The Vancouver Christmas Market opened on Friday, November 22 and runs through to Christmas Eve. Many of the food vendors from last year returned this year but this post will highlight some of the new foods available at the market this year.
Upon entry, you are directed to get a mug for your Gluhwein as well as a wristband for alcohol consumption throughout the fair.
Next to this booth is the Krombacher Brauerei booth. They are giving away samplers of their brew so be sure to check them out. On the left hand side of this booth is the Pretzels or Brezeln. There are regular pretzels, cheesy pretzels and all come in various shapes and sizes. Grab one of these as a starter and begin your journey into the market!
One new addition that worth checking out is the Flammekuchen. The translation is Flame Cake but it’s actually a pizza-like flat bread, covered with onions, cheese and other toppings. The owner is from the Double Hill Ranch and Lodge in Bridge Lake and he is super friendly. The flammekuchen I chose had bacon (of course) and it was a hefty portion.
The toppings are perfectly proportioned to the thinness of the bread. The wood fired oven bakes the flat bread in about two minutes. The outer crust of the flatbread is nice and crisp and the cheese is just gooey enough to be satisfying. It’s a large portion and likely enough for two to share. After all, you want to save room to try other items!
Another must-try is from Black Forest Meat & Sausages. They’ve been at the market before with their giant award-winning bratwurst and sauerkraut. These are delicious, all-natural and come with a heaping serving of sauerkraut on a bun.
This year, they’ve added a new tantalizing treat call the Haxen. It’s a ham hock or pork knuckle that has been slow roasted until the skin is crispy and the meat is falling off the bones.
You can have the Haxen two ways, the first is for them to debone it for you, and place it in a bun and topped with sauerkraut. The meat is tender with a nice salty flavour. Another way is to have it served bone-in, with the sauerkraut and bun on the side. You can then pretend to be Fred Flintstone and eat the meaty pork right off the bone.
For something sweet, visit the German Cakes & Cookies from Becker’s Baker. Serving traditional items such as Black Forest Cake, Copenhagen and an assortment of Strudels, they also have coffee pairings to make your dessert complete. They also feature items such as Spicy Christmas Cake, Cinnamon Roll and my favourite, the Tiramisu Cheesecake. They offer a couples discount so it’s a great way to share something sweet with your sweetheart!
One vendor that I visited but didn’t try is Das Deutsche Nudel Haus. They feature items such as Schupfnudeln with Prosciutto, Spatzel with Cheese and Ham. For those with a sweet tooth, they even have a Spatzle with sugar, cinnamon and apple sauce. But since the market is open daily until December 24, I’ll be back to give them a try.
Returning again this year is the Season’s Pass for the market. With one paid admission, you are granted access to the market for the duration of the market. Another deal is the 2 For 1 “Bring a Friend” Lunch Pass. When you visit the market Monday to Friday, you can print a lunch pass from the Vancouver Christmas Market website, which gives your colleague a free entry. Entertainment includes Dal Richards Orchestra, Santa’s Brass Band and Phat Santa Swing.
Kids will like the Christmas Market Scavenger Hunt, candle decorating and personalizing their own gingerbread men. Even Shrek, Fiona and Donkey are supposed to be visiting too!
Vancouver Christmas Market
*Note that most of the food vendors are cash-only, ATMs are available at the venue.
Address: 650 Hamilton Street, Vancouver (Queen Elizabeth Theatre Plaza)
Hours: Daily from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. until December 24 (11 a.m. to 6 p.m.)