(photo inset: Roasted & grilled vegetable panini.)

Thankfully, neighbourhood restaurants seem to be returning to the food scene.  In Kelowna, we have DeBakker’s Kitchen.  As cozy as you can get, with awesome owners who are also the cooks/bakers and sometimes servers, this is the kind of place where you want to become a regular.  

There are actually many forms of “regular” customer at this eatery:
– Those who make daily trips for a coffee and amazing baked treats (the blondies and chocolate chip cookies make me weak in the knees).
– Those who pop in every couple of days to replenish their organic bread or bun supply (sourdough, potato, rye, gluten free spelt and their famous focaccia as well as baguettes) – all baked in their apple wood fed REAL wood fire oven.
– Those who are regular lunchers, addicted to their homemade soups, wood fire chicken roasted sandwiches, healthy salads, not to mention the desserts like my favorite: Mary’s chocolate cake with organic strawberry sauce (sigh).
– Those busy folks who look to the DeBakker freezer section to take home delicious comfort food like soups, vegetarian or meat lasagnas, shepherd’s pies to feed their families or themselves guilt free knowing that it was made with the best ingredients and a good dose of love.
– And then there are those who can’t get enough of their wood fire oven baked pizza!!  Really, this pizza is as good as it gets with an amazing array of toppings and the best ingredients, you will leave smiling. (The pizza, as well as other dishes including Sandi’s out of this world homemade pasta, are served at dinner time.)
A very kid-friendly ambience, DeBakker’s is also a great hang out for adults with an outdoor patio, live music nights and a great wine list.  

I am a huge fan as you can tell.  These wonderful people symbolize what we are trying to become here in the Okanagan.  Owners Sandi and Mary Lukic support the community by shopping local and organic.  They care about what they are serving their customers and take pride in living and breathing the food revolution.  With early roots at the Farmer’s Market, these are the kind of people I love to celebrate and give thanks to.

~ Jennifer Schell