Now that summer is in full swing, we’re planning our days off around the best food spots in the Lower Mainland. Would we travel far and wide to get our hands on exceptional eats? Of course, we would.
But dining out safely, whether on a patio or indoors (or by ordering takeout), isn’t just a major treat we look forward to sharing with our favourite people. It’s a way to safely support BC’s food industry after one of the most challenging periods that local restaurants — and the farmers who supply them with fresh, nutritious products — have had to endure.
“It’s no secret that this past year has been incredibly difficult for our local restaurants and small businesses. Farmers and food businesses rely on each other, so when dairy farmers and businesses work together to support their local community, everybody wins,” Jeremy Dunn, general manager at BC Dairy, tells Daily Hive.
If you’re keen to join us in supporting local restaurants and cafes in BC this season (with the chance to win some epic prizes along the way), consider these four gems for your next foodie day out.
There’s never a wrong time to eat ice cream, and Rain or Shine Ice Cream is all the proof we need. Founded by Josie Fenton and Blair Casey, a husband-and-wife duo inspired by fresh, pure-ingredient ice cream, the foodie parlour has locations on Cambie Street, at UBC, and on West 4th Avenue. When you stop by, you’ll realize there are tons of menu options to choose from, among which are our go-to choices worthy of trying: the malted milk chocolate ice cream with homemade honeycomb and the cracked mint ice cream with 70% flaked dark chocolate.
Address: 3382 Cambie Street, Vancouver
Address: 6001 University Boulevard, UBC
Address: 1926 West 4th Avenue
When we see the words fresh, local, and seasonal on a menu, we’re instantly hooked. North Vancouver’s Douce Diner, led by chef and owner Dawn Doucette, serves up mouth-watering dishes that check all of these boxes with an added touch of creativity. Whether you visit to dine in or pick up takeout, we suggest ordering the in-house waffles with whipped butter and seasonal compote and adding a vanilla milkshake on the side. (You can thank us later.)
Address: 1490 Pemberton Avenue, North Vancouver
It’s the season for al fresco dining and boards loaded with locally made cheeses and cured meats. In Maple Ridge, sisters Jenna and Emma Davison make award-winning artisan cheeses with grass-fed jersey milk, and the menu selection at their cafe is the stuff of any cheese lover’s dreams. From gooey brie to parmesan-style charmesan and cheddar aged for up to two years, Golden Ears Cheesecrafters has something for everyone with an appreciation for cheesy goodness. Pro tip: Marvel at cheese being made in-store through the expansive window at the back.
Address: 22270 128th Avenue, Maple Ridge
If you’re like us, chances are you’re already looking for a second local ice cream shop to support during Vancouver’s long, hot summer. Back in 1997, Jamie and Yvette Cuthbert launched Rocky Point Ice Cream as a summer business operating out of a small kiosk, and today, they have three locations and two ice cream trucks serving up handcrafted frozen treats to locals. Upon your visit to their Port Moody or New Westminster stores, or their Coquitlam summer pop-up, we suggest ordering scoops of cookie dough, maple walnut, and salted caramel ice cream.
Address: 2800 Murray Street, Port Moody
Address: 100 – 500 Sixth Avenue, New Westminster
Address: Town Center Park, Trevor Wingrove Way, Coquitlam (weather dependent)
When you visit any of the above-mentioned foodie spots this summer, your support goes a lot further than you might think. And to celebrate, BC Dairy is partnering with each restaurant and cafe to run contests over the next four weeks, giving you the chance to win gift cards.
For more information on how you can enter to win and make your summer even sweeter, check out Daily Hive on Instagram. The contests will be taking place each week from July 6 to 27. Good luck!