Drift Food Drink Nanaimo

Drift Food DrinkFine dining takes on new meanings at Drift Food Drink, 77 Skinner Street. The atmosphere is relaxed at this elegant yet informal downtown Nanaimo restaurant. You may be met at the door by the owner, Rikhi Datt, and seated at a table with a great view of the Old City Quarter and Mount Benson through the floor-to-ceiling windows. Cocktails are served at the broad marble bar, and in summer Drift opens a large exterior deck.

The menu has changed four times since Drift opened in early 2007, and Datt plans yet another change in time for Valentine’s Day, Thursday, February 14, 2008. Book a table now if you’d like to be there that day. As the grape vine canopy at the entrance suggests, this is an ideal place to sample fine wines.

Drift’s fresh West Coast cuisine includes interesting South Asian touches such as green onion pakoras and basmati rice pudding. You could begin with the Dungeness crab and squash bisque soup ($6) or a small plate of braised pork belly ($11). For a main dish, consider the butter pouched lobster ($31) or the forest mushroom risotto finished with truffle oil and parmesan ($10 to $16). Tahitian vanilla brulee is available for dessert.

The portions are rather small but everything is artistically prepared. The service is leisurely so bring along good company and order a bottle of wine. Drift Food Drink opens for lunch Tuesday to Friday from 11:30 am to 3 pm and weekends from 10:20 am to 3 pm. Dinner is from 5 pm to 9 pm Sunday, Tuesday, and Wednesday and from 5 pm to 11 pm Thursday to Saturday. Closed Mondays. Reservations are recommended at (250) 753-7438.

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