A Foodie’s Guide to the Harrison River Valley
(2 or 3 days)
The Harrison River Valley is filled with charming eateries and patio views of lake, river, and mountain. We’ll take you through each of our community hubs, pointing out must-have signature dishes.
Harrison Mills: Off the Eaten Track
Harrison Mills is a hidden jewel, located 20 minutes east of Mission and 20 minutes southwest of Harrison Hot Springs. People work hard and play hard here, translating to hearty eats!
You want to start the day with a well brewed, fresh tasting coffee, which you’ll find at River’s Edge Clubhouse at Sandpiper Resort. If you have spent the night in a cabin at the resort, you can opt to stay in your PJs and bring food back. Choose a table on their heated, covered patio to take in the river and golf course views. The Tomato and Goat Cheese Frittata, which is a three-egg open-faced omelette with sautéed onions, mushrooms, bell peppers, tomatoes and local Farm House Natural Cheese’s goat cheese, is amazing. It’s served with roasted potatoes and arugula salad. However, you might want to skip the potatoes given the day of eating you have ahead.
Burn off breakfast with a brisk 20-minute walk. The eagle trail starts adjacent to the restaurant. Nature bathe as you explore old-growth forest and rushing streams before arriving at the eagle-viewing gazebo. While you can see the eagles year-round, they gather in great numbers starting in early October. In fact, Harrison Mills is home to the world’s largest winter bald eagle gathering.
Get ready to explore the area with a short drive out to Kilby Historic Site where you’ll be hosted by interpreters in period costume from the early 1900s. See the General Store Museum and Post Office and Manchester House Hotel. On your way out, stop at Kilby Café for another cup of java and a piece of their homemade famous farm-fresh fruit pies. Kilby sources Back Porch coffee, which is roasted in a circa 1919 flame roaster just up the road in Agassiz. At another time, come back to try their homemade soups and sandwiches and Sunday afternoons feature traditional roast beef dinner. (Please check Kilby Historic Site’s for its hours of operation)
The area between Sandpiper Resort and Sasquatch Mountain Resort is awesome for exploring. Drive slowly and stop wherever you can. You’ll pass by the Pretty Family (original owners of Sandpiper Resort) cemetery shortly past Sandpiper Resort along with campsites, forest groves, creeks, streams, and wildlife! About half way up the road to Sasquatch Mountain Resort, there is a spot on the right that provides an incredible view of the Harrison River Valley. A winter morning invites a magical mist. You’ll be snapping and posting this shot for sure! (Tip: If you are coming during winter, be sure to have tire chains as you are not allowed up the mountain without them.)
A mid-day snack and brew awaits at Sasquatch Inn Pub. Choose from a vast selection of on-tap ales and lagers or uncork a bottle of BC wine. You’ll see locals playing pool or hear them chat about where to catch the biggest fish or spot the most Bald Eagles while you are ordering. Ask for the daily special or the Mountain Man Pie, which is homemade shepherd’s pie with seasoned ground beef and fresh veggies topped with fluffy garlic mashed potatoes and gravy and served with tossed salad. Be sure to share because you still need room for dinner. The staff are down-to-earth and will make you feel right at home.
Our last stop of the day is to have you step back in time and dine at Rowena’s Inn on the River, located at Sandpiper Resort. This elegant dining experience is only offered once a month during the shoulder seasons in the Upper and Lower Drawing Rooms. You will be dining, fireside, amidst the 1920s ambiance of the colonial inn with a backdrop of the Harrison River.
If you haven’t booked your stay during a Step Back in Time dining event, skip the mid-day snack at Sasquatch Pub and wrap up the day with a classic pub dinner.
Find where to stay in Harrison Mills here.
Agassiz, Kent, and Harrison Hot Springs: Fertile Lands, Farm-Fresh Foods, and Village Vibes
If only you could stop by each café and bistro for a small bite to experience them all! Hopefully you have a plus one with you to share all these foods with! Ladies, get those lulus on and guys we hope your belt has a few belt notches of room.
Breakfast starts at Harrison Corner Café, which is the locals’ top choice for good eats.
Explore Harrison Village to work up an appetite for your next meal. You can rent bikes at Jamie’s Quadricycles to boot around town and canoes, kayaks, and pedal boats at Killer Cove’s Boat Rentals. You can even book a guided hike or kayaking trip with Harrison Eco Tours. See our biking and paddling suggestions.
Your next must-see stop is Muddy Waters Café, featuring farm-to-table cuisine and the most monstrous baked treats you have ever seen. The menu is constantly changing given Muddy’s seasonal philosophy, so whatever is recommended today may not be there tomorrow. Seriously, whatever you choose on the menu is guaranteed to be delicious. Grab a soy or oat milk latté on your way out along with a cookie or square to put in your knapsack. You can dive into it later when you road-trip home.
Walk the esplanade along the lake and people watch, explore the Village’s boutique stores and Canwest Art Gallery before ending the day with a few dinner bites. Harrison’s food scene can actually take you ‘across the world’. Choose from a global culinary scene and/or dinner with a view.
Let’s start with India. Harrison’s Courtyard Café has a fusion menu from west coast fare to Indian and the Royal King Indian Restaurant specializes in ‘all things curries’. If you trek out to Butter Chicken House in Agassiz, you will not be disappointed!
Although tandoori chicken and butter chicken remain popular dishes, we recommend trying flame-cooked thava roti versus the classic naan with cashew cream-based korma. Choose from chicken, beef, goat, lamb, and prawn.
Next, we are taking you to Germany to the Black Forest Restaurant* to try the Roasted Garlic Potato Pan Cake with black forest mushroom sauce and the Gourmet Schnitzel, topped with sautéed black forest ham, mushrooms, and bearnaise sauce.
Milos Greek Taverna* is located on the beach front and serves a delish lamb shank, braised in Greek herbs and pulled lamb poutine, along with wild Pacific salmon souvlaki. Did you know that the Harrison River is a certified Salmon Stronghold? In fact, it’s the only stronghold for Pacific salmon ecosystem diversity in Canada. All five salmon species and steelhead are found in the Harrison River.
Head over to Vietnam to Phở Hỗ for a large selection of Pho and for Japanese and Korean foods at Sushi Kitami Japanese, Rib and Chicken, and Yukiya Sushi. Chef’s nigiri and raw fish bibimbap with Korean sweet and sour chilli sauce is phenomenal. You can’t go wrong with tonkatsu but since you have tried the schnitzel at Black Forest, why not sample some other flavours? Located in Agassiz, the Fresh wild sockeye salmon avocado roll at Cheam Sushi is a winner.
The last country on the list is Mexico. We are talking ‘living la vida burrito’ at Taco Rio, with the chorizo or burrito. So hard to choose just one dish here. The crispy chicken rice bowl and baja tacos are our favourites, best washed down with some antioxidant-loaded hibiscus tea. By the way, Rio means river and, in this case, the team is referring to the Miami River that flows behind them.
For an elevated dining experience, Morgan’s Bistro*, Harrison Corner Café, and the Copper Room, located at Harrison Resort pair beautiful food and award-winning wines with fresh, seasonal flavours. Off the eaten path in Agassiz is the newer Broken Whisk Restaurant, serving wood-fired pizza, calzones, and seafood delights.
If you can’t choose between these recommendations – and, who could blame you?! – add another day to your trip and Bon Appétit!
*These restaurants have patios with lake views.
Find where to stay in the Village of Harrison Hot Springs here.