14 Tastings, 8 Stories and 3 Hours of Pure Bliss
Written by: Cecilia Ryan
With its new home at the Jack Poole Plaza, the 7th annual Vancouver Christmas Market creates the European holiday feeling that we crave on this side of the pond. The snow-capped North Shore mountains now provide a picture-perfect backdrop as you wander the glittering Christmas village.
Get lost amongst the rows of wooden huts, perusing market stall trinkets while delighting in mouthfuls of Bratwurst, Schnitzel and Pretzels. Pair that with live music, life-sized candy canes and a steaming mug of Glühwein and the Vancouver Christmas Market is sure to melt your heart on a cold winter evening.
The market now houses over 70 vendors in its winter-wonderful village. With mouth-watering scents wafting from every hut, it’s hard to know where to start.
1. Das Gulasch Haus
After working at the Vancouver Christmas Market last year, Austrian native, Thomas, felt that it was lacking the meal which most means Christmas to him – Gulasch. Thomas has created a traditional gulasch based on his mother’s recipe: BC beef, potatoes and carrots and a Hungarian Paprika. Thomas also offers a vegan option.
From Christmas to New Year, gulasch would be shared amongst Thomas’ family and at Austrian Christmas Markets. Now, he’s thrilled to share it with the foodies in Vancouver. For a hearty, warming, home-cooked meal, Das Gulasch Haus hits all of the spots.
*Foodie tip: Visit Mon-Fri at lunch for Gulasch with a free bread bowl. The gravy soaks into the bread, how could you resist?!
2. Handbrot & Soup Hut
Fresh from their summer pop up restaurant, Roof Garten on Granville and Smithe, owners Jan and Zuzana now bring us a treat all the way from Dresden, East Germany: Handbrot.
Literally meaning “hand bread”, cutlery isn’t needed; it’s the perfect market food! The bread is stuffed with smoked ham and Monterey jack cheese, before being topped with sour cream and green onions.
German baker, Barbara, brings her authentic recipe straight from the Dresden markets and into the hands (and stomachs) of lucky Vancouverites. Simple and addictive, this delicious smoky bread pairs perfectly with a steaming bowl of their pea and ham soup. This hut is not to be missed as you make your rounds!
3. Captain and the Chef Spätzle Haus
The Captain and the Chef, aka Chris and Tina, jumped at the chance to join the Vancouver Christmas Market this year. German chef, Tina, spent months honing a traditional spätzle recipe – a type of pillowy egg noodle, covered with a choice of three different sauces.
Of course, we had to try all three! From the traditional Cheese and Caramelized Onion, to the rich and creamy Mushroom, to the extremely untraditional Curry, you can’t go wrong! Accompanied by a traditional German cucumber salad, the Spätzle Haus is already firm favourite at the Vancouver Christmas Market.
With the Christmas village feel and authentic offerings in abundance, the Vancouver Christmas Market is a must this holiday period. Come with an empty stomach, clear a space in the cupboard for a classic German stein souvenir, and strap in for full-on holiday fun!
Nov 26-Dec 31, 2016
1055 Canada Place (site of the Olympic Cauldron)
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