I will eventually get around to uploading pictures and writing a post on Weeks #18 and #19 , but I felt an urgent need to talk about all the glorious food I ate in B.C. last week. If you love food (and mountains, oceans, etc.), you need to get out to the West Coast. Go right now.
Victoria is serious about food. It has the second highest number of restaurants per capita in North America – only San Francisco has more. I also appreciate Victoria’s love of breakfast and brunch, clearly the best meals of the day. And yes, second breakfast is a thing.
This was my favourite restaurant of the entire trip. I wouldn’t stop talking about it and recommended it to everyone I met who made even a slight mention of Victoria. They had amazing vegetarian, gluten-free and/or dairy-free options (welcome to B.C.) and the restaurant itself was so cute.
I’ll let you drool over these pictures for a second, take your time:
My friend and I each got an almond milk latte and it was the best thing ever. We asked our waitress how they made it so deliciously creamy, but didn’t find out the secret. Guess I’ll just have to go back. We split the “Benny’s Gone Nuts” – poached eggs over kale (so much kale everywhere), mushrooms and baked sweet potato with a cashew turmeric sauce. We also shared the “Morning Scramble” – butternut squash, shallots, and arugula over red lentil hummus with seedy crackers that were soooooo goooooooood. To top things off, we had cashew cheesecake with rhubarb (not picture, because it got devoured immediately – breakfast dessert should always be a thing) that I also couldn’t stop talking about. Takeaway: definitely go here. And bring me some when you do.
My friends had recommended this place and then I came across it as I was wandering along the harbourfront. It’s a little chip stand with some seating overlooking the harbour and was super delicious. I can see how it would get really busy in the summer and I was lucky to only have to wait about 20-30 minutes. I ordered the jerk fish tacones and a salad – although I kind of regret not trying the chowder since it’s supposed to be really tasty. The tacones were awesome; the fish was so fresh. I chatted with some Australian women as we chowed down and of course recommended they hit up Nourish for brunch the next day hehe. 10/10 would return to Red Fish Blue Fish…and try the chowder.
We went the Roost for lunch before I headed to the ferry on my last day in Victoria. This restaurant had a vineyard on site and a nice bakery. I got the veggie wrap, which was massive and tasty and a cranberry orange cookie for the ferry ride. They had so many delicious-looking treats – will have to try the peanut butter or nutella cupcake (or both) next time. Can you tell I’m already planning a return trip??
I also want to share this picture of these awesome doughnut skewers from my Camino friends’ wedding:
Where do I even start. There were soooo many restaurants (and lots of healthy veggie food) and I don’t think I ate anything I didn’t like here. I’ll start with sushi.
Take a moment:
I ordered the spicy salmon maki and a piece of the tuna and salmon nigiri (I love salmon OK?) with a seaweed salad. It took me about 30 minutes to eat this because I didn’t want the experience to end. This was by far the best sushi I’ve had – so fresh and look how bright that salmon looks!! So bright. Who would have thought Vancouver’s sushi is better than Sudbury’s?? (Extreme sarcasm) The restaurant itself was cute; you order at the counter and then sit at the communal table. I like places with seating like this when I’m on my own; less lonely than a table for one hehe.
I went for a sunset run and got hungry on the way back to my AirBnB. I generally don’t (i.e. never) eat a full dinner mid-run but it was just too tempting. I stuck with vegetarian rolls (avocado, yam and inari) this time since I’d been eating a lot of fish and thought it would probably sit better on my post-dinner run.
We popped into this place as we waited to get into Rodney’s for dinner. The New Oxford, located in the upstairs of the Tavern in Yaletown, had an English pub vibe going on (complete with large leather armchairs that made me feel important/like a boss). The crispy cauliflower with a citrus honey jalapeno sauce was reeeeally good and the taro root chips with hummus were OK (but nothing special compared to everything else). Even if you’re with someone who prefers a real chicken wing over a vegetable facsimile, they’ll be pleasantly surprised by the cauli. I promise.
This place was really busy and we had to wait awhile to get a table, but it was worth it. Sidenote: you’ll get used to waiting for food out here. I was on the fence about the oysters, but Rodney’s seemed as good of a place as any to give them a try. And they were delicious. I also got the halibut (was potato encrusted on the menu but I requested it just be seared) which came with vegetables and was, again, so fresh and tasty.
Omg. This place is right up there with Nourish but wasn’t as keen on making things healthy hehe. I also keep recommending/dreaming about my breakfast from here. Red Wagon is a tiny diner on East Hastings St. and it fills up really quickly. We got there 20-30 minutes before it opened to make sure we got a spot! My friends raved about (and ordered) the pulled pork pancakes, but I ordered the special that basically had my name on it: chocolate chip banana peanut butter pancakes. It also came with bacon so I got it on the side for the others to eat – would have been a bit much even if I did eat meat. It was filling enough to skip lunch, which isn’t typical for me. I’ll just let the pictures and my excited face speak for themselves:
These pancakes fueled me for a long-ish run later in the day and I didn’t eat anything until I came across the next place at around 4:00….
That’s correct. My diet was very cake-based that day…I swear this isn’t typical…but maybe it should be. Once I got to Deep Cove, I saw a bunch of people lined up at Honey Doughnuts and Goodies so I hopped in line and then looked into what it was. Spoiler alert: honey doughnuts are their thing. I assumed it was good since it was so popular even though I didn’t particularly need or want a doughnut. Again, with the waiting – about 20 minutes to get to the counter and then another 30-40 minutes for the dang doughnut. But oh maaaaan, it was gooooooood. I went with the classic honey doughnut (how could I not?) and the coffee was also great.
I found Chau Veggie Express at Granville Island Public Market after wandering around for awhile, having some coffee and window shopping. There were so many food places to pick from here and I wasn’t disappointed with my choice. Chau offers Vietnamese-inspired vegetarian (primarily vegan) dishes. I would have been happy to eat anything on this menu, but went with what the girl at the counter recommended: the tropical rainforest bowl (added tofu) and a coconut shake. It was a lot of coconut so it’s a good thing it’s one of my main food groups. Another delicious meal in the books.
I had (very) briefly considered cutting out the sweets post cake-day, but these looked too good. I unfortunately only got one, hmmph. The logo was really funny – how French is that little macaron dude with a beret and mustache?? I think they said they had 60 flavours (again, way too many choices) and I went with the goat cheese fig. Mmmmm. No regrets. Except only getting one – that’s a regret.
I had my last meal in Vancouver with some new friends from my AirBnB. Another vegetarian/vegan place – and this one was open 24 hours! Necessary. I got the Naam vegan burger (tofu, nuts and seeds – before you roll your eyes and/or curse it for daring to be called a burger, give it a try!! And then bring me one). I went for the platter option which came with sesame potato wedges with miso gravy and a salad. The burger was, of course, delicious and the bun was amazing. The sides were pretty good too, especially the gravy and the green dressing. The portion was massive and I took most of the potatoes and salad home.
In summary, Victoria and Vancouver have delicious food (and scenery of course… but I’ll get to that later). It’s nice to be home and now I have some good ideas for food I can try to cook myself 🙂