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By Sonu Purhar Once a hot culinary trend, buffet dining has slowly dwindled into obscurity, replaced by farm-to-table dining, organic and sustainable everything, and tapas-style small-plate meals. But who says you can’t enjoy the best of both worlds? We’ve rounded up our favourite AYCE experiences across Metro Vancouver, many incorporating the exquisite platings, cultural diversity and sustainable ethos we’ve come to expect from our food. So, what are you waiting for? Step into those stretchy pants and let’s go. Mongo Bongo Mongolian Grill 512 6th Avenue, New Westminster Dishing up an intriguing selection of Eastern Asian cuisine, Mongo Bongo is renowned for its Mongolian-style stir-fry. You can take advantage of the restaurant’s AYCE lunch and dinner by filling up your bowl with crisp veggies, meats or tofu, piling on the sauce, and then carrying the concoction to the chef, who will cook it up on the grill. Diners with big…

By Kristi Alexandra Spicy, creamy, fishy, meaty. Throw in cabbage, leafy greens, eggs, wontons, mushrooms, ginger, thin-sliced meats and whatever else your heart (and tastebuds) may desire. There’s no shortage of customizations when it comes to hot pot, the meal you go out for and yet cook yourself. Made through a Chinese cooking method of preparing your food at the dining table, hot pot is an interactive meal made for group dinners on cool days. While a simmering soup base (spicy, creamy or vegetable, depending on the restaurant) is kept boiling, ingredients are thrown into a pot and cooked at the table. We found Metro Vancouver’s top 5 Hot Pot spots so you can cook and chow down at the same time. Pearl Hot Pot 7154 Sperling Ave, Burnaby Step right up and sit down for a group session at Pearl Hot Pot. Set right in the centre of the…

By Brittany Tiplady For West Coast Canadian 90s kids, donuts serve up some serious childhood nostalgia. Tim Hortons trips before hockey, Long John’s served with elementary school hot lunches, boxes of Krispy Kreme at a birthday party. You get the jist. Today, donuts are somewhat of a cultural currency. The beloved pastry continues to be elevated and topped with unique, showstopping ingredients that are as delicious in real life as it looks on Instagram. Hungry yet? Browse the list below to find some local favourites to indulge in. Doppio Zero Pizza 1655 Como Lake, Avenue, Coquitlam Because, you can never eat too many carbs in our opinion, after dinner try the Graffe. It’s an Italian made-to-order style doughnut drizzled with hot caramel. Outpost Mini Donut Company 110-12240 Second Avenue, Richmond Located in the heart of Steveston’s idyllic village, Outpost Mini Donut Company lives up to its name, serving up gourmet…

By Brittany Tiplady Our beloved BC salmon season is here and whether it’s baked, grilled, smoked, or served raw, BCers love their salmon (and preferably, of course, Ocean Wise). As the summer continues to be heated (this BC heat wave sure is intense), cooking in-doors becomes less of an option and outdoor BBQs, waterfront patios, and AC-clad restaurants reign supreme. Check out this helpful list of local Metro Vancouver restaurants and small-scale shops who are serving up fresh BC salmon to enjoy this season. Vancouver’s North Shore The Salmon House A truly stunning and coveted spot serving Indigenous West Coast fare for over 40 years. The Salmon House On The Hill is not for any old dinner, this iconic North Shore haunt is perfect for anniversaries, birthdays, and really, celebrations of any kind. Bonus: the window-wrapped dining room bares the breathtaking view of the Vancouver and Burrard Inlet. As the…

We all have one: that friend who posts pictures of every meal on Instagram; who hosts immaculate dinner parties and amps up the carefully curated cheese board with homemade sourdough and prosciutto cured in their own garage; who frequently visits farmer’s markets or forages for fiddleheads. They’re a foodie. But who ever said foodies were exclusively adults? With the ubiquity of cooking shows, YouTube tutorials, and wherever else kids get their information these days, Gen Z is ready to make something delicious. And what responsible parent wants to ignore their child’s desire to be in the kitchen? (So long as they learn to clean, anyways.) Indulge your kid with one of these top-notch cooking classes whether you live in BC or are just visiting; after all, the best way to experience regional cuisine is to make it yourself. Your kids will learn to appreciate different kinds of food and take…

by Catherine Dunwoody No excuses – our West Coast palette is refined, so waxy chocolate bunnies, rock-hard jellybeans and Peeps (what are those even made of anyway?) are just plain unacceptable. We can do better. And we do! Here, three of BC’s best chocolate makers show us what’s new for Easter 2018. Wild Sweets By Dominique and Cindy Duby’s Spring limited edition chocolate art collection screams “spring!” with the use of fruits, origin cocoa bean-to-bar chocolate and a palette of spring-like pastel colours. Sophisticated flavours include cassis caramels, pistachio praline and cherry caramel ganache, and a liquid strawberry caramel with dulce de leche. Almost too pretty to eat. Almost. Shop at their online boutique or at Wild Sweets’ own retail store The Atelier Chocolate Lab Gallery in Richmond. Shop at their online boutique or at Wild Sweets’ own retail store The Atelier Chocolate Lab Gallery in Richmond, BC. Purdys Chocolatier is about as old-school…

By Catherine Dunwoody The award-winning supplier of ethical and sustainable meats sold at some of BC’s best restaurants has opened up shop. It’s a traditional working butchery, complete with a glass-walled dry-age room; a European-style deli and take-away counter; plus a 32-seat, eat-in restaurant. There’s a stylish terrazzo-floor, 2,500 square-foot industrial space and come sunny weather, an additional 16-seat patio where you can get a hearty lunch or share a charcuterie board. Two Rivers Meats selects, prepares and sells only ethically and sustainably raised products from like-minded farms, including Cache Creek Natural Beef, Peace Country lamb, Cheam View Pork, Farm Crest Chickens, Canadian Rangeland bison, Yarrow Meadows Farm duck, and others. Chef Tony Starratt’s kitchen and family-style eatery serves what the Two Rivers brand does so well. Bonus? Guests can dine in and then take home recipe ideas. Try the 60-day dry-aged burger or the rotisserie chicken with hand-cut fried…

By Catherine Dunwoody If being elbow-deep in the freshest, tastiest seafood around is your kind of feast, then The Captain’s Boil is your new go-to eatery. And with so many options of flavor, spice, and sides, it’s a crowd-pleaser for everyone in the family. With numerous west coast locations, including Richmond, Coquitlam, Vancouver’s North Shore (coming soon), and Vancouver, this Canadian chain restaurant offers a classic Cajun-inspired seafood boil that you customize to suit your tastes perfectly. Start with choosing from a variety of freshly caught fish and shellfish, then add sides and sauces from a lengthy menu of options. You’ll be given a plastic bib and gloves to protect your clothes and hands from the delicious mess, and you wont find cutlery on the table either. Shellfish crackers are provided and the fun begins. Try the Cajun crawfish with a side of okra, or the king crab legs with…

By Mary Ann Bell Cupcakes are little hand-held delights of the baking world. They’re just enough to feel like you’re enjoying a decadent treat, but not so much that you feel like you’ve eaten the entire cake. With as many variations as you can dream up, they come in simple as well as unique flavours, and are topped with everything from frosting and sprinkles to bacon and pickles. Every February, animal rescue organizations including the BCSPCA are holding their annual National Cupcake Day* to raise money for animals, and what better way to get into the spirit than with a cupcake party? Bake your own or visit one of these Metro Vancouver bakeshops: Pink Ribbon Bakery 103-306 6th Street, New Westminster This funky little shop is New West’s go-to spot for cakes and cupcakes.  With their newly introduced “flavour of the week” cupcakes like Mountain Dew x Doritos, Nanaimo Bar…

By Brittany Tiplady Ah, February, the month of all things sweet. Sure, the weather may still be chilly but you can’t deny that love is in the air and the temptation for sweets is stronger than ever. If you’re an inquisitive chocolate lover you’ve come to the right place! Consider learning more about your favourite decadent treat at one of these workshops: Wild Sweets by Dominic and Cindy Duby Richmond (12191 Hammersmith Way #2145) Wild Sweets offers weekly sessions, every Saturday, for attendees 10 years and older. Sessions include an extensive and educational chocolate tasting, appreciation and pairing, (including wine, beer, and spirits) priced at $45. Coconama Vancouver’s North Shore (264 East 1st Street) In only two hours the chocolate experts at Coconama will teach you how to make chocolate from scratch by hand, and of course, you get to take your treats home with you! Classes are $40 per…

By Catherine Dunwoody Spoil your sweetheart and yourself with one of these sumptuous treats just in time for Cupid’s big day. Remember nothing says “I Love You” more than chocolate. Or cake. Or pastries. You get the idea. Every Community in Metro Vancouver is whipping up something special this year; have a look at our picks from each: Fieldstone Bakery Surrey Their Heart Shaped Cake for 2, ($16) is a chocolate cake filled with hazelnut mousseline and topped with a chocolate mirror glaze. Available from February 9th –18th at the store, but pre-orders are always recommended. Chez Christophe Burnaby A new Velour dessert has red velvet sponge, lemon yogurt mousse, pistachio ganache, pistachio beet chocolate crunch, and raspberry jam. Available February 9th – 14th. Cakes N Sweets Coquitlam Valentines High Tea features buttermilk scones with Devonshire cream and jam, cucumber and lemon aioli finger sandwiches, red pepper and cream cheese croissant, three cheese quiche, chocolate…

By Catherine Dunwoody It’s February – have you made your Valentine’s Day reservations yet? Celebrate your most beloved loved one with a special evening for two at one of these restaurants across Metro Vancouver. Champagne optional (but not really – bubbly is pretty much essential). My Shanti Surrey Considered to be one of the best restaurants for Indian cuisine in the lower mainland, this Vij’s owned eatery has an exotic, dreamy vibe that is sure to set hearts aflame. Plus, spicy food helps. Wild Rice New Westminster, in River Market Order the share table for two, $60, with $5 from every meal donated to Ocean Wise. Nibble on sautéed prawns, organic Angus beef carpaccio, seared sablefish and more. A sexy sharesie meal indeed. Horizons Burnaby The view is absolutely spectacular in the gardens of Burnaby Mountain Park. Book soon to reserve a table early in the evening before sunset. Globe@YVR…

By Brittany Tiplady Vancouver’s North Shore winters may be chilly and long, but there is always beer- and Kinky Friedman said it best: “Beauty is in the eye of the beer holder.” We know the holidays are long over (thank goodness!) but if seasonal beers are your jam, you’re in luck! There’s still a bevy of winter-themed brews stocked by beloved craft breweries on Vancouver’s North Shore to keep yourself warm for the winter months to come.   Green Leaf Brewing 123 Carrie Cates Court, Lonsdale Quay Market, North Vancouver LoLo Stout 5.5% Named after Green Leaf’s Lower Lonsdale neighborhood, LoLo is a dark and hearty stout that boasts rich and delicious chocolate and coffee flavours. Perfect for the endless North Shore winters.   Deep Cove Brewers and Distillers 2270 Dollarton Hwy #170, North Vancouver Dog Mountain Extra Stout, 7.5% (Cans only) Deep Cove Brewers lovingly describes the Dog Mountain…

By Brittany Tiplady We have Europe to thank for the invention of olive oil and balsamic tasting bars. Now, olive oil specialty shops are popping up around Metro Vancouver and making quite the impression on curious foodies. Artisanal olive oil shops don’t just have bottles of beautiful oils (and most also have a large selection of vinegars) on display, olive oil tastings bars present an interactive and educational experience. Customers can peruse the lineup of fustis, special stainless-steel jars that store olive oil and balsamics, and learn about the flavours, origins, and make of each oil and vinegar. Tasting olive oils offers a sensory experience for the consumer, bringing the flavour profile we usually read on a label right to your palate. “Smaller boutique shops get people talking about traceability when it comes to olive oil. Shops like ours educate customers on who you are supporting, and the freshness of…

by Catherine Dunwoody Chocolatier Thomas Haas has revealed their brand new holiday collection of Christmas-themed chocolates and candies, plus stocking stuffers and baked goods. A long-time resident of North Vancouver, Thomas and his wife Lisa own two patisseries, one on Harbourside (where the production kitchen is as well) and the other on Broadway in Kitsilano. The holiday goodies include Rudolph in the Forest— a chocolate crafted Rudolph with a belly full of cocoa nib crunch and caramelized nuts dipped in chocolate, a Truffle Tree, traditional stollen Christmas bread, chocolate lollipops, delicate fruit gelées and so much more. An internationally acclaimed, fourth-generation pâtissier, Thomas Haas gained experience in Michelin-starred restaurants in Europe and North America before settling in Vancouver in 2005. Haas is a fourth-generation pâtissier, and has held stints as Executive Pastry Chef at the Four Seasons Hotel, Executive Pastry Chef at chef Daniel Boulud’s flagship eatery Daniel on Manhattan’s…

By Brittany Tiplady What comes to mind when you think of the North Shore’s Deep Cove? Hikes up Quarry Rock amongst a bustling crowd, paddleboarders gliding across the Burrard Inlet, kayaking, lush terrain, stunning mountainous views and a sweet small town-esque vibe. Heading west from the quay to the picturesque Indian Arm is Deep Cove, and at the centre of this cozy waterfront community is the beloved and highly acclaimed Cafe Orso, a local staple with big Italian influence that serves European-inspired food sourced locally. This brainchild of owner Jonathan Hayward and his wife Lori Steeves was conceived when they were on a European vacation enjoying an apres-hike coffee and cheese board. “We were [over] mediocracy in this affluent, high-end neighborhood of Deep Cove. And a lot of people in this area were expressing the need for a good coffee shop. So, we came up with the concept, and here…

By Brittany Tiplady How do we identify true members of our community? The term community albeit, chalk full of good intentions, has been tossed around so much that we often forget the true meaning of the word. North Vancouver’s Chef Joel Green certainly has not forgotten the meaning of community-in fact, he embodies it. I met with Green at Lonsdale’s Pinnacle Hotel on the Pier on a sunny Saturday afternoon, opening our interview with light conversation about the early Vancouver snowfall and the beginnings of winter that’s upon us West Coast wimps. He is simply giddy about an early snowfall- “I love it!” he beams. “Last winter was great, I spent 30 days on the mountain.” We start to chat about Green’s impressive career, his deep and passionate involvement with the North Shore, and the contents of his last meal. It’s evident that Green loves where he lives, loves what…

by Catherine Dunwoody Vancouver’s North Shore Tourism Association has partnered with the five (soon to be seven!) microbreweries to host their first-ever craft beer festival, running from October 6-13, 2017. Vancouver’s North Shore goes from Deep Cove to Horseshoe Bay, and participating breweries are offering everything from cask nights to craft brewery crawls, to Brewmaster’s Dinners, and more. Who’s in on the fun? Beere Brewing Company, Black Kettle Brewing Company, Bridge Brewing Company, Deep Cove Brewers and Distillers, and Hearthstone Brewery. Serious about beer? Get your very own Vancouver’s North Shore Craft Beer Week Passport and get stamped as you sip your way to the opportunity to win a prize draw. Think hotel stays, Capilano Suspension Bridge passes, filled growlers, and much more. “We are delighted to introduce this festival, and our craft breweries, to new and old friends alike”, said Jennifer Belak, Executive Director at Vancouver’s North Shore Tourism…

By Kristi Alexandra There’s a homey vibe when you step into Nourish Market on Vancouver’s North Shore. With crates of fresh produce greeting you at the door, a quiet dining enclave in the corner, and a few rows of neatly arranged grains and bottles, the small mom-and-pop grocery shop is no big box store. Tucked into the pristine Lynn Valley Village, it’s not even the wholesome facade of high-end, organic grocers. Unpretentious, healthful, and local, a trip to Nourish Market evokes friendly feelings of visiting a neighbour to break bread. “A lot of folks, like us, are tired of the impersonal big box and chain stores. They are looking for a deeper connection to their food and their community. We offer a curated collection of the best of what local producers and artisans have to offer,” says founder Jeff Proseilo. Proseilo and his family opened up shop in 2011, and…

By BC Association of Farmers Markets The BC growing season is in full swing, and you can experience the palette of summer with a trip to some of the 145+ BC farmers’ markets. Whether you’re headed here on a weekend with family or friends, or taking the summer to explore Canada’s West Coast, here’s everything you need to build a farmers’ market visit into your summer travels across the province. Step 1: Know your BC farmers’ markets With over 145 BC farmers’ markets across the province, you’re sure to discover more than a few that you’ll love to return to year after year. This helpful BC Farmers’ Market Finder tool will help you make the tough choices (popsicles in White Rock, or honey in Richmond?) and you might be surprised to see how easy it is to access more than one farmers’ market closer to home. Here’s a tip: BC…

By Kathy Mak The local craft spirit movement has been gaining momentum for the past five years in Greater Vancouver thanks to a burgeoning breed of small-format distilleries that produce atypical products for a thriving cocktail community.  Nowhere is that truer than at the Sons of Vancouver Distillery, based on Vancouver’s North Shore. This self-proclaimed really, really small batch distillery has won over fans and followers with their grassroots energy and well-crafted roster of artisan products – a vodka, a chili-infused vodka and an amaretto liqueur. The dynamic duo behind Sons of Vancouver are James Lester and Richard Klaus who met during trade school. They are part of a breed of new artisan distillers shaping the craft cocktail landscape in British Columbia.  These two enterprising friends and business partners are not ones to chase conventional dreams.  When they started their adventure as one of a few local early-adopters in craft…

by Catherine Dunwoody No excuses – our west coast palette is refined, so waxy chocolate bunnies, rock-hard jellybeans and Peeps (what are those even made of anyway?) are just plain unacceptable. We can do better. And we do! Here, three of BC’s best chocolate makers show us what’s new for Easter 2017. Wild Sweets By Dominique and Cindy Duby in Richmond have new chocolate art collections with made in-house designs and from origin cocoa bean-to-bar chocolate. Sophisticated flavours include cassis caramels, pistachio praline and cherry caramel ganache, and a liquid strawberry caramel with dulce de leche. Almost too pretty to eat. Almost. Shop at their online boutique or at Wild Sweets’ own retail store The Atelier Chocolate Lab Gallery in Richmond, BC. Purdys Chocolatier is about as old-school and iconic as you get. Founded in 1907 in Vancouver, they have a long history of providing the West Coast with melt-in-your-mouth…

By Ashley Lockyer Few places on earth let you enjoy freshly made food from the city in the quiet wilderness of a rainforest: Vancouver’s North Shore is one of them. At places like Lynn Canyon Park, you can take in sweeping horizon views, test your fear of heights on the suspension bridge, or simply wander in nature with friends and family. Start your adventure at the Lonsdale Quay Market and pack some unique treats for the trail.  Bowen Island Pizza Company Beware: Thin crust pizzas (in flavours like pear and brie cheese with caramelized onions) will attract envious looks on the trail. Crack one of these mild pepperoni whip sticks to keep you moving on the trail. They are best described as a “snappable” snack because of their crunchy casing. Try one to see! Kin’s Market Stroll through a farmer’s field of fresh fruits and vegetables, and harvest a few…

By Jaclyn Jularbal Right in the heart of Squamish Nation on Vancouver’s North Shore, lies the PR Bannock Factory – a catering business and food trailer owned and operated by Chef Paul Natrall. Paul began his cooking career a decade ago as a teen involved with the Cook Street Café, a six month program for youth on Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. His love for preparing meals led him to enroll and graduate from the Aboriginal Culinary Arts program at Vancouver Community College, where Paul launched his career specializing in traditional Indigenous cuisines. The dream to start his own business came into fruition after finding success as part of Team Canada’s Culinary Team in the 2012 World Culinary Olympics. Though he’s been working professionally for just a decade his journey to owning his own business has been much longer. Paul’s love for cooking started when he was just a boy. “I’ve been…

With a backyard of clean rivers and lakes, the Pacific Ocean, and rich fertile land, the farmers, chefs, brewers, distillers, fishers, and producers are able to bring their diverse traditions, cultures, and creativity to the plates, cups, and glasses of Canada’s west coast. The taste is hyper local, from Vancouver to the Fraser Valley. Featured in this video: The Vancouver Aquarium, The Liberty Distillery, Fraser Valley Cider Company, Cherry Lane Farms, Burnaby Village Museum, Bella Gelateria, Crazy Cows, Steveston Seafood House, Campbells Gold, Central City Brewers and Distillers, Fuggles & Warlock Craftworks, Trading Post Brewing, Steel & Oak Brewing, Vij’s

By Jaclyn Jularbal Vancouver’s North Shore boasts some of the most incredible views of the city. Surrounded by lush trees and snow-covered mountains, it’s a great place to enjoy many of winter’s finest things – snowboards, sweaters, and soup. Warm up with some of the tastiest soups in town and try some comforting flavours from around the world. Tamarind Hill 1440 Lonsdale Ave, North Vancouver If you’re a laksa fan, look no further. With delicious noodles, savory vegetables, and the perfect amount of spice – the milky essence of laksa is sure to warm you up from the inside out. Choose from your choice of Assam Seafood, Malaysian, and Singapore laksa. Be sure to pair it with an order of Roti Canai, the sweet fried bread makes a great add-on. The Neighbourhood Noodle House 1352 Lonsdale Ave, North Vancouver Don’t be fooled by the name – The Neighbourhood Noodle House…

By Jaclyn Jularbal When you talk about west coast cuisine, the first thing that comes to mind is usually salmon – baked, smoked, candied, and cured. So many species of salmon have flourished around BC and for centuries Indigenous communities across the province have been dishing them up deliciously. Chef Paul Natrall of Squamish Nation has been specializing in Indigenous cuisines for over 5 years. After his graduation from the Aboriginal Culinary Arts program at Vancouver Community College, he takes a special interest in creating the most unique flavours of salmon candy. His catering business, the PR Bannock Factory, serves up delicious bags by the pound at local farmers markets and on order all-year round. Salmon candy gets its flavouring from the salt and brown sugar used to flavour it. Left overnight the wet fish texture changes and becomes ready for its next steps towards becoming the almost syrup-like candied…

By Catherine Dunwoody Canada Place hosted the largest gluten-free food trade show in the country recently, the Gluten Free Expo. An opportunity for the consumer to stop and sample the wares and gain information at the many booths, plus check out some cooking demos and presentations – all geared to folks with gluten-allergies or sensitivities. Newly diagnosed with celiac disease myself, this show intrigued me both professionally and personally as a food writer with a rather refined palette trying to navigate this New Year eating gluten-free. Here’s my ‘best of the fest’ – products I tried and thought worth sharing, and mostly made right here on Canada’s west coast. Naked Coconuts from Vancouver makes soy-free teriyaki sauces.  Not only gf, but also soy-free, this organic, non-GMO, sauce has that salty, umami flavour we crave when it’s stir-fry time, and this one has 65% less sodium too. Free Yumm cookies and…

By Ashley Lockyer Wander through old growth forest, over streams and brooks, and you’ll find the perfect picnic place on Vancouver’s North Shore. The moderate Quarry Rock hike in Deep Cove leads to a rocky bluff with clear views of the water, mountains, and cityscapes, and is accessible year-round. All hikes require energy but don’t worry. This dockside town has plenty of portable portions to fuel your adventure. Stock your snack pack at these charming, locally owned businesses: Honey’s Donuts & Goodies Even the name of this place makes hikers hungry. This North Shore Vancouver breakfast cafe is famous for their doughnuts, baking, and all day, everyday brunch. Covert Cafe Apparently, the neighbours are complaining about the addictive scents wafting out of this spot’s door. They bake and make grandma-approved food in a modern and airy atmosphere. Bluhouse Cafe Local, organic, gluten free, and vegan. Experience the goodness in good…

By Kathy Mak These days, consumers wanting or needing gluten-free and vegan options do not have to miss out on delicious baked products, thanks to a growing number of specialty bakeries in Metro Vancouver and the Lower Mainland. But, the only decidedly all gluten-free and vegan bakery in the Vancouver area yet, is Two Daughters Bakeshop. They provide a large selection of oven-fresh, healthy products that are both gluten-free and vegan-friendly, without compromising on irresistible flavours. Tucked away in Lolo Lane, between 1st Street East and Esplanade Avenue, the cozy artisan bakery is located steps away from Lonsdale Quay on Vancouver`s North Shore. In 2012, Lisa Reichelt opened the bakery, dedicated to making gluten-free-vegan pastries, snacks, breads and desserts. It was inspired by her passion for baking and by her youngest daughter’s need for a celiac diet without eggs, dairy and gluten. Two Daughters Bakershop’s mission is to use the…

By Catherine Dunwoody “Fiddleheads should start popping up soon near Vancouver, and we’re looking for lady ferns Athyrium filix-femina and bracken ferns Pteridium aquilinum – those are the best in our area,” says Robin Kort of Swallow Tail Culinary Adventures. For those new to these wonderful, woodland edible plants, fiddleheads are the delicate, curly-cued, tip of the forest fern, and in season for a very short time. The taste is most often described as akin to a mix of asparagus and spinach. “Our foraging tours start in May,” says Kort. “Most of the tours are held on the North Shore as long as enough of the edibles are popping up there.” Some insider tips if you do hop on the foraging trail? “ Bracken ferns have carcinogens in them (but so does any char on a BBQ chicken),” says Kort. “I would cook all ferns, don’t eat them raw as the carcinogenic…

by Catherine Dunwoody Canada’s premier craft and micro-distillery festival, BC Distilled, showcased 27 BC-based artisan distilleries to nearly 500 fans of locally made gins, whiskies, liqueurs, vodkas and more this April. Clearly the show-stealer was The Woods Spirit Co.’s homegrown Amaro. If you’re the cocktail-culture type, or familiar with this Italian herbal liqueur because it’s been around for centuries (respect!) – you’ll likely be aware that Amaro in Italian means ‘bitter’ and brands like Aperol, Campari and Fernet-Branca are a few well-known names. Amari (that’s plural Amaro, folks) tend to be sipped straight up after dinner, soothing digestion with their balance of herbal, botanical, elixir-like properties. And in the land of classic cocktails? A Negroni would not be a Negroni, nor a Sprtiz a Spritz – without Amaro. Joel Myers and Fabio Martini, co-owners of The Woods Spirit Co. tell us the secret to their Amaro recipe is found on Vancouver’s…

By Vancouver’s North Shore Tourism North Vancouver’s iconic Lonsdale Quay Market opened during Expo ’86 as a carnival style marketplace. Almost thirty years later it has evolved into a culinary destination for those seeking fresh, local and unique foods. Recently a crop of new eateries has opened at the Quay, further cementing it as a great place to grab lunch or dinner. Check out The Bowen Island Pizza Company with their amazing thin crust pizzas made with local, organic flour and super delicious toppings. Try The Bite @ the Quay, is a new fusion restaurant with a view, featuring Cantonese and Chinese Dishes on an a la carte and tapas menu. The casually delicious Sandwich Shop has a menu of mouthwatering sandwiches loaded with juicy, fresh ingredients. At the Quay, you can pick up a bottle of wine or a growler of craft beer, bring home fresh seafood for dinner…

By Vancouver’s North Shore Tourism Hidden away on a busy through street, just off of Marine Drive in North Vancouver, you’ll find a bright little shop where the walls are lined with stainless steel keg-style vessels and rows upon rows of bottles just waiting to be filled. What’s special about this shop is that you’re not filling the bottles with wine or beer, you’re filling them with olive oil. And not just any olive oil, oil with names like Harissa infused, Mild Manzanillo, Robust Picholine, Persian Lime and Butter (it really tastes like butter). This is Olives on Tap and these are not your run-of-the-mill supermarket olive oils. Opened by owner Andrew Cameron in 2012, Olives on Tap educates visitors about the complexities of olive oils and the balsamic vinegars that pair so well with them. All of the oils and vinegars are available for sampling, and tasting is encouraged.…

By Vancouver’s North Shore Tourism Diners at Pier 7 Restaurant + Bar enjoy what has to be one of the most spectacular views of any restaurant on the North Shore. Located in Lower Lonsdale’s historic Victory Shipyards, the restaurant overlooks Burrard Inlet and the glittering towers downtown Vancouver. The heated patio is the perfect spot for enjoying a glass of wine while soaking up the evening sun and the dining room is warm, cozy, and perfect for savouring any of the memorable dishes on Executive Chef Matthew Phillip’s menu. The Pier 7 menu is seafood focused and emphasizes boat-to-table choices as well as seasonal, local fare. An Ocean Wise partner, they includes tasty sustainable seafood offerings including grilled west coast salmon and fresh-shucked oysters. Be sure to head down on a Thursday for “the boil,” an impressive seafood feast that includes Dungeness crab, snow crab, prawns, mussels, clams, grilled corn…

By Vancouver’s North Shore On the North Shore we take a lot of things seriously: hiking, mountain biking, skiing, and the weather to name just a few. We’re also serious about breakfast! It seems when someone finds a great breakfast joint, they do one of two things: they either tell all their friends or they keep it secret, for fear of not being able to get a table the next time they get a craving for eggs benny! Well, we’re going to share our breakfast secrets and let you in on the best spots on Vancouver’s North Shore. BLVD Bistro BLVD Bistro is the new kid on the block, but they came out swinging with a delicious all-day breakfast menu. From unique eggs bennies and heuvos rancheros to pulled pork pancakes and a to-die-for steak & eggs, the menu is fresh, local and delicious. Location: 636 Queensbury Avenue, North Vancouver…

By Kathy Mak When it comes to the Shipyards Night Market, the journey and the destination are both rewarding! Catch some of the best views of the city and the North Shore Mountains while cruising across the Burrard Inlet on the Seabus passenger ferry (between downtown Vancouver to Lonsdale Quay, North Vancouver). In the early evening, you can peruse the speciality shops in Lonsdale Quay Market on route to the night market, which is conveniently located next door. In contrast to other open-air night markets, the Shipyards Night Market is located on the waterfront with beautiful views of Vancouver’s skyline and setup at one of Canada’s Historic Places, the Burrard Dry Dock Company (Wallace Shipyards). You’ll be amused by the vibrant selection of amazing local food, drinks, music, arts, crafts and vendors, all the while watching the glow of the sunset fade over the city. Feast on fresh cuisine from…

By Nikki Bayley Vancouver’s street food scene is known as being one of the best in North America, with more than 100 trucks dotted around the city serving up a dizzying selection of cuisines from around the world. On any given day you could dine on Mexican tortilla stuffed with cactus, a Thai papaya salad, Polish homemade pierogi or even just a hot dog – Japanese-style –dressed with Teriyaki sauce and seaweed. The delicious twist with many of the trucks you’ll find around town is that they use seasonal ingredients right from the lower mainland, so you can taste something new and local each month as the fresh harvest comes in. You’ll also see Ocean Wise stickers on many of the trucks, which means that the seafood they serve is 100% sustainable so you can chow down guilt free. Find your new favourite truck with the handy StreetFood app. Start your…

By Joanne Sasvari Keep going. Over the train tracks. Past the North Shore Auto Mall. Towards the giant Seaspan crane towering above the North Vancouver shoreline. Through the industrial park and across from the high school. And there it is, chocolaty nirvana, in one of the most unlikely locations you could expect. This is the bijou little shop of master chocolatier and pastry chef Thomas Haas. If you’ve arrived after, say, 10 am, chances are good that there’s a lineup of people waiting for his croissants and cappuccinos and the gorgeous chocolates glittering in the glass case like cacao-scented jewels. Don’t worry, just get in line: everything here is worth the wait. If it’s really busy, Haas himself might pop out to visit. Perhaps he’ll hand around some of his rich, dark “sparkle cookies,” which have been named among the best in the world by Saveur, The Los Angeles Times…

By Joanne Sasvari Here on Vancouver’s North Shore, you could say the meat is, well, a cut above. North and West Vancouver are home to a number of butchers, meat shops and sausage makers who’ve carved out a high-quality niche, often specializing in local, organic, antibiotic-free, chemical-free and humanely raised products. Two Rivers Specialty Meats Technically, Two Rivers Specialty Meats is a North Vancouver-based wholesale distributor that sells meat throughout the Lower Mainland. But they’re much more than that. They’re a force for good – after all, they’ve done more than just about anyone to make local, ethically raised meats the popular choice for diners in Vancouver. You’ll find their products – from highly respected producers like Sloping Hills pork, Thiessen Farms chickens and Pemberton Meadows natural beef – on the best restaurant menus in Vancouver as well as in boxes from the SPUD organic food delivery service. Now Two…