John Linn pauses on the phone with me for a moment as he thinks about the dates between when the Admiral Pub and Grill closed and then reopened.
He thinks the historic pub on Hastings Street near Gilmore in the Burnaby Heights neighbourhood closed on March 17, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It ended up staying closed for the rest of the year.
It reopened on Feb. 16 with new owners leasing out the space, so that makes it about 11 months it was closed.
I can tell you now that it was worth the wait to see this beloved business open again because it’s gone through a complete rethink of its approach to meet the demands of pub goers of 2021.
For one thing, the entire menu has been blown up and redesigned with a focus on fresh ingredients and multicultural choices.
For one thing, there’s a chef’s “curry table” with lamb, chicken, seafood and vegetarian options.
They’ve also gone full avocado toast with one dish that includes jalapenos, fried eggs and arugula.
“It’s definitely more of a gastropub feel,” said Linn, the new Admiral manager. “We’ve put a focus on using fresh ingredients, making things in-house and adding some more diversity to the menu.”
There are also a lot of pub favourites like pizza and burgers, but many of the choices turn those on their head.
Linn said the Admiral has also greatly expanded its selection of beers, with plenty of craft beer choices for beer lovers to choose from, along with modern cocktails.
I’ve written before about my personal connection to the Admiral, which has been in the Heights on and off for about 60 years, with some name changes along the way before going back to the original name.
My parents first met at the Admiral around 1960 and so, yeah, I owe it a lot.
Glad to see it back on its feet.
Follow Chris Campbell on Twitter @shinebox44.