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Boulevard Provisions

Once upon a time, there was a girl. That girl enjoyed meeting her friends (usually other girls, but occasionally boys, too) for happy hour at various locations around the cosmopolitan city in which she lived.

And one of her favourite places for Happy Hour was Boulevard Kitchen and Oyster Bar, in the Sutton Place Hotel, in the heart of downtown Vancouver.

Boulevard has two distinct and different areas with very different vibes. The main dining room is sleek, modern and undeniably upscale. The lounge, however, with its dark wood, masculine leather couches and massive bar is cozy, especially if you get to sit near the fire.

Plate of vegetable curry with rice

Roasted Vegetable Curry

Let’s just say the girl spent a fair amount of time here.

And then there was a global pandemic.

Easy, casual meetings with friends in restaurants became a thing of the past. There was no more lolling around on couches in front of the fire drinking a glass of red wine and eating mushroom toast.

So Boulevard, like many restaurants, decided it needed to pivot. After all, people still need to eat, global pandemic or not, maybe even now more than ever.

So they created Boulevard Provisions, a way for the girl (and everyone else) to get their fix, just at home.

And you know what? It’s pretty great.

Yes, my living room lacks the warm crackling fire and the leather couches. It lacks my friends, too. But it sure was nice to have some of these familiar dishes I’ve grown to know and love in my own home.

The process was pretty simple. Just head to Boulevard’s website, and then click on the link for “Boulevard Provisions.” Here, you can scroll through a few categories: they sell raw ingredients (like fish or steaks) that you can cook yourself, but they also sell pre-cooked food that either fresh or frozen that you just take home and heat up. There’s soups and stews, they even sell charcuterie. Most of the dishes feed between 2-4 people, and there’s even options for desserts and cocktails! Yes! Cocktail kits! Oh happy days.

The cornbread that dreams are made of

Once you’ve selected your purchases, you just tell them when you want to come pick it up. Then you just pull into the driveway at the selected time and text a phone number, and a nice person comes out and puts the order in the back of your car. Super safe, so easy, and now you have delicious food to eat.

I highly recommend you order the cornbread. Cornbread is one of those seemingly “low brow” foods that actually takes a lot of finesse to do right, and this stuff is downright addictive. Actually, you should probably order two because you’ll likely consume the entire first pan on your own, straight out of the pan, because that’s how good it is. It is, not shockingly, their most popular item.

There are some really homey and tasty soups and stews. My understanding is that the bolognese is pretty world-famous, though I didn’t try it, as it is made with meat. However I know enough people who have tried it that assure me its hella tasty.

I did order the roasted vegetable curry, which is vegan. A creamy curry made with coconut milk and hearty, satisfying vegetables, I just tossed some rice in my rice cooker and heated the curry on the stove for a dead-simple, but very satisfying and comforting dinner. The leftovers have been great lunches.

So, you wanna feel like Chef Alex Chen is cooking for you in your own kitchen? You gotta check out Boulevard Provisions.