We have a city full of dedicated, talented chefs and bartenders who deserve your patronage a lot more than a three-day Instagram pander.
I was listening to the radio the other day, when a song by The Hives came on and I thought, "I remember this song from a few years back." When I got to my desk and Googled the song, I realized it was 12 years old. With it, I am not.
But I do love Lego. I still have my original space Lego in my basement for my nephew and I've been to Legoland north of San Diego. Twice. So please know I have nothing against these beautiful, pricey little pieces of Danish imagination.
But when I heard that we were getting blessed by a Brick Bar (they don't use the L word in any of their promotion, so I assume there's no connection to the Nordic toy geniuses) this July, my first thought wasn't "Great, now I can get liquored up and relive my youth at the same time"—mostly because I can do that by watching Rocky IV with a bottle of Laphroaig in the comfort of my own living room, My first thought was "Why?"
Why would someone pay a $15-plus cover charge for the privilege of then having to pay additional money to buy food and drinks during your allotted 90-minute access? Is it because they've hired one of our city's amazing bartenders to craft some truly memorable cocktails? Er, no. Or have they hired one of Vancouver's hardworking chefs to create some magic in the kitchen? Um, not exactly. Is it because the pop-up is in a spectacular location? Well, it depends how much you love the Anza Club off Broadway.
No, its raison d'être is right there in its promo material: you are paying $30 for "most importantly, amazing Instagram photos to make your friends have serious FOMO."
Now if you're someone whose feed is that important, then fill your boots. But I ask you one thing: just own it. Proudly say that you choose restaurants and bars based on their ability to provoke envy from your followers with contrived set-ups. This isn't my thing but, you know, remember that Hives anecdote.
But you don't get to say you're a foodie or a cocktail lover or any other moniker that suggests you're someone who is truly passionate about food and drink. You aren't. If you were, you'd go to one of the dozens of restaurants or bars where people are busting their asses every night making great food and crafting serious drinks. And one that doesn't charge you cover for the pleasure of patronizing their establishments. They need your support even if they don't offer "amazing Instagram photos to make your friends have serious FOMO."
So by all means go to the Brick Bar. Take your pics. But park your foodie cred at the door, because if you do one then you don't have the other.