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Feature Story: Edmonton Dishcrawl brings growing foodie community together for a night of new experiences

Edmonton Dishcrawl brings growing foodie community together for a night of new experiences

Foodies "crawling" to their next stop at Dishcrawl Edmonton: Foodie Treats on 124 Street

Edmonton’s food community takes part in Dishcrawl Edmonton: Foodie Treats on 124 Street. Edmontonians sampled dishes at four restaurants in the span of the evening. It’s just the latest in a number of food trends to hit the city.

WATCH THE VIDEO, CLICK BELOW:

httpvh://youtu.be/pCs0UEFlhf8

Notes: I still don’t have proper audio or lighting equipment so I apologize for the bad audio and grainy footage, lol. Also if anyone wants to give me vocal lessons, I’ll take it! LOL

Linda Hoang, March 5, 2012

EDMONTON – Four plates. One night. Eat food. Meet people.

That’s the platform behind Dishcrawl, the latest food trend to hit the city and it’s being welcomed with open arms (and open mouths) by local foodies.

“The idea behind dish crawl is really to connect the food eaters to the food makers,” says Dishcrawl Edmonton organizer Teresa Lin.

“You’ll meet new friends, you’ll try some awesome food, you’ll meet chefs and owners. It’s an awesome experience altogether.”

Teresa Lin speaking to foodies at Dishcrawl Edmonton: Foodie Treats on 124 Street

Dishcrawls are guided tours through four local restaurants during one night where participants sample dishes, learn more about the restaurant and the chefs behind the dishes, and connect with likeminded individuals.

On Feb. 28, about 30 Edmontonians gathered at The Dish & Runaway Spoon Bistro on 124 Street and Stony Plain Road for Dishcrawl Edmonton’s “Foodie Treats on 124 Street.

The sold-out event brought foodies to Matahari followed by The Manor then ended at d’Lish Urban Kitchen and Wine Bar. All of the restaurants involved in the Dishcrawl – aside from the first – are kept a secret from crawlers as a way to enhance the entire experience.

“There’s a little bit of an element of surprise and suspense that they like,” Lin says.

Pear & Cambazola Triangle, Artichoke & Goat Cheese Dip (with papadam, purple yam, and sweet potato chips), Lamb Phyllo at the Dish & Runaway Spoon Bistro at Dishcrawl Edmonton: Foodie Treats on 124 Street
Mango in Rice Paper at Matahari at Dishcrawl Edmonton: Foodie Treats on 124 Street
Duck Springroll at The Manor at Dishcrawl Edmonton: Foodie Treats on 124 Street
Seasonal soup shot, tomato risotto cake and whoopie pie at d'Lish Urban Kitchen & Wine Bar at Dishcrawl Edmonton: Foodie Treats on 124 Street

Lin first heard about Dishcrawls in November after watching a television report about Dishcrawl Toronto.

The third year nutritionist and food science student at the University of Alberta went online to see where the nearest Dishcrawl to Edmonton would be and was surprised to find there was none in western Canada at all.

She emailed Dishcrawl to ask if there would be one in the area any time soon and “one conversation led to another and (they asked) ‘is this something you’d like to be involved in’ and I was like ‘oh well, actually…'”

That’s how Lin became a Dishcrawl ‘ambassador’ bringing the trend to Edmonton.

The first crawl “A Taste of Old Strathcona” took place on Jan. 25.

“Everyone had really positive things to say about it,” Lin says.

Foodies eating at the Dish & Runaway Spoon Bistro at Dishcrawl Edmonton: Foodie Treats on 124 Street

“It’s a fantastic way of enjoying food together and bonding over food which is traditionally what food is all about, that bonding time. I think in our busy, fast-paced lives that’s something that we’ve kind of lost sight of a little bit.”

And it’s that bonding over food through a number of different events that Edmontonians are certainly getting used to.

From alley burgers to food trucks to culinary cook offs and dishcrawls, there appears to be no shortage of unique events centered around the city’s foodie community.

Pop up restaurants are also quickly becoming a popular trend.

Blink Edmonton Pedway Pop-up Restaurant

The pedway between Scotia Place and Commerce Place downtown was transformed into a 60-seat pop-up restaurant called Blink on Feb. 26. Tickets for Blink sold out in mere hours.

Blink chefs Paul Shufelt and Tony Le say it’s the experience that’s the biggest appeal for those who attend the events as well as the chefs who are involved.

“I think dining itself is not just about the food and the service, it’s about the overall experience,” Shufelt says.

“I think every chef is a little bit of an artist. It’s nice to have that opportunity to express yourself and be creative and this sort of allowed us to leave our restaurant concepts behind and focus on doing something completely different.”

Blink Edmonton Pedway Pop-up Restaurant

Blink isn’t the first pop-up restaurant to pop up in the city. Nomad Kitchen held a pop-up night in December. Chris Delaney of Big City Sandwich has held several pop-up events. And the Common held their first pop-up restaurant on Feb. 18, an event that sold out with 100 people attending. Their second pop-up restaurant – which also sold out – took place on March 3.

Kyla Kazeil, co-owner of The Common, says events like pop up restaurants and the Edmonton Dishcrawls are filling a void among Edmonton foodies.

“Edmonton is for sure hungry for new ideas. You can’t go on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram without seeing food posts constantly,” she says.

It’s also going a long way in supporting local.

“There has been a huge trend towards supporting local growers and producers,” Kazeil says.

“I love the idea of people experiencing all that this city has to offer and especially if it means supporting what’s in your own back yard.”

And Lin agrees.

“What’s the passion and inspiration about the food, what’s your background, why is it that you want to share food with us,” she says.

“Being able to actually make that personalized connection (with the chefs) is definitely one of those things that Edmontonians really look forward to.”

Foodies eating at d'Lish Urban Kitchen & Wine Bar at Dishcrawl Edmonton: Foodie Treats on 124 Street

The third Dishcrawl Edmonton is set to take place the last week of April (exact date to be announced).

Ideally Lin would like to hold one every month but realistically they’ll likely be held every other month depending on schedule constraints.

With each additional crawl, Lin is certain more restaurants will be more open to coming on board, and even more foodies will try and make it out to experience the evening.

While the Edmonton foodie community is still small, it’s growing dramatically and its members are fiercely passionate.

“It’s nice to see that every time it’s become easier to sell out and easier to get people excited about (the different events),” Shufelt says.

“I’m really looking forward to whatever direction the foodie community takes over the next couple of months, next couple of years in Edmonton because it’s definitely moving at a very fast pace,” says Lin.

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“Feature Story” is a section of this website where Linda (that’s me!) tells stories about interesting Edmontonians and interesting happenings in Edmonton, because that’s what she loves to do! If you’ve got a story idea you think she should turn into a story, or have questions or comments, click here to email Linda!!

Disclaimer: These “Feature Story” posts are not affiliated with Global News.
It is strictly my own side project! :)

Linda Hoang is an Edmonton blogger who writes about food, travel, lifestyle/events and pets. She's also a social media/digital specialist with a journalism background. Linda is in love with her city and loves exploring and promoting Edmonton and other places she visits with her husband Mike. Linda is also the founder of the Edmonton International Cat Festival (and has 2 cats herself, along with 2 dogs).

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  • Family Day long weekend with my family and winter adventure buddy @mikethyking! 😊❄️⛸🗻
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  • Brunch brunch brunch brunch brunch brunch brunch brunch brunch brunch brunch brunch 😍
📸 pictured: the chocolate fondue banana pancakes at the #WaldhausPub @FairmontBanff Springs. 👌🏻 (eggs benny #yolkporn in my Story!)
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  • Convinced @mikethyking to stop at a couple of #InstagrammableWalls we missed on our last Calgary visit. 😜😊📸 He’s a great #InstagramHusband. We also visited a pop-up wall students worked on at @itsallatthejube (swipe 👈🏻 to see). They said the project was inspired by my Guide to #IGWallsofYYC blog post! 🙏🏻 When blogs/social media inspire action... 💕 It was really cool to see (you can see it too! On display til Mar 30). 💖
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  • This #longweekend @mikethyking & I are in Calgary & Banff! I was excited to try sandwich shop & deli @EmpireProvisions and it did not disappoint! 🐷 The porchetta sandwich with rosemary garlic salsa verde was UNBELIEVABLE. One of those first bite makes you exclaim oh my god, kind of dishes. 🤤🙏🏻Must return to try their other sandwiches!! Thanks for the recommendation @jaypeacee! Happy Long Weekend everyone!!
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  • Things I love ❤️ that are all in this photo:
• My Valentine @mikethyking 😚
• This romper dress 😍
• Better weather. 🙏🏻
Hope everyone has a sweet Valentine’s Day!
(or just a good Wednesday). 💕
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  • Ahead of #ValentinesDay 💕, I thought I’d throw back to this super cute photo of Olive on her Valentine’s spaghetti date with Australian Labradoodle Flynn! He didn’t really share the noodles. They’re no longer together. 👀😂 Click the link in my bio for some Valentine’s (or galentines or palentines) #ExploreEdmonton date ideas I shared on @CTVEdmonton this week! 💗
📸 photo cred: @jsp.photo 📸
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  • Our regular order at @kazoku_yeg is their delicious tonkotsu black garlic ramen 🍜 (for Mike) & the tonkatsu curry pork 🍛 (for me!) This weekend we added their chicken karaage, which is also wonderful. We love Kazoku! 💕
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  • This week I tried a vegan restaurant AND the #SuperFoods menu at @milestonesrestaurants, so I’m feeling pretty healthy right now. 😉 This is the fiery (and it was fiery 🔥) Tunisian Chicken on quinoa and vegetables from #MilestonesRestaurant. They have a special Super Foods menu running until Feb. 25, that I was invited to try this weekend! It features tasty dishes specifically packed with things that are really good for your body, like antioxidants, fibre, omega-3s, protein, vitamins, probiotics and calcium (#FoodwithBenefits!) I also really enjoyed the Tempura Green Beans and Sweet Potato Fries from this same menu! 😋 #sponsored
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  • Having a happy friyay down at the @SilverSkateFest and @IceCastles_ with @argenplath! ❄️🌈💕 We were invited to check out the new @SpiritsOnIce #yegfood #yegdrinks & live #yegmusic event running tonight & Saturday night (but the Silver Skate Festival runs til Feb. 19 & Ice Castles usually runs until March!) Super lovely. Go out and enjoy our #WinterCityYEG this weekend, guys! 😊 📸 photo cred: @argenplath
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  • * UPDATE * @alyssaparon is the winner!! Thanks for entering everyone!
💕 VALENTINE’S GIVEAWAY! 💕
I’ve partnered with one of my favourite Japanese restaurants in Edmonton — @izakayadorinku — to give away a Valentine’s Dinner for 2! (valued at $100). If you win, there’s a reservation with your name on it to Dorinku this Wednesday, Feb. 14! 💕
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To enter: follow @izakayadorinku & me + tag your Valentine in the comments below! (Tagging gals and pals is also totally fine too lol) I’ll randomly select one winner out of all entries here, on Facebook and Twitter, by end of day Monday (Feb. 12)! 🤞🏻
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Dorinku is one of the coolest Japanese restaurants in the city. 🇯🇵 The atmosphere and decor reminds me most of my experience in Japan a few years ago. Their pressed salmon sushi is just one of the incredibly delicious menu items. Another favourite is pictured here—their udon carbonara. Warm right up with this. 🤤 They’ve also got real Japanese bidets in the ladies washroom! Bidets are the most amazing thing. 🙌🏻 If you haven’t tried, even if you don’t win this giveaway, do yourself a favour and go try Dorinku!
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  • As a serious meat eater / meat lover, I was pretty wary when @littlmissandrea suggested we go to @themothcafe for lunch today (😅), BUT I’m happy to say I was pleasantly surprised and satisfied with this super cute (very Instagrammable) restaurant on the east end of Jasper Ave! The Moth Cafe offers a good variety of plant-based dishes including the “crab” cakes, spaghetti and “meatballs,” avocado smoothie bowl and Vietnamese “banh mi” sandwich that we tried! 😊 Beautiful presentation, tasty, filling, and well portioned & priced! 👍🏻 The meat eater would come back here! lol .
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