As Adam Sandler once (well, repeatedly) entreated: “Put on your yarmulke, it’s time for Hanukkah.” The Jewish festival of lights, which lasts for eight (crazy) nights happens this year from the evening of Saturday, December 24 through the evening of Sunday, January 1, 2017.
If ever there was a given gateway to Judaism it’s through the food, and Hanukkah foods are definitely relatable. Look for sweet and savoury treats made using oil (remember it’s a celebration of the miracle of oil lasting to give light for over a week) like latkes (fried potato pancakes) and sufganiyot (jelly doughnuts), as well as gelt (gold foil-wrapped chocolate coins).
Whether it’s your menorah getting lit this Hanukkah or you’re the gentile rolling the dreidel, here are seven places in Vancouver where you’ll find Hanukkah eats and treats.
You bet that if it’s got Jewish Delicatessen in its name, they’re going to have Hanukkah eats. Indeed, you’ll find latkes and jelly doughnuts at Mensch. If you need a whole bunch and don’t want to chance them running out, drop Mensch an email ([email protected]) and let them know what you need. When paying them a visit, come hungry; you’ll want to grab one of their pastrami sandwiches, or bagel and lox, or matzo ball soup to enjoy on the spot.
Address: 666 East Broadway, Vancouver
Boasting a retail shop as well as a deli counter and restaurant, Oak Street’s Omnitsky’s can be a one-stop Hanukkah shop if you need to stock up on menorahs, candles, dreidels, gelt, and seasonal eats. In addition to their regular menu, Omnitsky’s fries up latkes and sufganiyot for Hanukkah.
Address: 5775 Oak Street, Vancouver
Facebook: Ominitsky’s Kosher (Eppy’s Kosher)
This long-standing bakery prepares a range of Jewish staples based on old-world traditions, including deep-fried latkes (which can be bought either fresh or frozen), house-made apple sauce, and authentic sufganiyot.
Vancouver’s Purdys has a trio of Hanukkah treats on offer for 2016. Of course they’ve got bags of milk chocolate gold coins, along with a set of Minis (bite-sized milk chocolate pieces) in a 200g canister, and a special 6-piece set of Mini Favourites of kosher-certified chocolates (White Silk, Mini Hedgehog, Classic Dark Truffle, Maple Meltie and Peanut Butter Crunch Mayan).
Kerrisdale’s Gem Chocolates always has something special and sweet for Hanukkah. This year’s treat is Mordecai Mensch, a 4-inch high fella made of chocolate. They also have Star of David-decorated chocolates filled with a dark chocolate ganache blended with apple and spices.
Address: 2029 West 41st Avenue, Vancouver
Have a whole bunch of people gathering around your menorah? You may want to put in an order for mini latkes (65 cents each) and sufganiyot ($1.25 each; $1.10 each for orders over 100 pieces) from Maple Grill, one of Vancouver’s best-known Kosher-certified restaurants. Call(604) 568-4885 or email the restaurant at [email protected] to place orders.
Address: 1967 West Broadway, Vancouver
Facebook: Maple Grill Restaurant & Catering
If you’re going for themed eats, or need to send a tasty (and tasteful) Hanukkah gift, Vancouver’s Sugar makes a sweet Hanukkah cookie set. Includes menorahs, dreidels, and Star of David cookies, each cookie is hand-iced and presented in a Sugar gift box. Orders ship in two business days within Metro Vancouver.
With files from Jess Fleming