Tag Archives: Chef Jefferson Alvarez

What’s Good This Week in Vancouver Version 2017.0

What to do in Vancouver this week of January 2017

Is it just me or does it seem like the new year really starts in the second week of January? Last week wasn’t bad, it’s not like I ate a dozen donuts in one seating, I actually had some great gal pal time  and even planned my pre-wedding week away. I did try a new restaurant, and explored new cocktails and food, and even went for a couple runs. I just don’t feel I buckled down like I need to for 2017 business-wise I suppose. So, since my business is telling you what to do (or something like that), let’s get this week going with a few great events I’m giving the thumbs up to in and around Vancouver. Wishing you motivation and success this week! Please do the same for me?wine tasting

Best Sommelier of BC Competition

Monday January 9 at Rogers Arena (200 Level, Captain’s Lounge, enter via Gate 10, 800 Griffiths Way, Vancouver),  at 1:00 pm you can catch the top three finalist competing in the practical exam that will determine the Best Sommelier of BC. There will be test on Sparkling wine service, Red wine decanting, Food and wine pairing, Menu correction and a Blind tasting of cocktails, red and white wines. It’s open to the public by donation. Later that night, the Winning announcement for BC’s Best Sommelier in 2017 will be announced at a sold out event at CIBO. I’m heading down to catch some of the action.

theater of life 2016 poster

Theater of Life at Vancity Theatre

MON JAN 9 – 7:00PM (Gala Launch part of Vancouver Italian Film Festival)
FRI JAN 13 – 6:30PM • SAT JAN 14 – 3:45PM
SUN JAN 15 – 5:45PM • MON JAN 16 – 6:45PM • THU JAN 19 – 6:15PM 
INFO + TICKETS | Website & Trailer

In an extraordinary soup kitchen in Milan, two vastly different worlds come together in a unique social experiment. Theater of Life captures the remarkable relationship forged between the finest haute cuisine chefs in the world, led by chief instigator Massimo Bottura, and the city’s most disadvantaged groups: refugees, recovering drug addicts, former sex workers, and a host of others with no place else to go. Monday Jan 9th Gala Launch Event: Doors from 6:30 pm. Reception – 6:45-7:45 featuring dishes prepared by chefs David Gunawan (Royal Dinette); Brian Luptak (The Acorn) and Robert Clarke (The Arbour). (Pay bar) 7:50pm Screening followed by Skype Q&A with Filmmaker Peter Svatek.


Psychonaut World Premier

January 10th, 2017 at the Cinematheque Theatre in Vancouver, BC you can catch Psychonaut, a sci-fi indie feature shot exclusively in the Vancouver area. Psychonaut is a psychedelic sci-fi indie feature about mind travel. It follows one man’s journey on a path of spiritual awakening through science and technology. Scientists who have been pushed into underground research facilities following government intervention, continue to work on discovering the inner workings of the human mind. But when a secret disc containing sensitive research is stolen, it’s a race against time to recover the disc before worlds collide, causing catastrophic consequences.

The soundtrack is provided exclusively by psychedelic band DRUGZNDREAMZ Watch the trailer here: https://vimeo.com/176829943 To purchase tickets to the exclusive world premiere of Psychonaut, click here

wild rice

Wild Rice DINE IN JAN 3 – FEB 12

Dine out Vancouver starts Jan 20 (book here quickly!), but you can already get some deals around town. Take a ride out to New West for a change and try the two course meal for $25, or for an additional $5, you can choose the dessert of your choice.


BOOK FOR Dine Out Vancouver

The good seats go fast so get booking for Dine Out Vancouver, Canada’s largest annual celebration of food and drink. This year there is 17 days of culinary events, prix fixe menus at 270-plus restaurants (at $20, $30 or $40 price points), as well as “Dine and Stay” packages and special hotel rates  January 20 to February 5. dineoutvancouver.com @DineOutVanFest #dovf

In addition to prix fixe dinners at more than 270 restaurants in and around Vancouver (many with suggested BC VQA wine pairings), food lovers can select from a roster of more than 40 events that include an Oceanwise Pop-up at the Vancouver Aquarium (sustainable, locally sourced menu paired with an interactive under-the-sea experience); a Robbie Burns Celebration (Scottish-themed feast at YEW Seafood + Bar along with a whisky masterclass led by award-winning bartender Lauren Mote and a special visiting guest who’s making waves in the spirits world); an Asian-inspired Lunar New Year feast at Heritage Asian Eatery (10-course, family style meal celebrating the Year of the Rooster); and more. Returning favourites include the Vancouver World Chef Exchange (welcoming star chefs from London, New York, San Francisco, Mexico City and Galway); a series of brunch crawls showcasing the most palate-pleasing haunts in Vancouver’s distinctive neighbourhoods; and others. And you won’t want to miss made-for-a-crowd experiences like the music-packed Tasters Tapas & Talent; a cozy Winter Beer Hall; Craft Beer & Tacos (a fan favourite pairing!) and more.


Campagnolo ROMA  will be pairing up with Odd Society

Delicious food and cocktails? YUM! Wednesday, January 11 Chef Jesse McMillan will be serving up six courses based on the hearty, rustic winter cuisine of Rome while cocktail pairings
will be designed using spirits from Odd Society.

Oyster – oaked mignionette

Winter Squash Salad – pumpkin seed vinaigrette, scamorza

Charred Cabbage – bollito misto, brassica brodo, sourdough bread

Squab – grilled radicchio, anchovy, squab jus

Goat’s Milk Custard – brown butter, peach, lovage

Baked Apple – pie crust, smoked anglaise

Tickets are $90 inclusive of food, beverage, and service and can be purchased by visiting http://romacollab.eventbrite.ca or by phoning the restaurant at 604.569.0456campagnolo

Chef Jefferson Alvarez Cacao Vancouver


Chef Jefferson Alvarez has had a busy fall as he’s recently opened Cacao, inspired Latin American plates in Kitsilano. We had a few questions for him as he preps for Gold Medal Plates to compete for Gold, but there were no hints as to what he’ll be serving!

Tell us a little bit about your restaurant and/or style of cooking.

We are a latin American restaurant style progressive Latin

Where do you eat in your city?

Where chefs are hands on!

What would be your ideal food day? 

Food from my mom

What trend do you wish would die?


What trend/s do you wish would be next?

NO MORE TRENDS PLEASE! We should evolve and progress like normal people use to.

What ingredient do you always have on hand?

Salt & pepper.

What’s your go-to recipe when you’re eating at home? 

Brazilian bbq chicken.

What equipment do you wish you had in your kitchen?

A real stove top.


What cookbook would you suggest for a gift for your foodie friends this year?

Virgilio Martinez CENTRAL

Any hints on what dish you will be preparing for Gold Medal Plates?

No comments.

What wine/beer/libation are you pairing with this year?


Who is coming with you?


What’s Good This Week August 4+

Vancouver Events

Well I’m a little behind this week as a stupid summer cold has slowed me down, but I’m hoping the worst is over as there’s no time to be sick! This week we are prepping for Les Dames Summerdine happening next Wednesday, Meet the Rancher at Hopcott in Pitt Meadows, which makes a nice little drive, there’s cider to be had at Orchard and the Sea and far more!


Orchard & the Sea – August 5, 6, 7

Head to Gastown for artisan cider and hand-crafted small bites from Chef Jefferson Alvarez at 55 Powell Street 6-11 pm this weekend As I did my food tours the past few weeks I wish I’d had time to stop into Birds and The Beets for this pop up! Perhaps this weekend! Orchard and the Sea


Hopcott Farms Meet the Rancher – August 6

Hopcott Farms is celebrating 10 years this August at Hopcott Meats and has two months of fun-filled events to share. This weekend Meet the Rancher includes a charity BBQ for Alisa’s Wish, live music, free coffee and product samples, and activities for all ages. With an ever-growing number of people concerned about where their foods come from, Hopcott Meats has responded with an opportunity to ‘Meet your Rancher’ where the public is invited to stop by and learn from the ranchers who raise their meat.


Come Forage with Chef Chris Whittaker August 7

On August 7th Come Forage with Chef Chris Whittaker on beautiful Fraser Common Farm, and Laurica Farm. Tour the two farms, all the while learning more about them, and foraging. Then enjoy dinner you helped to forage ingredients for. This event is an annual fundraiser for the ongoing educational programs of Fraser Common Farm. Get tickets here!

Experience Delta Farm and Culinary Tour
Experience Delta Farm And Culinary Tour August y

Join us on Sunday, August 7th from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. when a select number of Delta farms, gardens, orchards and vineyards swing open their gates to welcome the public in for a peek and a taste of what life is like on the farm in one of the most significant agricultural communities in all of B.C.  Details

summerdine 2015 27619738692 o

Les Dames Summerdine – August 11

Dine for a cause this coming Wednesday. $79 gets you an amazing dinner and wine pairing. Ticket available at Notch 8 at Hotel Vancouver, Chicha Peruvian on East Broadway, Arc at the Fairmont Waterfront, Nicli in Gastown, Kaya Malaysian (8 dishes) and Boulevard at The Sutton Place Hotel. TICKETS  Funds go to scholarships to women in wine and food and children’s school programs.

provence 2016 virgin tomato tarte 2

Tomato Fest at Provence August 2-31

It’s the 7th Annual Tomato Fest. Take advantage of our exclusive 3-course menu ($55) and optional wine-pairings ($22) that highlight fresh, in-season and locally-grown heirloom tomatoes. Click for details

The Keg Lobster

Lobster at the Keg – Until August 28

Sample steak and lobster, whole lobster, lobster tails, lobster tacos and more at the Keg until August 28th. Details


Bullipedia Fundraiser with Chefs Jefferson Alvarez and Chanthy Yen

Chef Jefferson Alvarez and Txotx Basque Imports Pop Up Basque Pintxos Bar

Walking into a bustling pintxos bar in the Basque Country is an experience. On the counter are dozens of beautiful small bites being enjoyed by groups of friends as they discuss the day’s events. Between bites, txakoli (a light, effervescent white wine) and sidra (an acidic and funky cider) are ordered to cleanse your palate and prepare you for the next delicious pintxo.alvarez

On July 10th, Chef Jefferson Alvarez and Txotx Basque Imports are teaming up to transform Propaganda Coffee into a traditional Basque Pintxos Bar. Bring close friends, and meet new ones as you sip on txakoli and sidra late into the night.

Tickets are limited and will sell out fast, so don’t delay!

WHEN: Friday July 10th, 2015 – 8pm-late
WHERE: Propaganda Coffee – 209 E. Pender, Vancouver, BC


*Each ticket includes: 2 glasses of txakoli, 2 glasses of sidra, and pintxos
*Must be 19 and older.

– A printed ticket with barcode, or download onto your smart phone*.
– A valid photo I.D.

Secret Location’s All About Mom Dinner


We’ve heard your Mom wants breakfast in bed, so instead of brunch this year, let her sleep in and instead join Secret Location’s event on Saturday May 9. This All About Mom Dinner is a special 10 course evening for $95 and we’ve heard she’d prefer this, over eggs benny any day! If you haven’t been to try Chef Jefferon Alvarez’s amazing cuisine, be sure to do so pronto, and this dinner is the perfect excuse to treat yourself and your mother, all in one night.

On the menu.

  • Potato ramp soup
  • Burrata and chayote salad
  • Wild mushroom salad
  • Duck rillette
  • Elk carpaccio, truffle
  • Wild boar, birchwood syrup
  • Vanilla coffee squab
  • Chocolate braised bison short ribs
  • Carrot field dessert
  • Chocolate textures

Reserve online or call 604.685.0090.


Flashback to Hamid Salimian’s Persian New Year’s Menu

Now that I’ve got my ticket reserved for an upcoming evening where Chef Salimian will be cooking his fantastic Persian cuisine, I am happy to re-share a meal from the past. I’m selfish you see (mostly only when it comes to divine food) and I just don’t want you to beat me to the reservation. As once you see this meal, you will certainly be eager to book one of the upcoming dinners. Luckily there’s a few to choose from and I’ve smartly already reserved my seat.

The meal below was the actual first of the delightful meals I have gratefully consumed that have emerged from the kitchens led by Chef Hamid Salimian. I am not well versed in Persian food by any means, let alone the deconstructed and molecular gastronomy-influenced version we had that night at the Westin Airport in March of 2011. I was in awe of the whole experience and highly suggest you book your ticket now for Chef Salimian’s collaboration with his friend and fellow culinary superstar, Chef Jefferson Alvarez at Secret Location from March 2-14.

Abedogh kiar Yogurt, cucumber, mint, wild flower

Abedogh kiar Yogurt, cucumber, mint, wild flower

Gaote Pita, preserved walnut, basil, feta

Gaote Pita, preserved walnut, basil, feta

Salad-e Olivieh Poached chicken, fingerling potatoes, green olives

Salad-e Olivieh Poached chicken, fingerling potatoes, green olives

KooKoo Sabzi Salmon, Seville orange, sunchoke feta

KooKoo Sabzi Salmon, Seville orange, sunchoke 

Mirza Ghasemi Sable, octopus, eggplant, tomato

Mirza Ghasemi Sable, octopus, eggplant, tomato

Fesenjan  Slow cooked Duck leg, orange, pomegranate

 Fesenjan Slow cooked Duck leg, orange, pomegranate

Ghormeh Sabzi Lamb, red bean, parsley, stone dry lime, basmati rice

 Ghormeh Sabzi Lamb, red bean, parsley, stone dry lime, basmati rice

Bagh-Lava with Akbar Mashdi Ice cream Almond mousse, chickpea crumble, preserved peaches

Bagh-Lava with Akbar Mashdi Ice cream Almond mousse, chickpea crumble, preserved peaches

Faloodeh Lime, rice noodle, rose water

Faloodeh Lime, rice noodle, rose water Bagh-Lava with Akbar Mashdi Ice cream Almond mousse, chickpea crumble, preserved peaches

Secret Location 10-Course Dining Around The World

Secret Location1

In 2015, Secret Location’s Chef Jefferson Alvarez encourages diners to “Take a journey with us and travel through Spain, Italy, France, Asia, Persia, and South America.”

From the evening of January 5th to March 21st the restaurant will serve a 10 course dining experience for $95, including complimentary drinks.

Spain | January 5-17
Italy | January 19-31
France | February 2-14
Asia | February 16-28
Persia | March 2-14
South America | March 16-21

Secret Location

Executive Chef Jefferson Alvarez
Guest Chefs:
Chef Pino Posteraro | January
Chef Angus An | February
Chef Hamid Salimian | March
Chef Carlos Garcia | March

Secret Location
$95 with complimentary drinks
Dinner service begins 5:30pm
For reservations call 604 685 0090
Price quoted per person, gratuities and tax extra

Download and share a PDF of this page.

Secret Locatione

Cancelled – Secret Location welcomes Thiago Castanho


Unfortunately this is cancelled, as Thiago Castanho’s had to return home. BUT! Instead for $200……

august 12, 2014 Chef Jefferson Alvarez will be cooking a 16 course adventurous Tasting Menu, with drinks included, along side his talented friend Chef Hamid Salimian for $200! UNREAL

This however is now off Cancelled….

Currently residing in Belém, Brazil, Thiago Castanho is the Executive Chef of Remanso do Bosque. Surrounded by Amazonian jungle, Castanho creates a purely Brazilian tasting menu using innovative, contemporary, and indigenous techniques.  Castanho shares similar values with Alvarez, and both strongly focus on local products.

Recently Castanho was noted for his incredible skill as #38 on Latin Americans 50 Best Restaurants, and also won the award for The One to Watch.

As one of the first retailers in Canada to sell his newly released cookbook, Brazilian Food, we will be hosting a book signing on August 11 between 4pm – 6pm.

This August 12 we will be housing a revolutionary Four Hands Dinner, featuring the collective work of Jefferson Alvarez and Thiago Castanho.  The 16 course dinner with snacks and drinks will be an exploration of the senses.  For reservations email Virginie Rins, General Manager, vrins@secretlocation.ca. We hope you’re able to join us!

Secret Location’s Amazing 300 dishes in 30 days

thetastingmenu_day7Head to Gastown and into the gorgeous room that houses Secret Location and where Chef Jefferson Alvarez creates his magic.  Alvarez is one of the city’s best and is challenging his crew with a daily changing menu of ten courses per day until February 15.  I sampled the menu on day one and it was fantastic   GLV

daily changing 10-course tasting menu
January 16 – February 15 evening service
3 snacks, 2 appetizers, 2 savoury, 1 palate cleanser, 2 sweet
Executive Chef Jefferson Alvarez
$75 per person with complimentary drinks

dinner service begins 5:30pm
for reservations call 604 685 0090
price quoted per person, gratuities and tax extra
secret location one water street vancouver british columbia v6b 2h9

Day 1 – Menu pictured above (a few shots from the talkented Mijune Pak – Follow Me Foodie  and some pro shots)

sturgeon skin smoked salt radish and seaweed aioli

beef tartare + truffle

squash: squash seed milk, squash skin, tonka bean infused squash

shaved elk: smoked beets, dill aioli, black olive oil

confit toothfish: lobster saffron broth, kelp vermicelli

bison short ribs: wild mushrooms, freeze dried peas, shaved truffle

the discovery: manjari espresso aerated ganache, hazelnut cream and soil, rosemary honey lemon fizzy

along the Mekong River: kaffir lime parfait, calamansi + blood orange sorbet, curry pistachio, burnt orange caramel tapioca