May 21, 2019
BC restaurants are celebrating the launch of the growing season by participating in the Launch month of Buy BC: Eat Drink Local. It’s a fantastic season because we start to see everything popping up in our own gardens.
May long weekend is a signature date for many communities in Canada – it’s the day to start planting your summer vegetable seeds outside. It’s warm enough for seeds to set without the risk of frost. This spring has been a warm one across the province – amazingly restaurants are already featuring local greens. But it’s just getting started!
After this weekend, many restaurants will be planting their own kitchen gardens. These gardens are a return to an old tradition and add so much to the plates at local restaurants. When you get to try ingredients from a kitchen garden on a restaurant menu, you are tasting the freshest items you can. We’re talking greens and herbs picked today and served today. That’s an amazing privilege – and a taste sensation not to be missed.
Here are some amazing restaurants that have kitchen gardens that are essential to their spring summer offerings.
- Pasta Polo & Brick Oven Pizza in Coquitlam BC is a family eatery offering handmade pastas made with organic wheat, thin-crust pizzas & Italian entrees. They grow all of their basil in house – year round. They have a mini-green house with a hydroponic capability. Once the growing season starts, they add fresh herbs into their kitchen garden.
- Kishimoto is an authentic Japanese restaurant on Commercial drive in Vancouver. Chef Akira Kishimoto loves providing his guests a truly seasonal experience. He makes everything in house and uses fresh flowers and herbs as garnishes that he and his wife grow in their kitchen garden.
- Shaughnessy Restaurant at VanDusen Botanical Gardens is surrounded by one of Vancouver’s largest and most spectacular gardens – a 55 acre teaching garden right in the heart of the city. Chef Matt and Owner Chris Chatten have recently started working with the garden to grow vegetables and herbs that they serve on their menu.
- The Teahouse in Stanley Park is a Vancouver icon. Located in on Ferguson Point, the restaurant is in a classic heritage building that faces onto English Bay and is surrounded by gardens. Chef Adam Meade and his team harvest fresh from the garden to add that special touch to seasonal plates.
If you are thinking about planting your own kitchen garden, here are a few items that grow around the province:
- Herbs: Rosemary, Thyme, Sage, Parsley, Oregano, Lemon balm, Garlic chives, Cilantro, Mint
- Edible flowers: Begonias, Bergamot (bee balm), Borage, Calendula, Chamomile, Chives, Dandelion, Day Lilies, Hollyhock, Johnny-jump-ups, Marigold, Nasturtium, Pansies, Sweet Pea, Squash Flower, Violet
- Vegetables: Cucumber, Tomato, Garlic, Onion, Raddishes
- Greens: Lettuce, Kale, Swiss Chard, Mustard Greens, Spinach
More info on local edible flowers, check out: