Vancouver - DINING & NIGHTLIFE
August 9th, 2013
We've (happily) done the research on this one: herewith, 5 wines we keep chilled all summer long.
As the sunny stretch continues, so should your intake of rosé. Cast in the Southern French style more-white-then-re as opposed to the more-red-then-white roses we see in the new world. With food or just some French pop music and a magazine this should transport you poolside at the Hotel Du Cap. $29.99 at BC Liquor Stores.
Brought to you by winemaker Senka Tennant (original cofounder and winemaker of Black Hills and the cult wine Nota Bene), they have struck pay dirt again with this exquisite summer sipper. This refreshing combo of Albarino and Verdejo juice is full of citrus and cleanses the palate like a scoop of grapefruit sorbet. Pair it with fresh seafood, lemon, chilies and mint (oh, and sunshine). From $25 direct from winery, https://www.terravistavineyards.com/order
Newly available (just) on the mainland at specialty shops and restaurants this hidden gem from the Cowichan Valley peaked our interest on a recent Victoria visit. Will most likely hit the shelves at $24- great value for a decent BC pinot...I'm sure the sale won't last forever. Start with salmon and finish with cherries and mint served over ice cubes (and exaggerated stories). From $25, www.bluegrousevineyards.com
Made in the traditional French method this tasty blend of Pinot Blanc, pinot noir and Chardonny is fit for any celebration...like, dinner. If a pretty woman from K-town was swept off her feet by a sophisticated Frenchman, this would be the love child. $24.99 at BC Liquor Stores.
It took silver at this year's national wine awards, but it's gold in our books. From the sunny slopes of Naramata (home to most of our favourite BC whites), its vibrant acidity makes this wine a perfect pairing to seafood and shellfish. Open a bottle to celebrate the running of the salmon this summer. From $22 direct from winery, www.laughingstock.ca
Osoyoos LaRose Le Grand Vin 2008
Just as the blackberries are starting to ripen comes this Bordeaux-style red blend with complementary notes. Add in the dark chocolate, caramel and vanilla, and it sounds like dessert to us. With its young and handsome new French winemaker Mathieu Mercier newly arrived at the Oliver vineyard, we can expect even more grand things in vintages to come. $45 at www.osoyooslarose.com
—Sarah & Murray Bancroft
August 2nd, 2013
Big wooly blankets are divine, but if you're heading to a picnic on foot, bike or transit, you may need something more practical.
Yield Bags ($56) double as carry-all and sheet, with zippers instead of seams that allow them to unfold flat. It's not as luxurious as a blanket, but you can you can still embrace the theatre of picnicking with a sumptuous spread of snacks and minty lemonade.
And if a picnic turns into wine on a patio, you'll be happy to not be toting a quilt around town. —Athena Tsavliris
From $65 at www.shop.yielddesign.co
July 26th, 2013
Adding to the city’s newfound love of Latin American cuisine is Cuchillo.
Meaning “knife” in Spanish, Cuchillo also means business. This sexy, soon-to-be hot nightspot has the crowd flocking to Japantown. Its tequila-heavy cocktail list is bound to get the party started. We started ours with the Mexican Firing Squad ($10), a take on the margarita, with housemade grenadine and angostura bitters. The taco selections are unique, particularly the Pulled Duck Y Cracklin’ ($7), with blackberry habanero jam. Main courses get eclectic with dishes like Pan Roasted Hearts of Palm ($18), served with cactus paddle and kale sauté — that’s a mix of greens you probably haven’t tried before.
261 Powell St., Vancouver, 604-559-7585, http://www.cuchillo.ca
July 24th, 2013
Sure our phone has become a laptop/daytimer/map/, but taking eating advice from an app can kind of feel like a blind date (you could end up with George Clooney, or George Costanza).
Chefs Feed has the recommendation you need, from the expert you want - top chefs all across Canada who pinpoint specific meals at their favourite restaurants. First launched in the US with recos from Thomas Keller and Mario Batali, the app recently launched in Canada (Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal) and includes notables like David Hawksworth in Vancouver (a fan of mutton kebobs from Vij's) and Daniel Boulud in Toronto (he's partial to the spicy squid at Grand Electric).
From under-the-radar ramen spots to fine dining pappardelle, this is one blind date we know will be love at first bite.
July 23rd, 2013
Food trucks may rule the streets, but a bricks and mortar lunch spot still holds a place in our heart (and our stomach).
With a selection of just four (count 'em, 4!) menu items, you may still find if difficult to decide on what to order at grilled cheese mecca Cheat Day.
Being an expat (and former "Georgia peach"), I made a beeline for the most apropos sammy (and also the chef's fave), Her Name Was Brie ($8). Oozing with a (un)healthy portion of brie, and grilled on brioche with peach chunks, peach gastrique and caramelized onions, this option lives up to the restaurant moniker. Those with something simple in mind can select the Classic with Quebec three year old aged cheddar ($5). Want to upgrade? Order yours with bacon and egg in a basket for an extra $2.
If cheat day is wrong, we don't wanna be right. —Laura Cropper
Cheat Day, 552 Seymour St., Vancouver, 604-616-9458, www.cheatday.ca
July 19th, 2013
A cool Strathcona hangout has a new menu to welcome food enthusiasts to the neighbourhood.
Dunlevy Snackbar now serves up Korean, Latino, and American-inspired tapas to soak up the bar’s delectable cocktail and craft beer offerings. Spark your palate with Roasted Shisito Peppers ($5), drizzled with lime mayo, and the refreshing Smashed Cucumber Salad ($5), garnished with puffed rice and cilantro. For a heftier snack, try the Pork Belly Steamed Bun ($6), a lovely companion to a cold glass of beer.
A nightly DJ series ups the hip factor, enough to make it a night out. —Anya Georgijevic
433 Dunlevy Ave., Vancouver, 604-569-0454, http://dunlevysnackbar.com
July 17th, 2013
Your mother always told you to eat your vegetables.
And this time of year it's easier than ever—the Main Street Station Farmer's Market (in a picturesque park in front of the historic Pacific Central train station) is the place to be Wednesday afternoons (till October 2). Pick out your Chilliwack hazelnuts and biodynamic apricots, (and don't forget a bag of pasta from Campagnolo's by-donation stand to support local kids' school food programs). Then walk a block over to Campagolo restaurant to try the day's special market dish (from 5 p.m.) prepared with ingredients bought that day. We loved this 2-minute video of chef Ted Anderson shopping for ingredients then making a gorgeous traditional brodo with market vegetables, fromage frais and agnolotti).
Your marketing plan is complete! —Sarah Bancroft
Main Street Station Farmers Market, 1100 block Station St., Vancouver, 3-7 p.m. Wednesdays. Campagnolo restaurant, 1020 Main St. 604-484-6018, www.campagnolorestaurant.ca
July 12th, 2013
The wait is over. Beloved Miku has reopened in a large new waterfront space with a view of the mountains and harbour.
Vancouver may have more sushi spots than coffee shops, but only a select few serve sushi Aburi style. Miku was the first and still the best. The partly flame-seared and partly raw sushi is pressed into the rice, making it one delicious compact unit. Try the Aburi Salmon Oshi Sushi ($15) with jalapeño, and Miku’s secret sauce and Aburi Ebi Oshi Sushi ($15), pressed prawn with a hint of lime. Get your greens with Kale Goma-ae ($6), a fresh take on the traditional spinach and sesame dish, and wash it all down with a Shiso Mojito, a delightful and refreshing shochu version eschewing mint for the shiso leaf—a brilliant idea.
70-200 Granville St., Vancouver, 604-568-3900, http://mikurestaurant.com
July 10th, 2013
Deep fried duck fat donuts. Do we have your attention?Little Duckers donuts (try saying that three times fast!) is the crowd sourced-theme of this year's Edible Canada take-out window. We recommend picking up this snack for a sugar buzz before fighting the crowds in the Public Market.
The window features four different varieties, including Bring the Payne- an homage to the theme's originator, and the appropriately named Chubs MaGrubs, with a Quebec Rougie Fois Gras centre. I recommend the Nutty Duckers with Fraser Valley honey and Agassiz Hazelnuts ($6). Judging from the chocolate sauce smeared on my little sister's face, When Sticky Pigs Fly with double smoked bacon and salted caramel was her clear favourite.
Bikini season, shmikini season.
From $6-$10; open daily throughout the summer, from 11 a.m.-7 p.m., Edible Canada
1596 Johnston St., Vancouver, 604-682-6681, www.ediblecanada.com
July 5th, 2013
Look up to the gorgeous reclaimed pressed tin ceiling
Look down to the bold mosaic floor
Look around to the long banquettes, elevated private room and deuces perfect for a tete-a-tete with a beau.
Modelled after one of Paris' "grand cafés," The Homer St. Cafe and Bar's prime heritage corner location, street front terrace, and impressive French rotisserie make it a destination unto itself. Throw in a clever wine list (unfiltered Merlot! Delicious whites from Greece!) and handy "to go" service for the busy Yaletown mom, and there's a lot to love. And if that's not enough, we highly recommend the tiny pot-au-chocolat with cocoa nibs and honeycomb.
You're welcome. —Sarah Bancroft
898 Homer St., Vancouver, www.homerstreetcafebar.com