Things are beginning to return to some normalcy here in British Columbia, Canada. Restaurants, food trucks, bars and even movie theatres are opening their doors to customers who want in. Some wear masks, most don’t. Social distancing remains and hand sanitizer is at every door.
We are in Phase 2 of our lockdown and expected to enter into Phase 3 shortly if no outbreak arrives (fingers crossed). I am even beginning to work on a plan to re-re-launch my food tour company in the coming month or so.
June 12th was my first experience dinning out after the initial lockdown in March. My husband and I decided to do a beer tour of our own visiting the latest addition to the Kelowna brew scene, Shoreline Brewing. This brewery opened across from Gyro Beach with only 50% capacity allowance and outdoor seating set at full. Sometimes on sunny days you can find a line up stretching out the door and down the busy street to get in.
That first evening out my husband and I took a cab to our second location, Provisions at Kettle River Brewing. The cab driver mentioned a fare she drove to a popular chain restaurant. The woman she dropped off called her within 30 minutes to be picked up. It was simply too busy for her comfort level after 3 months of isolation and social distancing.
Not everyone is open arms to change with the fear of the virus still plaguing us all.
With daycare starting back up in July I have been making the most of the days with my son as they dwindle down.
I took him to Davison Orchards to play and see the farm animals. We picked up a flat of fresh strawberries grown on site as well as some fresh bread and cookies (he has an obsession with Cookie Monster right now). After an hour we had to leave. He was tired and groups of families weren’t exactly following social distancing.
During our day out I treated myself to one of the Okanagan’s food trucks currently stationed at what is known as Gasoline Alley (although there isn’t a gas station there but rather luxury car lots). The Lobster Pot is located along highway 97 at the Harley Davidson location on your way out of (or into) town. The line was short luckily. Despite the cost of $18 per lobster roll – and that’s all they serve – a line up forms stretching out of the Harley Davidson parking lot and into the neighbouring car lot. Quite simply, the large bun stuffed with an incredible amount of lobster was well worth it!
The city of Kelowna isn’t exactly food truck friendly. The city itself has some great locations for food trucks but it’s the city bylaws that make it both difficult and costly to adhere to the rules. Food trucks are then found at wineries, car sales lots, breweries and anywhere else the city can’t charge them to operate. It’s a shame because we have some amazing food trucks, some of which have failed because of the bylaws.
What I am watching
I cannot be on my computer without some foodie show playing in the background.
Somebody Feed Phil
I consumed the entire new season of Somebody Feed Phil within the first 72 hours. There’s something about Phil Rosenthal’s way of experiencing and connecting with the world that I find soothing. He isn’t out to critique or expose issues. He is there to make you feel good about travel, experiencing new foods/cultures/ways of living all with his humour and charm. He can make anyone smile and he does. He makes me want to do the same. I loved his Montreal & London episode the most.
For the first time since his death I have been able to watch Anthony Bourdain episodes of No Reservations again. Right now, as I type this, I am watching Season 8 Ep 7 “Japan Cook It Raw” of Bourdain’s No Reservations.
Perhaps the antithesis of Phil Rosenthal’s approach, Bourdain has long been a favourite traveler and writer of mine and I am excited to introduce my son to him when he becomes more interested in food and travel. He shaped many of my experiences around the world. There was no traveling to a new city without watching what Bourdain ate and drank.
Travel shows make me happy in general. Particularly in this time when we are encouraged to travel within our own province or stay home. It makes me happy to see a world prior to the pandemic. A world where everyone is still eating, traveling, living life.
June 25th is Anthony Bourdain Day, his birthday. I am taking it off to celebrate with local eats as a treat to myself for my own birthday (the 27th).
My latest binge on Amazon Prime is The Great. A fun and embellished look at Catherine The Great and her life as empress of Russia. It has made me laugh, cry and look up Sebastian de Sousa’s IMDB. If you’re a fan of period pieces updated for modern eyes, then you’ll love this. It’s like Sophia Coppola’s Marie Antoinette but with no spots of boredom. Yes, it is embellished and it states as much at the beginning of each episode with a cleverly placed asterisk. But is pure fun and brings female empowerment when women had none to speak of (out loud anyways). Huzzah!
Aside from the very busy Father’s Day weekend, this month is busy. It is both my and my son’s birthday within 2 days of each other. A week after that is my mom’s birthday. Then we can finally relax and enjoy the summer without feeling the pressure to celebrate. Don’t get me wrong, I am excited about it all but free weekends are far and few between this time of year.
To treat myself I am heading out and doing a few wine tastings alone. Photograph the vineyards. I might go to Kelowna’s newest restaurant, Diner Deluxe or I might hit up another food truck. Kiddo will be in daycare for a drop in day. You’ll find out what I get up to on my Instagram.
Black Owned Businesses
A local illustrator & designed, Samantha Leigh, created a post featuring black owned Okanagan businesses and ways to support them. Head to her Instagram to see a list that is by no means complete but a definite beginning. Click the image below to see the full post.