Restauranteurs Clinton McDougall and Dane Brown open their highly anticipated currywurst restaurant Bestie this week in the heart of Vancouver’s Chinatown. The sausage and beer parlour is the first for the pair whose background is in art and design.
Architects David and Susan Scott designed the space around the owners’ desire to build the 25 seat restaurant themselves. The design uses common materials which can be worked with a few simple tools and a limited number of everyday details which are repeated to allow for the work to be completed on site with minimal shop support.
The project draws from the architects’ and owners’ shared love for both the matter-offact functional detailing of ad-hoc construction and for highly considered rational design. The work of fellow Vancouver designers is throughout the space including Zoe Garred’s Mariner lights and Joji Fukushima’s bar stools.
The loose tables and benches in the dining space allow for varied arrangement (film screening, communal dinners and removal) to facilitate changing events. The kitchen is fitted with a tool, stein and glassware hanging system that can be adjusted and added to over time.
The main wall will be an array of 116 holes and wooden pegs which will support an ever-changing rotating composition of locally produced design objects and art; coats and umbrellas; additional stools and pendant lights, and the odd copy of Der Spiegel.
As with the stripped down and direct menu of German street food made with locally sourced ingredients, the space celebrates ordinary materials and simple details with oiled economy grade spruce lumber; copper hardware and counters. The floors and walls are painted in the eating hall as an easily maintained backdrop to the benches and coloured vinyl cushions that have the familiarity of the highway restaurants of our youth.
Photographs: Courtesy of Scott and Scott Architects