Nothing says summer like a pint of thirst-quenching craft beer. No, wait… Nothing says summer like outdoor dining. Okay, how about this: nothing says summer like having a cold craft beer on a glorious sun-splashed patio. Now we’re talking. Add excellent eats to the mix, and you might find yourself dreaming of an endless summer…
Here are a few places where the food is as good as the brews and where you can take it all in with fresh air.
The sands of Jericho
Want to fall in love with Vancouver all over again? Hit the Galley Patio and Grill at the Jericho Sailing Centre (1300 Discovery Street) and take in the most glorious ocean, mountain, and city views. While you’re at it, share a pitcher of Granville Island Infamous IPA, R & B Raven Cream Ale, R & B East Side Bitter, or some such.
To go with, there’s plenty of fish: Baja fish tacos, fish and chips (with Alaskan cod), oyster po’ boy with chipotle slaw, salmon melt with Havarti, and grilled wild salmon salad with mango vinaigrette. Classics, meanwhile, include nachos, poutine, the quarter-pound Classy Dog, and a black bean and roasted spaghetti squash tostada.
With the False Creek breeze on your cheeks, Olympic Village hot spot Craft Beer Market (85 West 1st Avenue), in the historic Vancouver Salt Co. warehouse, is nirvana for those who take their craft seriously. Wheat ales, white ales, saisons, and blondes; amber, hazy, and black; IPA, pilsner, porter, and stout—you name it, they’ve got it. Then there are anomalies like the quinoa-and-amaranth-based Glutenberg White (with “hints of coriander and curaçao”).
If the beer menu reads like a global wine list, food choices are just as diverse: dark-beer-braised beef brisket; Phillips beer-can chicken; TLT (seared tuna) sandwich with pea shoots, avocado, and togarashi aioli; ahi poké bowl; butternut-squash ravioli; Craft’s four-cheese mac ’n’ cheese with bacon and poblano peppers; and more.
Keep on truckin’
The warm weather means the patio at Red Truck Beer Co. (295 East 1st Avenue) is open—and that the monthly Truck Stop Concert Series under the water tower is back. (It kicks off on June 16, featuring Coleman Hell; see the Truck Stop Concert Series website for more info.)
There’s also live music at the Truck Stop every Friday and Saturday, with tap choices including Red Truck lager, IPA, and red pilsner; then there are cool brews like blackberry-bourbon ale and Totality Imperial stout.
You’ll find hearty fare like brisket or veggie chili, double-decker grilled cheese sandwich, deep-fried beer-battered pickles, a variety of all-beef hot dogs and burgers, and five all-day egg dishes (including corned-beef hash with Texas toast). Best of all? Dessert: an ice-cream float for adults made with your fave beer.
North Shore style
Situated in a newish complex next to a yoga studio and the North Shore’s first Stong’s Market, the patio at Deep Cove Brewers and Distillers (170–2270 Dollarton Highway) overlooks a vegetable and herb garden where the business sources ingredients for its food menu and where some of the botanicals grow for its made-in-house gin.
Beerwise, you’ve got Picnic Apricot Pale, Sake Dark Lager, Watershed Witbier, the creamy and chocolate-y Crawl Stout, and more. Eats include bao, bowls, and flatbread; craft beer shows up in several dishes, like the spicy pretzel fondue and the Cove Reuben.
May the fourth be with you
The Bauhaus Group recently took over the Blenheim Pub (3293 West 4th Avenue), which has an expansive street-side patio. Uwe and Natalie Boll own the Bauhaus Restaurant in Gastown, and they know good food.
To go with pours like Red Truck Golden Ale, Parallel 49 Gypsy Tears, Strange Fellow’s Talisman, Driftwood Fat Tug IPA, Krombacher Pilsner, and Erdinger Weißbier, opt for untypical pub fare like soft-shell-prawn tacos, apple-walnut salad with blue cheese and a cider vinaigrette, schnitzel sandwich on marble rye, mushroom-and-kale pizza, or the quinoa-based Kits Bowl with chicken.
Tapping the market
With three killer locations (False Creek, the Vancouver Convention Centre, and North Van’s Shipyards), Tap & Barrel has got patio season down pat. Draft craft options are immense, from Beere Mental Floss Double IPA and 33 Acres Life to Howe Sound Sky Pilot Northwest Pale Ale and Brassneck Passive Aggressive Pale Ale.
Yellow Dog, Strange Fellows, Fuggles & Warlock, Whistler, Moody Ales, Steel & Oak, and Powell Street are among the numerous other breweries represented. (Wines and ciders are also on tap.)
To fill your belly, there’s pulled-bacon poutine, gyozas, tuna tataki, and local wild-mushroom-and-arugula wood-board pizza, among other shared plates. Heftier dishes include a P B & J Burger (with chipotle peanut butter and bacon jam), pesto chicken linguine, and rigatoni with a pork-and-beef craft-beer Bolognese sauce.