From our calendar to yours comes this carefully considered agenda of cool things we are doing, wishing we could do, or conspiring to do in Vancouver, March 18-24, 2021.
EQUINOX | Now is the time to turn soil and appreciate cherry blossoms! The Vernal Equinox officially signals the beginning of longer days and warmer weather. Yup, starting at 2:37am on Saturday, March 20th you can start to justify the packing up of winter hats and coats (just don’t put away the rain gear quite yet). Fun fact: there is an old wives’ tale that Vernal Equinox is the only day of the year when an egg can be perfectly balanced on its end. Myth or possibility? Hours of frustration/fun can be had giving it a shot.
DRINK | Why not celebrate the coming of spring with a cocktail? The Forager’s Gimlet ($14) at Grapes & Soda is a good-looking, bright green sipper of gin, Canadian hemlock syrup, lime, wormwood and grapefruit bitters — perfectly suited for the first day of spring. While it can be enjoyed at the bar, Grapes & Soda also offer a take-home kit. Each one ($60) includes enough Bombay Sapphire Gin and house crafted forager’s mix to make six cocktails (all you need is ice, a shaker and a glass). Details here.
TASTE | Hot crossed buns! They aren’t for everyone but that delicately spiced, fruit-studded, out-of-the-oven deliciousness topped with fresh cold butter…oh I’m a definitely a fan. I intend to try as many variations of this seasonal treat as I can before the availability window closes. So far, I’m aiming to work my way through buns from the below bakeries. Let me know if I’ve overlooked your favourite!
MOVE | If you’re planning to eat as many hot crossed buns as I am this week, you might also want to factor in a walk. The trails through the University Endowment Lands are some of my favourite at this time of year. The forested paths are a relaxing escape from the city, full of bird songs, beginnings of new plants, and shocks of bright green leaves starting on branches. Lately I’ve been taking a route through the forest down to Spanish Banks. Forest sights and sounds followed by ocean air and and a clear horizon. Good stuff.
WATCH | If you’re anything like me you’ve probably run out of good things to watch during Covid. I still find the occasional gem, however. This week I was transfixed by a film called Tashi and The Monk. It came out in 2014, so if you’ve seen it feel free to fast forward to the next entry. Once I started I couldn’t stop. Only 40 minutes long, the documentary tells the story of a community of orphaned and abandoned children in the foothills of the Himalayas with specific focus on a little girl named Tashi Drolma and a Buddhist monk named Lobsang Phuntsok (who founded the mountaintop refuge). Watch it here.
BRUNCH | We’re happy to pass on the good news that it looks like this weekend is the weekend you can once again have brunch at Dock Lunch. And the menu is looking deliciously Dock Lunch-y. Saturday’s offering will be a choice between pancakes or slow braised South Carolina Sea Island peas with Windsor house-smoked bacon, egg and cornbread. On Sunday it will be: caramelized leek breakfast tart with salad or ‘Island of Eggs’, which is spicy rice and beans with melted cheese, pico de gallo, jalapeño, cilantro, and eggs (with the option of adding avocado and/or chorizo). Brunch is first come, first served. Friday and Saturday dinners are still on. Get all the info here.
SUMMER SKOOL | Mark your calendar: registration for Summer Skool‘s spring clay classes opens this Friday at 7pm sharp! Offerings run the gamut from 6-week long wheel throwing and hand-building workshops to 2-hour long single project classes. All are led by the fabulously fun and colourful ceramicist/instructor, Julia Chirka. Wanna get a jump on your Mother’s Day gift? There’s a class for that. Got a plant that could use a planter upgrade? Summer Skool has you covered! Class sizes are being kept super small, though, so you’ll need to act quickly if you don’t want to miss out. Find out more.
PLANT | Feeling the pressure to plant your veggie garden but not sure where to start? UBC Farm is hosting a beginners-level gardening workshop via Zoom this week (and another one next week) that will cover the basics of what you need to know to get growing. Learn about soil, what to plant, how to water, when to harvest, and how to troubleshooting plant health issues. Build a solid foundation for a summer of salads! But hustle, as UBC Farm workshops fill up fast. Waitlists are an option. Like the idea of a gardening workshop but looking for different dates? The Lynn Canyon Ecology Centre offers a series of free online courses March 27 through April 24 – check those out here.
CHILL | Looking for somewhere to decompress? The open air seating situation at The Keefer Yard offers distanced seating, ample circulating air, fire tables and cocktails from one of the finest bars in the city: sounds like a fine place to unwind if you ask us! Bonus: order take-out from neighbouring restaurants Bao Bei or Juke Fried Chicken to be delivered to your perch. Keep in mind: Happy Hour happens 2-4pm on weekdays.
NOURISH | Take a trip to the Farmers Market this weekend to fill up on spring goodies like stinging nettles, chives and lovely eggs from happy chickens as well as hearty root vegetables, fresh bread, dried fruits, sticky honey and other locally-grown goodies. One more week of Winter Markets before we begin to transition into summer markets! Get out there and support the people who grow your food! Find out more.