Vancouver - DINING & NIGHTLIFE
October 12th, 2012
Vegetarian cuisine sure has come a long way since the tofu stirfry.
The Parker, the newest veggie-full restaurant to hit the scene, is a tiny gem of a place that serves tiny gems of plates. A standout? Poached egg and chanterelles served with holandaise sauce on toast ($9). For dinner. Then for dessert, the chocolate ganache served on a peach compote and finished with fall’s favourite flavours: spicy pumpkin and maple ($8).
Judging by the hip crowd, everyone loves their veggies. —Kelsey Dundon
The Parker, 237 Union St., Vancouver, 604-779-3804, www.theparkervancouver.com
October 3rd, 2012
We know you shouldn't judge a restaurant by its light fixtures… but it's hard not to when the stunning specimens are made from curtain pulleys reclaimed from the late Pantages Theatre further along Hastings Street.
Housed in a building from 1888, Wildebeest has been drawing crowds to its 1930s Toledo's lab stools that bring you up to eye level with your waiter.
All the better to order the more-ish smoked Castelvetrano olives and the delicious country paté that comes in its own mason jar.
Do order a bottle of the Helena rosé (just $21) sourced from a tiny producer in Italy and named for his daughter.
And speaking of children, the restaurant was named by an owner's son, whose favourite animal is the wildebeest.
Will it be yours, too?—Sarah Bancroft
Wildebeest, 120 W. Hastings St., Vancouver, 604-687-6880, www.wildebeest.ca
September 28th, 2012
Ever gone out with a group of girlfriends and two hours later been presented with a bill for $400 and think: how'd that happen?
Now there's no need to spend the equivalent of a Phillip Lim jacket on girls-night out. Espana, the new West End Spanish tapas bar from Brit Neil Taylor (formerly of London's famous riverside Cafe by way of Cibo), offers cheap-as-chips (or should we say salt cod and potato croquettes?) options that are as tasty as they are affordable.
Local chorizo ($6), Catalan Spinach with pine nuts and raisins ($6), Tuna Steak ($9), crispy squid with chili jam, yogurt and mint ($9) - you can't really go wrong here.
Now don that Phillip Lim jacket and get out there! —Sarah Bancroft
Espana, 1118 Denman St., Vancouver, 604-558-4040, www.espanarestaurant.ca
September 18th, 2012
Opus Hotel has a new restaurant with a familiar face.
Fans of the perpetually booked up La Quercia will be delighted to discover its sister restaurant La Pentola, which opened in Yaletown just a few days ago. On our visit, it was already packed and for good reason. After ogling the incredible-sounding menu for the longest time, we split the thrilling Fettuccine Genovese ($12) with pesto sauce, filled with green beans, crunchy pine nuts and soft potatoes, before moving on to the main dishes. There was enough room left to devour the Flat Iron Steak ($28) with red wine sauce, topped with arugula, which was perfectly executed.
As was the Semifreddo dessert ($8), the perfect ending to a perfect meal. —Anya Georgijevic
La Pentola della Quercia, 350 Davie St., Vancouver, 604-642-0557, www.lapentola.ca
August 31st, 2012
Old Mother Hubbard
Went to her cupboard
To get her family a treat,
When she got there
The cupboard was bare
Of savoury crumbs and sugary sweets.
So Old Mother Hubbard
Did with her mouse hover
Over a new website called Foodie Pages.
Now the whole family Hubbard
Finds their toast smothered
In gourmet Canadian-made spreads for all ages.
August 24th, 2012
You know a restaurant is going to be good if it’s located in a strip mall, has no atmosphere to speak of and yet always seems to be packed.
Sal y Limon on Kingsway is such a place. Serving up fresh, flavourful Mexican food, it’s a hole in the finest variety. Its pollo pibil, stuffed with marinated, slow-roasted chicken breast, isn’t your average burrito ($8.50). And their housemade horchata ($2.00), all sweet and cinnamon-y and served on ice, is easy to knock back on a summer’s day.
Like its namesake (salt and lemon), Sal y Limon makes our mouths water. —Kelsey Dundon
Sal y Limon, Unit #5-701 Kingsway, Vancouver, 604-677-4247, www.salylimon.ca
August 21st, 2012
In our student days, cold coffee was a necessity. Now, it’s a delicacy.
One of Vancouver’s premiere coffee houses, Revolver, is now bottling their own cold brew, and we don’t mean just any ordinary coffee. This particular cup o’ joe takes over twelve hours to reach perfection. Once it does, it is bottled fresh in a stylish 250 ml medicine-style flask. Without hot water, the coffee tastes slightly more velvety and sweet, making it deliciously refreshing whether you drink it at your desk or take it to the park for an after-picnic treat. —Anya Georgijevic
$4.50 at Revolver, 325 Cambie St., Vancouver, 604-558-4444, www.revolvercoffee.ca
August 17th, 2012
Sun’s out, guns out.
Since you’re going sleeveless, you’ll want to make sure your bare limbs are decorated accordingly. Handmade bracelets by Vancouver’s own Sarah Cameron will do the trick with just the right amount of razzle and laidback dazzle. Her Bon Voyage wrist-wrapper ($20) balances a bit of glam (the gold-coloured chain) with athletic-inspiration (rope tied in an adjustable knot).
It’ll look great as the guest of honour at your (no longer bare) arm party. —Kelsey Dundon
August 13th, 2012
A lady who lunches often has two choices: lacklustre takeout or overindulgent luncheons.
Switch things up. Culver City Salads make the perfect lazy lunch that just happens to be healthy: vegan entrée-sized salads and brown rice bowls that they’ll deliver to your office (provided your office is located downtown, in Gastown or in Kits). Dishing them out Tuesdays through Fridays, these salads are always different and always packed with more vegetables than a you can shake a carrot stick at. We hear they’ll soon be offering vegan desserts too (the ones we sampled were out of this world).
Salad—it’s what’s for lunch.
August 7th, 2012
Lunching on salads can be a big bore, but not when one is noshing at Railtown Café.
This busy new spot, outfitted with Union Wood Co.’s reclaimed furniture, is already a neighbourhood favourite due to their vast menu of sumptuous salads. Classics like The Chop ($12) and The Wedge ($9) are loaded with layers upon layers of fresh ingredients: beets, egg, tomato, cheddar, bacon bits and a serving of your choice of protein for the former, and tomato, breakfast radish, chives and blue cheese for the latter.
Before you can say “yum,” you’ll be also eyeing Railtown’s sandwich menu and delicious baked goods, including their baked-in-house doughnuts, continuing Vancouver’s current doughnut revolution. —Anya Georgijevic
Railtown Café, 397 Railway St., Vancouver, 604-568-8811, www.facebook.com/RailtownC