Vancouver’s overflowing with amazing new spots to head out to for a post-work bite and bevy these days, it’s almost hard to keep up (never mind controlling our expanding waistlines!). We recently uncovered The Abbey (which opened this summer), and have to say… we’ve got nothing but praise for this cool new culinary spot.
Dubbed a ‘progressive tavern’ in the heart of Gastown (always a hub of activity), The Abbey has taken over 117 West Pender Street (previously home to Wild Rice). They’ve revamped the spacious room, tweaking it enough to bring it up-to-date with today’s sleek stylings.
Owners, and industry vets, Andrey Durbach and Chris Stewart know a thing or two about what makes a room work, given they own a clutch of popular spots (like La Buca, Pied-A-Terre and The Sardine Can) already.
At The Abbey, they didn’t have to do all too much given the space already afforded a pretty slick feel (well, minus the glowing blue bar that was a bit 90s). Splashy curved staircases and vaulted ceilings create plenty of room to play with in terms of lighting and design, and the addition of wood furnishings and accents throughout plays perfectly into the cozy British tavern feel they’re going for.
As for the cuisine, The Abbey has plenty to offer and appeals to any hankering you might have. Tuck up to the bar that runs the length of this upscale pub and take your pick from a pretty snappy-looking cocktail, beer, and wine menu.
Hang out for Happy Hour (between 5pm and 6:30pm daily) for a light bite and choose from plenty of sharable nibbles too. House-made sausage rolls fare well, as do Durbach’s take on Chicken Karaage and the simple/savoury mushrooms on toast. Opt for these or choose from a stack of other items (all at 50 percent off during that time).
It’s not all about comfort eating at The Abbey, though, and the menu features enough alternatives to help this tavern crossover to casual fine dining. Dishes such as sockeye salmon with grilled asparagus, foie gras parfait, Welsh Rarebit (rarely seen on menus in the city), and Oysters Rockefeller are all succulent options you won’t be disappointed with.
Oh, and you better try to reserve some space for dessert – they’ve got a peanut butter pie topped with sour cherries that is a must. You’ll thank us later.
Check out the full menu and more details about The Abbey online.
What are some of your favourite dishes from The Abbey? Let us know in the comments below or tweet us @ViewTheVibe.