by Daniel Colussi | A quick heads up to inform you that this evening the Austin-by-way-of-St.-Louis by-way-of-Ohio by-way-of-Boston baroque/folk crew Mutual Benefit are playing The Cobalt. They’re a ragtag assembly of folkers lead by Jordan Lee, a young man who quit a promising career in corporate PR to bum around different cities and write beautiful, timeless songs. His newest and most widely available album, the low-key but confident Love’s Crushing Diamond, was a delight of late 2013 and his premier Vancouver appearance tonight is sure to be a night to remember. It’s perfect winter music, as album highlight Advanced Falconry (below) attests.
Further incentive: the show opener is Vancouver’s own White Poppy, who positively killed it in 2013 with her self-titled LP, which proved to be a romantic drone pop masterpiece. Tickets at Red Cat, Zulu and the venue.
The GOODS from Heirloom Vegetarian
Vancouver, BC | Heirloom Vegetarian is now hiring Bartenders! We are looking for those with a passion for service and relevant industry experience. Both day and evening positions available. Please forward your resume to info [at] heirloomrestaurant.ca. Learn more about us after the jump… Read more
Definitive Records asks interesting Vancouverites to pick the three albums that anchor their musical tastes. Today, we hear from Bob Rennie. Most Vancouverites know him as a real estate marketing legend (he’s been at is since 1975), but he’s also one of Vancouver’s leading supporters of the arts. He sits on Emily Carr University’s Board of Governors and chairs the North America Acquisitions Committee (NAAC) at the Tate Museum of Modern Art in London. The public can check out his own Rennie Collection in Chinatown’s Wing Sang Building two days a week. Have a listen to the foundational sounds of…
Beck, Bogart & Appice – Superstition | LISTEN | “Very fond friendship memories of youth and camping.”
Simon & Garfunkel – At The Zoo | LISTEN | “Describes life…animal farm-ish.”
David Bowie – Young Americans | LISTEN | “My ex-wife and I loved this song when we were 18!”
The GOODS from Nicli Antica Pizzeria
Vancouver, BC | Award-winning Nicli Antica Pizzeria announced today that starting immediately it will now be accepting reservations for lunch. “We’ve always tried to keep things informal on a first-come basis,” says General Manager Anthony Sterne, “but with the holiday season just around the corner, we did not want our guests worried that they might not get a seat when they wanted one. This is especially a challenge during lunch when people have a limited amount of time in which to dine.”
As a result, Nicli will now be accepting reservations for lunch only (dinner remains on a first come basis). It doesn’t matter if you are a party of two or a party of ten, reservations can be made by calling the restaurant at 604-669-6985. Nicli is open for lunch every day starting at 11:30am. Read more
The GOODS from JoieFarm
Vancouver, BC | Vancouver food and wine lovers are invited to join Joiefarm’s Michael Dinn in person for a special six course dinner at Gastown’s Cork & Fin restaurant on Sunday, November 10th. Tickets are $89 and can be purchased either by emailing rodney [at] regiogroup.ca or by phoning 604-569-2215. A preview of the menu may be found by clicking here. Learn more about JoieFarm after the jump… Read more
Vancouver’s architecture is often difficult to distinguish as many of its homes are adaptations or amalgamations of more recognized styles. By cataloguing them, we gain an understanding of our homes and neighbourhoods, which gives us all a sense of pride in our city. With this is mind, the Vancouver Heritage Foundation provides Scout with an exclusive series that we call The Roof Over Your Head.
In North America, the period following World War I was a time of cozy, entrenched traditionalism. The “new” domestic architecture of the 1920’s-30’s unfolded at the height of the influence of the Hollywood movies, which had always depicted the exotic, the rare and the distant. This also led to widespread acceptance of the exotic and the picturesque.
As the economy improved after the War, more people had an appetite for a sophisticated approach to the picturesque. Bungalows were reinvented with whimsical elements such as Tudor half-timbering and multi-paned windows. Characterized by steeply-pitched gables and gothic-arched windows, the Storybook style is inspired by historical motifs but embellished with romantic elements.
The massing of Storybook houses is nearly always asymmetrical, with striking character-defining rooflines which are usually tall, and steeply gable. Everything from the clipped edge ‘jerkinhead’ roofs, to ‘Dutchweave’ eaves found on ‘Hansel and Gretel’ cottages, to the French Norman influence of turrets can be found on the Storybook home. Many Storybook houses adapted a one and a half storey massing to reinforce the doll-house look, with the roof hovering close to the ground.
The front entry is often arched and outlined with brick or stone. Pointed, rounded or shallow arched windows are common. Other windows are deep-set with leaded muntin-barred windows, dressed with shutters and window boxes. Side yard gates were often attached to the front plane of the house reinforcing the asymmetrical “cats-slide” roofline (where one side of a pitched roof angles towards the ground in a sweeping curve).
Storybook homes in Vancouver are few and far between now. Their whimsical styling was only popular for a few years and many were demolished, with a few notable exceptions. The homes lovingly referred to as the “Hobbit House” on King Edward and 3979 W Broadway are obvious starting places (both were designed by Brenton T. Lea.). However these character homes can also be found in Dunbar and around Point Grey.
Vancouver Heritage Foundation is a registered charity supporting the conservation of heritage buildings and structures in recognition of their contribution to the city’s economy, sustainability and culture. VHF supports Vancouver’s built history by offering educational tours, talks and lectures, courses, and special events. Launched early in 2013, the Vancouver House Styles Architectural Web Tool is a free online reference cataloguing Vancouver’s common architectural styles.
by Chuck Hallett | The start of the winter cellaring beer release season is upon us. How can I tell? Vancouver Island Brewing has dropped the 2013 version of their famous Eisbock, aka Hermannator. Now in its 26th year, this dark and strong bugger comes out mere weeks before the rest of the winter heavies, giving us beer geeks time enough to clear out a shelf or two in our cellars.
You wouldn’t know it by looking at it, but an Eisbock is actually a lager; a pitch black, strong (9.5%!) lager that, upon tasting, you’d be forgiven for confusing with a rich ale, what with all the chocolate, caramel and brown sugar that comes through on the palate. And is that some raisin I taste in there, too? Yes it is. This is a brilliant beer to sip out of a snifter on those cold winter evenings (drink it from the bottle and I will break into your condo, hurt you, and take it away like a cruel sort of reverse Santa Claus).
And don’t just take my word on it. Hermannator was recently awarded the coveted Best Of Show Award at the 2013 BC Beer Awards, which is some serious beer geek cred. In addition to being almost universally acclaimed as awesome, Hermannator is a great starting beer for those interested in cellaring. Properly stored, this beer will age and slowly improve for five or more years.
If you’re keen on cellaring, look for the limited edition waxed dipped 650ml bomber with the 2013 vintage stamped into the wax-dipped top at private stores in Victoria, and at select private stores in Vancouver (VIB will announce who gets the goods via Twitter).
Where to get it: The LDB carries the six packs. Private stores in Victoria will get access to the waxed 650ml bombers.
How much is it: $13.75 for six 335ml bottles.
When to get it: Hermannator six packs stick around for a few months, but generally are gone by February.
by Douglas Haddow | “The sky above the port was the color of television, tuned to a dead channel” – so begins William Gibson’s Neuromancer – a novel that defined the cyberpunk genre and went on to become the most influential piece of literature to ever come out of Vancouver.
In addition to dragging science fiction headfirst into the 21st century, Gibson was able to perfectly capture the post-industrial zeitgeist (and the tensions therein) far more effectively than any “serious” literature at the time. But in a world where cloak-and-dagger conflicts between an omniscient surveillance state and hacker anti-heroes with dumb haircuts have become fodder for cartoon tabloids, we’ve come to take cyberpunk’s techno-dystopic forecasts for granted.
“Cyberspace”, the Gibson-coined iCloud of darkness that once threatened to turn us all into plasmatic feedbags, is now a mother-friendly playpen of tickled kittens and soft rock astronauts. Telus is right – the future is friendly. Only it’s the type of friendly that will leave you lying awake at night, ashamed of yourself because your latest Instagram post only got three likes and you don’t know who you are anymore.
And so if we ignore all the grim futurism and fractious gadgetry, the true theme of Gibson’s work emerges: cyberpunk was never really about the unintended consequences of technological determinism. Rather, it sought to allegorize an experience that is universal to all Vancouverites: the sense of impending doom that creeps across the Lower Mainland like a vampire squid whenever November rolls around, lifting the fog of our seasonal amnesia and reminding us of the unavoidable truth: it’s going to rain constantly for the next four months.
But not to worry! We’ve got you covered these five vaguely Gibsonesque rain hacks that will help you avoid a post-summer bummer:
On a chemical level, one of the causes of the winter blues is, according to WebMD, a decrease in serotonin production. Fortunately, cannabis, a genus of flowering plant indigenous to Vancouver’s suburbs, can boost serotonin if used responsibly. In order to properly capitalize on the plant’s therapeutic properties, it is recommended that those suffering from “the fuckin’ rain” crawl inside a fabricated womb and forget that the world exists. Call in sick to work for one or two weeks, build a pillow fort in your living room, and watch Star Trek: The Next Generation in its entirety and/or until cured.
The best way to deal with the existential despair commonly triggered by a lack of sunlight is to avoid confronting said despair directly. If you’re single, this can be achieved by immediately latching on to the first person who agrees to sleep with you. While physical intimacy is key, it’s also important to temporarily become as emotionally co-dependent as you can. You don’t have to necessarily like the person, either. All that matters is that you both have warm bodies and will regularly calm each other’s egos with some form of positive reinforcement. Once the rain clears, simply delete your number from their mobile phone and carry on as you were before.
If on the other hand, you are already in a relationship, and it isn’t properly insulating you from the harsh realities of a Vancouver winter, why not augment one’s level of intimacy by connecting with a group of like-minded individuals? You don’t have to go all Scientology right off the bat. In fact, it’s recommended that you ease into structured groupthink by signing up for a spin class first.
Vancouverites, especially of the male variety, are very fond of curating an outwardly rugged aesthetic. Robust beards, plaid shirts, woolen toques, waxed coats and so forth – all harkening back to a time when the archetypical British Columbian did not avoid the elements but embraced them with an open heart and a sharpened axe. Instead of slinking around under an umbrella like a coward, walk proudly into Mother Nature’s bosom, drink the rain from your moustache and let it soak deep into your bones. Yes, you will definitely get sick and likely develop a productive cough due to a weakened immune system, but at least you can hack some authenticity into your embroidered handkerchief.
And finally, the most common and effective method of seasonal evasion: the all-inclusive trip to Hawaii. Kick back on the beach, get a tan and sip some Piña Coladas. Ride some gnarly waves. Swim with the dolphins. All that good stuff. Maybe even get around to reading that copy of No Logo that’s been collecting dust on your bookshelf since first year of uni. Just avoid staring into the mirror for too long when you towel off, because the only thing worse than the rain is realizing that it’s the very least of your problems.
Douglas Haddow is a Main Street-based writer and the Associate Editor at Scout. His work has appeared in The Guardian, Adbusters, Vice, Colors, Slate, Hobo, and various online ice hockey forums. He has a BA in film studies from UBC, is a reluctant Calgary Flames supporter and likes to drink and argue.
The GOODS from Tableau Bar Bistro
Vancouver, BC | Today, Tableau Bar Bistro is pleased to officially make two long-awaited announcements: Henry Wong is promoted to Executive Sous Chef and Alain Canuel is named new restaurant manager. Diners can expect a fresh focus on creativity in the kitchen thanks to Chef Henry, while Alain brings a charismatic leadership style and a passion for exceeding guests’ expectations. Armed with decades of experience and possessing undeniable talent, both are welcomed assets to Tableau Bar Bistro’s award-winning team.
A proud local, Executive Sous Chef Henry Wong was born and raised in Vancouver and spent much of his childhood at his parent’s restaurants, learning his way around a kitchen at a young age. He honed his skills at the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts in Vancouver and finished a formal three-year apprenticeship at Lumière restaurant, training under chef Marc-André Choquette and chef Rob Feenie. He continued his culinary journey in San Francisco, Hong Kong and Montreal, where he worked at various Michelin-starred restaurants learning from renowned chefs, such as chef Corey Lee. In 1998, Chef Henry helped open Cibo Trattoria and Uva Wine Bar before settling at the Loden Hotel in 2008, again under the wing of Marc-André Choquette, Executive Chef (Chef MAC) at Tableau Bar Bistro. Read more
The Four Seasons Hotel is located at the corner of Georgia and Howe, making it the perfect place to meet for after-work drinks, post-shopping cocktails (Pacific Centre Mall has adjoining doors to the hotel) or pre-theatre or art gallery gathering place. It’s also very attractive, busy and – this is rare for most hotel lounges – host to a surprising lot of locals.
The Drink(s) |Barman Justin Taylor has recently rolled out a 100 mile cocktail list. We suggest The Vancouver Millionaires (Victoria Gin, Bremners Cranberry and Blueberry Juices, Venturi Balsamic, Honey Bee Center Honey, and Phillips Blue Buck Pale Ale | $14. The deep maroon colour of the cocktail is a tribute to Vancouver’s first professional hockey team, The Vancouver Millionaires, who were Stanley Cup winners in 1915. Also fantastic: Bella Dama, a twist on the classic Margarita made from Anejo Tequila, St. Germain Elderflower, Bittered Sling “Denman” Bitters, Muddled Ginger and Cilantro, Fresh Squeezed lemon Juice and vanilla-infused simple syrup (the green fella above) | $13.
YEW Seafood + Bar at The Four Seasons (791 West Georgia St) | WEBSITE
The GOODS from Kale & Nori
Vancouver, BC | Back in January, Kale & Nori’s Chef Jonathan Chovancek and Lauren Mote traveled to the agricultural belt of Mexico to develop cuisine and cocktails using the “Aguardientes” and “Licors” of the Onilikan Distillery. These European-style spirits will take centre-stage for two special cocktail events at Legacy Liquor Store’s beautiful long table: May 8 with bartender Marc Smolinski (Max’s Burger’s, A Drinker’s Peace) and May 27 with Lauren Mote (Kale & Nori, Bittered Sling). Enjoy these unique opportunity to taste the spirits, cocktails and cuisine created with Onilikan’s spirited line up. Tickets for May 8 here and May 27 there. Details and menu after the jump… Read more
by Sean Orr | The great vindication? Study finds number of neighbourhood’s social housing units actually on the rise. “These residents won’t be eating at Pidgin or drinking IPAs across the street at Bitter or at whatever new boite turns up nearby. But they aren’t leaving the historic area either, according to the report, despite the upward trajectory of their neighbourhood’s price point”. This has been my entire point all along. Yes, change is happening, but unless you’re a wide-eyed anarcho-syndicalist who is unable or refuses to see nuances in capitalism – that projects like 60 West Cordova and independent restaurants like L’Abattoir (who in turn hire grumpy bloggers like me) can be sensitive to demographic concerns – then the debate is purely, uselessly academic.
So how do the “Marxists” respond? Well, they first held a meeting (rough video facsimile at the top), wherein they decided that the City lied! City skews numbers to hide loss of low income housing – 430 units lost in the last year.
The city report, which is in fact only a slideshow presentation for a public relations campaign, suggests that the number of low-income singles housing in the downtown core has increased…However, Ward’s Tyee article fails to take into account that the same slideshow also states that out of the 4,482 low-income SRO units in 2012, only 24% of the units rent at welfare rate… The problem is that the city’s SRA By-law literally does not count these units as losses in the affordable housing stock, regardless of what price they climb to.
Ok. Fair enough. But what does a restaurant have to do with that? Raise the bloody welfare rates now and the point is moot.
But how do the self-styled class warriors respond? They steal the little sandwich-board sign from out front of Save On Meats. Because that’s how the Russian Revolution started, am I right?
Related: saying you will hire from within the community sure sounds good, but it doesn’t always work: Businesses strain to retain Downtown Eastside workers. “Just like the neighbourhood residents, they’re figuring out how to succeed in their own way.”
Meanwhile, did you know that a middling pizzeria is responsible for the wholesale displacement of Quebecois squeegee kids and patchouli-covered trust-fund hippies on Commercial Drive? Yup. Pizzeria allegedly vandalized by Vancouver anti-gentrification group. Would it be too predictable of me to now form an Anti “Anti Gentrification Front” Front?
And check out these fucking gentrifiers: Introducing the Brewed Awakening feature tap at Pat’s Pub & Brewhouse.
Sorry, but Canada was never the No. 1 place to live. I don’t know if it was on purpose, but I love how the first word there is sorry. So Canadian!
Bummer | Slang/Nickname | Vancouver nickname for that General Motors gas-guzzling monstrosity, the Hummer
Usage: “Dude, let’s key the shit of this Bummer”.
(via) Busier then than now? Probably, though I suspect the intersection is much tastier today with Nuba, La Taqueria, and Meat & Bread. It’s likely more aromatic, too, what with the absence of horse shit and the introduction of all that smoke emanating from The Amsterdam Cafe. Harbour Center? Meh.