Camilo Romero Does ‘The Dishes’

We asked the bartender at Mt. Pleasant's Como Taperia to take us on a tour to some of his favourite spots across Vancouver.
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Camilo Romero Does ‘The Dishes’

The Dishes is a repeating Scout column that asks Vancouverites to walk us through a map of their ideal day and night on the town. We’re talking breakfast, lunch, happy hour, dinner and late night cocktails. Tax and tip included.

For this edition of The Dishes, we tag along on a whirlwind crawl with Camilo Romero, bartender and tapas slinger at Mt. Pleasant’s popular Como Taperia.

Good morning! What’s for breakfast/brunch?

“Livia. Yes, it’s brand new and busy but the wait is worth it even if you’re buying a loaf to take with you or sitting and enjoying some of the tasty things in house. My favourite is toast with honey and ricotta! Simple but done so right. Having bought a loaf to-go I cross the street to Santa Barbara Market. I will jostle with the mob of older Italian gentleman and young professionals to grab some cold cuts and cheese to put on the fresh loaf. If I’m feeling a little more hungry then I’m hitting up mis compadres at Varadero on the Drive for the best Cubano in the city. I don’t care if it’s not ‘breakfast’… I want it. Side of platanos maduros. Easy.”

Livia 1399 Commercial Dr. MAP
Santa Barbara Market 1322 Commercial Dr. MAP
Varadero Cuban Cafe 2767 Commercial Dr. MAP

Where should we meet for coffee/tea?

“Walking my dog (Tuna) is a morning ritual that sometimes needs caffeine. I tend to pick up a cup or meet up with friends at Prado on Commercial Drive or if I’m in the area Matchstick in Chinatown. The coffee at both of these places is phenomenal and gets me going. If I’m in need of quick pick me up before service I go to Our Town for some of their delicious nitro cold brew!”

Prado 1938 Commercial Dr. MAP
Matchstick (Chinatown) 213 East Georgia St. MAP

Now we’re hungry again. What’s for lunch?

“Fitting in lunch can sometimes be tricky but Carp does it right for me. It’s small and quick but whenever I want a simple poke bowl these dudes alway provide fresh, tasty, and filling fare. I always pick up a couple Spam musubi as well. Always. If you know you know. On those days off that I covet so much I always have to hit up Downlow Chicken Shack. That Classic Sando can’t be beat for me in Vancouver. Now that the sunshine is out here (kinda) I tend to take mine outside to one of their picnic tables!”

Carp Sushi 2516 Prince Edward St. MAP
DownLow Chicken Shack 905 Commercial Dr. MAP

Who has you figured out at Happy Hour?

“Plugging Como would be unethical (free tapas, ahem) so I would have to defer to Bar Tocador for their early and late night deals on classic cocktails and small plates. The carpaccio and yuca fries are my favourites. The national drink of Martinique, the Ti’ Punch, is awesome if you like a fresh, light version of an Old Fashioned.”

Tocador 2610 Main St. MAP

What’s for dinner?

“I like to eat around or cook at home when I can for dinner but somewhere I always return to is Sula for their Lamb Pasanda. Awesome fresh cilantro flavours with just enough spice. Throw in some onion and cilantro na’an and it’s a meal (or two). Autostrada Osteria is also a favourite. Their burrata game is strong and the pasta’s never leave me wanting.”

Sula 1128 Commercial Dr. MAP
Autostrada Osteria 4811 Main St. MAP

What’s for dessert?

“I’m not a dessert person at all. That being said I do have a few exceptions. Maybe it’s the nostalgia from growing up on The Drive but I do have a soft spot for Tiramisu. Via Tevere or Pepino’s are my faves.”

Via Tevere Pizzeria Napoletana 1190 Victoria Drive MAP
Pepino's Spaghetti House 631 Commercial Drive MAP

Where are you taking us for late night cocktails?

“I usually keep it close to home by this point in the evening. Trans Am has fast become my spot for a late night one or three (even a cheeky Le Burger if there’s any left) but those fellas don’t mess around with their drinks. On the occasion that I get down to Gastown I’m hitting up The Diamond for a few. I can’t choose a standout favourite but depending on ones mood or taste those folks have something for you.”

Trans Am 1879 Powell St. MAP
The Diamond 6 Powell St. MAP

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