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Maxine’s, Endless Summer Patio Party

Today I was getting my first taste, or rather sip of Maxine, West End Vancouver’s modern cafe and bar. They were hosting their “Endless Summer Patio Party” to mark the end of the season and invite guests into their cozy space on a Wednesday.

Their staff and covered patio were dressed for the occasion in tropical prints and inflatable palm trees. It all certainly helped to set the tone, even if the weather wasn’t cooperating with cloudy skies and the good chance of a drizzle.

The space would be set up for free standing and roaming, with select booths available for seating, should you be lucky enough to secure one. This was a similar case with the limited food, brought around on trays. Sadly I would not be able to try much or any of this, and settled on just taking a photo of a board curated for VIP guests (I was not one).

The one morsel I did snag was their flaked fish canapé over a crispy rice cracker. It was hearty with a good amount of seafood. A little too salty, which I found the available cocktails helped to remedy. This one in particular needed a drink to refresh the palate afterwards.

For this case, I recommend the Tom “Sunshine” Collins prepared with Northern Keep, Crème de Cassis, Lemon, and 33 Acres of Sunshine beer. The mellow nature of beer came though well in this, with the freshness of citrus and the sweetness of cassis making it a great a great vodka cocktail to sip on.

Now the drinks are what I was able to try all of, and below are my tasting notes on each of our vodka and tequila options.

At the same Northern Keep Vodka Bar there were two more options to choose from. The Roadrunner was an easy one, tangy with a bright fruity flavour. Northern Keep, Campari, Pineapple, Lime, and Grenadine.

But my favourite of the lot was the Frozen Espresso Martini. Northern Keep, Kahlua, Cabot Trail, Coconut Milk, and Espresso. The creamy flavour and caffeine of a blended caffeinated beverage, but with the extra kick of some quality liquor to help transition from morning to happy hour.

For those looking for something more tropical, guests could head over to the Popup Tres Generaciones Tequila Bar on the patio. Here there were two classic cocktails remade using Tres Generaciones tequila.

I liked the punchy spice of the Spicy Cadillac Margarita with the flavour of spicy jalapeño already pre-infused with the Tres Generaciones tequila. To it the bar added Grand Marnier, Lime, and fresh squeezed Orange. The result, a refreshing cocktail with a more savoury flavour profile, which is to my preference. The only thing missing here was a salted and equally spiced rim.

But for those who like it sweet, the Mango Tequila Cosmo was a great option. Prepared with Tres Generaciones, Mango, Lemon, and Simple syrup. This was pretty neutral on the palate, so easy drinking for multiple rounds. I was just missing the mango and maybe a nice sugar rim to have it stand out. But this occasion was designed for masse pouring and delivery, so extra flourishes and garnishes were not included.

In short, this was a nice way to end the season. A fully sold out affair at $10 an admission ticket, with two drink tickets included, plus the opportunity to purchase more as you see fit. Not to mention, complimentary canapés, should you be able to get your hands on some. Be sure to look out for the next one.

Maxine’s Cafe & Bar
1325 Burrard St, Vancouver, BC V6Z 1Z7
(604) 707-7224

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