Delivered piping hot in an impervious molcajete bowl (made from volcanic stone bowl), the queso fundido with chorizo at La Mezcaleria on Commercial Drive is a delicate but delicious operation. If you bring children to it, they will require assistance. The best way to eat it, according to managing partner Ignacio Arrieta, is to fork it out in coalesced globules (that might burn a hole through lesser metals) and smear it onto the provided tortillas which you then mount with guacamole and squirt with chile de arbol salsa. Pair yours with either a Michelada or a Margarita, and have yourself a very swell evening.
1220 Commercial Drive | Vancouver, BC | 604-559-8226 | www.lamezcaleria.ca
The GOODS from Cannibal Cafe
Vancouver, BC | Want to be at the helm of serving the BEST gourmet burgers in the city? The Cannibal Cafe is looking for an executive chef with a minimum of 3 years experience. We are currently in the process of expanding our brand with another location opening in late fall. We’re looking for the right candidate to organize and maximize the productivity of our kitchen staff through strong, effective leadership and management, while overseeing the day to day control of labour and food costs. This position requires the highest level of organization, work ethic and a high execution of product quality, presentation and creativity. An in-depth knowledge of labour and food costing for restaurants is a must for this position. Please email your cover letter and resume to: thecannibalcafe[at]gmail.com. Read more
The GOODS from La Mezcaleria
Vancouver, BC | We looking for dynamic and highly motivated experienced servers. This is a great opportunity to be a part of our family. Located in the hub of Commercial Drive, La Mezcaleria is an authentic Mexican restaurant with a vivacious energy and the drive to succeed. We are seeking strong servers who will work late nights Fridays/Saturdays and are flexible to cover shifts when needed. If you have a passion for Mexican food and want to be a vital part of our team, please send your cover letter and resume to info [at] lamezcaleria.ca. Spanish is an asset. Serving it Right-certified and 3+ years experience. Lear more about La Mezcaleria after the jump… Read more
The aptly named Commercial Drive is the most popular street in Grandview-Woodlands, a wh. It got its start in Vancouver’s own beginnings as a lengthy trackway for dragging felled logs down to the waterfront. An 1890′s streetcar line connecting New Westminster to Vancouver ensured its rise as a small business high street, and eventually earned it its name-change from Park Drive to Commercial Drive. It had it ups and downs between the wars as its peripheral blocks were filled in with houses, and it wasn’t until the 1950′s that its present day cultural character would begin to metastasize. Post-war Italian immigration and an increasingly heavy Italian business presence on Commercial Drive would result in the area garnering its “Little Italy” moniker. Later immigration from Portugal, the Caribbean, and Southeast Asia added more diversity to the mix, as did a slow but vital trickle of artists, musicians, and politically activists. A distinctly permissive counter-culture had a lock on the neighbourhood by the 1980′s, and despite the creep of gentrification it has never really let go. Today, Commercial Drive is one of the most vibrant and culturally exciting streets in the city. A walk of its length, from Venables to Broadway, is always a enlivening breath of fresh air.
On Commercial Drive at the moment (our HOOD palettes are ever-changing), we’re seeing several shades of incense amalgamated into one dun brown; high quality marijuana; Prado coffee tri-colour; aspirational Italian male Ferrari red and yellow golf shirts; yoga mat lavender; VW Type 2 van rust; Joe’s Cafe rainbow (six colours); summer day sidewalk.
LOTS OF MID-CENTURY MODERN AWESOMENESS AT ATTIC TREASURES
CUSTOMERS SHAZAMMING WHATEVER RECORD IS SPINNING AT AUDIOPILE
PLENTY OF GROWN-UP SUPER PRIVATE FUN TIME TOYS AT WOMEN’S WARE
SHOP KEEPER & CAFE OWNER SENSITIVITY TO “OUTSIDE FOOD AND DRINK”
BLACK VELVET PAINTING COLLECTION AT LITTLE MISS VINTAGE
SAUSAGE AND FISH SMOKE ON CAR FREE DAYS
THE CONSTANT THREAT OF HACKEYSACK
THE INTOXICATING INCENSE SMELL INSIDE (AND OUTSIDE) OF PARANADA TRADERS
HAPPY HARMLESS PEOPLE SMOKING MARIJUANA LIKE IT WAS LEGALISED IN THE REAGAN YEARS
BEDOUIN WORLD TRANCE WIZARD YOGA*
THE TIMELESSLY GARISH INTERIOR OF CAFE CALABRIA
HOMELESS DOGS IN NECKERCHIEFS GUARDING A LIQUOR STORE
MIDNIGHT MOVIES AT THE (LICENSED) RIO THEATRE
EVERYBODY WEARS PATCHOULI TUESDAY
BEER FETISHISTS SCHOOLING SERVERS AT BIERCRAFT
PEOPLE PEOPLE WATCHING THE PEOPLE WATCHERS ON THE PATIO AT HAVANA
SUNDAY AFTERNOON JAZZ AT TANGENT CAFE
MIDDLE-AGED ITALIAN MEN GOSSIPING OUTSIDE ABRUZZO CAPPUCCINO BAR
SKATEBOARD WHEEL VENDING MACHINE AT BLVD SKATESHOP
SCHNITZEL SANDWICHES AND GERMAN CHEESECAKE AT ANDY’S BAKERY
PAPUSAS FROM RICONCITO SALVADORENO
SAINT HONORE CAKE FROM FRATELLI’S BAKERY
THE FALAFEL AT DONAIR TOWN
WING WING CHINESE SAUSAGES FROM SOUTH CHINA SEAS TRADING CO. (ON VICTORIA DR.)
AL PASTOR TACOS AND COLD, SPICY, TAJIN SPICE-RIMMED MICHELADAS AT LA MEZCALERIA
COLD WHITE WINE AND FRESH OYSTERS AT MERCHANT’S
“LEMMY” POBLANO BRUNCH AT BANDIDAS
DIY ITALIAN SANDWICHES AT LA GROTTA DEL FORMAGGIO
UK-STYLE FISH & CHIPS AT WINDJAMMER’S
PEANUT BUTTER CUP AT BUMP & GRIND
BOMBER BEER AT BIERCRAFT
PROPER SAMOSAS AT SWEET CHERUBIN
HEATHER’S BUTTERMILK LOAVES AT UPRISING BREADS BAKERY (ON VENABLES ST.)
AUTHENTIC NEAPOLITAN PIZZAS AT VIA TEVERE (ON VICTORIA DR.)
COFFEE AND SUNDAY BRUNCH AT PRADO CAFE
EASTER COOKIES AT ELIZABETH’S BAKERY
JERK CHICKEN AT RIDDIM & SPICE
SPAGHETTI & RIBS AT NICK’S SPAGHETTI HOUSE
MONKEY’S LUNCH SMOOTHIES AT ETERNAL ABUNDANCE
- The name “Grand View” is said to have originated from a hand-painted sign located on First Avenue in 1892.
- Commercial Drive started as a skid road for logs en route to the old Hastings Mill on Dunlevy.
- Ice hockey can be played year round at the Britannia Rink.
- Following World War II, many of Vancouver’s Italian-Canadian population migrated from Strathcona to Commercial Drive, leading to its nickname as “Little Italy”.
- In the Blvd Skateshop there is a gigantic photo reproduction of the 1986 Thrasher Magazine cover that put Vancouver’s skateparks on the world’s skateboarding radar. It features a young Chris Miller tucking a frontside air over one of the hips at Seylynn Bowl in North Van.
- Early Squamish settlers identified the southern section of Grandview-Woodland as Khupkhahpay’ay, which translates to “cedar tree”.
- Trout Lake (or Blackie’s Lake as it was originally called) is the only lake in the city of Vancouver.
* NOT A REAL THING
We’ve invited The Cannibal Cafe on Commercial Drive to join our GOODS section as a recommended place to chill and knock back a burger with a beer. They are now a proud member of Scout, and as such we will be posting their news in addition to hosting a page for them on our curated list of independent goodnesses. We would like to thank them for their support of Scout, and for making Vancouver a juicier place to be.
by Andrew Morrison | The best burger I’ve had since Mamie Taylor’s was recently wolfed at The Cannibal Cafe on Commercial Drive. They invite diners to build their own, and mine was a beast on brioche that was layered with applewood smoked bacon, BBQ sauce, horseradish mayo, iceburg lettuce, tomato, onion, and smoked gouda. It was really well constructed and balanced (if not designed, ahem), and I like that diners get to choose the “doneness”. I also love how they crisp the circumference of the bun so the sauces don’t get all uppity in their soakitude. The modest set of taps (and mason jar pours) magnetise the bar, as do the no-nonsense but wicked friendly staffers. It was my first time in, and aside from all the few loud Edmonton Oilers fans out for their opener (see you in five more years, rookies), I really dug the space, which felt about authentic as it gets for The Drive. The punk rock gig poster wallpaper effect is charming, and as an ancient fan of local band SNFU, I think the branding is spot on. It definitely had me humming away…
The food ain’t bad and the food ain’t good Come with me, I’m on my way
Don’t dare order the “Leper’s foot”
I recommend the “Ass of a farmer’s wife”
Very tender, not too juicy, heavy on the cellulite
To the Cannibal Cafe
Won’t you come to the only place
Where you can be the Special Of The Day
The food ain’t bad and the food ain’t good
Come with me, I’m on my way
1818 Commercial Drive | Vancouver, BC | 604-558-4199 | www.cannibalcafe.ca
1818 Commercial Drive | Vancouver, BC | 604-558-4199 | www.cannibalcafe.ca
Owner: Matt Thompson
General Manager: Jen Temple
About The Cannibal Cafe
The Cannibal Café is Commercial Drive’s newest restaurant, serving up hand ground beef burgers and authentic milkshakes in a nostalgic, rockin’ diner-esque environment. Inside you’ll find a gorgeous bar, a sleek and clean atmosphere and walls decked out in concert posters from the 90’s heyday of Vancouver indie rock from forgotten venues like The Town Pump and The Hungry Eye.
The Cannibal Cafe grinds 3 cuts of Alberta Beef; Brisket for it’s flavour, Short Rib for it’s rich marbling and Chuck, cause he’s a nice guy. The meat is hand ground daily in house to very specific standards then cooked to your preferred doneness. Open 7 days a week, we are located at 1818 Commercial Drive, serving up the freshest and tastiest burgers to come to this city!
Remember when we posted about Commercial Drive’s awesome Little Nest being forced to shutter at the end of July after their really awesome landlord raised the rent by an fuck you 50%? Well, since D-Day was approaching, we contacted the kid friendly restaurant’s owner, Mary MacIntyre, to get an update on what’s happening. Is Little Nest gone for good? “I actually have some good news,” she says. “We are staying open a little longer.” Why? “I was really encouraged by the overwhelming level of support and so I’ve decided to look for another venue.” And what happens next? ”I will keep the doors open as long as I can until we find a place to move. I am still paying the new rent month to month so I do need to leave our current location as soon as I can.” Our selfish vote is for the DTES or Strathcona proper, but we’ll take it wherever it lands.
We’ve invited Commercial Drive’s new La Mezcaleria to join our GOODS section as an awesome place to spend an evening. They are now proud members of Scout, and as such we will be posting their news in addition to hosting a page for them on our curated list of independent goodnesses. We’d like to take this chance to thank them for their support, and for making Vancouver a tastier place to be.
Owners: Marcelo Ramirez Romero
Part owner/manager: Ignacio Arrieta
Consultant chef: Tina Fineza
About La Mezcaleria
La Mezcaleria (mezcal bar) born in 2013 in the heart of east side Vancouver, as the first Mezcaleria in Canada offering the finest hand craft mezcales and cocktails coming out from different regions of Mexico.
We cook our food from traditional Mexican recipes made with local, organic and sustainable products when available; our menu offers botanas (snacks) and tacos that are meant to be shared with friends and family and chased with a sip of mezcal.
What Is Mezcal? Mezcal (also: Mescal or Meskal) is a spirit distilled from mash made out of the steamed hearts of various species of agaves. The word mezcal comes from the Aztec language, the Nahuatl, and means “cooked agave”: mezcalli from metl = agave, ixcalli = cooked. Historically, mezcal is the general term of agave spirits made in Mexico.
by Andrew Morrison | After a lengthy, near-crippling wait for an electrical upgrade, the long anticipated La Mezcaleria (from the good folks at La Taqueria) is set to finally open its doors this evening at 1622 Commercial Drive. Some background:
This time around we can expect an old school Mexican diner and Oaxacan-style Mezcaleria featuring everything from tostadas and enchilidas to cold beer and hard-to-find find Mezcals (consulting chef Tina Fineza is doing the menu). It’s going into the old Wazubees location on The Drive, a lovely old spot with garage frontage, high ceilings, and lots of natural light (much of which is provided by a huge skylight). It’s been near completion for a while now, and by that I mean the kitchen is installed, the floor has been laid with imported gorgeous Guadalajara green tiles and the 55 seats (including 35 at the lengthy bar) are ready for their first bums. “Once we get the electricity we need,” co-owner Marcelo Romero says with a shrug, “we should be ready in 15 days.”
And therein lies the trouble. The space has insufficient electricity, and they’ve been waiting to have it upgraded for nearly nine months. Romero claims – with no small amount of frustration in his voice – that his phone calls to City Hall and BC Hydro aren’t being returned. “The Mayor, he loves our tacos. Maybe I have to go knock on his door? I don’t know.” As it stands today (when these pictures were taken), Romero and his partners don’t even have a clue as to when they’ll get their electrical insufficiency sorted, and while they’re grateful that they have an understanding landlord (they aren’t paying full rent at the moment), the cost is nevertheless crippling since there’s absolutely no revenue coming in.
It was awesome to hear that shortly after the story hit the web, the obstacles to their progress were removed (and there was much rejoicing). I checked in earlier today and got the good word. Tonight’s the night, amigos, and things are looking mighty sharp!
Drive, The | Nickname | Instantly conjuring up the smell of patchouli oil and espresso, The Drive is one of our city’s most recognizable nicknames. Short for Commercial Drive, it’s a microcosm of East Van; part hippie, part aging working-class immigrant, part yuppie gentrifier, part hipster, part Quebecois squeegee kid, and part lesbian (according to Wikipedia).
Usage: “I was on The Drive this morning and I saw a guy with dreads twirling Devil Sticks in the park! I’m serious. Devil sticks!”
Hot off the presses from our friends at FeastVan:
Fill your bellies (and pint glasses) with a good conscience during FeastVan starting this weekend. Indulge in a specially priced three-course dinner (or two course lunch) between January 18 and February 3 and $1 from every prix fixe dinner sold will go towards the Vancouver Inner City Back Pack Food Program, a rad initiative that helps kids who do not have reliable access to nutritious food by sending them home from school with healthy snacks that help to see them through the weekends.
We’re talking about good restaurants, folks. Au Petit Chavignol, The Acorn, Bao Bei, Campagnolo Roma, The Cascade Room, East of Main, Eight 1/2 Restaurant & Lounge, El Caminos, Habit, Harvest Community Foods, Les Faux Bourgeois, Nicli Antica Pizzaria, The Parker, Union Bar, and more are on board.
Not only that, but a percentage of the proceeds from every keg of R&B Brewing’s East Side Bitter sold at participating FeastVan restaurants will go towards the Back Pack Program and Les Amis du Fromage will be doing the same for every sale of take home macaroni and cheese. Pat’s Pub will do the same for every sale of it’s awesome Pulled Pork or Beef Brisket Sandwich.
No passes, tickets or coupons are required. Diners may simply visit their favourite participating restaurants throughout the 17 days to enjoy the specially priced prix fixe menus. Advance reservations are strongly encouraged, but walk-ins are appreciated. To make a lunch or dinner reservation, please contact the restaurant directly. Please note that some restaurants do not take reservations.