Children to give their uncensored restaurant reviews this week at PuSh
For most serious diners, entering a crowded restaurant and finding it overrun with excitable children would mean a quick change of dinner plans.
But this week, PuSh Festival is inviting diners to embrace the mayhem of prepubescence, and hang out with pint-size restaurant reviewers as they sample the wares of various fine establishments across the city.
Eat the Street is the brainchild of Mammalian Diving Reflex—the same folks behind 2008’s raucous Haircuts by Children. The Toronto-based company has invited Grade 5 and 6 students from Surrey’s Bridgeview Elementary to cast their discerning palates—and eyes and ears—on a slew of Vancouver restaurants including, among others, the Irish Heather GastroPub (January 25 at 6 p.m.); Nuba at The Waldorf (January 27, 6 p.m.); La Casita (January 29 at 6 p.m.); and Chambar (January 30 at 6 p.m.).
“We’re just going to watch these kids tell us what they think about Lebanese food,” explained Kati Stevenson, event coordinator for The Waldorf, who admitted that Lebanese cuisine “can be an acquired taste. What are these kids going to think when they get humus and baba ganoush and whatnot?”
It’s not just the food that these fine establishment have to worry about: these young critics have been asked to give their uncensored comments on everything including the service, the décor, the state of the washrooms, and even the charm of the dishwasher.
Comments, videos, and photos will be uploaded to eatdastreet.blogspot.com, where previous Eat the Street events from other cities have been documented. (Sample comment: “The door of the washroom was difficult to open and the washroom was so small. The floor was so sticky and it stinks. The food was delicious…. The service was not so good as they forgot so many people’s orders and brought it late.” Yowch.)
Stevenson insists that the Nuba chef and staff aren’t sweating this, though. “I know chef is going to prepare something that’s palatable for them and make sure that everything is recognizable, so that they don’t get freaked out by any of it,” she says. “I’m pretty confident in the Nuba food and the experience, and the fun, and how great the atmosphere is in our dining room on a Friday night.”
Want to see how it all goes down? Check the list of participating restaurants, and reserve yourself a table for the same time as the kids’ visit.
You can also take in the Eat the Street Award Ceremonies, which will take place February 4 at 2 p.m. at The Roundhouse.