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, from April 7 to April 14, 2022. Note that you can now get the Scout List – with a few extra pieces of intel included – sent to your inbox every Thursday by signing up for your subscription in the sidebar.
EAT | The annual Spring perogy lunch at the Ukrainian Cultural Centre in Strathcona goes down this weekend. In addition to the shining linoleum-floored basement filled with communal lunch tables ready for homemade borscht, perogies and kielbasa, there are usually tables of baked goods and a bazaar to pick through upstairs. Always a Scout favourite. This year, partial proceeds from perogy, baking, and craft sales will to go towards aid for Ukraine. Keep in mind that, due to the overwhelming demand, organizers will be limiting sales to four dozen perogies per person. Still, four dozen goes a long way… See you there! Find out more.
DRINK | BC Distilled goes down this Saturday. Expect the coolest products and players from BC’s micro-distillery scene congregating in one place at one time to provide spirit wonks with a snapshot of what’s happening in the industry. This year, 30 of BC’s finest small-batch distilleries will be on hand sampling and showcasing their artisanal liqueurs and spirits (think gins, vodkas, and whiskies galore). You should also anticipate cocktail-making demonstrations, tastings, serious conversations and general booze-nerdery. Find out more.
GATHER | The Pie Shoppe owners, Stephanie and Andrea French, team up with Chef Dana Ewart and Winemaker Jordan Kubek (Pamplemousse Jus, Lighting Rock Winery) for a special 4-course wine dinner at The Pie Shoppe on Tuesday night. Dinner will showcase the bright flavours of spring through foraged and farmed ingredients from Summerland, BC. Each course will be expertly matched with pours of wine from Pamplemousse Jus and Lightning Rock Winery. And yes, there will also be pie. The evening runs from 6:00 to 9:00 pm on Tuesday, April 12th. Tickets are $155 per person and can be found online here.
CONNECT | Apero mode is a wine-centric blast of a good time at the Ellis Building happening on Wednesday, April 13th, that involves a counter service situation offering a nice selection of tasty wines, simple snacks and ‘fun wine chats’ with all sorts of cool people. What kind of vibe? As explained by event organisers: “It is late afternoon in France or Québec and people are taking a pause to catch up and indulge in a little wine, often without commitment of dinner plans.” This is a vibe Vancouver needs more of, and it’s going to be an excellent time that we will absolutely be attending (again). Bonus: The Boxcar (set to close at the end of April) is right across the street for a post-Apero hang with pals. Details.
BLOSSOMS | Sakura Days Japan Fair is happening at VanDusen this weekend. Expect loads of live entertainment, arts and craft tables, Haiku readings, flower arranging, origami making, tea drinking and tasty Japanese foods, not to mention huge crowds of cherry blossom-gazing buddies for you to hang with. Avoid disappointment by buying tickets online here.
FAMILY STYLE | The Festa della Polenta menu is happening at Gastown’s Di Beppe right now. The origins of the event that inspired Di Beppe “…date back to the 16th Century when members of the nobility offered polenta to hungry townspeople to help counter a famine that was ravaging the region of Tuscany. The gesture grew into a time-honoured annual communal feast that continues throughout many towns in Italy to this day.” Although the official ‘Festa della Polenta’ multi-course dinner doesn’t happen until Sunday, May 1st (score tickets here), Di Beppe offers a polenta menu throughout the month of April and, as big fans of the soft stuff, we recommend eating as much polenta as possible. Find out more.
THE VANISHING LANDSCAPE | Head over to Canton-Sardine, located in Chinatown’s Sun Wah Centre, to see conceptual photographer Weng Fen’s two latest series of absurd realism, The Vanishing Landscape and Learning to Live Better in this World. The artist, who has exhibited extensively, including at The Met, MoMA, Centre Pompidou, and Mori Art Museum, is known for his photos featuring schoolgirls, backs turned to the viewer, gazing out to sites of urbanisation in major cities in China, like Shenzhen, Haikou, and Shanghai. For this exhibition, Weng turns his lens to his hometown on Hainan Island, which has been developed into a satellite launch site and is slated to be built into an entirely new, modern town. In other work, he responds to the period of isolation at home and how he coped at the onset of the pandemic. The show is a Selected Exhibition as part of Capture Photography Festival. It opens Saturday, April 9th, from 12-6PM, and goes until June 4th. Find out more.
HELP | On Sunday, April 10th, Odd Society Spirits will be hosting some of their chef friends for a collaborative day-long celebration of Ukrainian food and culture. For snacks, expect a bunch of traditional favourites, including Holubtsi (cabbage rolls), Vareniki (perogies), and Dessert Pirozhok (sweet deep-fried dumpling). The food will be complemented by a drinks menu including beer, wine, cocktails and, of course, Odd Society’s own vodka, served up two ways. The whole thing goes down from 3 to 8pm, and is called Смаколики (Sma-koly-ky), which means, roughly, “yummy/tasty things”. Walk-ins are welcome, but reservations can also be made in advance here. Proceeds from food and drink sales will be donated to Ukrainians affected by the current conflict, via various grassroots humanitarian aid organizations.
GIG | English ‘space rock’ band Spritualized play the Commodore on Saturday night. As the Wiki explains: “Space rock is a rock music genre characterized by loose and lengthy song structures centred on instrumental textures that typically produce a hypnotic, otherworldly sound.” Tickets (still available) aren’t cheap at $65 each, but “Otherwordly” does sound like a good way to spend a Saturday night. Spritualized is currently on tour promoting their Everything Was Beautiful album (to be released April 22nd). Have a listen and get more details here.
FARMERS! | Tasty signs of spring are hitting the Farmer’s Markets this week. Schedule yourself a trip to one of two Winter Farmers Markets this weekend to score some stinging nettles, fresh chives, green onions, young lettuce and lovely eggs from happy chickens. Also still on the scene: hearty root vegetables, fresh bread, dried fruits and loads of preserves. Eat local! Find out more.