2223 Kingsway, Vancouver, BC
Dear food fans. It is my pleasure to introduce to you this month’s feature — a hidden gem to Renfrew-Collingwood’s western border. Yes, we travel once again down that piece of Kingsway between Nanaimo and Victoria, this time to Dias Kingsway Cafe, for a little taste of Portuguese sandwich artistry.
This gem truly is hiding, under the guise of a mere coffee shop, so what you are looking for on the north side of Kingsway, a block west from Nanaimo, is the Kingsway Coffee Shop. It’s in here.
Here you will find a menu featuring a variety of fresh sandwiches and paninis. These sandwiches are awesome! Gigantic sandwiches on delicious Portuguese bread, custom made to your liking by Maria, and grilled if you like. Portuguese sausage, cappicolo, ham, salami, turkey, prosciutto, mortadela, egg salad, tuna salad, boconccini ($4.75-6.79). With soup: $8. 1 had the prosciutto sandwich with pea soup — for $8. A delicious homemade meal and this Gourmet Gourmand was full!
Hailing from Castelo Branco, Portugal, these guys came to Canada in about 1988. Their first establishment was on Commercial Drive, the Grandview Deli, which is now the Mediterranean Specialty Foods (remember, our friend Jack who was here near Victoria and Kingsway?). Anyhow, the Diases were there for seven years before moving south to Commercial Street. Here is where the sandwiches and coffee gained a foothold when, one day, Manuel pulled a coffee machine out of the garage. That was the beginning — a side biz to enhance the grocery biz that they had for 10 years there at 3599 Commercial Street.
“We love our new place,” says Maria, “but we miss our old place and the people at 3599.” Slowly but surely, the Diases’ long-time followers are learning to find them at their new location.
And I hope you do, too. It’s here that they have been for just over a year now, a relaxing, cozy place to hang out, facing the southern sun, or where it should be. The coffee is delicious — a hand-picked brew from Brazil called Mogiana. The espresso is from Italy — Cimo.
And let’s not forget the Danishes, pastries, breads — sweet treats to enhance your existence — literally and physically. “Forget about Starbucks. This is where it’s at.” — a sample of the good reviews on the ‘net. And from my friends down the street at the Green Cross Society — rave reviews. I told this to Maria who responded, “I just sent eight sandwiches to them.”
I had a wonderful meal at the Dias Kingsway Cafe. I was impressed by my soup and sandwich deal and I took home with me a bag full of those pastries — really delicious. And the Diases — so nice. I hope you get a chance to drop by soon and give these guys a warm welcome to their new neck of the East Van woods. And in advance for this tip, I say, you’re welcome.
Copyright (c) 2013 Renfrew-Collingwood Community News