Archive | December, 2015

Happy New Year – A Retrospective In Photos of 2015

31 Dec

happy-new-yearOn this New Year’s Eve, we wish to say thank you.  We love highlighting all the great people, businesses and events that make East Van such a great place to live and work.  We appreciate all those that share our stories and help our community grow.  We wish everyone a happy and healthy New Year and leave you with a few photos from 2015.

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callinghugeThe Daisy Theatre_publicity imageHansel&Gretel10985608_10204700103975896_8026024636177719531_oThe Cultch_Are We Cool Now__publicity image2_credit Murray Mitchell

Print-5658Mother's Day Gold and PinkColonyMainSourWhatItIs!PhotoKayakFirehallArtsCentreempireofthesun_landscape-300x225FullSizeRenderAllSoulsNightTartineMaplePuffByBrokenArrowFloralNWCABeaterEast Van Light lamp2-IMG_2621RawSoapSkincareTheUnCommonSpicesBartard1

Vancouver Foodster Brings The Brunch Crawl To Main Street January 31st

30 Dec

MainStreetBrunchCrawl2015Richard Wolak of Vancouver Foodster is hosting a Main Street Brunch Crawl on January 31st as part of the upcoming Dine Out happening in the New Year. So if you love brunch, this might be the ticket for you. The event is a culinary roving tour that takes place at different food and/or beverage establishments.  You register for the event at the designated spot in this case, The Honey Shoppe, 4125 Main Street. Thereafter, you wander whether by bike, foot, car or transit to the various venues and nibble away to your hearts content. Each location will have specific menu items on offer for the Brunch Crawl.

We understand there will be six stops on this Brunch Crawl which will include juices, smoothies, coffee, eggs benedict, pancakes, french toast, omelettes, brunch pizza, hash browns, desserts and more. Although names are still being added to the list, some confirmed stops include Rosemary Rocksalt with delish Montreal style bagels, Radicle Juice which is a new juicer offering pressed juices and smoothies and a little spot off the radar, Dock Lunch which specializes in comfort food from all over the world. As mentioned, more restaurants are being added, check Vancouver Foodster for the latest updates, but we expect it will be delicious. Tickets for the Main Street Brunch Crawl are now available online. Advance ticket prices are $45 before December 31st after that, ticket price is $60 per person. The event runs from 10:00 am – 2:00 pm with registration starting at 9:30 am at The Honey Shoppe.

Charlie Demers Brings Leftovers To The York Theatre January 26-30

28 Dec

PuSh2016_Leftovers_credit-Simon HayterAn interesting new show is coming to The York Theatre in the New Year called Leftovers. The show is part of the upcoming PuSh International Performing Arts Festival. Leftovers is created by Charlie Demers with Marcus Youssef of Neworld Theatre and is a political comedy like none you’ve ever seen. Charlie Demers, if you don’t know him, is one talented guy. He has worn many hats including one of the stars of CBC Radio’s the Debators, playwright of the East Van Panto – Jack & The Beanstalk and more recently a creative writing instructor at UBC best-selling author. Charlie Demers was born in 1980, between the elections of Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan, and emerged from that era as a proud socialist.  This January, Charlie brings you a complex comedy which we expect will move quickly and touch on many subjects including ideology, dreams and politics. It will be serious and hilarious and this is one show we will be lining up to see.  Leftovers runs from January 26 to 30 at The York Theatre. Tickets start at $10 and are available online from The Cultch.   A post-show talkback happens on January 27th which we expect will be an exceptional evening. Also, a matinee show has been added for Saturday, January 30th at 2:00 pm.  This show has a short run, so if you wish to be entertained, we recommend purchasing tickets in advance. If you wish to learn a bit more about Charlie Demers, we invite you to check out this write up in BC BookLook.

Photo Credit: Simon Hayter

Merry Christmas, Buon Natale, Joyeux Noël, Feliz Navidad, Frohe Weihnachten East Vancouver

24 Dec

Manu MohanChristmasTree

Merry Christmas

Frohe Weihnachten

Buon Natale
Joyeux Noël
Feliz Navidad
Feliz Natal

Maligayang PaskoSretan Božić

Vrolijk kerstfeest
Wesołych Świąt
Καλά Χριστούγεννα

East Van Business – RC Pet Products Giving Locally

23 Dec

12Days-Logo-SquareFor those of you that follow us regularly, you may know we are proud supporters of the BC SPCA. We support our local Vancouver shelter in many ways and are proud to be listed as one of their community supporters. We appreciate all the work the staff and volunteers do each and every day for all those that cannot speak for themselves.

Today, we would like to re- introduce to you a local business situated in SE Vancouver called RC Pet Products.  For those unfamiliar with this company, you may have seen their rather styling pet rain coats (fleece lined) around and about town. The 4 legged member of our family has been wearing one for years.  RC Pet Products also carries leashes, collars, seatbelt harnesses for both cats and dogs as well as many pet accessories. You will find their products at many local retailers including Sophie’s Pet Palace, Aqua Paws, Discover Dogs, Mark’s Pet Shop, Tisol Pet Products on Main Street and Grandview Highway and Pet Parlour on Fraser Street.

We wanted to highlight RC Pet Products as they are one of many East Van businesses that have made a point of giving locally. RC Pet Products is again providing needed items such as coats, leashes and collars to local animal rescue organizations including the ones near and dear to us being the Vancouver SPCA and Charlie’s Food Bank. For those unfamiliar with Charlie’s Food Bank, it is a weekly pet food bank operated by the BC SPCA that assists over 5,000 low income pet guardians on the Downtown Eastside each year.   As part of RC Pet Products 12 Days Of Giving, they have donated items to the following animal rescue organizations this year:

Best Friends For Life
Action for Animals In Distress Society
Richmond Animal Protection Society
Greyhound Pets Inc.
Cross Our Paws
Dogwood Rescue
Dhana Metta
Cera Dogs Society
BC SPCA Richmond
BC SPCA Vancouver
Charlie’s Food Bank

We wish to thank RC Pet Products for giving locally and for supporting the work of so many great organizations that help keep animals safe, happy and healthy. We wish all our four legged, two legged and our feathered friends a very Merry Christmas.

Action Fiction Project Till December 31st – Self-Guided Stories By Foot Or Bike

22 Dec

ActionFiction2Are you up for a little adventure and exploring? If so, we might have something fun for you. We invite you to check out Active Fiction Project. This is a mashup of public space intervention, literature, create your own adventure and walking tour in East Vancouver.  Action Fiction Project has created short fictional stories set in East  Vancouver that features you as the main character.  These are self-guided stories that are ‘hidden’ in public spaces for you to discover by walking or biking through the same neighborhood in which the story unfolds.  It is on now until December 31st and a great way to get out with the family and do a little exploring. The starting point is the planter boxes on East 28th near Main Street. For more information, visit Active Fiction Project.

Gourmet Warehouse Cooking Classes In The New Year

21 Dec

GourmetWarehouseLogoThe Gourmet Warehouse has a great line up of cooking classes in the New Year. Attending one of these classes, is a fun way to spend an afternoon. Of course, there is always shopping after the cooking class as participants are offered a 10% discount for purchases made the day of your class. For a full line up of all the classes Gourmet Warehouse is offering visit Cooking Classes. We have set out a sampling of some of the delicious classes they have lined up:

Flavours of Morocco – Saturday, January 23rd 11:00 am ($65) SOLD OUT

Chef Cindy Low invites you on a culinary adventure to Morocco. This is home to one of the world’s most intriguing cuisines. You will learn about the countless spices used in their dishes and the combination of sweet and savory that produces some unforgettable dishes. You will learn to make some classic dishes like briouats (filo pies), tajines (stews) and couscous. The menu for this class includes:

  • Briouats – Moroccan spiced beef wrapped in filo pastry
  • Kale salad with carrots, dates, pomegranate-orange vinegrette
  • Chicken Tajine (stew) with preserved lemons and olives
  • Butternut Squash tajine with chickpeas
  • Saffron Cous Cous
  • Chocolate-Mint tea sorbet

David Robertson of “The Dirty Apron” – January 28th 6:00 pm ($75)

Chef David Robertson, Chef and Owner of the Dirty Apron Cooking School, is their celebrity guest chef this season. Chef Robertson is known for making meals effortless. His class focuses on flavour and having attended a cooking class at Dirty Apron, we expect it will be rather fun as well.  The menu he has lined up for this upcoming class includes:

  • Grilled Corn, Double Smoked Bacon & Clam Chowder
  • Carmelized Fennel, Seared Haloumie Cheese with a Pomegranate Reduction
  • Miso Sake Roasted Sablefish
  • Green Thai Curry
  • Frangelico & Red Wine Poached Pear Tart

Game Day – Feeding A Crowd – Saturday,  January 30th ($65)

Are you planning to host a SuperBowl Party this New Year?  Chef Cindy Low will show you how to feed a crowd for game day or for any other occasion where you might be feeding a hungry crowd. Chef Cindy will focus on  delicious and (mostly) make-ahead favourites so you won’t miss all the fun during your party.  The dishes she has lined up for this class include:

  • Pulled chicken sandwiches with homemade barbeque sauce
  • Grilled marinated flank steak (Argentinian style) with chimichurri sauce
  • Turkey chili mole – chili with minced turkey, six varieties of beans and a hint of chocolate
  • Cajun roasted potatoes
  • Tangy coleslaw
  • Chocolate chip ice cream

If you are interested in any of the cooking classes, be sure to register early to avoid disappointment, classes do sell out. Bon Appetit!

Bakeries in East Vancouver – We Run Down Our Favourites

18 Dec

IMG_3459We are often asked where is a good place to go for brunch, coffee, dinner, live music or drinks in East Van. So we are beginning to feature some of our personal favourites as well as those we’ve been hearing great things about. Our first feature was Let’s Do Brunch in the Hastings Sunrise area, next up we are tackling our favourite bakeries. With Christmas coming, many of us our looking for that dessert to serve, or sweet treats to have on hand we just might not have time to bake So whether it’s an Italian pannetone, a German stollen or Christmas cookies or those croissants for brunch, we’ve listed a few of our favourites spots.


Bakery Sate: 2879 Commercial Drive

This spot is run by Eric Ho, Pastry Chef & Owner, and he makes a mean croissant. Eric also has an amazing and delicious selection of gluten free cakes and desserts such as Milk Chocolate Salted Caramel, Black Forest and Cheesecake.

Fratelli Bakery:  1795 Commercial Drive

This Italian bakery makes one of our favourite things, St. Honore cakes. Others may try and imitate, but personally we think theirs is hands down the best. Why accept imitation, as they say.  They also carry an amazing selection of dessert items.

Uprising Breads Bakery: 1697 Venables Street

This spot is just one block West of Commercial Drive and is most certainly a favourite go to spot for two things. One is Ginger Snaps and the second is pie.  They generally have small and large pies on hand and on Fridays pie is 25% off which means, get their early or they will be all gone. They do have a wide range of sweet and savoury items including delish scones. Be sure to stop by and try this East Van staple that’s been a part of the community for over 40 years.

Andy’s German Bakehaus, 935 Commercial Drive

If you love German style cheesecake (think quark), flaky apple strudel and piled high Black Forest cake, this is your spot.  This is a smaller bakery and café and thus not high volume, but quality authentic German sweets and breads. So if there’s something specific you want, we recommend ordering in advance.  Definitely worth a stop.


Batard Bakery: 3958 Fraser Street

This is a favourite spot not only for their amazing bread, but something I’ve come to love financiers made from mostly almond flour. They have some amazing individual decadent desserts for taking away or having in, but their seasonal treat that has us excited is a German stolen passed down from Oma’s recipe (translation grandmother for those not up on their German) and yes for the diehard fans, with marzipan.

Brekka Bakery:  6533 Fraser Street

I grew up on just about everything from this bakery when it was called Fraser Bakery. It has many German favourites including a variety of strudels, Black Forest Cake, Christmas cookies and a Bee Sting cake or Bienenstich in German which is a white sponge cake with pastry cream in the middle and topped with honey glazed shaved almonds.  A personal favourite.  The added bonus is if you are in a time crunch trying to get yourself organized for Christmas and need to pick up some items in a hurry, Brekka is open 24/7 seven days a week.


Gluten Free Epicurean: 633 East 15th Avenue

Located in Mount Pleasant at the intersection of Kingsway & Fraser with great neighbours Like Matchstick Coffee and Les Faux Bourgeois. Everything here is made in house and is a 100% gluten free for celiacs and those that are gluten sensitive.  They have an amazing selection of sweet and savoury ready made and frozen. Be sure to check out this quaint little spot.


Delish (Formerly East Village Bakery): 2166 East Hastings Street

Lots of delish options for sweet and savoury items including scones, cupcakes, cookies and more.  Quinoa is used a number of their baked goods, which is certainly a heathy choice.  They also have some vegan options.

Italia Bakery: 2828 E Hastings Street (#104)

This amazing bakery has a great selection of cakes always at the ready. Lots of Italian sweet treats and a great selection of biscotti.

Black Rook Bakehouse: 2474 E Hastings Street

This spot is famous for it’s Black & Tan Cake which has been featured as the one of the things you must eat before you die. Really, we aren’t making it up.  They have an amazing selection of desserts, cake and pies.  Did we mention their cakes have names, Harold seems to be a running favourite, but when these cakes are featured on social media, best be quick. These cakes don’t tend to last very long.

Le Gateau Bakeshop: 3458 East Hastings Street

Tanya Muller is the owner and pastry chef of Le Gateau Bakeshop and we think the creator of some of the most beautiful wedding cakes we’ve ever seen.  She of course also has an array of seasonal sweets cupcakes, tarts and cookies. All decadent and beautiful as you can see pictured above and below.


Trafiq Café & Bakery:  4216 Main Street

Trafiq is a chic little café which we’ve only popped into briefly, but we keep hearing great things about this spot and the cakes look to die for. They have a Lemon Lavendar cake that’s caught our eye and sounds amazing.

HONOURABLE MENTIONS:  Half Baked Cookie Company and PBC Bakery. We’ve received some feedback that these two bakeries should be our list. Of course, there are many great bakeries in East Van not included, we write about what we know, so we will be doing a bit of research to learn more.

NEW IN TOWN: Oh Sweet Day Bakery, 1706 East 1st Avenue by the lovely Fanny Bay, cookbook author and self taught baker has just opened shop (or is about to open her shop) on The Drive as of June 2019. Just waiting on confirmation on official opening.

So much sweet stuff so little time. We hope you get a chance to get out and indulge your sweet tooth.

Photo Credit: Le Gateau Bakeshop

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Gifting An East Van Experience This Holiday Season

17 Dec

GiftBoxXmasWe here at are big fans of gifting experiences. There is so much to see and do close to home and sometimes we just get busy and don’t get organized to put it together. So why not gift someone a fun East Van experience this holiday season?   We have set out below a few of our favourites which include brewery and foodie tours, cooking classes, theatre as well as dinner and dancing.  We have included links which take you directly to each site to make that gift giving easier.

Vancouver Brewery Tour – East Van Brewery Tour

Vancouver Brewery Tours does great brewery tours in and around East Vancouver. A $75 gift certificate gets you onto one of their regularly scheduled brewery tours which run approximately 3 hours. Another option is purchasing tickets for their Beer and Food Pairing Tours which happen in January 2016 for Dine Out.

Off The Eaten Track – Culinary Tours

Off The Eaten Track offers a number of culinary tours including Vancouver’s Best Brunch Tour which takes you through the Hastings Sunrise area for $65. There is also the Railtown Urban Eats Tour runs you $55 and starts in the historic ‘Japantown’ and takes you to a number of stops including Railtown Café and the Settlement Building.  Also on offer are the Main Street Hidden Gems Culinary Tour for $65. Then a personal favourite, the Vancouver Distillery Tour which stops at a number of local distilleries and provides tours, tastings and bites for $75.  Tours all begin at the Waterfront Station and times vary but approximately 2 ½ hours for each.

Federico’s Supper Club – Dinner & Dancing

What about a gift certificate for an evening of dinner and dancing. Federico’s Supper Club offers amazing Italian food, wine and impeccable service. You will regularly find owner, Federico Fuoco, belting out tunes but they regularly bring in lots of local talent to mix things up.

Les Amis Du Fromage – Wine & Cheese Tasting

If you know someone that loves cheese, you may wish to consider purchasing a ticket(s) to one of Les Amis Du Fromage’s upcoming wine & cheese tasting classes. They have some delicious classes lined up for the New Year including  Viva Le France on January 27th and March 9th for $65 and a Wine & Cheese Tasting Class on February 23 for $60.

The Gourmet Warehouse – Cooking Classes

Have a foodie in your life that loves cooking? Or someone that wishes to kick up their cooking skills a notch to impress that special someone? The Gourmet Warehouse offers some delicious and fun cooking classes. In the New Year they are offering Flavours of Morocco on January 23rd for $65,  David Robertson of ‘The Dirty Apron’ will be on hand the evening of January 28th showing you how to make some delish dishes for $75, or if you are feeding a crowd for SuperBowl this year, there is Game Day – Feeding A Crowd for $65. Most classes are instructional vs. hands on, but certainly informative.  To purchase tickets, call the store at T: 604.253.3022.

The Cultch – Live Theatre

This is a favourite spot of ours. The Cultch has an amazing array of talent that graces their stages whether drama, comedy, musical, historical, they cover all the bases. In the New Year, they have an interesting show we have our eye on called Leftovers. It features Charlie Demers, one of the stars of CBC Radio’s the Debators and best-selling author. This is a political comedy which we hear will cut through decades of BS.   Tickets are available online from $10. Note the show itself takes place at the York Theatre between  January 26 – 30, 2016.

The Motherf**ker with the Hat At The Firehall Arts Centre January 16 – 30, 2016

16 Dec

HatAn interesting show is premiering in Vancouver in the New Year at the Firehall Arts Centre. The Motherf**ker with the Hat is the inaugural production of Haberdashery Theatre Co., a company whose mandate is to contribute to the local theatre scene by doing edgier, issue driven plays.  This story features 12 Steps, 3 Heart, 1 Hat as well as love and addiction.  The story begins in New York City and moves to the Downtown Eastside.  It features Jackie an ex-con and addict who is determined to stay clean and get his life back track with the help of his sponsor.  Jackie’s efforts are challenged by Veronica, the love of his life, who is an alcoholic/addict and he suspects is cheating on him with a  ‘mofo’ with a hat. The play is being billed as “blisteringly funny and poignant”.    The Motherf**ker with the Hat previews January 16th at 8:00 pm and continues until January 30th at the Firehall Arts Centre, 280 East Cordova Street. Tickets are available online from $16 – $33 and Wednesday matinee shows are Pay What You Can.

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