• Archives
  • Nov13

    Food Talks logo

    Vancouver Foodster’s Food Talks series will wine down the year with Volume 10: All about wine!

    Meet and mingle with fellow foodies and wine lovers on December 3, where six wine industry panelists (who need no introduction) will be featured for an engaging talk about all things wine. There will be a Q&A following the talk, giving guests the chance to engage with the speakers, along with a prize draw.
    Read the rest of the post »

  • Nov7

    Roundel Cafe-1

    Vancouver Foodster’s latest tasting extravaganza will take place in Vancouver’s East Village on November 27 from 6 to 9:30 pm. Check out some of the newer and lesser-known spots from Powell to Hastings and from Commercial Drive to Renfrew. 
    Read the rest of the post »

  • Sep27

    Guanaco Salvadoran cuisine/Ayote pupusa
    [Guanaco Food Truck's Salvadoran cuisine: Ayote pupusa]

    Vancouver Foodster’s latest tasting extravaganza will take place along West 4th Avenue on October 6 from 4 to 9 pm. Think of it as a lazy Sunday roving dinner experience along Kitsilano’s best-known shopping street.
    Read the rest of the post »

  • Jul11

    Grain Tasting Bar Pizza Challenge-4

    As we’re right in the middle of Vancouver Foodster’s Pizza Challenge, I mulled over the list of contenders around town. With 14 restaurants spread out across Vancouver, Burnaby, and Maple Ridge, it was hard to pick a pizza from all the entries.
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  • Jun21

    Tasting Plates Summer route/stamp card

    I’ve attended past Tasting Plates Vancouver events put on by Vancouver Foodster (aka Richard Wolak); as each neighbourhood gets covered, there’s always something new to discover in our city’s abundant food scene.
    Read the rest of the post »

  • Mar18

    NY Cheesecake
    [Sampling Max's Burgers cheesecake in 2012; also entered into Best Cheesecake Challenge]

    There’s nothing more decadent than a slice of classic cheesecake. As a child growing up near New York City, I remember when my family and I were spoiled with excursions to some of the best bakeries and delis in and around Manhattan. There’s the Cheesecake Factory in the States (where a gargantuan slice of cheesecake is a meal in and of itself), and just about every bakery across North America producing their own versions.

    Vancouver Foodster (@vanfoodster) has created several food competitions over the years, including the Poutine Challenge, Burger Challenge, the upcoming Eggs Benedict Challenge (the latest in the series) and the Best Cheesecake Challenge. Last week, Richard Wolak (owner of Vancouver Foodster) invited a group of media to enjoy three of the 12 cheesecake entries in the competition.

    Cheesecake Challenge/The Gramercy Grill

    We started at Gramercy Grill, where chef Dennis Huang’s strawberry cheesecake ($7.50) is entered into the competition. This smooth, flavourful cheesecake is complemented with berry topping, fresh strawberries, and whipped cream. It was paired with a refreshing spritzer for the tasting, featuring Confidence Sparkling Brut from Summerland and Chambord liqueur, with a frozen raspberry dropped in.

    Cheesecake Challenge/The Gramercy Grill

    Gramercy Grill is located at 2685 Arbutus Street in Kits. Follow them on Twitter: @gramercygrill

    Cheesecake Challenge/Salontea

    Stop number two was to the colourful Salontea on Granville Street. I discovered this shop on a visit last summer just after their opening. Salontea has created a vanilla chai-infused cheesecake ($5.95) with tea-infused blueberries for Richard’s cheesecake challenge.

    Cheesecake Challenge/Salontea

    Inside that beautifully-presented round cake are bits of chocolate as well as a chocolate-hazelnut flourless crust on top, below the fruit. This is a gluten-free option as well.

    Cheesecake Challenge/Salontea

    Several pots of black, rooibos, and green teas were brought out in whimsical gold-accented porcelain pots to enjoy with our cheesecake.

    Salontea is located at 3010 Granville Street. Follow them on Twitter: @SalonteaCanada

    Cheesecake Challenge/Satori Factory

    Our third stop was across town at the Satori Factory, where chef Sandra Lee has masterfully created a vanilla bean apple pie cheesecake using goat and cream cheese, organic vanilla bean, and topped with ginger cinnamon crispy bits and organic apple. Satori’s entry is also gluten-free.

    Cheesecake Challenge/Satori Factory

    This was my favourite of the bunch, and complemented with a sweet artichoke tea ($3.25), made a rainy afternoon feel less dreary.

    Cheesecake Challenge/Satori Factory

    Our group sat at a long wooden table in front of the quirky space, on chairs using upcycled Singer sewing machine bases. Located at 35th and Victoria, it’s well worth seeking out for the next-door Chau Veggie Express, an equally cool space with veggie Vietnamese dishes on the menu and a living garden on the wall.

    Cheesecake Challenge/Satori Factory
    [Satori also does a mean cappuccino]

    Satori Factory also does catering for Vancouver Urban Winery amongst other clients and is located at 5054 Victoria Drive in Vancouver. Follow them on Twitter: @mysatorifactory

    Cheesecake Challenge/Satori Factory

    Tweet your favourite cheesecakes and photos throughout the Cheesecake Challenge using the #CheesecakeChallenge hashtag. You’ve got until March 28 to sample any or all of the 12 cheesecakes in the challenge. Voting will then take place from March 26 to March 31 online.

    Our cheesecakes and drinks were courtesy of Vancouver Foodster and the participating eateries described in this article.

  • Feb22

    2nd Annual Poutine Challenge/Dunn's Famous

    Vancouver Foodster’s 2nd Annual Poutine Challenge is well under way. Foodies around town are diving into some of the 21 creations available throughout the city. This past week, I’ve been able to try a couple of them.

    2nd Annual Poutine Challenge-1

    Regal Beagle is a lively pub that’s been around for 15 years. It’s got a relaxed vibe that plays cool tunes (and major sporting events on several of the five flat screen TVs). About four and a half years ago, Chef Ryan Wellington was brought on to add a more comprehensive menu to the establishment, better known for lively nights of drinking, dancing, and watching live sports.

    2nd Annual Poutine Challenge/Regal Beagle

    Ryan also manages both the Media Club and Portland Craft, plus helps to raise three children at home. That’s one in-demand guy!

    Dave Barnett owns the Beagle and named it after the famous bar in the long-standing 70’s TV hit, Three’s Company. Executive Chef Ryan Wellington, together with Head Chef John Montgomery work to create a changing menu with more attention to home made ingredients.

    Their creation for the challenge is a Jerk Pulled Pork Poutine ($13), containing slow braised pork, house jerk sauce, aged cheddar and country gravy topped with a poached egg.

    2nd Annual Poutine Challenge/Regal Beagle

    Ryan’s never been a huge poutine fan but had a regular customer from Montreal, so he took interest. The customer would occasionally bring back smoked meat from the poutine capital and Ryan would develop new recipes. Poutine is now a regular menu item that changes periodically for a change in ingredients and flavours.

    I enjoyed the goodness without the gooeyness; the dish wasn’t too salty either. The pulled pork works nicely with a Fat Tug IPA (one of several craft beers on Regal’s taps). The egg yolk worked its way to the bottom, adding a lovely match to the aged cheddar’s soft little cubes, helping to keep that aged flavour throughout the poutine. There’s also melted cheese in there, making for a nice contrast in textures.

    Craft beer lovers will be happy to know that The Regal Beagle will be doing a second casking of Phillips Bottle Rocket Indian Session Ale on Wednesday, February 27; Ryan aims to have more casking nights featuring offbeat, original regional brews. If you’re in, don’t forget to try Howe Sound’s Super Jupiter Grapefruit IPA, in very limited supply.

    The Regal Beagle is located at 2283 West Broadway in Vancouver’s Kitsilano.

    2nd Annual Poutine Challenge/Dunn's Famous

    Dunn’s Famous is obviously no stranger to poutine. Their entry for the Vancouver Foodster Poutine Challenge is Dunn’s Famous Pulled Pork Poutine. The plate is heaped with famous Kennebec hand-cut fries, in-house seasoned pulled pork, Quebec cheese curds, original BBQ gravy, and topped with coleslaw.

    2nd Annual Poutine Challenge/Dunn's Famous

    The dish was created by Head Chef Alex Brown. Both my friend Cathy and I found the poutine well-balanced and not too salty. The slightly-sweet BBQ sauce is a great compliment to the tangy slaw, also not overpowered with mayo but with a vinegar base. The dish was perfect for sharing at $10.99.
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  • Feb18

    Food Talks Volume 6-6

    Last week, Dockside Brewing opened its lovely bar and lounge space to host Vancouver Foodster’s 6th edition of Food Talks Vancouver.

    Richard Wolak aka Vancouver Foodster

    Richard Wolak is the man behind Vancouver Foodster, Food Talks, and Tasting Plates.

    Food Talks Volume 6-26

    A variety of appetizers and decadent desserts were prepared by Dockside’s Executive Chef Simon McNeil and his team for a large group of attendees.

    Fire roasted chili prawns with garlic Ancho jelly Irish Dubliner & glazed pear lollies with house quince butter Mini Banh Mi Sliders with hoisin mayo and siracha smear Petite pistachio financiers Food Talks Volume 6-7
    [Fire roasted chili prawns with garlic Ancho jelly, Irish Dubliner & glazed pear lollies with house quince butter, Mini Banh Mi Sliders with hoisin mayo & siracha smear, petite pistachio financiers]

    Each guest received two sampler-sized Dockside craft beers and the chance to mingle and nibble before the speaker portion of the evening started.
    Read the rest of the post »

  • Jan28

    Mobius Coffee & Tea

    Prepare to experience some of the newest and tastiest offerings on Wednesday, February 20 from 5:30 pm to 9:30 pm as Vancouver Foodster, Vancouver’s essential online food and drink guide, presents the 2nd annual Tasting Plates Vancouver: Downtown Edition

    “When I first started Vancouver Foodster over 3-1/2 years ago, it was because I had a great passion for food and wanted to share it with the public,” explains Richard Wolak, Editor and Publisher of Vancouver Foodster. ‘Tasting Plates Vancouver’ is a chance for people to try something different, foods from restaurants, food trucks, cafés and bakeries in Vancouver!”

    To kick off the evening, special musical guest Gio Levy will perform an acoustic set at the Vancouver Fanclub (registration venue) beginning at 5:30 pm.

    Key lime macarons
     
    Participating restaurants will offer tasting plates of their food, showcasing the restaurant while promoting their food and chefs. The ticket price will include tasting plates at each of the restaurants throughout the evening. Beverages will be included at some of the restaurants (to be noted on Tasting Card); wine, beer, cocktails or mocktails will be available for purchase at each restaurant on the tour. Vegetarian options will be available at many of the participating restaurants.

    Soho Road Indian cart

    Enjoy a self-paced foodie tour around Vancouver’s popular Coal Harbour and the West End, while socializing with friends over dishes and drink. This fun food networking event aims to connect Vancouver’s vibrant food community.

    Participating restaurants include:
    Pink Elephant Thai
    Lolita’s Cantina
    Zachary’s on Robson
    Betty on Burrard
    Red Card Sports Bar + Eatery
    Soho Road Food Truck
    Soirette Macaron & Tea
    Vancouver Fanclub

    Vancouver Foodster 2nd Annual Tasting Plates Vancouver: Downtown Edition
    Date: February 20, 5:30 to 9:30 pm
    Registration: Vancouver Fanclub, 1050 Granville Street; guests will show their printed or digital tickets and pick up a Tasting Plates Map Card.
    Tickets: Available in advance, online only
    Before February 17: $35 per person (Eventbrite fee extra); $100 for 4 pak of tickets/$135 for 6 pak
    After February 17: $45 per person (Eventbrite fee extra)

    $3 from each ticket purchase will support Project Limelight Society.

    Note: ALL tickets must be purchased in advance online. All ticket sales are final. No exchanges or refunds; however they are transferrable with printed proof of ticket. Tasting Plates Vancouver is produced by CMI Chat Media Inc.

  • Jan14

    Noodle Mania YVR/Bob Likes Thai Food
    [Noodle Mania YVR/Bob Likes Thai Food Kanom Jeen: minced tuna curry, rice noodles, Ga Chai,
    Kaffir lime, garlic, shallot, chili, fish sauce, veggies]

    Vancouver Foodster’s Noodle Mania got underway yesterday with an afternoon/evening tour through 10 of Vancouver’s noodle restaurants and tea rooms.

    Shaktea on Main
    [Main Street's Shaktea]

    Unlike past Tasting Plates Vancouver events, this one covered a much wider portion of the city, taking in South Granville, East Van (and Little Vietnam), Kitsilano, Yaletown, The Drive, and Kerrisdale. Diners converged at Main Street’s Shaktea, an adorable little tea shop in the busy 21st Street stretch, for event registration.

    Shaktea on Main Shaktea on Main

    Three teas were set up in glass pots: Vanilla Black, Organic Cinnamon Swirl Rooibos, and Spiced Pear. It’s events such as this that give foodies a way to discover potential new gems not on their radar.

    Living in Kitsilano, I’m spoiled with eateries (and two tea shops), not to mention countless cafés. Noodle Mania was set up to allow its participants to create their own route. I already had a strategy in place for both amount of eateries I’d be visiting as well as transportation (a combination of driving and leaving my car at Canada Line to pop into Yaletown for two of the tour stops, Urban Thai Bistro and Yaletown L’Antipasto).

    Noodle Mania YVR/Soho Tea Room
    [Noodle Mania YVR/Soho Tea Room DIY fish soup/lobster bisque broth with rice noodles]

    I also aimed to try as many restaurants that were new to me as possible, leaving a couple of places off my itinerary simply due to time, energy, and belly. After four stops, I was already feeling pretty full. Richard Wolak (aka Vancouver Foodster) warned those attending to arrive on an empty stomach, and he wasn’t kidding!
    Read the rest of the post »

  • Dec14

    Noodle-making demonstration: Garley Leung
    [Garley Leung demonstrates noodle making at Dragon Feast of the Century Lunch, 2011]

    Tantalize your taste buds at several noodle restaurants throughout Vancouver as Vancouver Foodster sets the event’s focus on noodles, expanding the Tasting Plates event to a full leisurely afternoon. You will sample all types of noodles, from chow mein to spaghetti to ramen, udon, pad thai and more. This tour encompasses many ethnic eateries and noodle dishes from American, Chinese, Filipino, Japanese, Korean, Italian, Malaysian, Singaporean, Thai, Vietnamese, and other cultures.



    Each restaurant will be serving up either tasting bowls or plates. Vegetarian options will be available at many of the participating restaurants. This all ages event welcomes foodies to join the city’s vibrant food community and meet the chefs behind some of Vancouver’s noodle restaurants. Who knows? You may discover your own secret noodle haunt gem during this event!

    This is a roving, self-paced tour that can be enjoyed by moped, bike, driving, walking, skateboarding or carpooling depending on your mood, the weather, and favourite form of transport.

    Participating restaurants: 
    Urban Thai Bistro (Thai)
    Chau Veggie Express (Vietnamese)
    Bob Likes Thai Food (Thai)
    Hai Phong (Vietnamese)
    Soho Tea Room (Hong Kong & Taiwanese)
    Yaletown L’Antipasto (Italian)
    Fet’s Bar & Grill (American)
    Novo Pizzeria & Wine Bar (Italian)
    The Mac Shack (American)

    Vancouver Foodster Noodle Mania
    Date: Sunday, January 13, 2013, 3 to 8 pm
    Venue/Registration: Shaktea, 3702 Main Street; this is the starting point where your printed or digital tickets will be shown in order to get a Noodle Mania Tasting Card.
    Advance Tickets: $30 per person (plus Eventbrite fee) until January 10th; $100 for a pack of four tickets; $120 for a pack of six tickets
    Regular Tickets $40 per person (plus Eventbrite fee) after January 10th

    All tickets must be purchased in advance. Ticket price includes tasting bowls or plates at each of the participating restaurants throughout the evening. A donation of $3 from each ticket purchased will go to support Project Limelight Society, a free theatre program for kids that inspires them to look inside themselves and discover their inner strengths, explore their hidden talents, develop confidence and form lasting friendships.

  • Nov6

    Your burger is served

    Get ready to vote for your favourite Vancouver burger! Richard Wolak (aka Vancouver Foodster, the man behind Vancouver Food Talks and Tasting Plates), created a new challenge for chefs around the city.

    The Best Burger Challenge has officially kicked off and diners are encouraged to vote for their favourite burger until November 30. Chefs were invited to dream up their to-die-for creation. Each burger is available at its restaurant, for lunch or dinner. Beef, bison, lamb, chicken, turkey, veggie: all will be judged on originality, creativity, uniqueness, price, value, and taste.

    Here’s a link to the different creations on offer, from Ace Burger’s Coffee Rub Burger, to Black + Blue Steakhouse’s B+B Burger.

    Think you can fit all 29 restaurants in? Voting will take place from November 28 to December 3 online. Burger challenge postcards are available at each participating restaurant to keep track of your favourites.

    And follow along at @VanFoodster with the #BestBurgerChallenge hashtag.

  • Oct22

    Food Talks Volume 2-2
    [Beta 5 Chocolates]

    Tasting Plates Vancouver returns for its fall edition, taking in Chinatown, Strathcona, and East Van. Get ready to enjoy some of the newest and tastiest offerings in these eclectic parts of town on Wednesday, November 21 as Vancouver Foodster, Vancouver’s essential online food and drink guide, presents Tasting Plates Vancouver Fall Edition.

    Each restaurant will offer a tasting plate, showcasing their restaurant while promoting the food and chefs. Learn about the restaurants, what brings these passionate restaurateurs to Vancouver’s thriving foodie scene, and enjoy great bites with friends in a social setting. Vegetarian options will be available at many of the participating restaurants.

    Tasting Plates is billed as is a roving tour that brings guests to participating restaurants, cafés, and bakeries around different parts of Vancouver on a regular basis.

    Waldorf Hotel Food Cart Festival/PazzaRella Auto Pizzeria oven
    [PazzaRella Auto Pizzeria at Waldorf Hotel Food Cart Festival, 2012]

    Walk, bike, transit, drive or carpool to the following participating restaurants:

    East of Main Cafe 
    Harvest Foods
    Beta 5 Chocolates
    Pazzarella Wood Fired Pizza
    Treasure Green Tea House
    Oyster Express
    Floata Seafood Restaurant
    The Chinese Tea Shop
    Electric Owl
    More restaurants to be added closer to event date

    Beverages are included at some restaurants to be noted on the Tasting Plate Card given at registration. Wine, beer, cocktails or mocktails will be available at each of the participating restaurants.

    Tasting Plates Vancouver Fall Edition
    Date: November 21, 6 to 9:30 pm
    Venue: Beta 5 Chocolates, 413 Industrial Avenue (parking lot) – Registration and starting point
    Tickets: $30; $40 after November 18 (not including Eventbrite fee)
    $100 for a 4-pak of tickets or $120 for a 6-pak of tickets before November 18 (not including Eventbrite fee)

    All ticket sales are final and must be purchased in advance; no exchanges or refunds. Tickets are transferrable with printed proof of purchase. A $3 donation from each ticket sale will support Project Limelight.

  • Sep21

    Food Talks Van Volume 3-11
    [Richard Wolak with Terra Bread's baker/founder Mary Mackay]

    Vancouver Foodster (aka Richard Wolak), one of Vancouver’s favourite food writers, is back with Food Talks Volume 4, a community-minded event that connects Vancouver’s local food growers and dining industries to the public.

    Urban Winery's Steve Thorp and Mike Macquisten
    [Urban Winery's Steve Thorp and Mike Macquisten]

    And October’s talented lineup is no exception. The five speakers will include Emad Yacoud and Shannon Bosa-Yacoub of Glowbal Group, Steve Thorp and Mike Macquisten of Vancouver Urban Winery (a space you should really experience!), Greg Hook, pastry chef/chocolatier/founder of Chocolate Arts (a recent stop on Vanfoodster’s Tasting Plates Kitsilano edition), Lesley Stowe, chef/author/founder of Lesley Stowe Fine Foods, plus Pete Schouten and Braden Douglas, the team behind Hardbite Potato Chips.

    Tasting Plates Vancouver/Chocolate Arts
    [Chocolate Arts treats at Tasting Plates Vancouver, Kitsilano edition]

    Appetizers prepared by the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts will be served before the event begins, Okanagan Crush Pad wines will be the event’s featured wine, and a small chocolate treat from Chocolate Arts will be given out at the end of the evening to guests. As with past Food Talks, a Q&A will follow the speaker session. I’ve attended all three past talks in the series and always come away learning something valuable and interesting about our city’s food!

    Urban Winery taps
    [Urban Winery taps]

    Tickets are available in advance online. Vancouver Urban Winery is located at 55 Dunlevy Avenue in Vancouver.