Come the weekend, we’ve got it pretty good. And it wasn’t too long ago that Vancouver was a bit of a brunch wasteland overseen by an irregular army of greasy spoon same-sames. Then along came Abigail’s Party in Kits, and later, Cafe Medina, which changed the game completely. The persistent line-up out front showed restaurateurs of a certain calibre that brunch was a saleable “thing”; that it didn’t necessarily mean a monotony of eggs benedict, buckets of hollandaise, and hungover campers drinking bottomless cups of shitty coffee.
Today, all the cool kids are doing it: Wildebeest, Mamie Taylor’s, Tableau, Chambar, Homer Street Cafe, The Oakwood, Ask For Luigi, Bestie, Burdock & Co., Farmer’s Apprentice — they’re all on board, and then some. The question today is, who isn’t on board? More to the point, who should be? We’ve given it some thought and drafted a short wishlist of seven that you can pick from. Though all are worthy of consideration, you can only pick one…
The GOODS from Ocean Wise
Vancouver, BC | Against a mesmerizing aquatic backdrop of the newly expanded Vancouver Aquarium, guests will enjoy delicious Ocean Wise restaurants, top B.C. wineries, and a jaw-dropping silent auction at Vancouver Aquarium’s annual fundraising event, Toast to the Coast, presented by CIBC. One of Vancouver’s best food and wine events, Toast to the Coast takes place on October 17 and supports vital aquatic conservation, research and education programs.
Enchanted guests will gather at 7:30 p.m. for this much-anticipated celebration of superb food, delicious wines and fascinating undersea life. A hit with young professionals, businesses, and organizations, the event, now in its ninth year, always sells out. In 2013, Toast to the Coast raised more than $100,000 for the Aquarium’s conservation, research and education programs, supporting important initiatives such as Ocean Wise, its national, award-winning, sustainable seafood program.
Guests will savour mouth-watering bites from 14 Ocean Wise restaurants, including Fable Kitchen, the Fairmont Pacific Rim’s RawBar, Minami, River Café, The Sonora Room at Burrowing Owl Winery, and Forage, among others. Complementing these bites will be sweet seductions from Soirette Macarons and Tea, Belle Geletaria, and Chez Christophe Chocolaterie and Patisserie, as well as sumptuous wines from some of B.C.’s best wineries. Additionally, Secret Location will be serving up an elegant VIP reception before the main event.
With nearly 55,000 additional square footage of living aquatic space to explore, guests at Toast to the Coast will have even more opportunities to be sea-star-struck by 50,000 beguiling aquatic creatures at the Aquarium, while music wafts through subtly-lit galleries. Over the course of the evening, guests will have an opportunity to bid on coveted silent auction items and experiences. Read more
The GOODS from Espana
Vancouver, BC | The West End’s popular Espana is looking for passionate, dedicated, and hard-working cooks who would like to join a small kitchen team. Ideally, candidates will have experience working in good, busy, high volume restaurants, but this is not essential if you are willing to learn. All interested candidates should email neil [at] espanarestaurant.ca with their resume and details. You can learn more about the restaurant after the jump… Read more
The GOODS from EXILE BISTRO
Vancouver, BC | Exile Bistro in the West End is looking for a dynamic individual for a part-time position as a bartender/server. Essentials qualities include strong cocktail and service skills, great attention to details, the ability to take the initiative, and an affinity for team work. We offer competitive wages, a great atmosphere, and amazing food and drinks to work with. Please forward your resume at exilevancouver [at] gmail.com. Thank you, and stay wild at heart! For more info about the bistro, click after the jump or visit exilebistro.com. Read more
The “Rangeland Game Burger” ($16) at Robson’s Forage comes layered with caramelized onion preserve, gooey gouda, and house-cured bacon on a spongy, responsive poppyseed bun. The patty – a mix of bison, elk, and venison - is thick, dense, juicy, and so flavourful that it’s pronounced above the onion’s sweetness and the mustard’s pungency.
Unfortunately, it’s too late for it to be included in the “Best Burger in Vancouver” poll that we recently posted, but it deserves to be counted among the better ones. Good fries, too!
Forage | 1300 Robson Street | Vancouver, BC | 604.661.1400 | foragevancouver.com
It’s time to grab yourself a picnic basket and claim a spot on the grass with your best blanket because tonight is outdoor movie night in Stanley Park’s Ceperley Meadow (at 2nd Beach). They’re showing the 1980′s teen-angst classic, Pretty In Pink, at dusk for the win. Anticipate a big crowd, folks.
As you can see from the shot at the top (taken last Tuesday by our friends at Fresh Air Cinema) a ton of people show up to these gigs and there’s definitely some wandering overflow from the Second Beach drum circle just down the way. So be extra smart about it and take public transit, some extra patience, and suitable provisions so you can make it through at ease. An outdoor movie of this calibre in this beautiful weather? Yes, please! Bonus: Ducky’s unforgettable Otis Redding impression.
The GOODS from Forage
Vancouver, BC | BC Day weekend often means great weather in the Lower Mainland with all sorts of fun, outdoor activities. On Sunday, August 3, join Chef Chris Whittaker at Fraser Common Farm in Aldergrove for a four course “Whole Hog” feast. The fun begins at 3:00 pm with a sparkling wine reception, a tour through the farm as guests help to forage for their meal (from a list provided by Chef) and then sit down to a long table dinner with beverages supplied by R & B Brewing and Backyard Vineyards Winery. All of this for a very reasonable $75 per person. Tickets available at Eventbrite or at Glorious Organics, home of Fraser Common Farm.
This dinner is a fundraising event for Fraser Common Farm as they install a permanent outdoor community water station. The structure will be constructed from an up-cycled shipping container and will feature a living rooftop and grey water system. Their intention is to expand their ability to host educational and community events on the farm including children’s camps, perma-culture courses and of course, more dinners. Read more
We’ve invited the West End’s plant-forward Exile Bistro eatery to join the Restaurants section of our GOODS program as a recommended venue for delicious food and drink. They are now proud members of Scout, and as such we will be sharing their news and employment needs on our front page in addition to hosting a page for them in our archive of local and independent goodness. We thank them for their support and for making The West End a more delicious place to be.
The GOODS from CinCin
Vancouver, BC | Famed Argentine Chef Francis Mallmann will soon visit Vancouver’s award-winning CinCin Ristorante for two nights only – September 10th and 11th – to showcase his unique brand of fiery ‘Gaucho Grilling’. This visit is Mallmann’s first to British Columbia and only his third to Canada.
Chef Mallmann will be co-hosting two multi-course dinners with CinCin executive chef Andrew Richardson. The first dinner – a five-course Wine Dinner – will see specially selected wine pairings chosen by Mallmann, while the second – a four-course Tasting Menu – will have optional bottles and by-the-glass offerings selected by CinCin wine director Shane Taylor and restaurant director Richard Luxton. Guests will have an opportunity to purchase an autographed copy of Mallmann’s much-anticipated second cookbook “Mallmann on Fire” – one full month before it is released to the public. But Mallmann has something more up the sleeve of his chef’s whites. On both evenings, the chef and his brigade will be giving special street-side demonstrations of their craft on Vancouver’s bustling Robson Street, right outside CinCin’s front door.
Call him the Man of La Plancha – the outsize Argentine cast iron griddle – that, together with his wood-burning parilla – form the tools of his trade. For Mallmann’s use of open fire is legendary. Argentine-born but European trained, Mallmann disdains the prissy and contrived of haute cuisine preferring the gutsy flavours found in whole salted chickens, baby goat, suckling pig and enormous cuts of beef. Indeed, his 2009 cookbook, ‘Seven Fires – Grilling the Argentine Way’ includes his method for cooking a whole cow – at once.
Prices for the five-course Wine Dinner and four-course Tasting Menu are CAD $165.00++ and CAD $120.00+, respectively. “Mallmann on Fire” is available for guests at a CAD $40.00 supplement, and interest may be indicated at time of booking. For reservations or more information, please call CinCin Ristorante at 604 688 7338 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Read more
Stab Night | Event | Any major fireworks event that takes place at English Bay, drawing over 250,000 people into the West End, among them thousands of suburban young men who neither know how to drink responsibly nor talk to women coherently so they violently turn on each other to vent their sexual frustrations.
Usage: “Fuck no, I’m not going to stab night! Are you crazy?”
The GOODS from Pizza Fabrika
Vancouver, BC | The founders and former owners of the West End’s popular restaurant La Brasserie have thrown open the doors to a new spin on the edgy pizzeria concept. Pizza Fabrika, a cozy pizza joint from restaurateur brothers Stephen and Michael Wiese, is a rebel with a good cause. Fabrika is a commonly used European term for “factory” and reflects the setting for this non-conformist pizzeria inspired by a working factory.
The pizza menu comprises of eight high-quality 12-inch pies fashioned using traditional methods, including a yeast-leavened sourdough created via time-honoured kneading techniques. The tomato sauce is a masterpiece made from D.O.P. San Marzano tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil and Kosher salt, and the Fabrika cheese blend is the perfect balance of full fat Canadian Mozzarella and Danish Fontina. The unique pizza offerings feature an array of modern, eclectic toppings such as duck prosciutto with fresh pea shoots; double smoked bacon with crispy pork crackling and house-made cre?me fraiche; and beer bison meatballs with spicy tomato sauce and roasted red peppers. All of which is complemented with original and tasty sides, salads and rotating dessert jars.
From the bar, guests will find a deliberate list of perfectly paired high-acidity wines from all over the globe and satiating beer options heavily focused on craft products. Wines will also be available in half litre carafes with a rotating local craft beer by the jug. Patrons hankering for a fresh order of their favourite pizza can call in and take out a sizzling 12-inch pie or come in any night of the week to enjoy the bold, energetic, unpretentious dining experience. Read more
Exile offers the concept of a true omnivorous, plant-forward menu. The food aims to be healthy, imaginative and tasty – daring you to be wild at heart.
At Exile, we use organic locally grown produce, foraged edibles, and ethically selected ingredients from beyond with small amounts of game meats and sustainable aquacultured fish. Our choices are and will constantly be affected by climatic, political, and resource sustaining factors.
Shying away from conventional agri-business models, the small team of foragers, cooks, bartenders and servers at exile invite you to start a passionate dialogue about what comprises food, taking into consideration its origin, history, environment, processing, handling, preserving, and effects on health.
We encourage our guests to reintegrate into the wild with synergistic phytonutrients that have long been ignored yet live in abundance in our Pacific Northwest rainforests. Instead of mono-crops we strive to offer bio-diversity, one plate at a time. At Exile, we eat the weeds and they taste delicious.
Cocktails are hand mixed with holistic ingredients such as herbs, functional foods and alternative sweeteners, added for their benefits. Wines are biodynamic, natural, or organic, and our bottled beers are small-batch crafted.
At 25 seats, Exile emphasizes intimacy and sharing. We invite you to come and feel nourished with us in a cozy yet sophisticated atmosphere.
The GOODS from Greenhorn Espresso Bar
Vancouver, BC | Without Symmetry – 8 zygomorphic views – is a series of large format acrylic paintings created by Vancouver based Mexican artist Mauricio Garduno. Mau has painted compelling portraits of stoic figures placed in deconstructed architectural spaces; all floating between light drenched seas and skies. His work is absolutely beautiful, achieved through an astonishing dedication and understanding of his medium – it’s certainly worth a look.
“Spaces, like people, like views, or books change as we gain knowledge of them and ourselves. The time traced between us and the time and space where we interact constantly shift so that at one point the hidden reflection is revealed, opening a door to a new perception of everything and of the space within, forever fragmenting into a new and irregular view.” – Mauricio Garduno
‘Without Symmetry’ opens at Greenhorn Espresso Bar on Sat, June 21 at 7:30pm. Read more
ABOUT PIZZA FABRIKA
Pizza Fabrika, a cozy pizza joint from restaurateur brothers Stephen and Michael Wiese, is a rebel with a good cause. Fabrika is a commonly used European term for “factory” and reflects the setting for this non-conformist pizzeria inspired by a working factory.
The pizza menu comprises of eight high-quality 12-inch pies fashioned using traditional methods, including a yeast-leavened sourdough created via time-honoured kneading techniques. The tomato sauce is a masterpiece made from D.O.P. San Marzano tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil and Kosher salt, and the Fabrika cheese blend is the perfect balance of full fat Canadian Mozzarella and Danish Fontina. The unique pizza offerings feature an array of modern, eclectic toppings such as duck prosciutto with fresh pea shoots; double smoked bacon with crispy pork crackling and house-made crème fraiche; and beer bison meatballs with spicy tomato sauce and roasted red peppers. All of which is complemented with original and tasty sides, salads and rotating dessert jars.
From the bar, guests will find a deliberate list of perfectly paired high-acidity wines from all over the globe and satiating beer options heavily focused on craft products. Wines will also be available in half litre carafes with a rotating local craft beer by the jug. Patrons hankering for a fresh order of their favourite pizza can call in and take out a sizzling 12-inch pie or come in any night of the week to enjoy the bold, energetic, unpretentious dining experience. The 25-seat pizzeria is centered in the bustling heart of the West End just steps from Coal Harbour, making it an ideal local dinner spot or an easy stop off to grab a pizza en route to Stanley Park, English Bay or the couch.