Picnics at VanDusen Gardens with Truffles Catering
Before summer becomes a distant memory, a visit to VanDusen Gardens while the gardens are in full bloom is a must. If you plan your trip around lunch time, there are two choices for dining, the more formal Shaughnessy Restaurant and Truffles Fine Food Cafe offering sandwiches, salads, desserts, afternoon tea and now picnic basics. What better way to truly enjoy the gardens sitting on a blanket with a basket full of goodness that you can just grab and go with?
Located inside the VanDusen Visitors Centre, Truffles Cafe’s $58 picnics-for-two include:
- admission for two to VanDusen Botanical Garden (a $21.50 value)
- a sturdy picnic basket with lined picnic blanket to use during your picnic
- two regular-sized sandwiches of your choice
- two small salads of your choice
- two beverages (including coffee, juices or sparkling water)
- a selection of cheese and crackers with grapes
- napkins and utensils
The basket has everything you need to enjoy a fabulous outdoor lunch before (or after) exploring VanDusen’s magnificent grounds and gardens.
The Truffles Cafe Picnics are packed on a first-come basis and can’t be ordered in advance; you must order them in-person at Truffles. Peak picnic hours are 11:45am – 1:15pm, so plan to get there a little earlier or later to avoid a wait.
On a rather sunless, but rain-free afternoon we headed out to VanDusen and ordered up the basket.
Walking the gardens, we choose a spot next to the pond, as a bench was handy and the view was right.
Sandwich choices ranged from ham and Swiss to turkey and brie all on fresh bread with added touches such as the caramelized onions in the in-house roasted beef and the tasty red pepper spread in the chicken panini, the two items we decided on.
We also picked out an orzo and been salad and chocolate chip cookies, that had to be packed home along with much of the meal because the portions are generous, you will not leave hungry. Drinks include the regular canned pops and pellegrino – we choose the orange flavours.
The gardens are gorgeous and throughout August there is a spectacular sculptural exhibit, so plan some additional time for viewing.