Up in British Columbia we take food and wine seriously. Maybe not as seriously as we do hockey and those other winter sports, but seriously enough. So for all the revellers coming to the city starting Now, VANOC [that stands for Vancouver Olympic Committee] wanted to make sure there’s plenty to eat and drink, as well as do and see, in Vancouver, the Olympic City of Winter 2010.
Now, we know we’re stretching the notion of “locavore” a bit thin here, but since so many nationalities are converging and calling Vancouver “home” for a few weeks this February, we thought we’d be generous and extend to them a temporary pass for “local” as in “locavore” and Local Foods. After all, they are serving “local” foods to where they’re from…so that’s gotta count for something.
Cooking will be done by Saxon Chefs. Its location is optimal…at the Vancouver Rowing Club, 450 Stanley Park Drive. You will enjoy free entry and menu items, in addition to the Kostritzer Schwarzbier and the Wernesgruner Pilsner ($9), will feature crispy roast pork with sauerkraut, grilled sausage with Bautzen mustard and trout in Riesling sauce with wild rice. Their apple and plum cakes will be baked on site. No kids after 9pm. And live music every night from 6pm to 11pm by De Erbschleicher. INFO: www.saxony-in-vancouver-2010.com From Feb. 12 – 28, 12p.m. to 2 a.m.
The Olympic Council of Ireland and the Irish Heritage Society have partnered to present this 9,000 square foot pavilion located next to Doolin’s Irish Pub on Nelson Street. Free for kids. Grown-ups pay $10 for admission until 7p.m, after that it’s party time and only open to adults, who pay $20 for admission. Steak and Guinness pie, corned beef and cabbage and burgers with Irish bacon will be served over-the-counter and prepared by local Vancouver chefs. Did we mention Guinness on tap? Food priced at around $9. Doolin’s is also open, look for the separate entrance. The daytime family-friendly atmosphere boasts local Irish storytellers, dancers and musicians. INFO: www.irishhouse2010.com 654 Nelson Street
The Dutch have taken over two hockey rinks in Minoru Arena, Richmond to create the famed Heineken House. Watch for the swarms of Dutch expected to to make the Holland House their party central. Apparently, “speed skating in Holland is like Hockey in Canada,” according to Ted Townsend, spokesperson for the City Richmond. Entrance is free, but expect lines for the wristband you’ll need to get each day. Adults only after 7 p.m. For eats: hotchpotch, a stew made from potatoes, veggies such as carrots, kale and sauerkraut, and beef, smoked sausage or crisp-fried pork. They’re also serving Canadian fare such as salmon adn buffalo steaks. Dutch chefs are cooking the two nightly dinner seatings. Prices between $17 and $30 and there will also be snacks…and Heineken! on tap! INFO: www.hollandheinekenhouse.nl/uk_home.html
Already written about in these pages…but just suffice to say that different days will see different and free samplings: Lindt Chocolate, cheeses from Switzerland and the Swiss soft drink, Rivella. Swiss Chef Beda Zingg will work with Bridges Chef Shane McNeil on specialties like Swiss air-dried meat adn venison with spaetzle for the restaurant. Menu also includes moitie-moitie a fondue made with two types of Swiss cheeses and garlic. INFO: www.houseofswitzerland.org 1696 Duranleau Street, Granville Island