Editor's Pick

Must-Try Vancouver Dish: The Bread at Black and Blue

Buttery, savoury bread that's such a standout it deserves its own course.

Bread at a restaurant used to be considered an afterthought: a basket dropped on the table with a handful of small, hard squares of butter that were both tasteless and impossible to spread without shredding the bread to smithereens. But I can say with certainty that times have changed: despite a meal that was delicious in its entirety, I can’t stop thinking about the bread at Black and Blue

Yes, other restaurants have implemented an elevated bread service, and I love them for that, too. But, this is no ordinary dinner roll. In fact, this massive loaf can feed a table of four and have you walking home with leftovers in tow. While baking, the dough is butter-basted, which in and of itself is a wild concept: brioche is already a very butter-heavy bread (as high as 70 percent). But I will never say no to more butter. The effect is magnificent: soft, laminated pieces shimmer as you pull them away from the crisp exterior—which also happens to be covered in a generous layer of melty, gooey, gruyère. 

Two ramekins also sit beside the family-sized loaf. One contains house-made sun-dried tomato butter, the other, Maldon sea salt. You might be thinking at this point, “I’m going too hard on the butter situation,” but as it melts, the whipped spread adds a deep umami note to the bread’s inherent sweetness (it is brioche), and the crunch of salt a perfect counterpoint to the soft interior. 

Despite a knockout of a meal at the steakhouse (I really could go on and on about Black and Blue’s carpaccio, too), it was this bread that I woke up thinking about the next morning. It was this superstar of a loaf that I mourned when it was gone and, frankly, it’s what’s going to get me booking my next reservation sooner than later. 

Black and Blue
1032 Alberni St.