South Granville (technically located “mid-Granville”) is well known for being the most beautiful part of a long very road that connects all of Vancouver from North to South.
What used to be a very quiet street, two years ago seeing closure of many boutiques during Covid, is now regaining the beat of it’s drum. One little wine bar on 13th Ave, nestled away from the busy intersection continues charming locals lures in patrons from afar.
Leicester, Thirville, Berwick, Sussex, The Moose… not cocktails off the menu but names of Victorian flats neighbouring The Stable House Bistro; We are left wondering, which one of these do two very special patrons of the bistro live in: a man and woman, neighbours in Vancouver, met across seas in Europe, had a little girl and now set to get married in Stable House! Now if that’s not a love story.
Nine years ago Stable House Bistro was fathomed by a young man Pete McDee, who opened the bistro as an idea for no more than what it was: a place to enjoy a delicate glass of wine in a comfortable environment with some nibbles. A few years back, the only items off the menu one could really order were wine and charcuterie boards (and a fantastic assortment of them!). Fast-forward six years, the bistro had Chloë Folkersen taking reins as head Manager and making a smooth canter into what the Stable House is today – a hot spot for beautiful farm-to-table fresh delicate meals, proven by an ever-changing lunch-sheet.
“The menu changes all the time, we could have these today and tomorrow something else!” said Chloë. We sat down in the best seats of the house, a c-shaped booth hugging a tiled wall with scattered horse art. “My background is serving then I moved to upper management, I’m most proud of bringing local to a whole new level at Stable House.
We focus on local throughout our whole menu now. Everything we serve is either made in-house or brought in by local farmers, we really take the farm-to-table approach seriously. We brought the staff to Heritage Farms to really understand where lots of our ingredients come from, followed by being able to pick them ourselves too! Now when we order seasonable vegetables we know exactly what part of the field those grow in!” Chloë said.
The menu is influenced by the bistro’s new Italian Chef, Chef Matteo Pagotto, from Treviso, North East, Italy . Chef Matteo is no stranger fusing different textures of ingredients to create complex flavors from few ingredients. Stable House Bistro is about bringing your tastebuds back to seasonal produce by a mix of Canadian, French, German and Italian heritage. With multiple job offers on the table in Vancouver, why Stable House? Working in big kitchens around Italy France and Australia, Chef Pagotto dove head first into the bistro’s love of seasonal and local, not to mention the freedom the restaurant gives him when creating dishes.
This year kicks off with a Bavarian Feast every Sunday (last year was Sunday Roasts) for the first month; lots of red wine in February and springs into what the bistro anticipates as a full season of bustling warm evenings, including a full house outside on the newly re-designed street patio… Frozé anyone?
The ever-changing menu is divided into 5 sections (6 if we are counting libations): Charcuterie and cheese, small plates, medium plates, large plates and sweet deserts. If you look closely, you’ll notice that each of the Plates selections offer an option of meat, fish or vegetarian dishes to choose from. Really cuts the guessing work to leave you with more time for your company, enjoying several of many local spirits Chloë brings in from local BC distilleries.
Although their kitchen is very small, Chef Matteo utilizes the space he needs to create dishes with ease. Unlike larger restaurant commercial kitchens, you’ll be surprised to know that Stable House uses table-top burners and warmers roughly the same size as coffee shop giants. Goes to show you don’t need super fancy equipment to cook something divine, or, maybe you just need a Chef Matteo in your life.
I was transported back to 2022 for two of the restaurants winning New Year’s Eve dishes. It wasn’t difficult to savor the local duck breast from Brome Lake slowly. Two sausage-sized pieces lay covered in a mustard duck jus (yes, they make their own mustard too), between half-moon slices of baked celeriac (the root of celery), celeriac purée and sprinkled with little charred onions.
Chef also prepared a scallop dish also using a purée similar in color to the celeriac, but tastes much like hazelnuts, and each little scallop wore a hat of caviar, creating some stir amongst the pickled strawberries scattered over the purée.
Stable House Bistro is warm and inviting, don’t be fooled by the relaxed atmosphere, this chiffonade of menu items is nothing short of exquisite. If you haven’t had enough here, visit two other restaurants (Fiore Famiglia, Italian on 16th, and the French inspired Coquette on Arbutus) under the same ownership for a continued experience.
You can count on me coming back to try their made in-house labneh and carrot cake next!
The Stable House Bistro is open till 10 or 11pm every day of the week.
1520 W 13th Ave., Vancouver.