Sam Shem does “the dishes” – Scout Magazine

The Dishes asks Vancouverites to present us with a map of their ideal day and night in the city. We’re talking breakfast, lunch, happy hour, dinner, and late night cocktails. Taxes and tip included.

For this edition of the Plats, we are leaving the reins to the pastry chef (@thedessertclubca), artist and frequent traveler, Sam Shem, for a day of dining and drinking around Vancouver …

Good morning! What’s for breakfast / brunch?

Something quick, light and easy would be the breakfast pastries at Viva Bakery Cafe. I tried their pains au chocolat, their fruit danishes, and their ham and cheese savory – all made with quality ingredients and expert precision. Pastry chef Daniel Munoz and his team are passionate about their profession and are among the best pastries and desserts in town.

If you have the time and want to treat yourself to a relaxing brunch, head to Chef’s Choice for their superb and refined dim sum. Dishes that stand out include the delicious soup dumpling (don’t share… everyone please order one each and avoid having to order more!), The shrimp and cilantro dumpling was superb, and the shrimp toast gives off a nostalgic retro Hong Kong – Cantonese dim sum vibe.

Café Boulangerie Viva

1555 If Street

Chinese cuisine at chef’s choice

955 West Broadway

Where should we meet for coffee / tea?

Livia sweets is my go-to place for coffee or tea, to meet a friend, have dessert (there are plenty to choose from, among their beautiful display of home-style breads and cakes), or sit and relax and enjoy their simple yet refined aperitif menu. Appetizer menu favorites include their fermented pickles and succulent whipped ricotta with olive oil and lemon zest served with a hot homemade baguette.


1399, commercial promenade

Now we are hungry again. What is there to eat?

For lunch, I will take you to Ubuntu. They have a wonderful menu focused on seasonal and local organic produce. They make delicious sandwiches, salads, pastas and proteins. Currently, I am enjoying their tomato and peach salad with a fermented chili vinaigrette and toasted Marcona almonds, so fresh and in season. My favorite item they make though is their focaccia bread. Pastry Chef Myra Maston and her team create some of the best breakfast breads and pastries Vancouver has to offer.

Ubuntu canteen

4194 Fraser Street

Who did you guess at Happy Hour?

For Happy Hour, I was happy to stumble upon Capo and the Spritz located in Yaletown at the Opus Hotel. They offer a simple and pleasant menu, friendly and relaxed. Italian-inspired snacks, desserts and a wide range of wines and cocktails. The Margherita pizza was delicious, carefully prepared and was a good deal for $ 10. Gnocco Sweeto (crunchy cushions mixed with cinnamon sugar and served with custard for $ 5), and these cocktails: Negroni, Aperol Spritz, and Procesco for $ 6! What are you all waiting for?

Capo and the Spritz

350 Davie Street

What’s for dinner?

If you haven’t been to the Potluck Hawker Eatery, do yourself a favor and go. Chef Justin Cheung creates and reinterprets many classics of Southeast Asian street food. His dishes are conceptually and aesthetically sharp and the tastes and flavors will transport you to Asia. Some of my favorite dishes in Potluck include: roti canai, chicken wings with caramel fish sauce (it’s ridiculously good), char kway teow noodles, and laksa fried rice. The atmosphere, food and flavors of the Potluck are perfect, bright, bold and absolutely delicious!

Potluck Hawker Eatery

3424 Cambie Street

What’s for dessert?

The sour cherry varenyky (pierogies) at Kozak Ukraїnian Eatery are currently one of my favorite desserts. They’re sweet, tangy, creamy (served with sour cream) and so comforting! They are incredibly versatile and can be eaten at any time of the day: breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert.

Other desserts that I enjoy include: Rum baba, dark chocolate babka, poppy seed roll, and rugelach. They also make a lovely and comforting array of savory dishes which includes: borscht, holubtsi (cabbage rolls), varenyky (pierogies), nalysnyk (rolled pancake) and their dense but delicious rye bread.

Ukrainian restaurant Kozak

5077 Victoria Drive

Where do you take us for late night cocktails?

The Odd Society cocktails are particularly good right now. Bar manager Mia Glanz is passionate about creating drinks and it shows in both her cocktail list and execution. My current favorite drink at Odd Society is Sour Owl, it contains: gin, crème de cassis, orange blossom water, lemon and mousse, and is the perfect balance between sweetness, sour and refreshing.

The recently reopened magnet is also fantastic. Extraordinary bartender Rob Scope curated an excellent beer and wine list (the sour beers Dilettante and Opulence are both fantastic!) And his cocktails are always well prepared. The light and refreshing Juan de Fuca Spritz and the much more potent Frozen Vesper are particularly worth trying. Rob is an absolute professional, with a deep love for his craft. I have drunk many of Rob’s cocktails over the past year and he is able to strike the right balance in every drink he mixes.

Strange society spirits

1725 Powell Street

Magnet, The

309 Pender Street West

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Steven L. Nielsen

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