In 1999, Freshslice Pizza founder Ray Russell set out to combine the once-separate worlds of pizza-by-the-slice joints and speedy pie delivery. Each ready-made slice or delivery pie is created with a dough recipe that's seven years in the making, with a wholesome multigrain base with a crispy texture unheard of in run-of-the-mill pizzas made with boring white dough or pickled Frisbees. At each of the restaurant's 70 British Columbia and Ontario locations, customers can pop in for a few takeout slices, select a feast from the litany of suggested topping combos, or craft their own creation from three different sauces, 20 different toppings, and a variety of cheeses. In addition to savoury slices of pizza covered in combos such as pesto, spinach, ham, and mozzarella, customers can dine on morsels of baked lasagna, sweet cinnamon sticks, or other pizzeria fare.
Behind their storefront's wood sign and bright red door, Jimmy Flynn's Celtic Snug's bartenders pour cold pints of Guinness to complement hearty Irish stews, seafood, and meat crafted fresh daily. Each morning, chefs whip up black pudding for traditional Irish breakfasts and then use Guinness to enhance the flavours of later day offerings such as bison burgers and barbecue pulled pork sandwiches. In addition to draft brews, Jimmy's crew can also fill glasses with local and international red and white wines.
Creamy textured walls, Celtic-themed paintings, and panoramic views of the White Rock Harbour wrap around the eatery's cozy confines. The dining room also hosts occasional performances from live musicians and special events such as whisky tastings with James Joyce's ghost.
Pearl on the Rock, a AAA Four Diamond award-winning restaurant, presents contemporary Pacific cuisine in a well-appointed dining room with spectacular views of Semiahmoo Bay. The inventive menu binds a harmonious marriage between land and sea with seafaring items such as Qualicum Bay scallops ($28.95), bolstered to daring levels of decadence by mushroom risotto and brown-butter cauliflower puree. The weekend brunch menu also boasts multifarious fare with items such as the pancetta and cheddar omelette ($12.95), with house-made bacon, farmhouse cheddar, organic greens, and hollandaise sauce. The restaurant participates in the Ocean Wise initiative, serving sustainable seafood while protecting the sea's tasty resources and mermaid farm industry. To supplement its creative culinary creations, Pearl boasts a 625-bottle wine list that has been awarded the Best of Award of Excellence from Wine Spectator.
The crafty chefs at Organic Connections' beachfront cafe placate hunger cries with fresh, organic items crafted into the menu's offerings of vegan, vegetarian, and live cuisine. Dining duos can split piping soups, such as a daily special or a classic borscht, a hearty blend of cooked beats and veggies that, like Mrs. Potato Head's cocktail attire, is capped in sour cream. Seasoned pumpkin and sunflower seeds sprinkle over the signature salad, priming palates for entrees such as a traditional red-quinoa bowl packed with nutrients and slathered in a mild curry sauce. Food artisans pile a rice-bowl special high with seasoned organic rice that sings its flavours alongside freshly steamed vegetables and a daily sauce. Though not included in today's Groupon, patrons can sip selections of organic juices and smoothies. Live music dances through the air on the weekends, and guests can belt out menu orders in three-part harmony on open-mic nights each Friday.
Situated cozily within their beachfront fortification, the culinary virtuosos at Iguana's Beach Grill shell out hearty platters of pub grub anointed with a Southwest American twist. The kitchen's bacon-and-cheddar burger (an $11 value) spans the cavernous gap between two bun halves with a succulent, beefy bridge. Meanwhile, the crab-and-gouda dip ($11) blends snow-crab meat with a mighty triumvirate of smoked gouda, aged parmesan, and cream cheese and arrives with an entourage of pita chips for dipping. Freshly plucked fruits of the sea play a starring role in main dishes, such as the portabella ravioli ($17), setting garlic prawns afloat on top of whole-wheat pasta, portabella mushrooms, ricotta, and roasted red-pepper pesto cream. Diners can relax on the beachfront restaurant's heated patio, ideally located for tossing table scraps to vagrant mermaids, or swing by on a Friday or Saturday night for live entertainment.