Vancouver Would Be Cooler If It Had More Public Bake Ovens

Vancouver’s only public bake oven is great for making pizzas, but we could use many more!

Communal ovens are perhaps one of earliest forms of shared public infrastructure. You will find archeological examples of them all over the Middle East and North Africa. Bake ovens were as important as the town square or the church to the life of the village. It was the place where people gathered to share news and stories and feel connected. In Medieval Europe, the ovens were the property of feudal lords who would charge serfs a few loaves in exchange for their use. Well-preserved examples dating back to 15th century dot the countrysides of France, England, Belgium and Switzerland. This tradition had mostly died out in western Europe by the 20th century, but it still persists across the Middle East.

Behind the Italian Cultural Centre on Grandview Highway is the first public bake oven in Vancouver. Through Il Centro, you can book the oven to make pizza or bake artisanal breads for 4 hours at a time for a base charge of $100.

Find it behind the Italian Cultural Centre on Grandview Highway

Though a great public amenity that’s worth taking delicious advantage of, this city is seriously lagging behind Toronto, which has thirteen(!) public bake ovens (and perhaps more) that range from simple DIY mud-dome pizza ovens to more elaborate structures with attached full outdoor kitchens. Some of them even have portable public tandoors like this one in Regent Park.

I could see these things being built at our local community centres. Trout Lake is a prime candidate. The obvious downside is the pollution from the smoke that these things emit when you start the fire. I hear that the Metro is restricting this kind of activity. (Even Southern BBQ joints are being forced to limit the use of their smokers).

Still, one can dream! If you are interested in lobbying the city for a communal brick oven, here is a good link from Minnesota on how to plan and build them. Good luck, and keep us posted on how it goes!

There are 0 comments

Vancouver Would Be Cooler If It Had This Shop Stocked With Wines by Women Winemakers

This female-forward, animal-friendly Silver Lake wine shop would be perfectly suited to Main Street.

Vancouver Would Be Cooler If It Had Tiny Islands for Hanging Out On in False Creek

With good weather approaching, we saw this 215 sqft island designed for Copenhagen's harbour and got covetous about it.

Vancouver Would Be Cooler if Our Anarchists Filled Our Pot Holes (Like They Do in Portland)

Portland anarchists decided to radically intercede where their city had failed them, taking direct action to the streets, literally.

Vancouver Would Be Cooler If It Had a Japanese-Style ‘Capsule’ Hotel & Sauna

This capsule hotel and sauna facility in Tokyo would be nice fit for Vancouver, which could use more diversity of accommodations.