As one of Vancouver’s most restaurant dense areas, Commercial Drive was the host for this year’s Food Crawl. Food crawls involve going to a bunch of restaurants and tasting the best they have to offer, all in the span of three hours! It also involves a lot of overeating. This year we visited four unique restaurants: Biercraft, Harambe, Memphis Blues, and finally Dolce Amore.
Our first stop was Biercraft. Despite having beer in their name, many of us were underage and we instead came here to dine on their pub food. These dishes were all easy to share and tasted great. Although not the fanciest dish, the poutine was our group’s favorite. Just look at that cheese stretch!
We also enjoyed a trio of seafood: Crispy Calamari, Fresh Tuna, and Tasty Mussels.
Our next tasting at Harambe was the most exotic. To much surprise, this Ethiopian restaurant was not named after the meme, but because Harambe literally means “all pull together” in Swahili. We each got an individual portion of lentils, cabbage and carrots, and lamb stew served on a sour bread called Injera. Despite the moderate amount of spice, the three options portions complemented one another. The acidity from the veggies cleansed the palate as we devoured the tender lamb while the earthy lentils added a starchy texture. To make the dining experience even more memorable we were given no utensils and were told to take some bread and use it to grab ahold of a small portion of “filling” to create a bite size wrap. This made for some messy fun and a group migration to the bathroom afterwards to wash our hands.
After Harambe, we were all quite full but we were served giant platters of barbeque goodness at Memphis Blues. These platters included 4 sides: potato salad, coleslaw, beans, and even a full bowl of bbq sauce. These went well with the brisket, pulled pork, ribs, and sausage. We also got some nice crispy fries and cornbread. Although we did have utensils, it was still quite messy, but their giant rolls of paper towels helped us keep clean.
Our final stop was Dolce Amore, a small gelateria. Even though it was a cold day and we were already quite stuffed, everyone had room for dessert. We were told that we could each choose a combination of two flavours. At first we were overwhelmed by the plethora of choices, but to aid us in our indecision we were able to try samples. Eventually, most of us fell back to personal favorites, but some of us were adventurous and chose unique combinations. Where else can you mix the flavours of whiskey and birthday cake?
If you missed this year’s food crawl check out our next event in January, Dessert Tasting! Overall the food crawl was great value. It was also a lot of fun and if you have a chance to come next year, it is highly recommended!