Our SSAG group met again on Saturday for an event. We were told to dress oddly - I think the group photo confirms that! We didn't know what the event was other than it was going to involve eating. The natural conclusion would be that you go to a restaurant that has a). a great view b). renowned Chef creating exotic mouth watering temptations c). music or some type of entertainment d). perhaps some type of ethnic dining not ever experienced. But why should we dress so oddly - two different pairs of socks - I carried this a little further by wearing two different shoes, a Versace inspired scarf, a trench coat or a long coat, Sun glasses. The SSAG organizer was Cathie Borrie, author of The Long Hello and Looking into your Voice - among other things about her experience with her mother who had Alzheimers. All of us like a little craziness and thankfully, despite the stares from a few passerbys we managed to get to our location on time and a little early. Once there we were blind folded and then lead to our dining location.
Cat and I helped march our little 'odd' group to the restaurant door where we had to wait for them to open - I'm so seldom early! The menu was posted at the door and we had to pre-order our dinner - 4 of them still with blind folds on. After a few minutes of waiting we were introduced to our waiter Dustin and he escorted us to our table at which point the 4 blindfoldees were told they could remove their blindfolds. And guest what? It was still pitch black! The entire restaurant was completely in the dark. No flashlights, no (annoying) cell phones. No light except the occasional glow from an opening here or there. We ate in the dark - we found the food, found our mouth. It went from a to b and it was enjoyed.
The restaurant is called "Dark", about 70 per cent of the staff are blind or near blind - our waiter Dustin has no sight and yet he took very good care of us. I'll quickly tell you the food was very good. I had beef and it was brilliant - crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside, the Surprise courses were delish as well - the first course was a salad and the last our a lemon cake. We drank two bottles of wine between the 6 of us, didn't spill anything, didn't drop anything. After a few minutes, when we could understand the concept and the limitations and finding that some usual expectations were quite possible we quite enjoyed ourselves.
I'm sure everyone has a different experience when they go to Dark on West 4th Avenue in Vancouver. For me - I LOVED IT and would definitely go again. I loved that it was a surprise and I loved that the room was filled with people having their own joy in dining - and they were, everyone and I have no idea how many people there were in the restaurant, were laughing, talking and enjoying each others company. And I have to say I have so much more respect for someone who is vision impaired. But I don't feel sorry for them - Dustin was one in a million, we couldn't have had a nicer waiter.
It's a popular place so if you want to go it is best to make a reservation. Or let me do it for you if you are a guest with us....it would be a big pleasure to do this for YOU and for THEM.
|Here's our odd little group standing in front of "Dark Table". With these crazy clothes on we had no problem finding a photographer from the sidewalk.|
|This is Penny standing in front of the letter "P"|