Friday 19 July 2019

H Tasting Lounge Summer Patio Party

You know what the best part about spring and summer is? Patio Season! It is finally hot and sunny in Vancouver and I try to soak in every second of it. If I am going out to eat, I am getting a table on the patio because every minute spent indoors is a minute of summer wasted.

L to R: Christina Kaspercyk (Lumin Pictures), ME in the middle, Ruby Gillett (@rubygillett)
H Tasting Lounge is just off of Vancouver's Seawall inside the luxurious Westin Bayshore Hotel. From the patio, you get a clear view of Coal Harbour and the Northshore mountains. Before I get into the food and drinks, I cannot resist mentioning the Art Deco design of H Tasting Lounge. Art Deco has always captivated me with its bold geometric shapes and jewel tones crossed with rich yellow gold. H Tasting Lounge has gone with a contemporary take on art deco and breaks up the rich royal blue and gold with soft lilacs and white marble. I also love the amount of natural sunlight that drenches the space from the skylights and massive windows. Needless to say, H Tasting Lounge is a stunning space that embodies effortless luxury.

The Harbourside Patio is very spacious, and the distance from the seawall gives patrons still a sense of privacy. Not to mention the hotel is nestled away in a quiet neighbourhood, so there is no sound of traffic and roaring cars to kill the mood. 

During the media event, H Tasting Lounge had re-arranged their indoor dining room to accommodate a massive three table length charcuterie spread. There were luscious cheeses, salty crackers, beautifully arranged meats and spreads for days. I surely made a couple of laps around that table with my equally food-obsessed and new friend Ruby Gillet. My favourites from the table was the caramelized Goat Cheese Brulee which I paired with Rainforest Crips! So darn good!

The theme of the night was #SippingSeaside and H Tasting Lounge's Bar Team delivered. Every drink was mixed to order with flair and attention to detail. I also must mention the men behind the bar were total hunks - a feast for the eyes indeed! 

There were several cocktails available that evening. I sipped on a couple but soon transitioned to virgin-cocktails as I am not the most seasoned drinker. Thinner Walls (Tequila, snow peas, suze, lemon, soda) captivated everyone's attention with its rich green colour and snow pea garnish. I would describe it as a healthy green juice with a kick. 

Out on the patio, they had two tea-infused alcoholic punches. The Rye Chai had strong undernotes of spice while the Late Blossom was a lighter sweeter punch featuring Vodka, nutcracker tea and lime soda. These spiked teas are served in beautiful Japanese teapots with matching blue and white bone china teacups. 

There were several small bites being served throughout the night. My favourite was the Morel Mushroom Tartine which came on toasted sourdough. In fact, it sort of ended up being the only thing I had that night as the remainder of the offerings were primarily raw seafood and beef tartare all of which I generally do not eat. I did, however, try the Lump Crab Cake, which had a satisfyingly crispy exterior and soft flakey centre paired with H Tasting Lounge's signature Old Bay Aioli. 

I do want to mention that the team at H Tasting Lounge did a stunning job at displaying the freshly shucked oysters, Crudo and carpaccio. Two massive "H" Tasting Lounge logos were carved from ice and the various fresh seafood was beautifully displayed on a table of crushed ice with fresh flower petal garnishes. Each Crudo and carpaccio was pre-portioned on tiny little white dishes for patrons to grab. I think this is the first event that I attended with an ice carving and it made me feel so boujee. 

To finish off the evening, I got to spoil myself with unlimited Salted Caramel Gelato and fresh Altulfo Mango Sorbet by Uno Gelato. The gelato was being scooped from an adorable bike drawn ice cream cart complete with a red canopy. Uno Gelato is owned by the internationally acclaimed gelato master, James Coleridge, so it goes without saying that the gelato and sorbet were magnificooo!

This was my first impression of H Tasting Lounge and they get two thumbs up from me. I probably will be returning to this patio very soon because of its location and privacy. Also, I just love the warmth of the sun on my skin and the cool sea breeze brushing my cheeks. Living in Vancouver means I have a short window of hot summer days, so I need to soak up every moment of it.


H Tasting Lounge at the Westin Bayshore Hotel
A: 1601 Bayshore Drive, Vancouver, BC

Disclaimer: Media Invite. All opinions and content are original and my own. Certain pictures are courtesy of Denise Lin Photography.