The Dishes is a new Scout column that asks Vancouverites to walk us through a map of their ideal day and night on the town. We’re talking breakfast, lunch, happy hour, dinner and late night cocktails. Tax and tip included.
For this week’s edition of The Dishes, we had Robbie Slade, one half of local electronic band HUMANS, take us on a bicycle tour of his favourite places to eat and drink across the city. Time to work up an appetite!
Good morning! What’s for breakfast/brunch?
I love a nice morning bike ride and lately my destination has been the Bigsby bakehouse. As I live in East Van, this is a nice 30-minute ride for me. At Bigsby, I go for the cold cereal muesli, self-serve coffee and I usually grab a loaf of the in-house sourdough.
Where should we meet for coffee/tea?
If I want to take my time heading home from this ride, I like to dip in at Matchstick on Fraser. Especially if I have enough room in my backpack to grab a little plant from the Bloom Room thats just down the street.
Now we’re hungry again. What’s for lunch?
Federal Store – a fairly new little shop right on the corner of 10th and Quebec, (on the bike route, of course!) has fantastic food. The grilled cheese and the porchetta sandwiches are amazing. Their sourdough is amazing as well, as it’s a whole grain variety. It’s another place I love to buy bread too, if you missed Bigsby. The coffee, magazines, plants, music, interior decor and staff make it my number one spot in Vancouver. The owner, Chris, also runs a Monday evening disco and dumpling night at Burdock and Co. which needs a shout out on this list.
Who has you figured out at Happy Hour?
As yet another musician waffling back and forth with sobriety, having an offering of splendid non-alcoholic cocktails is a must have in my repertoire of places to eat and drink. Crowbar (pictured above) is always a spot I suggest for this. I’m not sure what they have in terms of virgin cocktails on the actual menu, but it’s a place that has the talent behind the bar to make you something memorable. When ordering a virgin cocktail, you’re going to get one of two responses from a server or bartender: either a discouraged eye roll, or a smile that seems to say “I have just the thing” — Crowbar is a place where I’ve been thoroughly taken care of in this regard.
What’s for dinner?
In my opinion, Italian is where it’s at in Vancouver lately. Go to Savio Volpe for the family dining experience, and if you’re on the booze be sure to try the Lambrusco. I can’t set foot in this fine establishment without ordering the panko kale salad. There literally isn’t a dish with better texture in all of Vancouver. There’s a reason they keep it on the menu through the frequent changes to almost everything else; its perfect. I like to go to Savio Volpe on an empty stomach and let my server make all the decisions for me. Just make sure I get that salad!
What’s for dessert?
Let’s keep this bike thing going – but this time you can have the dessert delivered to you – by bicycle! I’m not huge for desserts, but Sweet Boy cream puffs are not to be missed. Created by Chams Sbouai, these are handcrafted, artisanal sweets. He does deliveries on Fridays so make sure you get your order in for the week!
Where are you taking us for late night cocktails?
Late night drinks are paired with food on my list. This part is where Vancouver really shines. Almost every night of the week you can go to more exuberant gatherings for a drink, but usually, there is food as well for those of us who abstain. The aforementioned Dico Dumpling night is one such affair. Vibe Corridor at the Boxcar was another. But for my entry on this list I’m going to give a special shine to Vancouver’s premiere natural wine night – Juice Bar, which happens every Wednesday by Siôn and Sarah at Birds and the Beets. Their curation of the wine is so on point. It’s frankly a great place to get tipsy midweek. Make sure to listen to Siôn’s radio show on No Fun Radio — its called Juice Bar! As an added bonus, the one and only Chams Sbouai also provides the culinary experience, which is simply one of the best Vancouver has to offer. If Chams is making food, cancel your plans and have a seat.