Before moving downtown a few years ago I had only ever been to Gastown [wiki] a couple of times. Aside from being a usual destination for out-of-towners the majority of my experience included hitting dank ol’ pubs for nights of sticky shoes and Irish music. Times have changed and there’s more life in that corner of downtown, no longer is it solely for tourists and the downtrodden, although the combination of the two is a little perplexing. You have geeks and hipsters toting their Macs to the cafe, passing by trendy restaurants while BMW’s breeze through spewing the essence of Yaletown egos from their tailpipes.
The neighbourhood has character, I’ll give it that, and the history is beyond compare [Gastown.org][Warehouse Studio]. I’m looking forward to exploring more facets of Gastown – starting with the food.
One thing that I’m still searching for is a great lunchtime eatery since I’m now working a fancy new job on Water Street. I put the call out on Twitter the other day and Roland [RolandTanglao.com] [Twitter] was gracious enough to share some knowledge, which of course I have to pass on.
There’s Blake’s Coffee Parlour (221 Carrall St), Salty Tongue (213 Carrall St), and Fetch’s Hotdog Cart which can be found at the corner of Water St and Abbott. At Brioche (401 West Cordova) you can get pastries, coffee and soup and Roland recommends Jules Bistro (216 Abbott St) for great steak fries. There are even more choices when you take a short walk into Chinatown, such as Newtown bakery (John‘s personal favourite is the spicy steamed pork buns).
I have yet to try any of the above, except for Newtown, but I’m looking forward to all the possibilities. I’m used to being within close proximity of a food court and I’d be pretty happy not to see another for a very long time. Above all I’m pretty stoked about exploring a part of town that is less than familiar, be it for the food, the history, the people, or the blog fuel.