Click here to read about Day One of Angela Prosper’s 48-hour Vancouver Getaway.
3pm Brunch? It’s Perfect at Chupito
Sleep in, take in the views, then grab some coffee because you’re in for a whirlwind of flavorful stops on this second day, starting with a back-alley favorite for midday brunch, Chupito. Right behind Cantina 189, this tiny patio bar on the outskirts of Gastown boasts big flavors inspired by Mexican taquerias. Getting here early on a sunny day is a good idea since their limited outside seating can disappear in a heartbeat when the weather permits.
Enjoy a free sample of their rotating blended margarita while you look over the seasonally crafted menu. I am a sucker for octopus, so the Aguachile Tatemado was an immediate “yes please,” with pacific prawns, Hokkaido scallops, octopus, cucumber and mango.
Chupito is also known for its tacos, so go ahead and try several small plates. You can’t go wrong with the Taco De Puerco Ahumado, with smoked pork al pastor, pico de gallo de manzana, lemon vinaigrette and cilantro on a corn tortilla — or the crispy Tacos Dorados de Birria with salsa verde, crema and queso fresco. Wash it all down with one of their original cocktail creations like the Guanajuanto, a mix of Fandango mezcal, Tromba Blanco tequila, lime, apricot, ginger and turmeric, or the La Ticla featuring Sons of Vancouver vodka, BC absinthe, citrus curd, canela, coconut and grapefruit.
322 W. Hastings St. Vancouver, BC, V6B 1K6, Canada
Open: Sat-Sun: 3-11pm, weather permitting
Stroll the Vancouver Art Gallery
If the days are too hot and you need a little escape in between wining and dining, there is no better way to satisfy your mind and body than a few hours walking through the Vancouver Art Gallery. The Imitation Game: Visual Culture in the Age of Artificial Intelligence exhibition is a mind-bending look at AI’s use, abuse and artistic embrace in our modern art world from its birth in the 1950s to today. Watch robots dance around canvases, see how your body movements are digitized for artistic expressions and witness AI decipher the world wide web within dancing smoke signals. It’s worth the price of admission and sure to keep your cocktail conversations lively for the remainder of the day. The Imitation Game will be up until Oct. 23, 2022.
Vancouver Art Gallery
750 Hornby St., Vancouver, BC, V6Z 2H7, Canada
Open Daily: Sat-Mon & Wed: 10am-5pm; Tue & Fri: 12-8pm
Start Your Night Off Right: Grapes & Soda
Grapes & Soda Bar Manager Satoshi Yonemori is a modest man with a razor-sharp focus. Still, he is no stranger to accolades from fellow bartenders who often stop in to be inspired by his incredible cocktail creations. This cozy spot next to Farmer’s Apprentice in Vancouver’s South Granville neighborhood is a great place to grab a sip and a snack at happy hour with local farm-to-table fare.
To fully appreciate Yonemori’s innovative flavors and techniques, I highly suggest sitting at the bar —big surprise, right? Try something unexpected like the Kinome Martini (available on request), with blended Japanese gin, Junmai ginjo sake, and kinome tincture, or the Legal High with bourbon, unicum, Devil’s club tincture, bénédictine, maraschino and plum wine.
Scan the bar for their tiny chalkboard laden with the daily specials or, for a quick bite, nestle into some aromatic Smoked Castelvetrano Olives and their Country-style Red Fife Sourdough with French onion butter. Be sure to arrive before the bar opens at 5:30 p.m. so you can grab a seat if you don’t already have a reservation. The 22-seat bar will be packed within an hour!
Grapes & Soda is the perfect palate cleanser to brace for what’s coming up in your nighttime excursion through Vancouver’s bar scene.
Grapes & Soda
1541 W. 6th Ave., Vancouver, BC V6J 1R1, Canada
Open: Tue-Sat: 5:30-11pm
Grab Some Food: Pizza Coming Soon
Be prepared for a sensory overload at Pizza Coming Soon, which has nothing to do with pizza and everything to do with Japanese snacks and flipped-out comfort food. Located in Chinatown’s old New Mitzie’s Restaurant, Bartender Dylan Jones, Artist Alez Usow and Chef Keith Allison have combined their creative forces into something out of this galaxy.
With a killer soundtrack playing in the background, a technicolor interior and a severe obsession with the classic Kit-Cat clock, you can start to see why it’s a millennial hotspot with a psychedelic mix of highball and lowbrow aesthetic.
Enjoy their popular east-meets-west comfort foods like Ramen Powder Fries and Seafood Butter Yaki Udon with red crab, scallops, prawns, creamy garlic butter, dashi and bread crumbs.
A pitcher of Asahi beer will match the vibe, but their cocktails are also worth noting. Try their Piña Coming Soon with Tito’s Handmade vodka, Sake Calpico, pineapple and lime, or the Jungle Bird with Sombra mezcal, Woods Chiaro amaro, Banane Du Brésil, yuzu, mime, Ms. Better’s Sumac kiwi bitters and dehydrated pineapple.
Pizza Coming Soon
179 E. Pender St. Vancouver, BC V6A 1T6, Canada
Open: Tue-Sun: 5pm-close
Nightcaps and Movie Trivia at Chickadee
Birthed from the pivots of the pandemic with a tad bit of obsession for ’80s movie nostalgia, Chickadee is a contact-free cocktail bar connected to the infamous Juke Fried Chicken in Vancouver’s Chinatown district. With a killer late-night happy hour, Bar Manager Sabrine Dhaliwal will charm you with her quick wit, incredible cocktails and ’80s movie trivia knowledge.
Whether you partake in the constantly changing cocktail menu or something off the cuff, whatever you decide will be mind-blowing. Don’t hesitate to order up some Juke’s crispy fried chicken drenched in “Spicy Boyyyz” sauce for those last-call munchies. You can order from your phone while you wrack your brain to figure out who the bartender was in that one ’80s movie… dang it! Reservations are encouraged.
182 Keefer Street, Vancouver BC V6A 1X4, Canada
Open: Tue-Sun: 5pm-close | Happy Hour: 10pm-last call
Did you miss the 1st part of this 48 hour Vancouver adventure? If so click here to read about Day 1.