Animal House

Chic watering holes with designer bar stools and complex cocktail menus are fine and dandy, but sometimes all you crave is a sturdy pint in a cosy pub. The Wolf & Hound, an Irish tavern on West Broadway near Alma, fits the bill nicely. Think brass fixtures, floral upholstery, thick wood beams, and a menu that favours the deep-fryer. (Bonus points for the semi-private room in back with its plush leather couches and oversize flat-screen TV that shows hockey, rugby, and soccer games most nights.)

As at any authentic neighbourhood pub (of which there are precious few left in Vancouver), the crowd is a mixed bag: raucous groups of students, weary parents with toddlers in tow, singles hiding out with a book and a glass of wine, old-timers perched at the bar dispensing wisdom. On a recent Wednesday we happened on a “Kitchen Party”—a group of amateur musicians gathered around a table overflowing with empty pint glasses, led through jiggy tunes by a blind fiddler named Mary. (We kid you not.) It ain’t everyone’s cuppa, but after a few Dark ’n’ Tans the melancholic refrains from the Emerald Isle sounded just right.

When you go, you’ll…

Sip a pint of two-pour Guinness, of course. Or a Black ’n’Berry (Guinness and Ribena). Or a Black Velvet (Guinness and champagne). Or a Dark’n’ Stormy Night (Guinness and port)

See UBC profs, UBC students, boys in uniform from the nearby army base

Tuck in to a full Irish breakfast ($11.95) on weekends: eggs, Irish rashers (bacon), Cumberland pork sausage, grilled tomato, potato cakes, and homemade soda bread

Hear live Celtic music five nights a week. Sunday evenings are devoted to aspiring singer-
songwriters and comedians (consider yourself warned)