Besides their dedication to the arts, they serve some mean food. They boast the largest rum list in Vancouver, with over 70+ sitting pretty on their walls. And before anyone decides to dismiss rum, much like wine and any other spirit – there’s a real difference between your typical rum and the ones here.
Back to the food, I was invited by Calabash Bistro to try out the new Brunch menu that has launched recently.
To start us off, we had the deep fried coconut dumplings which can be served with mango or guava butter. You could even do without the butter because these puppies are delicious.
Our first course is the Escovitch Fish which is a pan-seared snapper, tangy Escovitch sauce, fried plantain, fresh cucumber, rice & peas. I wouldn’t think of having fish for brunch but this has changed my thoughts completely. The snapper is tender and moist and so enjoyable. The accompanying rice (which is consistent with other brunch dishes) is flavourful and not greasy at all.
Our first dish is paired with their Passion fruit and guava mimosa (Pares Balta organic sparkling wine, passion fruit juice, guava juice). This was by far my favourite drink of the three courses, but I’ve always been a mimosa type of girl! I love the tropical twist, it felt like we were transported to a sunny locale.
The second drink is their famous Dark & Stormy. It’s made with Ginger-infused Gosling’s rum, house-made ginger beer, Angostura bitters and ginger syrup. This definitely packs a punch – be warned! I’m just learning my cocktails, but I would have to say that this is a great drink, especially if you’re a big fan of ginger.
To pair with the Dark & Stormy, we had the Oxtail Stew Brunch Bowl (served with oxtail stew, two poached eggs, fried plantains, coconut rundown hollandaise, rice and peas). Oxtail has always been a staple in my home and my parents can make a mean oxtail. Seeing it pop up in more cuisines mean I’m not the only kid growing up with it! The oxtail is so tender and literally fell off the bone. What complimented this savoury goodness is the coconut hollandaise.
Finally, our last course is the Salara French Toast. It’s fresh-baked traditional Guyanese coconut bread served with fresh cut fruit, banana cream and spiced mango maple syrup. Absolutely to die for. The banana cream and spiced mango syrup really just enhanced the taste of the french toast and elevated it to it’s own level. I love that Calabash has really set the bar for delicious french toast – I’d like to see other restaurants get a little adventurous.
Our last drink is the Coconut Jumby, made with El Dorado 3 year old rum shaken with coconut water, agave syrup, muddled lemongrass, mint and lime zest. Is this place for real? I’ve found my new favourite brunch spot.
To learn more about Calabash’s art initiatives, check out their calendar or learn more about their brunch, check out their website here.