Top 5 Craft Beers for Summer in Vancouver

Photo credit: QuinnDombrowski | Flickr

Photo credit: QuinnDombrowski | Flickr

Put away those porters and hoppy, heavy IPAs.  Summer is nearly here and that means crisp, fresh beers that can be sipped all afternoon-long on a sunny patio.

Vancouver’s craft beer renaissance means there’s no shortage of local brews that fit the bill.  Here are five picks that should be part of your 2013 patio season.

Howe Sound Brewing King Heffy ImperialHefeweizens (German-style wheat beers) are the king of summer brews.  And Howe Sound’s King Heffy is . . . well . . . the king of Hefeweizens.  It’s a bit more substantial than most hefes but offers up all the signature banana and clove notes.  Just be careful: as an “imperial,” this brew packs a punch with a 7.7-percent alcohol content.   Continue reading:
Top 5 Craft Beers for Summer in Vancouver

Rooftop Patio on Hotel Georgia Opens for the Summer

Photo credit: Rosewood Hotel Georgia

It may not feel like summer quite yet.  But summer patio season in Vancouver is already heating up.

Among the newest contenders for the city’s coveted best patio title is a little-known lounge on the fourth floor of downtown’s restored 1927 Hotel Georgia: Reflections.

Reflections opened for the first time last summer and largely flew under the radar of die-hard patio fans.  That’s a shame because it has to be among the most sexiest spots to grab a drink anywhere in Vancouver, indoors or out.  But the good news is it just reopened for another season of al fresco cocktails and great people-watching.

But it’s not easy to find (and I think that’s half the fun).  Wander into the venerable lobby of the Hotel Georgia – all hardwood wainscoting and crystal chandeliers – and you won’t see a sign for Reflections anywhere.   Discretely ask the concierge, and he’ll point you to an elevator secreted away in the back of the hotel.

Take that to the fourth floor and prepare for a bit of a surprise.  Continue reading:
Rooftop Patio on Hotel Georgia Opens for the Summer

Summer Sipping: Best Brewpubs in Vancouver

beer sampler at Dockside Brewing Company

Nothing says summer like a crisp, refreshing pint on a sunny patio.  Vancouver has no shortage of pubs serving a great selection of local and international ales and lagers.  But for the consummate beer experience, head to one of the city’s signature brewpubs, where passionate brewmeisters serve up their latest creations.  Here are just a few local favorites, all of which boast great patios:

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Summer Sipping: Best Brewpubs in Vancouver

A Table with a View: Patio dining in Vancouver

Bridges Restaurant Wedding Vancouver Granville island

Winters in Vancouver have a reputation for being . . . well . . . a bit wet and cloudy.  So when the first warm rays of summer grace city sidewalks, Vancouverites can’t wait to get outside for some patio dining.

The city boasts hundreds of bars and restaurants with patio space, offering a uniquely Old World dining experience on the West Coast.  But for the consummate warm weather meal in Vancouver, you have to choose a patio with seaside views.  The Coal Harbour, English Bay, West End and Granville Island neighborhoods are all home to great restaurants offering outdoor dining on prime waterfront real estate.

Here are just a few selections for a memorable patio meal right on the water:

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A Table with a View: Patio dining in Vancouver

Vancouver’s Best Patio Dining: You make the call

With the weather getting nicer,  patio dining season is finally underway in Vancouver.  Restaurants have opened their doors and windows and set up their outdoor tables, offering diners a chance to admire all that beautiful Vancouver scenery that’s hidden behind fog and rain for much of the year.

But with the summer dining season so short, and so many great patios at restaurants around the city, it’s hard to know where to start.  So I’d like to hear from you.  Do you have a favorite patio?  A place with stellar views of the mountains, the water or the bustling streets downtown?  A spot with great food or great drinks where you can soak up the summer sun and warm breezes?

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Vancouver’s Best Patio Dining: You make the call