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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 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 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 Chef Joel Green at the Lobby Restaurant at the Pinnacle Hotel at the Pier on Vancouver’s North Shore Slow-braised beef, roasted vegetables, cabernet braissage. Serves 4 INGREDIENTS Boneless Chuck Roast (1.5 lbs) Unsalted Beef Stock (2 litres) White onion, Jumbo Carrot, Celery Stem (1 each) Vegetable oil (2 fluid oz) Your favourite Cabernet Sauvignon (250 ml) Unsalted Butter (60g) All-Purpose Flour (60g) Red Pepper, Red Beet (1ea) Broccolini (4 Stems) Finger Carrots (8) Olive oil (2 fluid oz) Pappardelle Noodles (1.5 lbs) Shaved Parmesan (4 oz) INSTRUCTIONS Preheat your oven to 300F Coarse chop your onion, carrot, and celery. Set aside. Grab a medium-sized pot, able to hold your beef chuck. Place on the stove at high heat. Add your vegetable oil. Season your beef with salt and pepper on all sides and sear in the pan for 30 seconds each side ensuring the meat has a dark golden colour. Remove…

By Kristi Alexandra Normally, a cold comfort is a bit of an oxymoron, but Burnaby and New Westminster are brewing up something that’s both refreshingly cool and cheering. As winter descends, you’ll want to cozy up with a glass of these drafts coming out of neighbourhood taprooms until the New Year. Steel & Oak 1319 Third Ave, New Westminster Back for a second year, and brewed in collaboration with Timbertrain (the West Cordova coffee roasters) is First Press. This double-entendre beer is a cold brew coffee stout with serious notes of cocoa, hazelnut, toffee, and a big old helping of freshly roasted coffee. Find them in cans or fill up on tap. As a redux to First Press, Steel & Oak debuts Second Press. This imperial cold brew coffee stout boasts big flavours of molasses, licorice, dark chocolate, hearty, roasted coffee and finishing smooth with a warming of alcohol. To…

By Brittany Tiplady Spring, so close yet so far. We recommend hibernating for the remaining winter months with a cold beer and a whole lot of Netflix. Or, hang out in one of the tap rooms listed below and take advantage of the rich, wintery beers they have to offer. Dageraad Brewing 3191 Thunderbird Crescent #114, Burnaby Londen, 7.0% Dageraad is the purveyor of classy and full-bodied craft beer. Recently released on January 19th, is Dageraad’s latest winter sipper called Londen; an English porter that is brewed with Belgian and Canadian influence and the “fruity, spicy mystery of a Belgian fermentation.” Try this on tap or in bottles at the Dageraad tasting room. 10°, 10.5% Hold onto your hats, this one is not for the faint of heart (or the lightweight)! The new Dageraad 10°, a 2016 bronze medalist at the 2016 BC Beer Awards, is an exotic winter brew…

By Kristi Alexandra Though the holidays have passed, winter doesn’t officially end until well into March, and nor do the city’s seasonal brews. While it may be too late for that craft beer advent calendar, the seasonal suds are still flowing with these Vancouver-based beers. We suggest you run, don’t walk, to find the following beers in the city before they stop flowing (and most definitely, don’t drive after). Postmark Brewing 55 Dunlevy Ave. Winter Warmer Bring it in for a classic, with touches so subtle you could drink this all-year-long. Dark, rich malts find themselves in a warming ale with refreshingly minimal spices. Parallel 49 1950 Triumph St. Broken Resolution Cherry Baltic Porter Finally, a winter beer that looks beyond December 25th. For when you give up on sober January, grab a hold of Parallel 49’s twist on the classic English Porter. Chocolate, plum, and a bright tart, cherry…

By Brittany Tiplady Beer can be romanticized in so many ways but the great Charles Bukowski nailed it: “stay with the beer,” he penned “beer is continuous blood. A continuous lover.” The holidays have come and gone, but Metro Vancouver’s mild winter weather is here to stay, at least for a few months. Curl up with these seasonal winter brews found in Surrey, White Rock and Coquitlam. Russell Brewing Company 13018 80 Ave, Surrey Winter Stout, 6.5% The name says it all. Available now in 650ml at private liquor stores, Russell Brewing’s Winter Stout is chock-full of chocolate and black malts and roasted barley. Black Death Porter, 6.5% Buckle up for this one! The Black Death Porter, part of Russell Brewing’s Brewmaster Seasonal Series, is a heavy porter brewed with Canadian and Scottish malted barley. Find it on tap or on the shelves at private liquor stores but buyer beware:…

By Alexis Baran It’s mid-January in Vancouver, and we are ready to stop letting the possibility of a little more winter rain dictate our plans at this point – we are ready to be outside. Street Food City, a part of the Dine Out Vancouver Festival is right on time, with a meeting of over 20 food trucks downtown all in one spot. Grab your coat, have your umbrella in hand, and follow the scent of melting cheeses, searing meats, grilling vegetables and wafts of spices to the Vancouver Art Gallery plaza. You can get hot and gooey with not one but two grilled cheese trucks (with vegan cheese and gluten-free options) or have a heap of mac & cheese that goes from a classic style to topped with broccoli or banana peppers or even (and you’ve got to try this one) roasted seaweed and teriyaki. If you’re into more…

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 VisitRichmondBC.ca Let’s face it, while cooking a big turkey with all the fixin’s for family and friends can be incredibly rewarding, sometimes it’s much less stressful to go out to eat and let someone else do the work for you. Many restaurants are closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day but, fortunately, many establishments in Richmond can come to your discerning palate’s rescue. Not only will they be open, but they also offer mouth-watering alternatives to the traditional Christmas meal. Here are five places where you can dine out on December 24th and 25th: Yuan’s Chuan Chuan Xiang Christmas often involves a bringing together of loved ones over good food. Hot pot adds an interactive dimension to the get-together that can be very enjoyable–and delicious. Yuan’s Chuan Chuan Xiang (Aberdeen Centre, 2792-4151 Hazelbridge Way) is the Richmond location of a chain that hails from Chengdu in China’s Sichuan province,…

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 Catherine Dunwoody Sometimes slowing down during the holiday season is the greatest gift of all. Through all the craziness, the non-stop hustle and bustle, just settling in for a hot cuppa and some delicious treats with family or friends is an ideal time out. Not only is most of the honey served at Honeybee Centre collected from their own bees, it is a big part of their new Holiday High Tea. Served from December 1st to 31st, choose from a variety of high quality teas (black, green and herbal) that come to your table in a French press, along with a tiered tray (doesn’t everyone love those?) with Christmas-themed cupcakes, macarons, cheesecake, shortbread cookies, cranberry orange scone with clotted cream and honey, plus savoury treats like the brie and roasted chicken panini, artichoke baguette, and a turkey and cranberry roll. Not a tea drinker? No worries, have a peppermint…

by Kathy Mak Winter may seem an unlikely time to visit an outdoor farmers market in Canada, but the milder climate in the Lower Mainland allows the markets and abundance of seasonal products to thrive. Deserving of more recognition, a winter market’s appeal lies not only in the quality and range of offerings, but also in knowing that it’s served by a passionate community of both food artisans/farmers and shopping foodies, all prepared to brave the elements in support of fresh local products. The charm of a winter market is in the smaller and manageable crowds. With shorter line ups, there’s time to sample and chit-chat with merchants. Live entertainment, food trucks and heating stations are also on hand to add some extra warmth. To visit a winter market is to crave comfy and warming flavours. It’s easy to take inspiration for cozy dishes from the bounty of seasonal products…

By Kathy Mak Baby, it’s cold outside! The best thing you can do is hoist a few wintry beers and cheers to chase the chill away. Winter beers, affectionately called “winter warmers”, are typically stouts and porters that are more robust – richer, bolder, creamier, and hoppier in style with a deeper hue appearance. They also tend to be higher in alcohol by volume (ABV) to keep you warm! Comforting flavours can range from hints of toffee, caramel, chocolate and molasses to smokiness. Some winter beers have spicy or sweet notes, while the more serious brews are barrel-aged. Unlike their summery counterparts, winter beers are sipped, not guzzled, and taste better around 7-10o C instead of icy-cold. In Vancouver and the valley, microbrewers have been busy crafting some of the most innovative seasonal specialities. Touted as the craft beer mecca of Canada, with over 50 artisanal breweries, there is an…