British Columbia Food and Drink
British Columbia has a dynamic food and drink scene, with a huge variety of international influences and a strong focus on farm-to-table menus. Restaurants dish up everything from fresh salmon and sushi to raw foods and tapas.
• The Pacific Ocean yields a great variety of seafood, including king crab, oysters, shrimp and other shellfish, as well as cod, haddock and salmon (coho, spring, chum, sockeye and pink), which is smoked, pan-fried, breaded, baked, canned or barbecued, and complemented by local vegetables.
• Fruits grown in the province include apples, peaches, pears, plums, apricots, strawberries, blackberries, the famousBingcherries, cranberries and loganberries.
• Victoria creams, a famous chocolate delicacy derived from a recipe dating back to 1885, come in multiple flavours, including raspberry, ginger and maple. The original confectioners shop, Rogers' Chocolates, is in Victoria on Vancouver Island.
Things to know
Spirits, beer and wine can be served in licensed restaurants, dining rooms, pubs and bars. In many jurisdictions, bars and pubs are open until 0200, but hours vary, since they are set by local governments. Alcohol is sold in privately and provincially owned liquor stores as well as in some grocery stores (where there is no nearby liquor store). You can also buy craft beer direct from the brewery, many of which also offer tours.
It's customary to tip between 15% and 20% at bars and restaurants in BC. Tips are also given to tour guides, and for taxi service, spa treatments, porters and haircuts.
Red and white wines, sparkling wines and icewines are produced in the Okanagan Valley, and several other regions have fledgling wine industries. BC's craft beer industry is booming, with new micro- and nanobreweries opening up across the province on a regular basis. An increasingly inventive list of beers, with creative labels to match, includes seasonal brews such as pumpkin or peach ales.