, Kaylin & Hobbs makes multiple flavours of the crispy, vegan, gluten-free snacks. If jalapeno has too much fire for you, other varieties include kosher dill, half sour, mustard, and full sour, which will have you puckering for more. The founders suggest serving them cold with charcuterie or a West Coast IPA—or simply eating them straight out of the pail.
Run by a mother-daughter duo, the window-side bakery has a tea room to sip its house-made Louise and Louise fine teas along with some freshly made pastries. To lift someone’s spirits, pick up a kraft-ribboned cookie box with a flip-top lid, filled with jam thumbprints, ginger stars, chocolate crinkles, Florentines, white-chocolate butter fingers, and gingerbread ladies.
Butter Lane’s signature gingerbread white-chocolate Christmas cake would also do quite nicely: the three-layer dark gingerbread sponge cake has white chocolate buttercream icing decorated with a chocolate tree, metallic edible paint, fresh berries, and gingerbread dust.
Blue Teapot has an extensive selection black, green, oolong, white, fruit, herbal, rooibos, and honeybush teas, which all come in the striking bold blue packaging. Solid picks for the holidays include tangy blood orange with safflower; organic ginger; or Moring Dew, a green tea with cornflower, rose, and sunflower. Then there’s the licorice-y Hurricane, with blackberry leaves, aniseed, fennel seeds, apple pieces, elderberries, rosehip shells, marigold, and more.
In operation at Lonsdale Quay since it first opened in 1986, the recently renovated Salmon Shop specializes in fresh West Coast seafood, from fishing boat to counter, such as halibut and wild salmon. It has a new oyster bar, too.
Two decadent B.C. treats are West Coast Select Maple Smoked Salmon Nuggets and SeaChange Seafoods’ Wild Smoked Sockeye Salmon. Slip one of these into a stocking, present as a hostess gift, or add to a gift basket with gourmet crackers and a bottle of wine.
Whether you’re splurging on a bottle of Mission Hill Family Estates’ 2013 Legacy Compendium VQA or celebrating Wine Wednesday more casually with Rigamarole Rosé VQA, you’ll find it here.
Raspberry Sour is festive; so is LoLo Stout, with its notes of chocolate and coffee. If it’s a non-alcoholic beverage you’re thirsting for, check out the cranberry-ginger kombucha, made in-hosue with fermented black tea.