1212 Commercial Drive, Vancouver BC
Today: 10 - midnight
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Martini Boy's Review - Best Patio
Cuba’s revolutionary reputation has traveled to the BC patio scene via Havana at this Commercial Drive locale. “Que?” might be your first response, but one blissfully relaxing afternoon of sipping on Mojitos will quickly calm any qualms you might have with rebel spirit. Havana resto’s wrought iron division from the street does as much to separate the tasty spot from The Drive as it does embrace it. The allure of this Latin spot has as much to do with the cheap drinks as it does with watching the eclectic Commercial Drive inhabitants of the area walk on by, and there’s no better spot to do it than Havana’s patio. A mix of funk and Cuban distress, and an art gallery in the back makes Havana a refreshing alternative to the luxurious, sometimes still-too-city feel of downtown patios. Fortunately, there’s a sweet selection of nachos and munchies on the menu - after all, this is the Drive. - B.J. $$. 1212 Commercial Drive, 604-253-9119.
from TIME OUT VANCOUVER
Feeling depressed by another grey and rainy February day in Vancouver? Escape to Havana. Winter gloom is as foreign here as grey skies in Cuba. Brunches - on its wide, noisy patio, or bustling, friendly dining room - are among the city's best secret, but night time is best for dining at the bar; the music is loud, the mojitos suggest sunburns and the heady campesino food can't be beaten.
Vancouver, B.C.'s Commercial Drive is a retro, multiethnic kick
Havana . This snazzy restaurant and bar offers a mixed continental menu, highlighting traditional Cuban favorites (mojito cocktails, savory black-bean soup).
But it's the vibrant look and salsa-fueled hum of the place that give it that Old Havana ambience. An indoor dining room is adorned with antique photos of Cuba. There's an outdoor "all-weather" patio, where cigar-lovers can puff on the genuine Cuban smokes for sale. And the back room holds a tiny but interesting art gallery, with rotating exhibits.
Did I mention the place's 60-seat theater? It regularly hosts jazz, poetry readings and plays.
By Misha Berson
Seattle Times theater critic
Theatre Review The Province-
DISHPIG review by: Jerry Wasserman
Soaking, sorting, scraping, scrubbing, stacking. Soaking, sorting, scarping, scrubbing, stackign, spraying. Stack stack stack stack stack stack spra-a-a-a-y.
Try saying that as fast as you can 10 times in a row. Worse yet, try doing it hour after hour, night after night, armpit-deep in a sink full of stinking greasy dishwater, the impatient, abrasive cooks and waiters yelling at you to sort, scrape, stack, spray, wash and dry those dishes faster and faster. It's minimum-wage hell. It's the dishpit. You're the dishpig.
Actually, Greg Landucci is Dishpig and all the other characters in this fabulous hour-long take on the life at the bottom of the service-industry ladder, written by Landucci and TJ Dawe. Graphic, vulgar, hilarious and surprisingly moving, Dishpig has emerged from the Fringe as a stand-alone evening that you'll wish lasted longer.
Dishpig is a guy named Matt who spent time in Europe after high school. Now he's returned home and needs a job and a place to live. After a dizzying series of applications, interviews, and attempts to rent an apartment, Matt takes the crappiest job - the only one he is offered - and moves back with his parents.
He feels like such a loser. Wearing a hairnet and stinking of grease, he quickly masters the numbering routines: scraping, stacking and washing the dishes, empyting the reeking garbage, cleaning the staff washrooms. On slow nights he gets to peel and chop onions. Soon he's no longer Matt. He's just Dishpig.
What gets him through each night is the prospect of smoking pot with the guys beside the dumpster out back. There we meet his fellow workers whose male camaraderie consists of obscenity-laced sex talk (oooh, what they'd like to do with that cute waitress Gemma) and fantasies of revenge against jerks like arrogant waiter Zach. They'll fill his motorcycle helmet with mayonnaise and fart on his dinner.
Under Dawe's snappy direction, Landucci does a great job evoking the quirks of each character: Dopers Mike and Dave, resident intellectual Leo, obnoxious sex-boaster Dan, Smeagol-like whiner Murray, and half dozen others, including fantastically luscious Gemma.
But Dishpig himself is the most fascinating. Landucci plays him as a sweet innocent with a touch of self-loathing and sharp but never cynical powers of observation. He also has a remarkable to talk fast. His high-speed dish washing raps become elaborate mini-symphonies celebrating the indignities of repetitive mechanical labour.
It may be the world's worst job but when Matt finally quits, Landucci shows us a beautifully complicated reaction that includes some regret and even a little nostalgia.
I can hardly wait for Dishpig 2: The Sequel.
Last Updated: Wednesday, January 11, 2012
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