BEST OF VANCOUVER
the fresh-from-the-oven pies. Forget boring old cherry or classic apple; instead, consider a rotating selection that includes the likes of Chocolate Haupie (a Hawaii-inspired blend of dark- and milk-chocolate pudding and toasted coconut) and Banoffee (fresh bananas with dulce de leche caramel and vanilla pastry cream, topped with whipped espresso cream and chocolate). Best in show is the Island Time, where tangy passion fruit and coconut custard transport you to a Gilligan’s Island–like tropical heaven. At the risk of bragging, East Van is the greatest place in the world, and Half Baked is one of the reasons.
BEST-KEPT SECRET FOR FINDING CHEAP EATS
This will come as a surprise to some: West Point Grey. The granddaddy of them all is The Diner (4556 West 10th Avenue), which is still serving low-cost “British Fayre” in its 60th year. For hungry students on a budget, there’s also affordable Szechuan, rice burgers, Korean food, and sushi galore. Bella Roma Pizzeria & Ristorante (4460 West 10th Avenue) offers a second pasta at half-price. Everyone knows that real-estate costs are skyhigh in West Point Grey, but that doesn’t mean bargains can’t be found in its dining establishments.
ACTIVITIES & EVENTS
BEST PLACE TO FIND A HALLOWEEN COSTUME
The Party Bazaar (1296 Station Street) is having a blowout sale like never before. Sadly, that’s because B.C.’S headquarters for Halloween costumes is closing its doors forever on November 4 after four decades in business. The bargains are amazing. The memories for many Vancouverites are indelible. But a new hospital is going in on the other side of the nearby train station, so the site of the store is being redeveloped for an office building. In Vancouver’s realestate world, fun always takes a back seat to financial gain.
BEST PLACE TO HOST VANCOUVER’S NEXT MARCH FOR SCIENCE
Gwyneth Paltrow’s much lambasted lifestyle brand, Goop, is bringing its annual wellness summit to Vancouver this fall, likely with a lineup of pseudoscientific seminars and—if we’re lucky!—hormone-balancing vaginal eggs in tow. That is to say, the conference’s location at scenic Stanley Park makes an apt site for the 2018 edition of the city’s March for Science Torontonians have a reputation for being willing to line up for almost anything—patio seats, shoes, and ice cream included—but Vancouver isn’t far behind, if the recent opening of Japanese-cheesecake chain Uncle Tetsu is any indication. The company, which is known for its delightfully fluffy cheesecake-meets-soufflé creations, unveiled its first western Canadian outpost in Burnaby this spring to an eager crowd of hundreds—numbers that continued to be recorded weeks after the official launch. In fact, head to the Metrotown counter today and you’re likely to see a neat queue of customers following a velvet rope that now seems to sit permanently outside. But, really, we shouldn’t be surprised: the same thing happened with Japanese retailers Muji and Uniqlo, both of which also made their B.C. debuts in Burnaby.
BEST START-UP MUSIC FEST
Sure it rained like Tofino in November, but that inconvenience did little to dampen the enthusiasm of those who attended the first edition BEST WAY TO LEARN ABOUT HIGH of SKOOKUM Festival in Stanley Park. ACHIEVERS IN VANCOUVER’S The goal of organizers was both simple LATIN AMERICAN COMMUNITY and ambitious: to bring a major, multiday Latincouver’s executive director, Paola musical blowout to Vancouverites Murillo, often points out that there in an easily accessible locale. Forget are more than 125,000 people of Latin having to load up the Hummer and American ancestry living in Metro head to Squamish or Pemberton, SKOOKUM Vancouver, counting students. On November was just a bike ride, Skytrain, or 1, Latincouver will honour the Evo commute away in the middle of a community’s heroes at its fifth annual majestic park. From art installations to Inspirational Latin Awards gala. Pay on-site fire pits for warming up, almost attention to this community. It’s doing every detail seemed meticulously conceived. lots of great things in the arts, business, And, God forbid, you could actually sports, academia, and activism. One inspirational walk around with a craft beer in Latin American immigrant your hand. As with almost any startup, to Vancouver, HIV/AIDS researcher Dr. there were some glitches, a big one being Julio Montaner, leads a team that developed long lineups at the festival’s gourmetfood treatments to turn a death sentence stalls. But one might argue that into a chronic medical condition. was a sign that SKOOKUM was more And if Colombian immigrant and socialjustice successful than anyone dreamed, with warrior Diego Cardona gets elected 18,500 attendees showing up for a Sat-
BEST BARGAINS FOR BOOK FIENDS Lovers of literature, mysteries, and nonfiction tomes are all going to converge on the Vancouver Public Library central branch later this month for the city’s most glorious book sale. This annual event takes place in the Alice Mackay Room from October 25 to 27, with fiction titles selling for a buck apiece. That’s less than the cost of a coffee in the nearby Blenz. Children’s nonfiction and picture books are also only $1 each. Most other items will be on sale for $2.50. And you never know who you might run into at this sale. A few years ago, Straight editor Charlie Smith had a brush with celebrity when he bumped into Nardwuar the Human Serviette. No doubt, the Nard was mining for precious material that he was planning to present in the future to his often-startled interview subjects.