One of the things I enjoy while traveling is acquiring souvenirs and items that make me reminisce about the places I have visited. These items also make for a start to a conversation.
Honey is an item I like to look for when I travel. I like to use them in my teas, lattes, and salad dressings. I also enjoy the taste of local honey. Location and environment contribute to the taste of the honey even though the same type of flower is used.
There is one honey vendor at the Public Market on Granville Island who I’ve bought from the last time I was visiting. Her location changed and I happened upon her while walking around the Market. Her booth is called Chilliwack Honey. They sell a variety of honey gathered from different flowers in the region of their farm, and other bee/honey related products. I tasted the different kinds of honey and thought the thistle honey would be perfect for TH. Thistle honey is dark with a unique flavor. I also brought home a jar of wildflower honey; light with a delicate flavor.
Icewine is one of the national products of Canada. In fact, Canada is a large producer of icewines outside of Germany. You can’t leave Canada without tasting icewine or taking home a bottle. The last time I was visiting Vancouver, I brought home a bottle of Inniskilin icewine, which I recently learned produces quality icewines but I get the impression that because they are a large company, they produce for the masses. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with that. I can confirm they make a really good icewine, and wouldn’t hesitate in getting another one of their products if they were available.
On this trip, I noticed bottles of icewines made with red grapes. Icewines are typically made with white grapes, although there isn’t any reason icewines couldn’t be made with red grapes.The red icewines are available as a pinot noir and a merlot. I did not hesitate to pick up a couple of bottles of icewines; one red and one white.
My friend, Nicole, had informed me that liquor is expensive in British Columbia, and that liquor can only be bought at licensed private liquor stores or government liquor stores. I did not know this. I don’t recall the reason why there are government liquor stores and limited licensed private liquor stores but I believe it is to reduce liquor consumption. A similar policy is/was also being considered in Scotland.
I bought the ice wines at BC Liquors, a government liquor store. There are a couple of locations in and around the Downtown Vancouver but I like the store on Bute Street. They’re open late an have more selection.
BC Liquors carries wines, hard liquor, and beer. In addition to the ice wines, I also took home a couple of bottles of locally produced gins.
I like sending postcards to my friends and I imagine they like receiving a handwritten card in the mail even when we are living in a digital age. Previously, I had sent postcards with picturesque photos of Vancouver. I thought it’d be nice to send postcards with graphic illustrations of Native American spirit animals on this trip.
I also picked up a couple of t-shirts and a few scarves that have prints with similar graphics of Native American arts.
Teas are not something I associate with Vancouver but I found myself in a teashop called Teaja. They specialize in organic teas. I did get some teas for myself, specifically teas that are spiced like chai. I also got some novelty teas called tea blossoms. They are handmade and dried into balls that are about 3/4″ is diameter. When placed in a glass vessel and hit water is poured over it, the bundled tea blossoms into a flower.
I could not resist popping into the Silk Weaving Studio on Granville Island, which I will elaborate in another post. I love beautifully handcrafted items and the woven items at this shoppe are something special. Anything from this shoppe will make a great gift for someone or yourself.