If you love chocolate, the Gourmet Warehouse is the place to be on Thursday, April 27th. They are once again hosting the very delish Chocolate Challenge. This event pits 8 chocolatiers against each other to create something decadent with chocolate. You have the opportunity to taste and vote who wins top prize for the best creation. In addition to chocolate, your ticket includes tastings from Earnest Ice Cream, The Preservatory, Stumptown Coffee, Tacomio, Tartine Tarts, Terra Breads, and Yorshire Tea. Best part of all 100% of ticket sales, silent and live auction proceeds will go to the Strathcona Backpack Program, Project Chef and the Vancouver Firefighters `Snacks for Kids` Program. Tickets are $75 and can be purchased directly from Gourmet Warehouse. Event gets under way at 6:30 pm. Come out and support this fun evening for 3 great local causes.
Do you love sherry? Granted this libation isn’t for everyone, or maybe it’s just the ones you’ve tried. Either way, if you would like to learn a bit more about sherry, than Cabrito Tapas on The Drive has an event for you. If you don’t know Cabrito Tapas, well you are missing out, it is a delish spot on the Drive serving Spanish tapas. On February 28th, they will be hosting their first ever Sherry Experience. They will be featuring 7 different sherries from Bodegas Lustau in Spain. Not only will you get to experience the sherries, but Chef Alex will be pairing them with tapas to highlight both the food and the sherries. Cost of this event is $75 which includes tax and tip. To register, visit Cabrito Tapas.
Photo Credit: Cabrito Tapas
Dine Out Vancouver, Canada’s largest restaurant festival gets under way January 20th for its 15th season with over 280 restaurants participating. For the restaurants participating in Dine Out, they will be offering 3 prix-fixe menus, $20, $30 or $40. As in past years, there are also a number of special events as part of Dine Out. The gang at Off the Eaten Track Tours is offering a few delish tours including Sip, Savour & Shop Main Tour, Discover Railtown Culinary Tour and Discover The East Village Culinary Tour. Vancouver Foodster’s Richard Wolak will be doing two brunch crawls in East Vancouver. First up, will be the East Village Brunch Crawl on Saturday, January 28th followed by the Commercial Drive Brunch Crawl on Sunday, February 5th. If you wish to participate in any of the special events during Dine Out, we recommend purchasing tickets promptly, many sell out quickly. If you have a particular restaurant, you wish to try again make your reservation early. Many fill up quickly and reservations open Monday, January 9th (today). For a full rundown of all the participating restaurants and events, visit Dine Out Vancouver.
Starting this Sunday, September 18th, Vancouver Urban Winery’s Sunday School is back with some fun wine education classes. You are invited to join the hosts David Stansfield and Lisa Cook, both sommeliers, for an engaging wine seminar. It doesn’t matter how much or how little you know about wines, there will be something to learn for everyone. This weekend’s class is “BC Wines v. The World VIII” and will feature an interactive, brown bag, blind tasting. Each round squares off a local wine against a global challenger in the Rocky III of wine tastings. Sunday School classes take place from 3:00 to 5:00 pm at Vancouver Urban Winery, 55 Dunlevy, in the heart of Strathcona. The cost is $40 per person and tickets are available via Eventbrite. If you miss this week’s Sunday School, they have two more sessions lined up in October and December. We’ve set out their upcoming classes below.
Oct. 16: Sommelier Smackdown VIII – 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Equal parts ‘Bloodsport’ and ‘Sideways,’ this seminar sees the sommeliers, Dave and Lisa, pit their favourite wines against each other in a vicious street fight for wine geek supremacy. You get to act as the judge and jury over five rounds of tasting.
Dec. 11: True Lies – 3:00 – 5:00 pm
Everything you know about wine is wrong. Or is it? Join them for this myth busting seminar that puts wine’s biggest (mis)conceptions to the test as you drink your way to the truth.
If you haven’t already checked out this great spot in Strathcona, we recommend you do. Belgard Kitchen is on site should you wish to stay for a bite to eat after class.
The Italian Cultural Centre is hosting a delicious outdoor long table dinner on Thursday, July 21st called The Taste of East Van. This evening is a collaboration with Slow Food Vancouver and will showcase local, organic and sustainable produce and cuisine. You will also have an opportunity to learn more about local growers and producers. The evening runs from 6:30 pm to 9:30 pm. Tickets are $45 and are available online or by calling the Italian Cultural Centre between 9:00 am to 5:00 pm at 604.430.3337.
Photo Credit: Italian Cultural Centre
Our friends at The Uncommon Café, 477 Powell Street, have a few fun cooking classes coming up. The classes are led by Valentine Kitamura owner of Tartine Maple. Valentine was born and raised in France and is a chef that has worked in hotels in Paris, Singapore, New Orleans and Toronto. She now works with The Uncommon Café, a commissary and café located just across the street from Oppenheimer Park. This great spot now has a lot of great company with Ed’s Daily, The Heatley and The MacKenzie Room just minutes away. We’ve set out below their upcoming classes which we expect will be delicious and fun.
Cooking Class & Dinner: Oriental Inspiration – June 1st 6-9 pm
This is a demonstration cooking class after which dinner will be served to all the class participants. Some of the delish dishes you will learn to make include Lebanese Tabbouleh, Chicken Lemon Tagine, Coconut Mousse and Mango Coulis. The cost of this class is $75 per person, but if you book in advance (by May 27th), cost is $65. You can book your spot online via Eventbrite.
Cooking Class: Brioche Making – June 15th 6-9 pm
In this class, Valentine will teach you how to make Brioche. Once you have the basic dough mastered, she will teach you how to make a Basic Brioche Loaf, Braided Brioche, Brioche Cinnamon Rolls and Brioche BBQ Pork Buns. What I love best about their classes, you get to enjoy a class of wine while brushing up on your kitchen skills. The cost of this class is $65 per person, but again if you book one week in advance, the cost is $55. You can book your spot online via Eventbrite.
Ice Cream Without A Machine – June 22nd 6-9 pm
Yes, you can make ice cream without an ice cream maker. Having said that, you will need a blender whether a standing blender, food processor or immersion blender AND a mixer (such as Kitchen-Aid or hand mixer). Valentine will teach you how to make some great ice cream and other frozen desserts including Lemon & Raspberry Semifreddo, Strawberry Frozen Yogurt, Vanilla Ice Cream Base and One Endless Possibility Ice Cream. To get you into the mood for your class, you will be greeted with a Margarita Granita served upon your arrival. How sweet is that? We love the way they do classes! The cost of this class is $65 per person, and again if you book on week in advance, the cost is $55. Visit Eventbrite to book your spot.
As you can see, signing up early guarantees you a spot at a reduced rate. If you haven’t already checked out their classes, we encourage to pop down and give them a try.
June is Italian Heritage Month and that means in true Italian form, you can expect a colourful celebration of this heritage from food to art to film and everything in between. All things Italian will be showcased on June 12th at Italian Day on Commercial Drive. There is a great event happening the week before as part of Italian Heritage Month. On June 6th, The Rio Theatre will be presenting Stefano Sardo’s acclaimed documentary Slow Food Story which is based on the best-selling book and, of course, the cultural movement of the same name that then followed. The Slow Food movement has now grown roots in more than 150 countries and includes cheese-makers, vintners and artisanal food makers. On June 6th prior to the movie, there will be a VIP Wine Tasting from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm. You can purchase tickets for this portion and the film for $30 in advance or $35 at the door. If you wish to see the film only, you can purchase tickets in advance for $13 or $15 at the door. To purchase your advance tickets, visit Rio Theatre online.