Canoe Brewpub, Marina & Restaurant0
There are many great pubs in Victoria, but few who can offer great atmosphere, a patio on Victoria’s Inner Harbour, and great handcrafted beers all in one place.
Well, Canoe Brewpub, Marina & Restaurant does just that.
With 10 years of brewing beers of distinction and a recipient of a Canadian Brewing Awards Gold Medal, if you’re a beer lover, you should definitely put this pub on your “must do” list while in Victoria.
Speaking of beer, while on our recent visit to Canoe, my beer-connoisseur-friend Mark tried their popular “Fleet of Beer” ($12.75).
It came with a sample of their 4 signature beers; Red Canoe Lager, River Rock Bitter, Beaver Brown Ale, and Siren’s Song Pale Ale.
They also normally add in another sample of one of their seasonal specialty beers, however this time they were out so Mark just got an extra sample of his favourite, River Rock Bitter.
While Mark was enjoying his beer sampling, I ordered a “Starfish Martini” ($8.50/2 oz).
Made with pomegranate juice, it was fruity and sweet, but not overly sweet which was what I was looking for.
After our first round of drinks we decided to order an appetizer. I thought the “Poutine With Braised Beef Short Ribs” ($12, $10 without ribs) sounded like it would hit the spot and it so did!
I have always loved poutine but had never seen it offered with braised short ribs on top. I wasn’t sure whether or not the two would go together but I really think they did.
There were plenty of cheese curds and their “brown ale demi” on top of the fries as well. A very yummy starter for sure.
Next Mark decided to order off the “Caesar Bar Menu”. At Canoe they have 5 different kinds of Caesars to choose from and Mark tried 3 of them.
His favourite was the “Jalisco” ($7.50), which was made with Olmeca Gold Tequila, muddled cilantro, clamato juice, chipotle, and a cumin spice rim.
If you like lots of heat, order the “Bangkok” ($7.50). It’s got sweet and sriracha chili in it, as well as a szechuan pepercorn rim which make it not only spicy but flavourful as well.
After we were finished sampling some drinks, we decided to order some mains. To start, I ordered the “Whole Leaf Caesar Salad” ($10.75).
Now I have had Caesar salad tons of times and prefer it to be more garlicy than lemony, so this wasn’t the most tasty salad of this kind I’ve ever tasted.
However, if you like your Caesar salad more on the citrus or tangy side, you will like this one. It’s also definitely a good size portion though, with its whole leafs.
For our main, Mark and I decided to share the “Orechiette” ($14, $16.75 with galloping goose sausage). In case you don’t already know, Orechiette is a type of pasta.
I know that now because Mark told me, not because it was on the menu. Apparently I need to learn more about pasta!
This dish comes with caramalized local squash, forest mushrooms, spinach, sage brown butter, lemon zest, crushed chili and shaved grana (a type of cheese).
I really liked the big chunks of mushrooms in this dish. Unfortunately, I can’t say much else in the positive department with regards to the Orechiette.
You are welcome to try it and disagree with me, but in my opinion it was very salty and over seasoned.
I’m not saying it was terrible or anything, just “okay”. Anyway, we decided to see if the desserts were any better.
Being the fan of chocolate that I am, I went with the “Brown Ale Chocolate Cake” ($7.50), and let me tell you, it did not disappoint.
It came with some almond brittle and good amounts of caramel drizzle and vanilla ice cream so I was quite content with the finish of my night at Canoe.
We have been to Canoe Brewpub several times, and both Mark and I agree that the things most worth coming back for are the beer and the atmosphere.
Whether you’re inside with your beer admiring the impressive timber frame architecture, or out on the patio enjoying the beautiful harbour view, it’s hard not to appreciate this place for its surroundings.
They also have a number of TVs mounted around the pub if you’re wanting to catch a Canuck’s or other game.
Another bonus which Mark and I discovered on this last visit, is that they have a live DJ there on Saturday nights starting at 9.
We really liked the guy who was spinning the tunes and it definitely added to the fun vibe that they had going on there.
They have a DJ on other nights too, just check the music calendar on their website if you want to know.