This Easter Sunday brought us to Main Street, out to enjoy the sun. We walked up and down the block looking for a spot to pause at, until we decided to give “Nomad” a try. Which turned out to be a great place, considering my guest had a traditional big Easter brunch hours before and was looking for only a light snack now.
Given the time we arrived (after lunch and before dinner) we found ourselves in an empty restaurant, with perfect timing for happy hour. Having never been here before and not having the regular menu to compare it, I am not sure how much we were saving by eating at this time. But the emptier setting was perfect for our group of two adults and one toddler. Our 0.5th member was able to walk along the cushion seats and push chairs around on the floor, with out distracting anyone. And all the staff even humoured her, they smiled and waved in the hopes that she would interact back. As far as family friendly service goes, this was tops.
The space is as chic as industrial can get. The all window front allows in so much natural light and the vaulted ceiling makes the space open up before you. Concrete floors and walls, wooden detailing and tables; and potted plants give it that urban garden vibe, that Vancouver is so fond of. The green creeped down high ledges, sat in mason jars at every table, and were even present in balcony railing planters that hung off the ledge of the mezzanine. Overall the simplicity of the space is definitely one of those places best enjoyed on a bright and sunny day.
Their abbreviated happy hour included drink specials. My guest went for a pint of their cider for $5.50, and I a cocktail at 50 cents more. The “Femme fatale” was a great breakfast drink along the lines of a mimosa but much more sharp, with more lip puckering citrus. It tasted like the lemon flavour from a meringue pie. Lavender vodka, lemon juice, ginger syrup, essence of rose, and sparkling wine. My favourite bit was the cherry that sunk to the bottom of the murky glass. It was a perfect last bite to the drink, sweet and full of the liquor it absorbed.
For food we shared two of their not-so-small appetizer plates. The “Smoked local pork belly” came with two cuts of pork belly, served with an apple fennel mustard and house made pickles for $8. The thick and fatty chunks of pork were tender. They were only lightly salted, so the extra briny tang of the pickled carrots and onion were a great little kick. And the pepper mustard offered some additional dimension.
But more impressive were their Sunchoke “wings” for $15. These were sunchockes (a cross between a potato and an artichoke) seasoned and prepared like chicken wings in a honey barbecue glaze that was the perfect kind of sticky, lick your fingers good. The chunks of sunchokes were served with alfalfa sprouts, celery sticks and dried apple chips. They added texture and another flavour that paired well with the house prepared ranch and hot sauce dressing it all sat in. All together it made a very dynamic plate, all the flavours matched and not one element overpowered the other. Once again I was surprised at how good this tasted, it will be one I crave for again and one I have no problem recommending.
Would I come back? – Yes.
Would I line up for it? – Yes.
Would I recommend it? – Yes.
Would I suggest this to someone visiting from out of town? – No.
Given how great this small tasting was, I would like to come back for an earlier dinner to try more of what they have to offer. Returning early in the evening to enjoy the fleeting daylight and the wonderful respite the setting provides, all before the rush of a busy dinner service. Or even brunch for more of the “femme fatale”. Don’t deny your cravings.