On the way to the airport this morning, I passed Dockers. It is a nondescript place to eat on Powell Street right besides the Vancouver docks. I have often stopped at this place to eat after a long ride on a sunny Sunday. The interior is “original” with no pretensions. The service is rough and ready. The food is extraordinary: large; substantial; and cheap. A great way to end a ride. A great place to eat—try it sometime.
I have just finished a superb Alberta steak in the Yellowknife Explorer Hotel. The windows look out on native trees, which are now green, although I have seen them white with winter snow. The service is sincere, yet basic. The waiter, a young man of tousled hair, did not know what cognac is; I got it from eventually, but he was obviously learning. Another great place to eat–try it sometime. The steak is the best I have had in a very long time.
Being alone at the table, I recalled other memorable mining meals. Last week at the Strathcona Lodge on Vancouver Island, we had two meals in a small room with large windows looking out on the lake, the mountains, and sheer beauty. My companions did not like the food: to camp-like their opinion. I, however, loved the food: soul food of lots of fat and flavour. First night was pork pieces in a vegetable mix. Second night was ground beef with onions and carrots. Add to this a large bottle of Belgian beer, and the eating is perfection.
My favorite California place to eat is TK Burgers on Pacific Coast Highway in Huntington Beach. For about five dollars you can have the best burger anywhere, a beer, and a view of the beach and ocean. With grandkids, eating does not get better.
My all-time favorite place to eat is The Keg in the Nomad Hotel in Fort McMurray. I am well teased for this preference. I like the atmosphere: dark, quiet, warm, brown, and lots of wood. The waiters are smart, fast, and attentive without getting in the way of eating. The steaks are uniformly perfect when washed down with lots of beer and talk of problems solved on the mine earlier in the day.
Eating in different places is but one of the rewards of being a mining consultant. You get to strange places. Eat where the food is. And relax to food and drink, knowing you have achieved something.
So tomorrow I will go to one of the diamond mines where the camp serves copious food and they warn you as part of health & safety training not to eat too much lest you get fat. Enjoy.