When it comes to watering holes, Canoe Brewpub is a venerable favourite of mine. There is much to recommend, a waterfront patio, handcrafted beer and friendly knowledgeable staff. The appealing menu puts an emphasis on locally sourced fresh seasonal ingredients. Canoe's prices do veer into "gastropub" territory but I don't begrudge it. Quality product costs money. That being said, Canoe now offers an enticing, budget friendly farm to plate menu. On a given day you can savour lamb shoulder with pale ale broth, gremolata, baby potatoes and heirloom baby carrots or crispy wild salmon cakes with romesco sauce served with your choice of hand cut fries or green salad. The feature changes daily and is available seven days a week for $10.99 (lunch) or $14.99 (dinner). I'm looking forward to trying pork vindaloo with cucumber raita, basmati rice, mango chutney and naan. Spicy succour for a blustery spring day!
If you opt for the regular menu do try the Cobb salad, which features a warm, slightly oozy free-range egg, little Qualicum cheese, maple bacon, baby iceberg lettuce, avocado and tomato. This is a refreshing, delicious salad with contrasting textures and flavours. Order it once and you'll see why this dish is a classic! If you are more in the mood for comfort food go for the poutine. Gravy is what makes or breaks a poutine and Canoe doesn't disappoint here. Hand cut Kennebec fries are bathed in rich brown ale infused demi-glace and heaped with Natural Pastures cheese curds. If you have room, share pulled chicken mini soft tacos with avocado, green salsa, tomato, cilantro and cumin infused crème fraiche. Wash it all down with a pint of Beaver Brown ale or try a Pimm's cocktail. This refreshing concoction features Pimms #1, lemon, house made ginger beer and 7up. The gingery kick in this drink is addictive and palate cleansing. I always crave this unusual, refreshing cocktail in the summer months.
Canoe has many other appealing menu items I have yet to sample. I'll have to head back there soon for some good tipple and a taste of local island bounty!