BEST OF VAN­COU­VER

The Georgia Straight - - Best Of Vancouver - Photo by Green­peace

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.

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