by Michelle Sproule | The main objective of this website is to scout out and promote the things that make Vancouver such a sweet place to be. We do this with an emphasis on the city’s independent spirit to foster a sense of connectedness within and between our communities, and to introduce our readers to the people who grow and cook our food, play the raddest tunes in our better venues, create our most interesting art, and design everything from what we wear to the spaces we inhabit. The Scout List is our carefully considered, first rate agenda of super awesome things that we’re either doing, wishing that we could do, or conspiring to do this week. You can also check it out in the Globe & Mail, from our calendar to theirs…and yours!
FEISTY FEAST | Feisty Feast is a pop-up communal table supper anchored by an inspiring guest speaker at a unique locale. This Wednesday, organisers brings together a crew of creative and innovative women at East Van’s Vinegar Factory. Attendees can expect five courses of Mediterranean-inspired food and a presentation by First Nations filmmaker, activist, and curator Elle Maija-Tailfeathers.
Wed, Oct 29 | 6:30pm | The Vinegar Factory (1009 E Cordova) | $55 | DETAILS
NATURE | These last days of October and first days of November see some of the most stunningly beautiful days to hike through local forests. We suggest a few hours on the trails at Pacific Spirit Regional Park. After you’ve done your hike, consider heading to the Beaty Biodiversity Museum at UBC (take a mushroom walk on Saturday at 2:15pm, find out about arctic berries on Sunday at 1pm, or ask an expert everything you ever wanted to know about marine bivalves on Sunday between 11 and 3pm).
FORESTS | All Week | Pacific Spirit Regional Park | DETAILS
SCIENCE | Beaty Biodiversity Museum (2212 Main Mall, UBC) | DETAILS
DRINK | The Irish Heather is holding one of their amazing whisky-themed dinners this week. Grab a seat at the table for pours of Ardbeg; their 10-year, Auriverdes, Corryvreckan, and Uigeadail — paired with lamb shank pot pie, colcannon mashed potatoes, maple-glazed carrots and a serving of bread pudding and caramel sauce for dessert. It all sounds like the perfect autumn indulgence!
Thu, Oct 30 | 7pm | Irish Heather (212 Carrall St) | DETAILS
RAINCHEQUE | The Vancouver Design Nerds will be at The Museum of Vancouver this Thursday evening to address a very important city specific issue: “How can we make new social connections in the rain?” Join a crowd of artists, activists, designers, and place-making enthusiasts as they brainstorm some innovative ways to make cool public spaces in a soggy city. Coolest bit: the winning concept will receive mentorship and assistance with prototype development funding. Get involved!
Thu, Oct 30 | 7-10:30 pm | Museum of Vancouver (1100 Chestnut) | DETAILS
LAUGH | Dino Archie has opened for Aziz Ansari, but he’s got his own gig at the Comedy Mix this Thursday night and we’re betting he knows how to crack up a crowd. When was laughing until your stomach hurt anything other than a fantastic thing to do? Read an interview with Archie here, then grab a ticket and get ready to laugh.
Thu, Oct 30 | 8:30p | The Comedy Mix at Century Plaza (1015 Burrard) | DETAILS
MONSTERS | The Fall Tattooing & Artist’s Gallery has a creepy-as-heck group show opening just in time for Halloween. Feature Creature will showcase the works of 12 local artists. Expect drawings, paintings, sculptures and collages of monsters, mutants, and creatures of the dark. This show runs from October 30 – November 13 with an opening reception and cash bar on Thursday night.
Thu, Oct 30 | 8-11pm | The Fall Gallery (644 Seymour St) | DETAILS
BEETLEJUICE | Beetlejuice Beetlejuice Beetlejuice! Catch the midnight movie at the Rio Theatre this Friday night. Extra points for film-related costumes, so dig out that black and white striped suit, pick up a beer from the theatre bar and slide into one of those comfy velvet seats for an evening of Tim Burton magic starring Alec Baldwin, Winona Ryder, Geena Davis and Michael Keaton. “Let’s turn on the juice and see what shakes loose!”
Fri, Oct. 31 | 11pm | Rio Theatre (1660 E Broadway) | $8/$6 | DETAILS
ART | Hustle over to South Granville for a look at Vancouver artist Rebecca Chaperone’s latest show: Eccentric Gardens. This exhibition of recent works bears the artist’s signature style: adorably dark and slightly creepy. Expect to encounter signs of the places we access creativity and imagination hiding in surreal sugar-dusted landscapes with murky undertones.
Now through November 15 | Initial Gallery (2339 Granville St) | DETAILS
HISTORY | Slip back in time at Vancity Theatre this Sunday with Vintage Vancouver: Archival Films from the City of Vancouver Archives and Vancouver – A Progressive City! Movies from the City of Vancouver Archives. These are fantastic compilations of footage gathered together from archival materials such as Parks Board films, home movies, newsreels, ads and television clips. In addition to live musical accompaniment by pianist Wayne Stewart, well known Vancouver historian Michael Kluckner will be on site to offer commentary for images originally produced without sound.
Sun, Nov. 2 | 2:30 & 7:30pm | Vancity Theatre (1181 Seymour St) | $11 | DETAILS
ESCAPE | Vancouver is expecting rain every day this week. How nice would it be to press pause on that? As unlikely as that might seem, there is a way. Hide out at the Bloedel Conservatory for a few hours. While the Parks Board website explains that “the Conservatory sits beside the beautiful Quarry Gardens and has a panoramic view of the city’s skyline and mountain backdrop,” you won’t be seeing much of a skyline this week. Instead, go for the artificial temperature, exotic plants and flowers and free-flying tropical birds. With a little imagination (and a few props like sunscreen and a pair of flip-flops), you might just forget how miserable it is outside!
Mon-Sun| 10am – 5pm | Queen Elizabeth Park (4600 Cambie St.) | $6.50 | DETAILS
Michelle Sproule grew up in Kitsilano and attended University in Australia and the University of Victoria before receiving her graduate degree in Library Sciences from The University of Toronto. She lives in beautiful Strathcona and enjoys wandering aimlessly through the city’s streets with her best friend – a beat up, sticky, grimy (but faithful) camera.
The Vancouver Lexicon – our A-Z dictionary of local slang, myths, legends, and such – might appear to be complete, but we mean to keep adding to it every week. Today we aim to highlight five more localisms that everyone in British Columbia should know about, that is if they don’t already. They are Gasclown, Tip Boner, Drizzlepiss, Guilt Pylon, and Citidiot.
by Nic Bragg | From Kitsilano’s Zulu Records, we once again present our monthly Scout feature, the Zulu Report. Within, you’ll find The Track – the song on heavy rotation in the shop this week; The Playlist – our selection of videos; and The Gig – the “must-see show” on the horizon. From our ears to yours, enjoy… Read more
by Andrew Morrison | The annually anticipated list of Canada’s Top 10 Best New Restaurants is out today from enRoute magazine and it’s a one-two knockout combo for BC. The Farmer’s Apprentice in South Granville took the #2 spot and #1 went to Tofino’s Wolf In The Fog. Congrats to all who cracked the list, with a special high-five to former Vancouverite Dale Mackay and his crew at Ayden in Saskatoon for not only landing the #8 spot, but also for winning the People’s Choice Award.
Here’s the basic skinny in the words of enRoute…
On a month-long culinary journey that took noted food writer Andrew Braithwaite from Tofino, British Columbia to St. John’s, Newfoundland, he discovered a group of chefs, sommeliers and restaurateurs who continued to explore this country’s terroir and redefine what it means to dine out in Canada. The Top 10 restaurants in order are:
1. Wolf in the Fog (Tofino): “On the extreme west coast of Vancouver Island, where rainforest meets ocean, you stumble up a flight of stairs and into a soaring cedar-clad room above a surf shop where chef Nick Nutting leads a crew trained in the precise details of fine dining.”
2. The Farmer’s Apprentice (Vancouver): “Each small plate – more often, a bowl – conjured by owner David Gunawan is a precise jumble of textures and flavours. Digging in is a sort of black magic.”
3. Le Vin Papillon (Montreal): “Long-time Joe Beef guru Vanya Filipovic fills massive chalkboards with organic wines to run with a vegetable-focused cuisine from boyfriend and chef Marc-Olivier Frappier.”
4. RGE RD (Edmonton): “The heart of Blair Lebsack’s kitchen is a wood-burning oven that consumes birch and maple at 700oF, curing honey ham and smoking Salt Spring Island mussels or even dehydrated local milk during the off-hours.”
5. Mallard Cottage (St. John’s): “Todd Perrin spent two years restoring a heritage property in Quidi Vidi Harbour for this brilliant mash-up of fine dining and comfort cuisine on the outskirts of St. John’s.”
6. Bar Buca (Toronto): “Rob Gentile’s restaurant likes to pretend it’s a simple bar for sipping Barolo. You’re here to drink, sure, but you’re also here to eat things like tiny fried smelt dusted with fennel salt.”
7. The Chase (Toronto): Chef Michael Steh doesn’t lean on molecular trickery or audacious ingredients to wow. His food is more direct and more delightful than that, in an atmosphere that makes you want to say yes to things.
8. Ayden (Saskatoon): Top Chef Canada winner Dale MacKay gambled that Saskatoon was ready for lime – and lemongrass – and ginger-dusted chicken wings. Ayden isn’t about showing off Prairie cooking to the world – it’s about bringing the world home.”
9. Légende (Quebec City): Northern Quebec is the culinary hunting ground that Frédéric Laplante mythologizes at his capital-city bistro. Cornish hen gets a boreal accent from balsam fir fleur de sel.”
10. Edna (Halifax): Jenna Mooers’ North End bistro digs up treasure from the fertile soils of Nova Scotia’s Annapolis Valley and hauls it out of the brisk Atlantic waters.”
The Top 10 restaurants will officially receive their awards during the annual Canada’s Best New Restaurants Gala celebration on November 20 in Toronto.
THE GOODS FROM WHISTLER CORNUCOPIA
Cornucopia, Whistler’s annual celebration of food and drink, is set to return to the mountain and will run from November 6th to the 16th. The festival attracts countless chefs, restaurateurs, vintners, distillers, and brewers from across BC to the village for a seemingly endless battery of winemaker dinners, special lunches, seminars, soirees, tastings, and all manner of delicious events besides. That it lasts for a full 11 days is not only a testament to the breadth and depth of the festival’s excellent programming, but also evidence that Whistler itself can not be “done” in a day. There’s just too much going on, especially during Cornucopia. You can access the full program here, but you can find our picks for what shouldn’t be missed below…
Thursday, Nov. 6 | HOUSE PARTY | “Now established as one of the hottest events of the year, House Party combines live music with local foods and domestic wines. Featuring the best of ‘local’ talent in music, food and wine, we invite you to Our House; a party of epic proportions. Indulge in a BBQ from SIDECUT, home-grown vodka, micro-brewed beer and much more from our land of plenty.” This always proves to be great way to kick off Cornucopia. | DETAILS
Friday, Nov. 7 | CELLAR DOOR | “Cellar Door is a smaller, more intimate tasting featuring more than 25 wineries and showcasing more than 100 wines priced at $35 and up per bottle.” Held in the Grand Foyer of the Whistler Conference Centre, we imagine this event as a concentrated collection of the best and most exclusive wines that can be had during the festival. | DETAILS
Saturday, Nov. 8 | CRUSH GALA GRAND TASTING | “Mingle with friends and discover your new favourite wine among the many red, white and sparkling glasses at this flagship tasting event, held in the Ballroom of the Whistler Conference Centre.” Crush is always a glamorous blast, and with 70 vendors this year, it’s so many tasty birds with just one stone. | DETAILS
Sunday, Nov. 9 | WITH A TWIST | “Wander With a Twist, enjoy a sophisticated atmosphere and decide what works best for you. Create your own mixed drink from the large variety of options provided, listen to tips from our mixologists or taste something they have prepared, or try something about which you have always been curious. Alternatively, have the fine products featured on the rocks or neat – your choice.” It sounds like a Choose Your Own Adventure story, written with booze. Count us in! | DETAILS
Monday, Nov. 10 | BEARFOOT BISTRO LATE-NIGHT WINE MIXER | This includes “a sampling of different wines and a variety of culinary treats by Chef Melissa Craig and her team while the room beats to the vibe of Whistler’s DJs.” Where else but Bearfoot? | DETAILS
Wednesday, Nov. 12 | DINNER AT ARAXI WITH PAINTED ROCK | “Get to know the glorious wines of the Skaha Lake bench from one of BC’s most spectacular vineyards as we welcome proprietor John Skinner of Painted Rock. If you’ve tried these wines before, you know what all the fuss is about; if you haven’t don’t miss this opportunity to get up close and personal with a BC Icon.” If you can go to just one winemaker supper over Cornucopia, let this be it! | DETAILS
Friday, Nov. 14 | NIGHT MARKET: TASTE THE WORLD | “Demonstrating the wonderful adaptability of wines, beers and liquors, attendees enjoy this fun-filled evening in a casual yet refined environment emulating a food market. Sample different beverages with cuisine to experience the magic in matching with exotic and creative fare. A truly gastronomic experience for the fun and adventurous.” Street food in a refined environment may sound a little odd, but the combo certainly makes for a more memorable evening. Expect variety! | DETAILS
Saturday, Nov. 15 | POURED | This event “encompasses an intimate tasting experience of wine, spirits, cider, beer and food. Ticket prices include your own glass to take home and five tokens that can be used for food or wine sampling.” Sounds like a fun mingler with plenty of food and wine, which is exactly what Cornucopia is all about. | DETAILS
To further wet your whistle, we’ve compiled a gallery from past Cornucopia events below…
by Stevie Wilson | Earlier this year it was announced that the Vancouver Art Gallery would be relocated from its current home to a brand-new structure at West Georgia and Cambie Streets. With this news came a second ruling that the 48 year-old Centennial Fountain out front of the gallery would not be preserved. The decision was met with a variety of perspectives, most arguing that the large fountain wasn’t conducive to the flow of pedestrians in the common area, and was no longer valuable as a gathering place – not to mention it had become prone to leaks. Others pointed out its historic character, and its value as a work of art itself, constructed of small, hand-chosen mosaic tiles by artist Alex von Svoboda. Whatever your thoughts on the fountain may be, there’s no denying that it’s a big piece (both literally and figuratively) of the Downtown core’s history.
Prior to its official unveiling in 1966, Premier W.A.C. Bennett wished to have the fountain’s construction kept hidden in order for it to be a surprise for the public. The fountain was intended to celebrate the centennial anniversary of the colonial union between BC and Vancouver Island in 1886. In 1966 the grounds were still home to the provincial courthouse – the VAG didn’t take it over until 1983. A memorial drinking fountain honouring King Edward VII was also sharing the ground out front on Georgia Street; it was moved to the side of the courthouse building in 1972.
Bennett requested the construction hoarding around the fountain site to be painted green and white, which conveniently enough were the colours of his BC Social Credit Party. However, this simply wouldn’t do for the more creative types at City Hall. Despite not being the renowned tourist attraction it is today, the location was nonetheless at the center of a growing cultural epicenter and therefore was a prime location for Mayor William Rathie’s alternative proposal to allow local artists to paint the hoarding instead.
The “Paint-In”, held on April 6th, 1966, featured over 100 local amateur and professional artists and displayed a wide range of styles and subjects. Artists had been encouraged to sign up and individual spots along the hoarding were assigned. Georgia and Howe Streets were closed as a large, curious crowd watched the painters get to work. The newly-formed Vancouver Life magazine even featured a photo of the artworks on the cover of their May issue.
The artists’ murals remained on view until the centennial fountain’s unveiling in December; what became of the artists’ work isn’t clear. Regardless, the creative stunt is not without its legacy. In 1968, the British Columbia Provincial Museum in Victoria staged a similar gathering and invited several local artists to paint on the hoarding around its construction zone. Check out the gallery below to view some of the unique works that helped add a little extra fleeting colour to our city.
Vancouver Life and BC Motorist magazine images courtesy of Jason Vanderhill. Archival photography of the murals is the work of Ernie H. Reksten and Leslie F. Sheraton.