J-C POIRIER DIDN’T NEED TO REINVENT THE WHEEL AT ST. LAWRENCE, the beloved East Vancouver temple of Québécois and classical French cuisine that he opened in 2017. Flush with accolades (including three previous C100B placements) and a perennially booked reservations calendar, the chef-owner coped with the pandemic via a temporary pivot, which he handily negotiated with takeout options as well as a series of ticketed table d’hôte theme dinners based on culinary regions. When the latter proved not just overwhelmingly popular but also a solution to volatile cash flow and no-show customers, he decided to do away with à la carte. A recent Brasserie Parisienne menu offered diners the likes of escargots in puff pastry, bison tartare and braised pork in blanquette sauce. Future themes will include Basque Country, Provence, Lyon and, last but not least, a menu focused on Poirier’s debut cookbook, Where the River Narrows, due in November.


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