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Classic Canadian eats: The poutine craze hits Vancouver

Take French fries, top them with cheese curds and gravy and you get poutine: a simple dish as consummately Canadian as hockey and maple syrup. And though the recipe originated in Quebec, it’s reaching bold new heights in Vancouver. 

For traditional poutine, purists head to Boneta, a French-inspired bistro in the heart of Gastown. Their recipe combines hand-cut Kennebec potato fries, real cheese curds sourced from British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley and a traditional poutine gravy. The result, according to some enthusiastic Yelp reviewers, might just be the best classic poutine this side of Montreal. 

Elsewhere in the city, chefs are taking poutine in exciting and sometimes unexpected directions. At Oakwood Canadian Bistro in the trendy Kitsilano neighborhood, poutine is served in a hot skillet piled with house-made beef brisket, on top of the customary cheese curds and gravy. Meanwhile, at the Memphis Blues Barbecue House along busy Broadway, poutine is given the Southern treatment, topped with pulled pork, melted cheese and barbecue sauce. 

Poutine adventurers may also want to check out local Vancouver favorites La Belle Patate, Belgian Fries, La Brasserie and Fritz European Fry House.