Gastown Dishcrawl: an unforgettable eating adventure
The first ever Vancouver Dishcrawl started off with a bang last night as 29 curious and hungry individuals toured the cobblestones of Vancouver's Gastown with event organizers Jacqui Janzen and Chris Nash.
Cloaked in mystery, we all received our first set of instructions and awaited the great unveil of the first secret location that was to launch our food experience. We were given an address, asked to meet in the lobby and given the time that we were to arrive.
It was a beautiful night to arrive in Gastown, mild and dry and within a short period of time we grew in numbers from the first arrivals of one or two quickly to a total of 29, all anxiously awaiting the details of how the night was to unfold.
We were warmly welcomed and guided to our first experience with Chef Niclas Hipperson of Farms to Forks underground restaurant project. The 26-year-old Chef Hipperson is also Executive Chef for the Raincity Grill in English Bay. Let me tell you, talk about talented in the area of food expertise and fine dining experiences!
Over a glass of wine either red or white we all enjoyed a delectable, tantalizing and exquisite tastings of duck, rabbit and cold beet salad that was beyond description for flavour sensation including freshness, crispness and taste!
The underground or pop-up restaurant experience was an idea brought over from England to Chef Hipperson from his colleague and business partner Nooshin. Having recently returned from spending a year in England learning first hand of the out-of-the-box food experience there, she quickly sought out her close friend and former culinary school classmate and shared the idea with him.
Enticed by the idea, Niclas jumped at the idea to showcase BC's own local organic produce and to support the local farmers and at the same time to bring his own natural cooking talents to an audience in a most original fashion, hence the Farms to Forks experience hosted in his own home.
The duck was incredibly succulent, the beet salad was a combination of crisp, fresh and slightly sweet taste sensation followed up with white rabbit wrapped in bacon. The wine selection, as handpicked by Niclas himself, was ideal. A full meal experience all on its own, and yet there was still more to come, literally right around the corner.
I could have easily stayed at the first location for the entire evening enjoying the conversation with all of the new people I had the pleasure to meet and in the comfort of the ambience that was created in such a warm and intimate manner in the kitchen of our first stop.
My first underground restaurant experience, and if the rest are anything like Farms to Forks I'll definitely be checking out some more.