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Where to Eat Vancouver

Seasonal Sips: Pumpkin Ale

By TIM PAWSEY

Bradley Moffatt with one of the fall offerings at Central City. (Photo by KK Law)

Well before Halloween, the city’s talented craft brewers turn their attention to pumpkin ales. And the results are anything but scary. Styles can range from dry and spicy to sweet and fruity. But the flavours, often with cinnamon, nutmeg and clove hints, are always authentic. For a truly seasonal sip, swing by Central City for Red Racer Snickerdoodle Pumpkin Ale. Head to Devil’s Elbow Ale & Smoke House in the Stadium District for the Pumpkineater Imperial Pumpkin Ale. At Steamworks in Gastown, sip some pumpkin ale and get a glimpse of the harbour. Or, to discover a range of styles, try a flight at St. Augustine’s in East Van, with over 60 beers and ciders from near and far on tap.

For more by Tim Pawsey, visit www.hiredbelly.com

Noodlebox Turns Up the Heat

By CHLOË LAI

Whether you like it hot or mild, you’ll find your flavour at Noodlebox.

Summer’s officially over, but the heat is on at Noodlebox. Curb your pan-Asian flavour cravings with classics like the Spicy Peanut Noodle Box, brimming with ribbon noodles, creamy Indonesian peanut sauce and fresh veggies. For a protein pick-me-up, try add-ons like ethically raised meats, Ocean Wise prawns, or tofu. And if a mild spice level isn’t enough to warm your belly, there’s always the Scorching Hot option—but be ready to feel the burn.

Welcome to Taste of Yaletown

By CHLOË LAI

Get a real Taste of Yaletown at restaurants like Fayuca. (Photo by Fuoco Photography)

Oct 11-27, 2017 Can’t decide what to order? At Taste of Yaletown, special menus and perfect pairings at 30 restaurants—like Provence Marinaside, The Greek and Yaletown Brewing Co.—take the guesswork out of great dining. Plus, partial proceeds from this fixed-price fare benefit the Greater Vancouver Food Bank. Talk about an easy choice.

Tacofino Oasis: Bliss in the Business District

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Take your taste buds on a tasty stay-cation at Tacofino Oasis. (Photo by Amy Ho)

For many, paradise is only a burrito away. If that’s your idea of nirvana, make your way to the city’s latest Baja-inspired outpost: Tacofino Oasis. It’s the fourth location in the family of Mexican-meets-West-Coast eateries, which hail from humble food-truck beginnings. This resort-inspired spot features a menu of unique offerings, including duck carnitas, pork belly burritos, crispy octopus and upside-down cheesecake. For those on the run, there are grab-and-go burritos, too. And of course, no watering hole is complete without craft beer and cocktails. Paradise, found.

In Good Spirits: Meet Four Award-Winning Vancouver Bartenders

By SHERI RADFORD
Oct. 2017

Raise a glass to four bartenders who are shaking up the local cocktail scene. (Photo by KK Law)

“Sweetheart, do you know how to make an Old Fashioned?” 

Female bartenders hear a variation of this question every day—proof that there’s still a long way to go when it comes to gender assumptions. But Vancouver has a bevy of fierce females who are defying stereotypes and shattering glass ceilings.

The first woman to win the Diageo World Class Canada bartending competition, and Vancouver magazine’s Bartender of the Year for 2015, Lauren Mote has revamped the cocktail lists at Yew, Café Medina and Burdock & Co. and spent years behind the pine at Uva Wine & Cocktail Bar. She’s also the co-founder of Bittered Sling Bitters, which makes award-winning bitters and extracts, and the Diageo Reserve & World Class Global Cocktailian. (more…)

Renaissance of the Railway Stage & Beer Café

By TIM PAWSEY

Rack up the good times at one of the oldest venues in town. (Photo by KK Law)

When the long-running Railway Club (dating from the 1930s) closed, a furor erupted over the loss of the downtown venue. After a year’s hiatus, the upstairs club was reincarnated as the Railway Stage & Beer Café. The remodelled-but-quirky space maintains its heritage feel, paying tribute to its forerunner with bric-a-brac recalling its long musical past. The new edition ups the suds ante with an impressive, mainly local 24 taps and—continuing the tradition of live acts—often blends beer with blues, boogie, jazz and joke nights. All-day fare includes freshly made soups, sandwiches and salads, such as a kale and romaine Caesar that can be topped with smoked turkey sausage, grilled avocado or blackened chicken.

Farm-to-Table Favourites in Kitsilano

By TIM PAWSEY

At Fable Kitchen, Trevor Bird serves mouth-watering dishes such as cavatelli with chorizo. (Photo by KK Law)

Decades ago, the local organic movement took root on West 4th Avenue in Kitsilano. Today, farm-to-table still rules. At Fable Kitchen, Top Chef Canada all-star Trevor Bird’s highlights include slow-cooked salmon with roasted zucchini, smoked duck breast with duck vinaigrette, and lemon-meringue parfait. At nearby Mission, fellow all-star Curtis Luk uses firmly local flavours in his creative chef’s tasting menu. One block west, organic trailblazer Bishop’s is still the destination for West Coast fine dining, while vegetarian pioneer The Naam turns 50 next year.

Sweet Treats for the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival

By SHERI RADFORD

We’re over the moon for these delightful desserts. (Photo courtesy TWG Tea)

Sep. 14 to Oct. 4, 2017 Celebrate fall with mooncakes. These sweet treats appear each year in time for the Mid-Autumn Moon Festival, a time of gathering and thanksgiving in Chinese and Vietnamese cultures. Visit TWG Tea to pick up a luxurious gift box filled with either four tea-infused mooncakes or Lotus Jade Tea paired with two tea-infused mooncakes. Word to the wise: pick up an extra box for yourself, because these gorgeous goodies are extremely tempting.

Sustainable Eats on Main Street

By TIM PAWSEY

Chef Andrea Carlson of Burdock & Co. keeps the focus on local and organic. (Photo: KK Law)

Burdock & Co. chef Andrea Carlson (who found her calling at Bishop’s) enjoys a well-earned rep for regional plates that appeal to both carnivorous and vegetarian tastes. For example, weekend brunch sports wide-ranging local ingredients such as pork-and-fennel-ragout fettuccini, or smoked salmon served on house-made sourdough and topped with poached eggs. Complementing the organic menu is the city’s best selection of BC and naturalist wines.

For more by Tim Pawsey, visit hiredbelly.com

25 Things We Love About Gastown

By DANIELLE CUNNINGHAM
Sep. 2017

The charming Gastown Steam Clock lets off an impressive show of steam and whistle chimes every quarter hour. (Photo: SSUNI/iStockphoto.com)

The Gastown Steam Clock lets off an impressive show of steam and whistle chimes every quarter hour. (Photo: SSUNI/iStockphoto.com)

1. The charming exposed-brick buildings and cobblestone streets that tell stories of years past.

2. Iconic landmarks such as the Gastown Steam Clock, Victory Square and statue of Gassy Jack.

3. Sipping a perfect brew from Prado Cafe, where each cup brims with local roasts from 49th Parallel Coffee Roasters. Soak up the lively atmosphere and fill your plate with sweet waffles, poached eggs, salads and more. (more…)

Hora Feliz! Happy Hour at Fayuca

By TIM PAWSEY

Fayuca keeps things fresh with a colourful albacore crudo salad. (Photo: KK Law)

Fayuca keeps things fresh with a colourful albacore crudo salad. (Photo: KK Law)

Truly a cut above, happy hour at Yaletown’s newly minted Fayuca is the real deal: cockles with lime, guacamole with crispy sunchokes, albacore crudo salad, vegan tostada, grilled cactus with salsa verde, all matched with BC wines, mezcal and margaritas. Linger longer in this airy tile-trimmed space for more substantial northern Mexican plates that range from pork jowl with black bean–braised cipollini onions and charred salsa to braised beef cheeks with butternut squash gnocchi.

For more by Tim Pawsey, visit hiredbelly.com

Poke Paradise

The city’s trendiest dish, straight from the Aloha State

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

At Pokérrito, sample a signature poke bowl or create your own masterpiece.

At Pokérrito, sample a signature poke bowl or create your own masterpiece.

Get ready to hang ten. Poke—Hawaii’s marinated raw-fish salad—has caught a wave, sweeping across the city and leaving Polynesian-inspired flavour in its wake. The island staple is pronounced “poh-kay,” which means “to cut or slice.” An apt description, as poke’s main ingredient is cubed raw fish, which is then topped with fresh ingredients. Of course, sushi-loving Vancouverites wasted no time saying aloha to the dish, and menus here feature both classic and creative versions. Here’s where to take the plunge.

Downtown

Where Pokérrito

Why Hawaiian and Japanese tastes collide in poke bowls and handheld seaweed-wrapped burritos (no chopsticks required).

Find it 558 Dunsmuir St. or 991 Hornby St.
www.pokerrito.ca

Where Poké Time

Why The adventurous try the Super Cruncheritto, a poke burrito stuffed with marinated fish, mandarin oranges, nacho crumbs, corn flakes and more.

Find it 1258 Robson St.
www.poketime.ca

Where Hooked Poke Bar

Why Hawaiian poke with a side of feel-good flavour, owing to the gluten- and dairy-free menu, house-made sauces and sustainable seafood choices.

Find it 995 Hornby St.
www.hookedpokebar.com

Kitsilano

Where Hoké Poké

Why Customize a bowl or choose from house creations, tortilla-wrapped burritos or tuna-and-guacamole-topped poke nachos.

Find it 1834 W. 4th Ave.
www.thehokepoke.ca

Gastown

Where Poké Guy

Why Classic poke dishes with plenty of island flavour, thanks to authentic Hawaiian salts and sustainable Ocean Wise seafood.

Find it 420 Richards St.
www.thepokeguy.ca

Where The Poké Shop

Why Customizable poke bowls can be packed with unlimited out-of-the-bento-box toppings that range from pineapple to guacamole.

Find it 306 Water St.
www.thepokeshop.ca

Main Street

Where Pacific Poke

Why Add a dash of the West Coast to signature or build-your-own bowls with toppings like avocado nori and jalapeño salsa.

Find it 625 Main St.
www.thepacificpoke.com

Cambie Village

Where Westcoast Poké

Why Curious but non-committal? These poke bowls come in a snack size—the perfect way to test the waters.

Find it 463 W. 8th Ave.
www.westcoastpoke.com