Lunch at Unsworth.

It’s always a good time to visit a winery on Vancouver Island.  A one day tour in the Cowichan Valley is a great way to enjoy several wineries and some very good wine. However, yesterday, we visited only one.  After picking up old friends from Ontario at the Departure Bay Ferry we headed south to UNSWORTH VINYARDS in the Cobble Hill area near Shawnigan Lake, about an hours drive. 

We arrived just in time for our reservation on the Patio at the Unsworth Restaurant. It was perfect but for a cool breeze that required sourcing some blankets from our server. A litre of UNSWORTH 2020 PINOT GRIS was ordered and apparently it came right from a cask, not yet bottled. It was delicious. The menu is limited but the offerings are wonderful. Sheila ordered the House Salad which was both tasty and visually beautiful. Included in it was Yellow Zucchini, beautiful Radish Fans and Almonds with a local cheese, HALTWHISTLE. Our friend Ruth chose the Clam Chowder and after hearing about the special my friend Bob and I abandoned the Burger and chose the Pasta Special. Fettucini with chicken and lobster mushrooms in a fabulous creamy sauce.  It was good! Their Fries looked inviting so an order was placed to share. Here are some food photos. 

House Salad
Fettucini Special

The litre of wine seemed to disappear, perhaps evaporation, so a half litre was dispatched to the table. We all enjoyed the food, the wine and the service. Very friendly and efficient. If you are thinking of noshing there, make a reservation on line as this place is busy. They are open for lunch and dinner Wednesday to Sunday. 

After lunch we spent some time in their Tasting Room sampling another Pinot GRIS and the Rose. Purchases were made. Unsworth has a charming tasting patio beside a pond, a spot you might enjoy for a few samples. Or, knock yourself out and sit in the sun and swill down a whole  bottle. 

UNSWORTH VINYARDS is one of the few wineries with a restaurant and we can highly recommend it ! 

Check it out at

Just saying…

HAPPY JACK’S Restaurant

There is a new place in town and since it’s been open nearly a month we decided to check it out tonight. It’s HAPPY JACK’S in the old White Spot location at  Wembley Mall in Parksville. Happily we were not disappointed. 

Happy Jack’s building has been extensively remodelled and include booth seating and a spacious bar with the appropriate big screen TV’s. A large array of nostalgic Parksville photos are on the walls.  Very interesting. The decor is basically black & white with polished concrete floors. 

This joint is a family oriented restaurant with an interesting menu. Burgers of course, but also Fresh Mussels, Tacos, and a Kids Menu which includes Mac & Cheese. The drink menu is really interesting with local Beer, BC wines, and some fancy drinks like Beergaritas, ( a Margarita with a small Corona beer) and Martinis.

A very charming server took our order, Cod Burger for Sheila, Fish Tacos for me. The Cod came with 2 sides, onion rings and CEASAR salad. 

The food arrived promptly and it was nicely presented and hot. The Cod was delicious as was the Taco. I added some Siracha to spice the taco up a bit. The onion rings, one of my favourites, were perfect. 

We arrived just after 5 and as we left at 6:30 it was almost full. I think the owners have the formula. Nice decor, great food, good service, and they will come. We certainly will go again. It’s great to have another offering just a few blocks from home. 

One small complaint. The music was dreadful. At least for octogenarians. 

Happy Jack’s is open for dinner from 4-10. 

Look at the menu here

You must go.  I know you will enjoy this new spot in Parksville. 

Just saying…