THE GIRL NEXT DOOR: Erin Ireland
Around these parts, we’re super lucky to work among some supremely talented guys and gals, and we want to share the love and introduce you to them. This month, we’re bringing you a stone-cold fox who has managed to take a baked good previously considered as sexy as your Uncle Phil after eating a can of beans, and transformed it into a glamorous, “To Die For” cult treat available in our very own Betty coffee shop. Erin Ireland and your banana bread, come on down!
What are you known for?
If I was asked this question five years ago, I wouldn’t have believed the response I am now sharing: banana bread. I even respond to “banana bread lady.”
How did you find yourself doing this?
It all started in my home kitchen when, as a starving broadcaster, baked goods were the least expensive, most thoughtful gift I could offer to friends and colleagues. The feedback my loaf received made me realize that I had an opportunity on my hands, so things got real and I found a commercial space. Three years later I have 60 vendors and three products.
If you’re making breakfast, what should we expect?
On a regular day, a souped-up bowl of oatmeal with an overload of fixings like nuts, berries, almond butter, honey and so much more. For weekend brunch I’d try get fancy by serving mounds of chunky, fruit-filled pancakes with coconut yogurt, more nuts and pure maple syrup.
A glass of real coconut water mixed with a teaspoon of chlorella, followed by a messy breakfast sammy with ketchup and mustard. These two condiments together is key.
Thing that you love about Vancouver?
Having the ocean at our doorstep. There’s nothing like grabbing a coffee and heading to the beach for a read or a think.
Thing that drives you crazy about Vancouver?
The many coffee shops that don’t open by at least 6:30 am (unlike Betty, which opens at 6:00 am! Kudos!) If you specialize in caffeinated beverages, I believe it’s your responsibility to open early enough to help the rest of us wake-up.
Someone’s visiting the city for the first time and has just 24 hours. What are your top things to do in Vancouver?
A life-changing croissant from Beaucoup Bakery for breakfast #1, followed by an Aquabus ride across to Granville Island for breakfast/brunch #2 at Edible Canada, where you’d of course have to stop at their culinary retail shop to stock up on Vancouver-made goods. Do a flavour-packed Indian lunch at Vij’s Rangoli and then siesta in preparation for a fun night out on the town, where you must hit up as many restaurants on my “best casual restaurants in Vancouver” list as possible. Progressive dinners are the best! And so is the food in Vancouver.
Backpack or wheelie suitcase?
Wheelie suitcase 100%! This is a hot debate between my fiancé and me. I say you can roll a wheelie suitcase everywhere you go, even in the forest. Okay, maybe not sand, but here’s where you pick it up. Easy! Why break your back when you can roll?