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Donnelly Group Dine Out/Blackbird's Chicken Pot Pie

If there’s one thing Vancouver does right, it’s restaurants offering comfort food. Vancouver’s Donnelly Group is the perfect example. Between their 16 locations (plus a barber shop for good measure), each restaurant has its own vibe and design.

New Oxford Vancouver
[New Oxford Vancouver]

It all started in 1999 when Jeff Donnelly bought Bimini in Kitsilano. 15 years down the road and the pubs, cocktail taverns and nightclubs show no sign of slowing down anytime soon, witnessed on a downpour of a Tuesday night in Gastown at The Lamplighter Public House, where the room was packed for its weekly trivia night.

Dine Out Vancouver’s got a glorious 288 restaurants included in this year’s 17-day food and wine festival, and Donnelly’s part of it.

Blackbird Public House
[Blackbird Public House]

10 of their restaurants (The Lamplighter, Clough Club, The Bimini, Cinema, The Blackbird, The Butcher & Bullock, Library Square, The New Oxford, Granville Room, The Three Brits) will offer a $20 three-course prix fixe menu from January 15 to 31.

Donnelly Group Dine Out/Blackbird's Mac & Cheese
[Blackbird’s Mac & Cheese]

Choose from hearty favourites such as curried parsnip soup with roasted apples, brown butter, honey yogurt and chives to mac & cheese using Quebec cheese curds to warm your system. Road 13’s Honest John’s Red pairs well with the gooey cheese and texture of the cavatappi pasta noodles.

Donnelly Group Dine Out/Blackbird's Bangers & Mash
[Bangers & mash, Blackbird Public House]

Donnelly Group Dine Out/Blackbird's Beef Shortrib
[Blackbird’s scrumptious Beef Short rib]

Another pub fave, bangers & mash, is included on many of Donnelly’s restaurants, and this version incorporates a Blue cheese mash, bacon onion gravy, crispy onions and arugula, nicely paired with a glass of Tinhorn Creek Merlot.

Donnelly Group Dine Out/Clough Club

After sampling from Yaletown’s New Oxford and downtown’s Blackbird, we moved on to desserts, one each at Lamplighter and next-door Clough Club.

Donnelly Group Dine Out/Lamplighter Public House
[Lamplighter Public House]

If you’ve not yet been to Clough Club, it’s an experience! The theme is eclectic bordering on surreal, with a glass dome containing a white sculpted man’s hand towards the entrance.

Donnelly Group Dine Out/Clough Club

In back, you’ll find more hidden dining spots, accented with some pretty cool touches. Since its opening (which I covered back in 2011), the walls have been painted white to ‘lighten up’ the space a bit, which I find helps in appreciating the decor.

Donnelly Group Dine Out/Clough Club

Make sure you get the chance to walk around with your bevvy of choice (great craft beer selection here!); the back room features a green ‘black hole’ for an extra spacy experience!

For the past 15 months, all Donnelly Group restaurants and bars have served 100% BC VQA wines, paying attention to smaller producers and boutique wineries as well as to local craft breweries. Dine Out’s dessert choice here is an ice cream sandwich with salted caramel drizzled on top of two double chocolate chip cookies.

Donnelly Group Dine Out/Clough Club's ice cream sandwich Donnelly Group Dine Out/Clough Club

Pair with a glass of 33 Acres of Darkness Black Lager and you’re set to cap an evening of food and fun in the city.

Donnelly Group Dine Out Preview-11 Donnelly Group Dine Out/Clough Club

Visit Donnelly online for more details. Unwatermarked photos courtesy of Donnelly Group.

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