The Dishes 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.
Today we hear from Erin Templeton, of Erin Templeton Vintage and Studio. Erin opened her iconic Chinatown storefront at 511 Carrall Street in 2002. Now, TWENTY years in, she continues to hand-produce stylish leather goods using her own designs, which are coveted by fashion savvy people around the globe. Being a central part of the local independent business scene for so long, we knew she’d have some solid suggestions on what to eat around Vancouver…
“All of these spots are places I go to because they are local, they do what they do because they love it, and they make the city better. Supporting us ‘little guys’ makes so much difference. I am always sending tourists to my favourite spots for this reason. Also, I can go to any of them with an online date and the staff all make me feel safe, haha.”
Good morning! What’s for breakfast/brunch?
I love the breakfast burrito at The Burrow (formally Bandidas). My friends are all very nice about me always wanting to go there and the staff are also really helpful if you have a buddy with food allergies or who is vegan (or both). The Red Wagon has the best bennies, but I only go there during the week, so that I don’t have to fight the crowds. Their new location also has a super cute patio! I wish they were open for dinner again because they used to have a pretty great lavender cocktail on the menu (the bartender moved to The Magnet – maybe if you ask nicely he will make it for you?)
Where should we meet for coffee/tea?
There is a great little cafe near my apartment, across from the Lido, called The Paper Crane. It has a sweet little patio in the back and they have really good pastries, too. I went there with a friend the other day and thought, ‘This might be dangerous’…ha!
Now we’re hungry again. What’s for lunch?
This time of year I like going for bahn mi at DD Mau on Pender (FYI they also do a cool DJ night on Wednesdays). It’s so nice to have them as neighbours. In the winter, if I’m feeling chilly, I’ll go over to The Ramen Butcher for a spicy ramen – I’m salivating just thinking about it now!
Who has you figured out at Happy Hour?
The Lido has a cute patio. They don’t have food, though, so if you want yummy snacks then Martini’s on Broadway has amazing deals. I actually haven’t been there for a while, so if anyone wants to get cheap Steam Whistles, let me know!
What’s for dinner?
I love the Alibi Room. I pretty much always get the burger and fries with coleslaw (unless maybe if the meatballs are on the fresh sheet) with a big pilsner. Even though they have a million beers on tap, I am a creature of habit.
What’s for dessert?
This questionnaire made me realize that I don’t treat myself enough! I went for a cone at Mario’s Gelati the other day, after kayaking in False Creek with a buddy, and I thought to myself, ‘This is what everyone is talking about! I should do this more – why do I live here if I’m not kayaking and eating ice cream cones?!’
Where are you taking us for late night cocktails?
The Boxcar! Go before they are gone forever! I’m super sad imagining a future without them there. I love the Boxcar’s relationship with Pizzeria Farina and I could go on and on about Vancouver and its obsession with so-called ‘progress’. Why does Vancouver tear down everything that’s interesting and cool? Even my gramma told me stories about The Cobalt! I think having different kinds of bars should be a heritage priority for the city. It sounds stupid, but this city was built on dive bars – so leave us a few, please! I don’t want Vancouver to become a hipster Disney World. Real cities have something for everybody.