On this night we were invited to visit Gastown’s newest pizza parlour, serving elevated Italian fare and cocktails with modern Vancouver influences. Their intimate space promises a memorable dining experience and they certainly delivered with unique interpretations on classics, and creative redesigns on staples. Not to mention their pizzas have a one-of-a-kind flavour to them as Gastronomy Gastown has the last wood fire oven in the city at their disposal.
We began our evening with a cocktail and would work our way through as many as possible. The following is what we enjoyed throughout the meal. Starting with the Seville Hugo, described as being light and refreshing with herbaceous citrusy notes. Flor de Seville Tanqueray, St. Germain, lime juice, mint leaves, and orange tree bitters. It was effervescent with a minty bubble kiss, and citrus and herb notes had it pairing well with food.
The Creme Burlee Boulevardier was a delicious one that I can recommend. A punchy and tropical elixir that is smooth going down, while finishing slightly bitter. The scent of creamy banana and caramel lures you in. Crown Royal, Northern Harvest, Campari, Antica Formula, Amontilllado Sherry, Giffard Banana de Brazil, banana bergemont bitters, and chocolate bitters.
The Dark Nights was a warming cocktail with punchy notes that finished chocolatey and smooth. You weren’t expecting a heated cocktail, until you learn it is modelled after a Hot Toddy. Its ingredients read like a potion, and it serves ideally as a digestif. St, Remy V.S.O.P., creme de cacao, butter washed roe and coe, Dark Matter and orange peel syrup, and Woodworm bitters. It calms and comforts like most hot beverages, but with an enjoyable boozy kick.
In the Eye of the Old Gods is a bitter and earthy cocktail that is fruit-driven with a spiced punch. It reminds you of a Negroni and you get all its classic tasting notes, but more elevated with a smoother, harmonious after taste. Blackberry infused Tanqueray, Campari Antica Formula, spiced syrup, black pepper & cardamon bitters.
The Raspberry Theory is a light and fruity drink described as being fluffy, herbaceous, and lightly smokey. Cazadores Blanco, lemon juice, spiced agave nectar, pineapple juice, raspberries, mint leaves, fuji bitters, vegan foamer, and an atomized sombra mezcal. It drank like a fizzy raspberry lemonade, an easy sipper ideal for those who don’t like their drinks too alcohol-forward.
The Nitro Goose is a silky cocktail that ends just as smooth and light, coupled with a sweet high note. It features a caramel infused Grey Goose Vodka that they prepare in house, Kahlua, fresh espresso, and chocolate bitters. This is a dessert martini flavoured in mocha. It smells good, tastes better, and you can’t tell there is any liquor in the mix.
As for food, we whet our appetites with a round of their Crazy Oysters topped with tomato aqua pazza, pickled chilli, and garlic aioli. This was a more approachable take on raw oysters, as their briny flavour is somewhat masked by the tangy tomato jus with the pickling as a highlight.
Once the shells were clean, we then started the night right by using their shells as a glasses for a round of tequila shots. A fun to do and a great way to add some natural salt to your spirit.
The Beef Tartare is prepared gluten-free with rice crisp, black garlic and charcoal mayo, crispy garlic, and cucumber. You use the light and easy to break crisp as a base to scoop up your tartare. The raw beef is lush and fatty, heavily fragrance by garlic aioli. This was a delicious, one-bite morsel.
The Hamachi is a citrus carpaccio dressed with Calabrian chilli vinaigrette, basil puree, and crispy onion. The inspiration behind this is a stain glass window, all the translucent colours overlapping. It is best enjoyed when you have a bite of everything in a bite. The Hamachi is sashimi quality fish. Its elegant flavour is given some life with the crispy onion and tangy citrus. This was another light starter that speaks to the kitchen’s skill and ability.
The Broccoli Caesar was a surprise hit, and I can see why it is one of their most popular dishes. Roasted and pickled broccoli, arugula, anchovy dressing, garlic butter croutons, and lots of parmesan. Everything is made in-house and tasted incredibly delicious. They even pickle the stems to ensure there is no waste in this product.
And of course, we had to try their wood fire oven pizzas. Each is served with a bottle of their house made chilli oil for self-drizzling.
They have a regular margarita pizza (Marge), but you can and should take it to the next level with the Primo Marge. Prepared with pomodoro, pugliese burrata, basil, and EVOO. Take all the complimentary flavour of a margarita pizza that you already love, and add to it creamy burrata for an extra indulgence. There is also the option to add 10g of caviar to this pizza for some extra splash. But we would have ours as a “caviar bumps” below, instead.
Why not enjoy caviar as is, as a heaping spoonful from off of the back of your hand?
And you know a pizza is good, when you aren’t a vegetarian but would order this one again the next time you visit. The 24 Carrot Gold is an amazing vegetarian pizza that even meat lovers would appreciate. Gold leaf, carrot puree, pickled carrot, fior di latte, and basil pesto. The glitz of the gold took this to the next level and the flavours were so well conceived. Carrot 3 ways, fresh, pureed and pickled, all brought together by a delicious fragrant pesto. This one is must try.
Wen Lambo? is the bougiest pizza on their menu. Lobster carpaccio, caviar, preserved lemon cream, creme fraiche, fried capers, and an herb salad. As a whole the pizza is creamy, salty, and fishy; a sumptuous mouthful over a chewy, doughy crust. The thin crust and its herbal seasoning well-accented the sweetness of the lobster meat and the salt from the briny caviar.
Another great vegetarian dish I would order again over the meat options is their Squash Lasagna with mozzarella, squash puree, roasted squash, preserved lemon cream, and toasted pistachios. Like with the carrot, they did well to highlight the natural sweetness and flavour of the squash. They exemplified its starchy texture to create a creamy and richly satisfying lasagna base.
For something saltier and a lot meatier, look to the Conchiglioni aka giant pasta shells. These baked shells were stuffed with fennel sausage, coated in a spicy tomato sauce, finished with a heavy covering of cheese, and served with house baked bread. This was such a flavourful dish that I found myself pairing the pasta with the bread for balance. The slices of sourdough bread were helpful in cutting the saltiness of the baked cheese. And I found the tough nuggets of zesty sausage a bit much. I would have preferred the filling to be more muted like with a spinach and ricotta filling instead, or even more carrot or squash.
For dessert we took it back to childhood with the adult take on a Warm Chocolate Chip Cookie, served with an Amaro Milk Punch. The menu does warn that it is necessary to wait 15 minutes as these gets baked to order for the best possible milk and cookies experience. It is as expected: a warm and gooey chocolate chip cookie with crispy edges, dunked into a boozy creamy milk beverage for nostalgia-sake.
The Elvis was a fun one, named after the King’s love of banana and peanut butter paired together. This is a banana panna cotta with organic peanut butter, balsamic reduction, banana brulee, and peanut brittle. It had a familiar taste with uts unique texture. Crispy sweet brittle chunks, softened tofu-like panna cotta, and crunchy freeze-dried banana slices. It ate light but finished decadently on the palate. A great one for anyone who liked what Elvis did.
And before you leave, make sure you take a pit stop to either of their washrooms, each decorated and worthy of a selfie.
In conclusion, Gastronomy is a great addition to Gastown, and an Italian restaurant and pizza joint worth travelling too. I cannot recommend them more. And if you visit from February 2nd to February 9th be sure to take advantage of their Pizza and Beer or Prosecco deal for only $25, in celebration of Canada’s National Pizza Day on February 9th! Applicable for select pizzas only, but still a great promo!
62 E Cordova St, Vancouver, BC V6A 4G8, Canada