Chinatown’s Bestie has been open for a few months now, and our friends over at Warren Lane Pictures have just put out an awesome little video that details its construction process in typically charming fashion. Press play above and enjoy.
And in other Bestie news, they’re doing a little beer collaboration with 33 Acres this Sunday, September 22nd. The festivities will take place from 1pm to 5pm at Mt. Pleasant’s new (and very gorgeous) 33 Acres Brewery.
Bestie will be on site serving pretzel, pickle and cured sausage tasting plates to complement a very special brew. Expect music and merriment and a modern Oktoberfest vibe. See you there!
The GOODS from Bestie
Vancouver, BC | Bestie is a friendly little sausage and beer parlour in the heart of Vancouver’s Chinatown. We’re looking for a talented cook to join our team, someone with experience working on a busy line and who has the ability to take initiative and drive a service. We’re looking for someone who can be flexible with their schedule and this position has room to grow as the business grows. We’re a tight crew who works hard, but knows how to have fun; a positive attitude is a MUST. Strong work ethic required.
Our menu is simple, but focused, changing daily, weekly and seasonally. Our kitchen is small but active, with a tight team and busy rushes. We work with Master Butchers, Bakers and Brewers, and do a lot of pickling, fermenting and condiment experiments in house. For more info visit bestie.ca. If you’re awesome and interested please send a resume and letter of interest to hello [at] bestie.ca. Thanks for your time, only those applicants short-listed will be contacted. Read more
The GOODS from Bestie
Vancouver, BC | Want to find out why all wine geeks hold Rieslings in such high regard, but wouldn’t know a Spätlese if you tripped over one? Join Kurtis Kolt of the East Van Wine Academy on Sunday, August 18th at 6:00 inside Bestie, “Home of Chinatown’s Finest Currywurst,” and taste through eight German Rieslings that will cover the range from bone-dry to decadently sweet. While touring through a handful of German wine regions, you’ll get a handle on all the important terminology, the various styles of the grape, learn how to make sense of the labels and gain a new appreciation for some of the best-value wines on store shelves today. And even better, you get to try these lip-smackingly delicious wines paired with a half-dozen different sausages while learning just how food-friendly these wines can be. It’s just $40 to taste through eight wines, bump up your wine education, and polish off a couple of plates of the hottest sausages in town. Seats are limited, so be sure to reserve yours today. Read more
by Andrew Morrison | This is a new feature in which we will examine 1,000 awesome things about Vancouver, 10 at a time. Ambitious, sure, but it has a point. It was originally designed to remind those people who have left Vancouver of what they’ve left behind. You probably know a few friends who’ve skipped town. I certainly do. I’ve lost many to places near and far afield, even a brother (to Germany) and a sister-in-law (to LA). The reasons why they left are numerous, nuanced, and as varied as the contents of a general store. Some left for love, while others fell victim to the notion that we live in a culturally retarded town where the powers that be take heed of (and act on) whatever the soul-killing NIMBYs are bitching about on any given Wednesday. And for many others still, it’s that irresistible opportunities presented themselves elsewhere. For most, however, it’s that Vancouver was too hard a place to afford a balanced, rewarding lifestyle where they could earn a proper keep. And who can blame them? We get it. Vancouver is not always awesome. But when it is, one has to admit that it’s in a league entirely of its own. This new series therefore aims to show those dodgers (and those who are considering getting out of dodge) that it isn’t all bad, and that their love of Vancouver is something worth coming home for. And if you don’t dig the first 10 that follow, there are – at the very least – 990 more to come. So without further et cetera…
by Andrew Morrison | Bestie is the first cool thing about Vancouver, and that’s probably because I just ate there with one of my boys and it was awesome. It was very inspiring to watch Clinton McDougall and Dane Brown – two guys without much training or restaurant experience – open a simple, straightforward eatery in Chinatown with public assistance and knock it completely out of the park without ever compromising their original vision. Sure it’s just German-style sausages and beer, but they have an oblique, out of the ordinary style that totally endears (and don’t just take my word for it — they were recently featured in Cool Hunting, Superfuture, Trendland, and a ton of other websites. When they were at Brewery & The Beast (June’s outdoor BBQ and beer extravaganza on False Creek), instead of putting up placards or sandwich boards to tell diners and drinkers who they were (very much the expected norm), they decided instead to spell out their name in giant gold balloons above their stall and jokingly hawk their wares carney-style, as if they were on Coney Island in 1958. No biggie in the large or small grand scheme of things, but to me, it exemplified their rare and contagious spirit of “Let’s just do it anyway”. Bestie – aside from being a reliably delicious place to get full – is a shining example of how passion and the resolve to be a little different from everyone else can trump experience, savvy, and pockets full of money.
by Andrew Morrison | A month after serving its first currywursts at 105 East Pender in Chinatown, Bestie finally served its first beers last night to the gentle sounds of an Oompah fellow who was brought in to herald the liqour license’s arrival, German-style. To compliment their sausage selection, they’re serving Coal Harbour 311 Helles Lager (brewed with the same yeast strain from the Paulaner Brewery in Munich), Driftwood Crooked Coast Altbier, Driftwood White Bark Witbier, and Red Racer Pilsner in the vessels seen above. Co-owner Dane Brown notes that they “also have Schneiderweisse in half litre bottles for any homesick Deutschlanders.” And there was much rejoicing.
by Andrew Morrison | The long wait for Bestie - the new sausage and beer joint at 105 East Pender in Chinatown – is thankfully, finally, awesomely over. We tore through its tiny menu at a dry run over the weekend and it was as good as I had hoped it was. Knowing how long it took (over a year) and how they agonized over every detail made me all the more critical going in, but finding a flaw in such a simple, unassuming concept – sausages and beer – especially when you love sausages and beer, is a silly bit of business. My only regret is that they didn’t have their liquor license yet, but that comes this week, with crossed fingers (and hopefully an oompah band). What to eat? Everything! But start with a classic, Oyama-made Thuringer sausage as a currywurst (with fries and sauce) together a warm pretzel, side of mustard, bowl of beets with horseradish creme fraiche, and maybe another sausage, like the spiced lamb or the turkey. Hours are Monday to Wednesday, 11:30pm to 10pm and until midnight on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. The tiny takeout window will operate late nights on weekends. Break a leg, fellas!
by Andrew Morrison | It’s high time we provided an update on the highly anticipated Bestie at 105 East Pender St. in Chinatown. We first reported on its coming a year ago this week, and we’re happy to say that the 25 seat German-themed sausage and beer joint from Clinton McDougall and Dane Brown is well on its way. They’ve hammered down a menu of Thuringian sausages (pork) that will include brats and currywurst, plus a rotating poultry sausage and a special or two. The good folks at Oyama are making them, but execution is in the hands of chef Colin Johnson, who worked in Andrey Durbach’s kitchens for upwards of a decade. The fries will be hand-cut BC potatoes, double fried and served with a little metal pommesgabel (literally “French Fry Fork”), and the beers will be German-inspired but locally brewed (4 on tap with several others in bottle format). As you can see in one of the images above, the tapped beers can be had in 8oz, 12oz, or monstrous 24oz pours, the latter to be enjoyed from proper ceramic steins! David Stansfield, who you might know from Vancouver Urban Winery, is in charge of the tiny wine program. He has one red and one white cheap and cheerful planned for taps and tumblers, with a few supplemental bottles, all containing German varietals. The only spirit sold at Bestie will be schnapps. Because jawohl!
As far as the aesthetic goes, it’s worth remembering that Dane and Clinton come to the food trade from the design world, so they’ve considered the look as much as they have the sausages. It’s going to be on the bright side, with wooded paneling lit by high gloss white floors and white walls. Much of the seating will be convertible. A series of “booths” along the long wall facing the kitchen bar can readily be modified so that they become one large table, and above these booths will be an ever-changing canvas of wooden pegs. There are 116 holes in the wall to accommodate them, so expect to see hanging lights, magazines, and probably a jacket or two suspended above the modular booths. There’s also a sweet corner table at the front window that folds up so that sausages can be sold through the window deep into the night (hello Fortune revellers!). The rear wall will see rotating works from local artists (overseen by an obligatory cuckoo clock), and I suspect that we might hear some 1980′s Grauzone leading what I hope will be a chiefly German soundtrack. Dane and Clinton are doing nearly all the construction work themselves, with guidance from David Scott of local architecture firm Scott & Scott (recent recipients of some Cool Hunting love).
Because of its close proximity to the Scout office, I see a lot of currywurst in my future. Opening day, which can’t come soon enough, is on track for the early June.
Andrew Morrison is the editor-in-chief of Scout and BC’s Senior Judge at the Canadian Culinary Championships. He contributes regularly to a wide range of publications, radio programs, and TV shows on local food, culture and travel. He live and works in the vibrant Strathcona neighbourhood, where he also collects inexpensive things and enjoys birds, skateboards, whisky, shoes, many songs, and the smell of wood fires.
The GOODS from Bestie
Vancouver, BC | We’re looking to add a few solid folks to the kitchen team for our our soon to be open 25-seat sausage and beer parlour. Bestie is inspired by German street food. This means sausages, sauerkraut, pretzels, and hand-cut fries. There will be pickling, baking, fermentation, and the creative use of vegetables sourced from Vancouver’s urban farms.
Bestie will be a collaborative little restaurant with a tight crew where each member will contribute to make something special happen with food, service and the overall experience. Applicants must be passionate and, at times, nerdy about food. Work ethic, character, and positivity are things we value. Hard work will be required, duties will overlap, and a sense of humour will be necessary.
To apply, please send a cover letter and resume to firstname.lastname@example.org. We appreciate all applications but due to the overwhelming amount of work on our plates right now, only shortlisted candidates will be contacted. Learn more about Bestie after the jump… Read more
The GOODS from Bestie
Vancouver, BC | Bestie is looking for a Sous Chef to come on board, help launch, and ultimately be awesome in the kitchen of our soon to be open 25-seat sausage and beer parlour. Applicants must be passionate and, at times, nerdy about food. Professional kitchen experience is required. We need someone who is capable of working as an integral part of a small team, has leadership skills, and can create and work with food budgets and seasonal ingredients. This position will be a crucial part of our team and we need someone who will hustle hard and take ownership of their role. This is an opportunity to be a part of getting a small restaurant off the ground. The role has the potential to grow as the business grows. Bestie will be a collaborative and creative little restaurant with a tight crew where each member will contribute to make something special happen with food, service and the overall experience. Work ethic, character, and positivity are things we value. Hard work will be required, duties will overlap, and a sense of humour will be necessary. To apply, please send a cover letter and resume to email@example.com. We appreciate all applications but due to the overwhelming amount of work we have on our plates right now, only shortlisted candidates will be contacted. Read more
Clinton McDougall & Dane Brown, co-founders
Bestie is a friendly little sausage and beer parlour in the heart of Vancouver’s Chinatown. Inspired by German street food, Bestie serves up a selection of finely crafted sausages, hand cut fries, tasty side salads, fresh baked pretzels, and Chinatown’s finest currywurst. We work with master butchers and urban farms, whole ingredients, and sustainably raised meats. We’ve got three curated taps of local beer, some odd German bottles, both colours of wine, and a storied selection of schnapps. Bestie is open for snappy lunches, friendly dinners, late night eats and thirsty visits anytime. Just look for the neon sausage.
Remember the fundraising video starring Clinton McDougall and Dane Brown, the pair behind Chinatown’s “Bestie” (a 25 seat sausage and beer joint at 105 East Pender due this March)? Their charming entreaty may have famously brought them over $10,000 in capital in just 5 days, but it also made possible this rather entertaining video of outtakes, which you can view with a giggle above (thanks Warren Lane Pictures).
PS. Bestie’s so-called “Magic Sausage Cards” can be purchased until midnight on December 31, 2012.
by Andrew Morrison | You might remember that 5 days ago we put up a post telling of how Bestie – a restaurant under construction in Chinatown – had turned to the Indiegogo fundraising website to help with an infusion of capital. They were looking for $10,000 of public investment. In exchange, the investors would get sausage dividends, or “magic sausage cards”. It was a smart idea, and a successful one…
MISSION ACCOMPLISHED, SAUSAGE LOVERS! – instagr.am/p/StjG7LoEw5/
— Bestie (@bestiewurst) December 1, 2012
Indeed. Earlier today Bestie owners Clinton McDougall and Dane Brown met their lofty target (and exceeded it). It took them just 5 days to raise 10 large…from strangers. So yeah, big congratulations are in order.
I hope this means that a reliable supply of proper currywurst and good beer is coming sooner rather than later. But I wonder if their fundraising scheme hasn’t opened a new and bizarre chapter in Vancouver’s restaurant scene. It might pass as being a one off thing that we’ll never see again, or it could have changed the local restaurant start-up game for good. In a few years, will public financing be as normal a step to a prospective restaurateur as, say, opening an Instagram account? Will diners – who are always hungry for new concepts – now volunteer regularly to help foot the bill of construction costs? Or will they revolt by claiming that it’s just another invasive industry subsidy, like the 20% gratuity norm?
Personally, as long as the return on investment is solid (you can’t go wrong with sausages), I’m all for it. In fact, I have $500 that I’d like to invest in a licensed ramen joint in Gastown, just as long as that gets me 75 bowls and beers. Any takers?