Saturday, April 07, 2007

Restaurant review - The Whip Gallery

I find it fascinating that a perfect example of the transformation of industrial land into urban/residential use is located so close to my house. The Mount Pleasant area used to be quite industrial. There are a few industrial buildings remaining (one of them used to be a candy factory and then became a brewery?!). At any rate, the building where The Whip is located I am guessing used to be another factory. It has that 'industrial flavor' to it. The building is fully red (for starters, that's kind of odd -- but I digress). And yes, the decor has lots of art (presumably local artists). This neighborhood tends to house lots of funky artists, I must say.

Given its location (6th and Main, but on the 200 block of 6th Avenue), I wasn't really expecting a restaurant. Funny how it works, according to several reviews that I have read online, it is an art gallery too. I fully thought it was a bar (a sports bar, for that matter) the first time I walked by. But now I think that this is a hipster place. I had a long conversation with H about the concept of hipster... non-conformist but all-conforming in their own non-conformity. Complicated enough? Think of scruffy beards, shaggy hair, wicked t-shirts, baggy jeans, aloofness and "I don't really care what you think of me but you should think I am super cool" kind of attitude. That's what transpired around us when we went to The Whip.

I found other Vancouver bloggers' reviews of the Whip and apparently this place used to be different. I didn't know The Whip before so I have no counterfactual. I found the pecan pie was really good and their beer was definitely drinkable. The waitress wanted perhaps to give an image of aloofness, but I managed to make her crack a smile (she was beautiful by the way).

However, as H would say, the atmosphere is hipster, the menu is not. The menu actually looks and reads a bit too upscale (a lot of martinis for $7.50 apiece, a few dinner items). Actually I found the pecan pie portions very small compared to when I go to an actual dessert place but it was a nice touch. I had never had pie with beer, and it turned out ok.

From the reviews I have read, this is the favorite gathering place of a group of Vancouver bloggers. I am not sure I might be crashing their party any time soon considering that I am a total non-techie and non-geek, so my blogging is at its very early stages. But it's nice to know that if I want to meet a group of Vancouver bloggers, I can always walk down to the Whip when they have their gatherings.

Whip Gallery in Vancouver

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