Staff Meal is a new column by Ken Tsui. The photo essays will detail the stories behind the family-style meals that some of Vancouver’s busiest restaurant crews get either before or after service.
by Ken Tsui | Before service, the team at Railtown’s Ask for Luigi rallies for their staff meal. Chef and owner Jean-Christophe Poirier and cook Edward Jordan decide to nostalgic for their days together at Pizzeria Farina, Poirier’s sister restaurant. They begin by rolling out some tempered dough while general manager Matthew Morgenstern does his mise en place for a Caesar salad. In the back, Ales, a former dishwasher-turned-kitchen apprentice is on “smoothie duty”. He puts together a different fresh fruit smoothie every day in the chef’s bid for a healthier staff meal. Today, it’s a delicious melange of blueberries, pineapple, mint and blood orange. Within half an hour, a variety of pizzas are passed around, smoothies are poured, and the salad is mixed tableside. A strong sense of family pervades the room as the team takes a moment to enjoy their meal and each other’s company before the first tables arrive.
A few weeks ago Scout broke the news that the folks behind Pourhouse and chef Jean-Christophe Poirier (ex-Campagnolo, Chow) had joined forces and were working on a new pizzeria in the old Italian Job space at 915 Main St. just off Prior (next to The Cobalt)…
It’s a tiny spot with only a handful of seats, so they’ll be concentrating on take-out and delivery (by bicycle!). Apparently, J.C. and local pâtissier Paul Croteau have been working on perfecting the dough for the past six months. What they’ve come up with is a style similar to what you find in northern Italy (lighter and not as a chewy as Neapolitan). Other awesome things of note are that Craig Stanghetta is in charge of the design (see Meat & Bread, Bao Bei, Stackhouse) and the good folks at Glasfurd & Walker are doing the branding (see L’Abattoir, Meat & Bread, Bao Bei and Scout’s recent redesign). They are looking to open in mid-August.
As you can see from the shots above (landed in my inbox just now), they seem to be on track to meet their target opening date. “I’m really happy with the way everything is coming together,” J.C. says. “The design and layout of the space is exactly what I wanted and the first few pizzas turned out even better than we expected.”
This just landed in my inbox:
Pourhouse Restaurant and Jean-Christophe (J-C) Poirier are excited to announce their new joint venture. Opening soon on Main and Prior, Pizzeria Farina will feature classic Italian pizza served in a casual, sit in or take out environment. The simple menu will focus on traditionally inspired pizza made from local, quality ingredients.
This is going down just a couple of blocks from my house in Strathcona at 915 Main St. off Prior (where Italian Job Pizza used to be). It’s a tiny spot with only a handful of seats, so they’ll be concentrating on take-out and delivery (by bicycle!). Apparently, J.C. and local pâtissier Paul Croteau have been working on perfecting the dough for the past six months. What they’ve come up with is a style similar to what you find in northern Italy (lighter and not as a chewy as Neapolitan). Other awesome things of note are that Craig Stanghetta is in charge of the design (see Meat & Bread, Bao Bei, Stackhouse) and the good folks at Glasfurd & Walker are doing the branding (see L’Abattoir, Meat & Bread, Bao Bei and Scout’s recent redesign). They are looking to open in mid-August.
The GOODS from Gastown’s Pourhouse
Vancouver, BC | Pourhouse Restaurant is pleased to welcome Jean-Christophe Poirier as their new Executive Chef. J.C. joins the team with over a decade of experience in the culinary ?eld. His experiences have taken him from Toque! (a Relais Chateaux restaurant) in Montreal to the West Coast of Canada. Fortunately for local foodies, in 2004 he made his home in Vancouver. Poirier had tremendous successes as the chef de cuisine of Campagnolo Restaurant, chef de partie at Lumière and C Restaurant and executive chef and proprietor of South Granville’s Chow.
J.C. has designed a new menu for Pourhouse offering the guest simple and approachable cuisine. Using only the best seasonal ingredients BC has to offer, J.C. creates bold, simple and beautifully-presented dishes.
Says Poirier, “We want to make sure that all aspects of the restaurant are well balanced. We want everything to work together: the food, the bar program, the service and the room. It needs to be clear to the guest that when they go to Pourhouse it is to eat the best Burger in town, to eat a scotch egg while drinking a Sazerac or to enjoy a nice bourbon sour in a room that is elegant and cozy.”
J.C. will be responsible for creating the Pourhouse menu, selecting the staff and running the business side of the restaurant’s back-of-house operations. He has appointed chef de cuisine Adam Johnson (former sous chef to Robert Belcham of Campagnolo and Fuel) to manage the day to day kitchen operations and to maintain the highest culinary standards.
Learn more about Pourhouse after the jump… Read more
Nearly a year ago we broke the news that Chow restaurant on South Granville was closing. It was a beautiful space, so I was very sad to see it go. What was especially disappointing what this its greatest asset – owner/chef Jean-Christophe Poirier – followed up the closure by leaving the country for South America. I assumed we wouldn’t be seeing him again for quite some time, if ever, but I’m glad to report that he’s back in town and taking the chef de cuisine reins at Main Street’s Campagnolo. We’ve seen advance copy of the press release that will announce his arrival tomorrow. Read it and rejoice after the leap… Read more
Address: 915 Main Street, Vancouver
Telephone: (604) 681-9334
Fax: (604) 681-9337
Facebook | Twitter
7 nights a week from 5pm until the dough runs out (check Twitter & Facebook updates)
Chef: Jean-Christophe (J-C) Poirier
“A correre e cagare ci si immerda i garretti.” – Don’t try to do too many things at once, just do one thing and do it well.
About Pizzeria Farina
Doing one thing really well … that’s what Pizzeria Farina is all about. Jean-Christope (JC) Poirier and the Pourhouse team have created a simple, community-focused, Northern Italian-inspired pizzeria. The menu is simple, consisting only of pizza and beverages, and the atmosphere is stylish, casual and comfortable. There are seven pizzas to choose from; some simple and classic for the pizza purist, others more creative for the non-traditionalist.
“Nella vita – chi non risica – non rosica.” – In life: who risks nothing – gains nothing.
Pizzeria Farina has a classic serve-yourself concept that is meant to inspire a sense of community. “Everyone looks after themselves … from ordering at the counter, to pouring their own water to bussing their own plates.” Customers can enjoy their pizza in-house with a glass of wine or beer (as soon as the liquor license comes through), an Italian soda, or filtered sparkling or still water. Pizza can also be taken out and enjoyed at home. The design is simple and sleek with high-top community tables and window bar seating. Table tops and grocery shelves are all made from reclaimed wood and add colour to the clean white and red environment.
The interior design by Craig Stanghetta is simple and sleek with high-top community tables and window bar seating. Table tops and grocery shelves are all made from reclaimed wood and add colour to the clean white and red environment. The graphic design and branding effort of Glasfurd & Walker is executed with a simplistic and quality approach, represented visually through several meaningful Italian proverbs prominently displayed. Several historic details are also present throughout the space – from the menu board made from a 1950’s butcher paper cutter to the 1980’s Pinarello Pista Bicycle on the wall – a Treviso original. All this is juxtaposed by a modern written-word art installation from local artist Ricky Alvarez, adding some drama to the otherwise simple interior. Pizzeria Farina also sells artisan Italian products: house-made raw tomato sauce, house-made Chili-Infused and Oregano-Infused Olive Oil and anchovies, packed in either salt or oil.
“L’occhio del padrone ingrassa il cavallo.” – “Nobody takes care of one’s business as does its owner.”