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Fun Food in the Shu!

By Margaret McCormick / Taste of the Shuswap/

Great Taste of Canada

Ok so the sun is in the sky nine hours a day and most ice cream shops have closed for the season but that doesn’t mean we don’t have some super fun places to eat because fall and winter in the Shuswap offers a whole new way to enjoy cosy, comfort and cheerful!

Shuswap Tourism challenged us to develop an itinerary that is fun and can last all winter so here goes.  We grouped our finds into “adult fun” and “kid & family fun”.  We reached out to our friends who are moms, Sarah from Shuswap Adventure Girl and Angela from Shuswap Shop Local for some help because our kind of fun definitely falls in the adult category.  We also crowd sourced on our Instagram @TasteoftheShuswap.  Their ideas (and ours too) we think are awesome and we hope you do too!

Here goes!

While once a roll up the carpet by five town, Salmon Arm is getting hip and we now boast some pretty awesome downtown local date night spots.

We recently had a wonderful experience at The Night Café. Opened in the fall of 2020, Adam and Jenna Meikle have created an eclectic, warm and stunningly beautiful space that mixes powerful art and delicious food. There is absolutely nothing like it anywhere in the Shuswap and it should be on everyone’s must do fun list. The menu is perfectly unpretentious incorporating smoked brisket done on site and tasty flatbread pizzas. The cocktails are dreamy and we loved their wine list offers patrons something different but remaining local to BC when they can. I had a perfect glass of rosé from Quails Gate which paired so nicely with my Greek pizza which was topped with smoked chicken and was smoking good! Carson Meikle was at the bar and also is the crepe master. Our Nutella with bananas and strawberries was a perfect end to a perfect date night.

No strangers to hospitality, Hanoi 36 owners Jenny and Michael Vu opened Weekends Restaurant & Lounge on Alex this October. “Fun and Fresh Dining” is their tag line and by all accounts its true as they introduce unique flavours to the Shuswap featuring poutines, French rolled sandwiches and shared plates. I am most excited to try their fried chicken which is receiving rave reviews and we love they have partnered with local artisans Inspired Breads and Flaked Pastry to complement their menu. Their décor has been developed with local artisans including a gorgeous cherry blossom painting, a living wall and a colourful sunset mural.

We were excited to hear that downtown Salmon Arm coffee favourite Anvil recently received their liquor license and will be opening later offering yet another casual fun vibe place to hang in the Shuswap. Speaking of hangouts, Marionette Winery hosts a very cool winter lounge on the weekends complete with fire pit, mulled wine and tunes.

If you’re looking for laughs paired with great food you can’t beat Small Axe Roadhouse in Enderby. We absolutely love their honest view of the world and their funky decor. Their food is so creative, delicious and fun. I mean how can you go wrong with menu items like The Crispy Kenny Rogers (a finger licking chicken burger) and Sweet Dreams are Made of Cheese, Who am I to Diss A Brie, I mean come on, you know you’re going to have so much fun!

Rachel and Les Biernacki owners of Ranchers Pizzeria & Bar in Blind Bay have created a place where “everybody knows your name” and the welcoming vibe is so awesome. They serve up really, I mean really good pizza, local wine and beer and if the Oilers are playing you can count on the game being on the big screen and Les sporting his jersey. But don’t hold that against him and to be fair, they offer a discount for anyone wearing any jersey on Saturday Hockey Night in Canada. We have had so many great times at Ranchers, and you will too!

Nothing is more fun on the North Shore than time at the Scotch Creek Hub. Live music, comedians and more paired with local beverages including Nigel’s favourite Crannog Ale Back Hand of God on tap. We love that their burgers are served with really fun choice of sides including baked beans with marshmallows on top and mac and cheese! Their specialties come from The Hub Smoke House which makes pretty much anything taste delicious.

While all the suggestions for date night are welcoming to children and families, there are some super fun places that mix fun and food especially for kids!

They may not cover all the food groups, but the Candy Vault is high on fun and we love their seasonal window displays. It is soooooo hard to decide which treat we want when we visit, I guess the answer is to visit all the time!

Our Moms tell us that Hungry Panda in Salmon Arm is a regular go to when kids are in tow. What kid doesn’t like to slurp out of a box with chopsticks and the quality ingredients mean that they are getting their veggies if they know it or not! So are you a noodle or a rice lover? At Hungry Panda you can have both and they have special Kids Boxes at very affordable prices.

Have you been to Sanctuary Games new location yet? They have more room which means more games and more events! Kids love going there and we love that they offer bubble tea which flavours change with the season. Fall offers include Maple Spice, Vanilla Spice, Caramel Apple Butter and you know it …. Pumpkin Spice! Perhaps a treat spot after great behaviour?

Sarah and Angela tell us that sometimes you need to some “to go” options and we hear that the “mac and cheese” at Blind Bay Village Grocer is a special favourite. Do your kids love Greek food? We love Stratis Mediterranean in Sorrento and their takeout is fast and yummy.

We could go on but writing about all this fun and fantastic food is making us hungry so we will sign off here and encourage you to get out, make it a date or a family event, but get out and make the most of fall and winter in the Shuswap. The Tastes here are amazing!

This story has been adapted from an original article available at: