Open Tuesday to Sunday, 5pm to Late
Chef Ivan Litland
James Marinoff, Sous Chef
Nate Caudle, Bar Manager
David Listhaeghe, Owner
Stage, the neighbourhood restaurant in the most neighbour-hoody of neighbourhoods, is located in the bohemian village of Fernwood – a place brimming with community gardens and one of a kind characters like Terry the Bubble Wizard and Damo the Pizza Guy.
Stage is intertwined with the history of this community, just a few minutes’ walk outside the tourist trappings of downtown Victoria. In 2007, original owners George and Linda Saaz took an empty, derelict space and turned it into an integral part of what has now become a vibrant hub within Victoria. They butchered their own meats in the basement and grew their own vegetables in their home garden on the same street before ‘farm to table’ was ever a catch phrase. In doing so they built a locally and even nationally recognized reputation. But Stage has changed and is no longer a special events place. We have taken their creation and tried to spread its roots even deeper within the community by giving it a classic French focus. True, the perception of French restaurants is of pretentious food and snobby waiters. But the fact is that the neighbourhood bistro may be the single greatest of all the French inventions. It was designed to be a community gathering house similar to the English pub but with better food.
Our Chef, Ivan Litland, is not cubing the perfect carrot and triple straining stocks like the Nouvelle and Haute chefs of Michelin fame. Rather, in the true spirit of Gallic cooking he focuses on maximizing flavour though off cuts and seasonality, as did both Escoffier and your French grandmother. We write the daily features on the windows and welcome guests with the smile of an owner/operator who is genuinely happy to see them.
The Wine Program is a collaboration between the owner and veteran Vancouver Sommelier Robert Herman. It is focused heavily on small European producers with a few shout outs to some of the best locals.
The Bar Program is crafted by local Barman, Nate Caudle, to fit the Parisian neighbourhood vibe. The classic aperitifs, cocktails and digestives are consistent with the food, wine and room. Our Parisian Absinthe Fountain is the centerpiece of this program, and both a great way to start and or finish the night.
All in all, Stage does not pretend to be something that it is not, but it does strive to be really good at what it is: a place of comfort, good food and drink.
Stage placed in the top 10 of Enroute magazine top new Canadian restaurants in 2008 and has won several awards since then, but in the end we are only as good as our last service.