It seems like overnight Kelowna built an urban culture.
Much of this new vibe is thanks to the super cool Brewery District that has emerged in the North end of town. And, as you will note from the massive construction that continues in the area, there is more to come.
The best news is that many of the breweries are also opting for a gastropub style and creating delicious menus to pair with their beer. BNA Brewing kicked off beer fever in Kelowna and Vice & Virtue followed, really cementing the craft brewery as a food scene as well.
Kettle River Brewing is tucked around the corner from the main drag of breweries on Richter on Baillie Ave. Housed in a former garage, this place is super hip, super cozy and makes “nano” sized batch brews. And omagad they are delicious. I opted for the flight to go with my lunch and loved every one of my little lineup of beers: Field of Dreams Lavender Wi, Ahead by a Century Pale Ale, People's Elbow Imperial IPA and the intriguing dark Skwisgaar Juniper Brown Ale. Speaking from a relatively unsophisticated beerist, I had a revival moment – I love beer.
Recently, Kettle Valley Brewing partnered with the delicious collaboration of culinary star Chef Brock Bowes (former RauDZ chef) and CrAsian food truck duo, sisters Courtney and Meiko Koga and seriously upped their game. This trio are seriously rocking the Kelowna food scene, operating two restaurants as well as their cult following food truck. Here at Provisions, comfort food rules the menu, I love how they have coined it ‘casual camp-inspired food done right’. They had me at the fried chicken dinner insta-post but there is so much more.
Their other brand spanking new eatery is housed in BNA Brewing's new tasting bar extension. BoxcAr is a permanent location for their CrAsian Food Truck arm and is featuring their uber popular Asian-inspired dishes, focussing on Banh Mi Sandwiches and Steamed Buns. This is a revelation for fans that frequented the food truck parked outside BNA - now they can get their fix any day.
Their menu evolves with the seasons, like any ethical great Okanagan eatery should, and they have specials featured on the chalkboard. All that you ever fantasized comfort food to be is on this menu. House made sausages with beer braised cabbage, meat pies (and meatless pies) burgers, chowder, fish & chips, pasta and again, fried chicken…mama I’m home! And beer just happens to pair beautifully with this style of cuisine. After much deliberation, we chose the spicy fried chicken sandwich and the beer battered fish and chips. They were delicious and I can't wait to taste the whole menu.
I love all of the details like the little toy car numbers you get to put on your table to wait for your food. This crew, like all members of this local craft beer scene ‘guild’, is very supportive of their neighbours. The breweries are not in competition, they are in collaboration and encourage pub hopping. One of their neighbours happens to be brand new cheese shop Perseval & Young Cheesemongers just around the corner on Richter. The finale to our lunch was an extraordinary cheese offering care of P&Y with Provisions fab accoutrements. Their preserves and condiments are made in house with jars available for sale along with the take home beer and merch area.
Inside Kettle Valley you get the cabin vibe with couches and all, plus local talent on open-mic nights, plus amazing food. Outside has a patio with picnic tables and cool mural. Basically, they have everything you need to stay awhile and come often. Oh, and you can book for private parties and I happen to be going to a Christmas party there.
PS They make beer floats!
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