I have to admit this review is long overdue. In my never-ending quest to explore all things craft beer related I somehow forgot to go back to my roots and pay homage to the places where I cut my beer teeth (so to speak). So now I would like to give proper due to a little gem in the heart of White Rock with a fabulous patio and impressive beer menu …Uli’s Restaurant.
To be honest, I have a wee bit of an urban bias when it comes to craft beer. I tend to frequent places where I can spend an afternoon imbibing at different beer oases, never encumbered by the restraints of one beer line-up or one environment, free to roam (on foot of course) between brew pubs and tap rooms BUT on a warm, sunny Saturday you would be hard-pressed to find a better location to park with a beer or two than Uli’s patio.
Uli’s is probably the place that did the most to further my beer education. When I was just discovering the diversity of craft beer their beer menu seemed like a veritable buffet. Often on the recommendations of Uli’s owner and beer geek Tyson, I explored all kinds of different beer styles starting with the light and fluffy, Fruli on tap, to the dark and fishy, Upright Brewing Oyster Stout, to the wonder that is sour ale, Duchesse De Bourgogne.
Re-visiting the beer menu as a seasoned beer drinker the menu is still impressive if a bit pricey. There is a good bottle selection with equal representation given to the big styles –IPA’s, Lagers, Belgians, Darks and Stouts– and a list of specialty bottles for the more adventurous sort. Sadly there are only five or six beers on tap and they do not rotate quite as frequently as I might like. I would love it if Uli’s did beer flights based on a selection of rotating taps but if wishes were horses …blah, blah, blah. They have begun hosting beer pairings, which is great news for those of us who live out in the White Rock/South Surrey area.
This time out we tried the Driftwood Farmhand on tap, D’Achouffe (Hopped version) on tap, Elysian Idiot Sauvin, Kronenburg Blanc, Samuel Smith Apricot Ale, Green Flash Trippel and a half Fruli half Kronenburg creation. For me, the Elysian, the La Chouffe and the Samuel Smith were the standouts.
My carnivorous friends praise the locally-sourced menu items; they even boast an award winning burger in two versions no less. I am a big supporter of the locavore movement but as a veggie the food selection is a little less impressive and not very consistent. They do have a veggie burger, salads and they can veg-ify the paella but there is nothing I would go out of my way to recommend to a fellow vegan or vegetarian.
The best part about Uli’s is alas also the worst part in many respects –the patio. White Rock is a tourist town, which means while I had visions of whiling away my Saturday afternoon drinking in the sun instead I got a ‘time slot’ on the patio after which we were unceremoniously re-located indoors (we were even threatened with another re-location due to an impending birthday party). For locals in the know you really need to visit Uli’s in those ever elusive windows where we have rogue sunny days in April and October so you can kick back, enjoy the ocean view and chip away at the beer menu.