Vancouver Foodster Best Taco Challenge 2019

Tuesdays aren’t the only day we dream about Tacos so Vancouver Foodster’s Best Taco Challenge is helping us find a new favourite taco for every day of the week.

The Best Taco Challenge runs May 16 – June 9, 2019 at restaurants around Metro Vancouver! 

Vancouver Foodster has challenged chefs to create their taco however their imagination can dream of; complicated or simple, traditional or uniquely non-traditional, vegetarian or meat-filled.

The public is invited to try out all of the Taco Challenge dishes then vote for their favourite creation at vancouverfoodster.com/taco-challenge to determine the People’s Choice Best Taco. 

In addition to the public vote, a panel of media judges, of which I’m proud and excited to be one, will be tasting the Best Taco Challenge entries to choose the Judges Choice Winner. Follow me, @jminter on Twitter and Instagram to see the Taco Challenge creations landing on my plate and those of the other Media Judges too, follow them at @lforlife_vancouver and @domoiscraving. See what other diners are talking about too by following #TacoChallengeYVR.

Don’t forget to follow the participating restaurants too, to see what they’re entry in the Best Taco Challenge;

Vancouver 
Las Tortas, 3353 Cambie Street

North Vancouver
Cinco De Mayo Mexican Grill, 200 Esplanade W.

Richmond
Little Mexico Cantina, 3131 Chatham St #150

Surrey
Hugo’s Mexican Kitchen,19151 Fraser Highwayn

Richmond
Hugo’s Tacos & Churros, 7899 Templeton Station Rd

Chilliwack
Hugo’s Mexican Food, 7101 Vedder Rd

Start planning your visits to Van Foodster Best Taco Challenge participants, try them all, and remember to vote for your favourite!

Tasting Plates Fraser & Main – recap

Last night Vancouver Foodster’s Tasting Plates headed to Fraser & Main Streets for a roaming food tour of the diverse neighbourhood. Centred on Fraser and Main Streets, around King Edward, Tasting Plates patrons found something for everyone’s taste as they roamed the evening’s eateries. As with all Tasting Plates events, patrons will checked in to recieve at the fist stop – Main Street Honey Shoppe – to receive their Tasting Plates map. Then it was off to try each restaurant’s ‘tasting plate’ or ‘tasting cup’. Check out #TastingPlatesYVR on social media to see some of the other patron’s posts of their experience.

Tasting Plates Fraser & Main included the following establishment

The Main Street Honey Shoppe for a tasting of their wide variety of their own pure and natural honey, and honey products, produced by their own local beehives.
Nammos Estiatorio, brought us a taste of Greece with their trio of flavours: Zucchini & Cheese Fritter, Keftes (grilled Greek meatball), and Deep-Fried Pita topped with Tarama (fish roe paste)
Eclettico Art & Coffee, a calm, quaint cafe and gallery plated a pair of food and drink pairings; Apple & Triple Cream Brie Panino + Bacio Rosa (Italian Lemonade, Wildberry Puree & Lime drink), as well as an Espresso Shot + Torroncini biscuit

Quesava, brought a quartet of gluten-free plant-based treats to the table to highlight their delicious good-for-you, ethically sourced foods; Porky Empanada (vegetarian, filled with smoked, spiced jackfruit), Bruschetta (topped with eggplant, zucchini ratatouille & vegan cheese on sourdough), Garlic Cheese Popper (plant based baked bites), & Vanilla Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies.

Rocky Mountain Flatbread Co, welcomed patrons with a glass of Sangria or fresh fruity Lemonade, then rolled out three slices of their handmade pizza fresh from the forno; Vegan Beyond Sausage (topped with Beyond Sausage, fresh veggies and balsamic reduction), Vegetarian Farmers Market (topped with today’s finds from the market – Kale, Rhubarb, Cherry Tomatoes, Pea Shoots), and Parma Flatbread (topped with Schinken Speck Ham, Mozzarella, Crimini Mushrooms, Mango and Arugula)

If this edition of Tasting Plates along Fraser & Main whet your appetite, why not check out an upcoming edition when Tasting Plates visits North Vancouver’s Lonsdale neighbourhood on June 12th, then Tasting Plates ventures to Richmond June 19th, or check out what’s new in the East Van Vegetarian scene on June 26th. Tickets are on sale now for all three events.

23rd Where to Dine Awards

Earlier this week, Where Vancouver Magazine presented their 23rd annual Where to Dine Awards at D/6 Bar and Lounge in the Douglas Hotel.

As attendees sipped and nibbled their way around the luxurious lounge and sunny patio, nervous award finalists waited for host, ‘man-about-town’ Fred Lee to kick off the ceremony. Where magazine presented the 2019 restaurants selected where to dine in Vancouver and Whistler.  Where readers were asked to select 22 of the 29 awards with the remaining selected by the magazines critics and editors.

The 2019 Where To Dine Awards went to;

CRITICS’ CHOICE

White Spot Restaurants received the Sustainable Seafood Award presented by Ocean Wise

Provence Marinaside received the Silver Service Award, presented by members of Les Clefs d’Or BC, for consistently delivering the ultimate guest experience: an exceptional combination of food, service and hospitality.

Christine Coletta

Michel Jacob of Le Crocodile received the Leadership Award for his impact on Vancouver’s dining scene.

Christine Coletta of Okanagan Crush Pad received The Les Dames d’Escoffier Trailblazer Award recognizing her long-time commitment to excellence.

Where Vancouver food editor Tim Pawsey presented Hy’s Encore with the Editor’s Choice award.  Coquille Fine Seafood with Vancouver’s Best New Restaurant

READERS’ CHOICE – VANCOUVER

Indian: Vij’s Restaurant
Chinese: Peaceful Restaurant
Japanese: Miku Restaurant
Asian: Maenam
Latin: Ancora
Italian: Italian Kitchen
Patio: Cactus Club Cafe
Pub Fare: Tap & Barrel
Beer Experience: Granville Island Brewing
Seafood: Blue Water Cafe
Food Cart: Tacofino
West Coast: Coast
French: Le Crocodile
Steak: Gotham Steakhouse & Bar
European: Bauhaus
Brunch: Café Medina
Fine Dining: Hawksworth Restaurant
Dessert: Thierry
Hotel Dining: Boulevard Kitchen & Oyster Bar

READERS’ CHOICE – WHISTLER

Casual Dining: Bar Oso
Après-Ski: Dusty’s Bar & BBQ
Fine Dining: Araxi Restaurant + Oyster Bar
Best New Restaurant: Il Caminetto

To check out more details on all the winners and finalists of the Where To Dine 2019 list, pick up a copy of the May edition of Where Vancouver Magazine.

MOV Happy Hour Choir Series

This week, Museum of Vancouver (MOV) presents the Happy Hour Choir Series on Thursday April 25th.

Explore feature exhibitions and enjoy live music performed in our auditorium. Two of Vancouver’s dynamic choirs share an evening of singing and engagement.

The West End Chamber Choir performs classical and contemporary music under the inspirational direction of Natalia Manolov. In its 10 year history WECC has performed in as many languages, during its 3-5 concerts each year.

Rhythm ‘n’ Roots is a community choir, with roots in East Vancouver, under the direction of Karla Mundy. The upbeat, adventurous and soulful ensemble performs powerful songs drawn from diverse vocal traditions throughout the world.

MOV : Neon Vancouver | Ugly Vancouver

Admission to MOV Happy Hour Choir Series is pay what you can at the door (suggested donation $10, regular adult admission is $20.50). The auditorium only seat 200, seating is on a first come first seated basis. The performance runs 7pm to 9pm, doors open for pay what you can admissions at 5pm.

Arrive early and take in all of MOV’s permanent exhibitions plus the current feature exhibits; There is Truth Here: Creativity and Resilience in Children’s Art from Indian Residential and Day Schools; Wild Things: The Power of Nature In Our Lives and Haida Now: A Visual Feast Of Innovation And Tradition.

Join Tasting Plates in the Fraser-hood

Vancouver Foodster’s Tasting Plates takes a trip over to the “Fraser-Hood” on Wednesday, May 1st. The roaming food tour, visits the diverse neighbourhood, on Fraser and Main Streets, around 18th – 26th Avenues. Tasting Plates patrons are sure to find something to suit every taste as they roam the cafes and eateries in the area. As with all Tasting Plates events, patrons will check-in at the registration location – Main Street Honey Shoppe – then head out with Tasting Plates map in-hand to try each restaurant, which will serve up a ‘tasting plate’ or ‘tasting cup’ from their menus. Nibble your way through the ‘hood, meet some new foodie friends in the line-ups or at the next table, meet the chefs, and learn about their restaurants.

Tasting Plates Fraser includes the following establishments (with more additions possible):

Registration Location: The Main Street Honey Shoppe – 4125 Main Street

Eclettico Art & Coffee, 4172 Fraser Street

Rocky Mountain Flatbread Co, 4186 Main Street

Nammos Estiatorio, 3980 Fraser Street

Quesava, 4129 Main Street

Tickets for Tasting Plates Fraser-Main are on sale now from EventBrite:
Ultra-Early Bird Tickets: $30 per person until April 15, 2019.
Early-Bird Tickets: $36 per person, April 16-22.
Advance Tickets $45 per person, April 22 – 29.
Regular $60 per person after April 29, 2019

Bill Reid Gallery brings new exhibit: qa? y?xw – water honours us: Womxn and Waterways

Opening April 10th, Bill Reid Gallery of Northwest Coast Art in downtown Vancouver presents the new exhibit, qa? y?xw – water honours us: Womxn and Waterways.

Rage Flowers by Lindsay Delaronde with Performance by Erynne Gilpin, Photo by KL Peruzzo

The premiere group exhibition is guest curated by four members of the ReMatriate Collective — Ts?m? Igharas (Tahltan), Tiffany Creyke (Tahltan), Angela Marie Schenstead (nêhiyaw), and Denver Lynxleg(Anishinaabe) — and features nine Indigenous artists. The exhibition also features Audrey Siegl (Musqueam) as an important contemporary Water Keeper. The show honours the important role of Indigenous women on the coast, both past and present, in a timely investigation amid ongoing debates about pipelines and Indigenous rights. qa? y?xw is a h?n?q??min??m? expression that means “water honours us.”

Tsesqel Original by Carrielynn Victor

qa? y?xw – water honours us: Womxn and Waterways, features video, photography, carving, printmaking, beading, and performance by artists affiliated with various Indigenous peoples of the Northwest Coast and the interior of British Columbia. Each of the nine artists considers a unique experience with the life-giving element of water, and creates innovative works based on culturally specific practices.

“This exhibition highlights womxn’s unique relationship with water as child bearers, healers, doulas, and other roles key to Indigenous matriarchal societies of the Northwest Coast as we are womxn and waterways,” says the ReMatriate Collective. “Water connects us all through the seas, rivers, and clouds, and is not bound by human-imposed borders. Through art, performance, and interactive programming, we explore water as a crucial element for all of creation, as well as its historical uses for survival and sacred cycles. In addition, the artists look at the excess of contemporary resource consumption as a threat to sensitive environmental and coastal ecosystems.”

Reconcile This by Krystle Coughlin

The ReMatriate Collective formed in 2014, dedicating itself to strengthening future generations of Indigenous women through positive self-representation. Their work encompasses the dissemination of public visual- and text-based works and exhibitions, including social media photo campaigns and hands-on workshops on traditional practices and skill development. Their collective work has been featured at the Western Front (2016), Arts Underground in Whitehorse (2018), and the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery at UBC (2018).

To find out what each of the nine artists brings to the qa? y?xw – water honours us: Womxn and Waterways exhibition visit Bill Reid Gallery of Northwest Coast Art, 639 Hornby Street, from April 10 – October 2, 2019. Find more information. exhibition hours and more online at billreidgallery.ca 

2019 Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival Blooms

CherryBlossoms

The 2019 Vancouver Cherry  Blossom Festival blossoms from April 4th to April 28th, highlighting the city’s vibrant colourful cherry trees. 

This year’s record cold February gave way to some record warmth for the start of spring and now the city’s Cherry trees are coming into bloom to welcome the new season.

Once again the Festival kicks off with the Cherry Jam, a free concert on April 4th, at the Burrard Station concourse. A festival atmosphere, the event features music by Zimbamoto, Katari Taiko, NoriNori & Kage, MNGWA as well as readings by the 2018 Haiku Invitational winners.

April 27th finds the Festival coming to a close with Big Sing, a free choral event that invites choirs and individuals to join the new free event for an uplifting and exhilarating public experience. Rehearsals for the Big Sing take place throughout the month around Metro Vancouver. 

In the midst of the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival, Sakura Days Japanese Fair at Van Dusen Botanical Gardens (admission ticket required) returns April 13th and 914h.  The popular event invites the public to enjoy Japanese Traditional Tea Ceremonies, Food, Sake, Haiku readings and Tree Talks and Walks through the gardens to soak up the beautiful blossoms all around the gardens.

Other community events during the Cherry Blossom Festival include; Haiku Invitational writing competition and Haiku workshop, The Big Picnic in Queen Elizabeth Park April 13th, BC Blossom Photo Watch, Bike The Blossoms on April 27th, Lantern Workshops.

Another highlight outside of the official Festival dates is the Sakura Night Gala at Stanley Park Pavilion on May 5th. The gala fundraiser celebrating Vancouver’s top chef’s with an asian influenced menu. 

The Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival runs all over the city from April 4th to April 28th, 2019 visit vcbf.ca for the full line-up of activities.  Follow the Festival hashtag  #vancherryblossomfest  on social media to find out what others are exploring during the Festival