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April 20, 2017

A Chef for All Seasons!

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A Passion for Great Food

Ross Collier has come a long way since his days delivering Pizza in Kelowna over 26 years ago, but his passion for cooking great food has never diminished. He’s been at Bridges Restaurant for 16 years, and still keeps things fresh (literally) on a daily basis!

“I love good food, and making people happy” Ross explains. “I went from delivering pizza in Kelowna to making dough in the kitchen. It’s there that I started to develop a real passion for cooking, and realized that this is what I wanted to do.”

Nurturing Talent

It was back in that humble pizzeria where Ross realized that he loved to cook. He subsequently, gained experience working in various kitchens—as he puts it, “I was lucky to have had really great mentors who taught me the value of hard work and nurtured my talent and love for cooking.

When You Think About Bridges, Think Seafood and Fish

When asked what Ross thinks of Bridges’ new focus on seafood and fish, he quickly responds saying, “I think it’s a great direction. It’s what people would expect from a restaurant right on the water. We’ve always had great seafood, but now being more seafood driven is perfect. It makes sense, as we love to use fresh local ingredients.

With the new menu, I’m sure that people will think of Bridges Restaurant when they think of seafood.” Ross explains that in addition to the new seafood and fish menu, an emphasis on sharing-style dining is also in the works.  According to Ross, “sharing works really well with fish, especially shellfish,” which happens to be his favourite food.

“Local and fresh fare is important— it’s about quality.”

What’s most important to Ross is that people are happy with their meal. It has to be gastronomically great! He genuinely cares and wants people to have a joyful experience—leaving satiated and satisfied.

When You Think About Bridges, Think Seafood and Fish.

Innovation and Collaboration

Bridges’ renewed focus on fresh seafood and fish has been exciting for Ross, as he gets to experiment with new creations, pairings and flavours. The owners of Bridges work closely with him, and collaborate to come up with the very best menu possible. It’s something that Ross loves about working at Bridges, commenting that “they really care about us, and seek our opinions about the menu.”

For Ross, being a chef at Bridges is more than a job; it’s a second home where he gets to cook and work with great co-workers. It’s truly a labour of love—an ingredient he puts in every dish he prepares.

Come and Check out Bridges’ Bistro!

Ross and the rest of us here at Bridges Restaurant would love you to come down and visit our bistro! When you’re mood for the best seafood and fish in town, come by and see what we’re cooking up! There are many new dishes to choose from and share! Oh, and be sure to say hello to Ross!  

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The dock at Bridges Restaurant is nothing less than an institution in Granville Island—the place to be in the city when the sun comes out to play. This year is no exception. The only difference this summer is that we’re taking things to a new level of summer patio goodness with an all new fish and seafood focus! It’s all about fresh, local and fun!

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Sunday, April 2nd was one of those flawless Vancouver Spring mornings. The sun came out in all its splendour; a cool breeze wafted over the water; excited Vancouverites were out rediscovering the beauty of Granville Island. In other words, a perfect day for brunch at Bridges Restaurant! However, this particular Sunday was extra-special, as we proudly hosted our 6th annual Ride2Survive Brunch—a worthy event that raises much needed funds for cancer research​. Last year, the brunch (50 dollars a plate), and auction raised over twenty-two thousand dollars! This year, we hope to raise even more!

Bridges, Brunch, Bacon and Bennies!

It’s evident that the 160 guests collectively bring light and warmth with them, as the weather has been consistently gorgeous for this event 6 years running! ​ Indeed, there was a palpable positive vibe in the room as guests enjoyed a delightful buffet-style brunch consisting of savoury Eggs Benedict, scrumptious bacon, scrambled eggs, roast potatoes, and more—all lovingly prepared by our Bridges kitchen staff and donated​       by many of our vendors!

Going Once…! Charity Auction for Cancer Research! 

Following brunch was the charity auction, conducted by Garry, a professional auctioneer, who flies up to Vancouver from his home in Arizona every year–on his own dime! This year he even donated a week’s stay at his mountain cottage for the charity! Other auction items donated this year included:

  • Pugz Earbuds
  • Standup Exercise Bike
  • XBox
  • Jackson Triggs Wine
  • Whale Watching Tour
  • Titleist Golf Balls

Garry is representative of so many truly dedicated folks who participate in this event every year​, and their passion and compassion is why we love being a part of this event!

Bridges Staff Donates!

Ride2Survive’s generosity of spirit inspires us too, which is why ​all of our kitchen and front of house staff donate their time and services for this event​–a generous act for which Fay Wightman, Interim Executive Director of the Canadian Cancer Society (BC and Yukon Division), told the guests she was grateful.

Our kitchen and front of house staff are all smiles at the 6th annual Ride2Survive Brunch!

What is Ride2Survive? 

Ride2survive is an independent fundraiser that raises money for the

Canadian Cancer Society. Started in 2005, ​Ride2Survive has raised over 5.5 million dollars, all of which goes directly to cancer research!​ This is possible because the organization is 100 percent volunteer based, something that Wightman is particularly proud of. Speaking at the event, Fay acknowledged the work that Ride2Survive does, explaining that it’s the largest fundraising organization in Canada! She further stated that raising money for cancer research is very hard because “people can’t always see the results right away.”

Kerry Kunzli, a Ride2Survive organizer, echoed Wightman’s sentiments, as he addressed the guests: ​Ride2Survive “directs dollars to hardest to treat cancers; smaller cancers;rare cancers. The fact that you ride for these is absolutely fantastic.

 

Longer Than the Tour de France!

Make no mistake, Ride2Survive is not for the faint of heart! As one guest put it, “it’s a tough ride for tough cancers,” which may be an understatement, as the 400 km ride starts in Kelowna and ends in Delta, and takes 19 hours to complete! Riders must climb not one but two mountain summits to boot! The ride, which is longer than the Tour de France, tests rider’s physical and mental strength, and their limits! As one guest, who is going to be riding on June 24th told us, “​I’m not telling you it’s going to be easy; I’m telling you it’s going to be worth it!

 

For more information about Ride2Survive, please click here! We’d love to see you at Bridges for the 7th annual fundraiser Brunch!

A packed upstair dining room at Bridges!
Bridges’ Events Manager, Susan Sharum, with Ride2Survive Organizer Vicky Kunzli

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