The Session Beer Craze Hits Vancouver

Photo credit: J R | Flickr

Photo credit: J R | Flickr

Among beer drinkers, Vancouver – in fact, the entire Pacific Northwest – has earned a reputation for making incredible West Coast-style IPAs (i.e. India Pale Ales).  These tend to be full-bodied beers, with a higher-than-average alcohol content and an unmistakable hoppiness.

But the thing is IPAs aren’t for everyone.  The bitter taste of the hops turns off lots of drinkers.  Not to mention that the beers can be so heavy – and so strong – that it can be hard to drink more than one or two at a time, especially in the summer heat.

The solution? Session beers.  Facing an IPA backlash, Vancouver microbrewers have turned their attention this summer to producing a crisper, more drinkable style of beer.  I’m not talking about anonymous light beers or the fruit-flavoured suds favoured by the university crowd.  Session beers are rich and flavourful without being overly heavy.  They’re crisp and balanced and – most importantly - you can drink more than one at a time because the alcohol content rarely exceeds five percent.

But I’ll let the pros at Beeradvocate.com describe: Continue reading:
The Session Beer Craze Hits Vancouver

Top 5 Decadent Foods at Vancouver’s 2014 PNE Fair

640px-Deep_frying_chicken_upper_wingThe PNE, Vancouver’s down-home country fair, is in town once again Aug. 16-Sept. 1, delighting crowds with the usual assortment of stomach-rumbling rides, agricultural exhibits and, of course, the most decadent food imaginable.

This year, there are some new additions to the calorie-rich smorgasbord at the fair, as well as many favourites from past years. Here are five decadent foods not to be missed at this year’s PNE.  Hope you’re hungry.

Deep-fried cheesecake at Granny’s Foods: What makes a rich, creamy cheesecake even more delicious? Dunking it a vat of boiling oil, of course.  Granny’s deep-fried cheesecake consists of a small sliver of cake, wrapped in a pastry coating and then fried to a crispy, golden-brown.  Also try delicacies like deep-fried Oreos and even deep-fried Kool-Aid. Continue reading:
Top 5 Decadent Foods at Vancouver’s 2014 PNE Fair

Gastown BBQ and Chili Fest returns!

2012 Gastown BBQ, outside the Irish Heather.

2012 Gastown BBQ, outside the Irish Heather.

If you like barbecue, chili, live music and outdoor fun in an urban setting, you’ll want to trek over to Gastown Aug. 30 & 31 for the third annual Gastown BBQ & Chili Festival. Over 12 area restaurants and bars will participate in an outdoor cookout during the weekend event, which includes celebrity judges, live music and even a beer stand.

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Gastown BBQ and Chili Fest returns!

Thailand in Vancouver

Photo from the Maenam website

Photo from the Maenam website

A flight from Vancouver, British Columbia to Bangkok, Thailand is roughly 16 hours, not including the commute to and from the airport, check-in process and potential flight delays. Add to that a solid day or two of jetlag on either side, and you’ve got an enormous travel commitment.

While the mangosteen fruit may not be quite as fresh in Vancouver as they are in Bangkok, it’s possible to experience an authentic taste of Thailand without doing big damage to your credit card, and with the added bonus of sleeping in your own bed. Continue reading:
Thailand in Vancouver

Hopping Around Vancouver Microbreweries

1_33Acres

Photo from the 33 Acres website

With a comprehensive offering of local ingredients, a notable desire to support local, and evolving provincial liquor laws, Greater Vancouver has seen a surge in microbreweries that shows no sign of slowing down.

Recent government announcements have unveiled plans to phase in the sale of beer, wine and spirits in British Columbia grocery stores and farmers markets, as well as new regulations around happy hour and larger site licenses at music festivals. These developments have seen provincial market shares for artisanal beer double over the past four years, with industry experts forecasting a count of more than 80 active breweries by the end of 2014.

With this, visitors and residents of Vancouver have an inspiring selection of local suds, with many incorporating tasting rooms, growler shops and the inclusion of local food trucks offerings.

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Hopping Around Vancouver Microbreweries