Canoe Brewpub: An Interview with Executive Chef Gabe Milne

With summer just around the corner, and one of the best patios in town, Canoe Brewpub’s executive Chef Gabe Milne is looking forward to a very busy season.

Since joining the Canoe team, Milne has created a menu that continues to showcase Canoe’s loyalty to local farm produce, Ocean Wise seafood with technique that is refined, light and expresses integrity to the highest quality.

Canoe Brewpub

With 95% of the menu made from scratch, Milne knows that having reliable, quality products is essential, especially when a busy summer day can draw up to one thousand patrons.

Having a background in Italian cuisine, (he trained under renowned Chef Pino Posteraro for 6 years) Milne is instinctively drawn to cooking that is relaxed in nature, yet authentic in tradition.

“Posteraro is arguably the best chef in Canada” says Milne. “He contributed to the bulk of my learning and to where I attribute the roots of my cuisine.”

Milne appreciates the fundamentals of sustainability, seasonality and quality ingredients in his cusine. The only bread used in house is sourdough from Leaven Bakery who Milne says makes the “best bread in town.” In respect to customer demand, all of Milne’s main dishes are gluten free (except the chicken). The fish and chips are made with gluten free panko style flour. The demi-glace is thickened with agar agar. Fresh produce suppliers include: Saanich Organics, Eagle Farm and J.C. Herb Farm. The seafood is always Ocean Wise from suppliers such as Albion Fisheries, 7 Seas, and mussels from Saltspring Island, oysters from Quadra Island, trout from Lois Lake and charcuterie from Choux Choux Charcuterie.

Canoe Burger & Fries

Milne’s touches are highlighted in his gravitation towards elevated, clean and light flavours. No heavy creams or butter. He uses only the choicest Turkish olive oils and the freshest ingredients and every dish is prepared with care to ensure continuity.

We asked the chef if he would share a recipe from the menu that best showcases Canoe’s style. Milne has offered a Canoe small plate classic, perfect for summer:


The Canoe Mussels

This dish is an excellent choice for enjoying out on the patio. Milne suggests pairing the mussels with Canoe’s seasonal Belgium Blonde beer.

Canoe Chorizo Mussels


1 lb Saltspring Island Mussels (sold at Finest at Sea)

2 cloves confit garlic crushed

1 tsp puree Thai chili

2 Tbs air dried Spanish chorizo (from Choux Choux)

3 leaves fresh basil roughly chopped

2 oz dry white wine

3 oz fish fumet (stock)

2 oz thin tomato sauce

Salt to taste

Extra virgin olive oil

Drizzle of rouille over top (recipe below)

Good crusty bread for dipping


In a cold pan, add the chorizo, basil, garlic, chili and mussels. Season with salt and put to the heat. As the ingredients start to heat the mussels will need to be tossed to coat them with all the flavours. Add the white wine, fish sauce and tomato sauce, stir and cover. When the mussels open, check seasoning and add olive oil and plate. Garnish with rouille and crusty bread. Enjoy!

Rouille Recipe


1 red pepper roasted and peeled

1 small potato cooked and peeled

1 egg yolk

1 seeded red chili

1 Tbs saffron tea

1 lemon juiced

½ cup grapeseed oil

Salt to taste


Add all the ingredients into a food processor and blend until reaching a mayonnaise like consistency.

Canoe Brewpub
Phone: (250) 361-1940
Address: 450 Swift Street, Victoria BC
Facebook : canoe.brewpub
Twitter: Canoe

Written By:

Holly Brooke is a true B.C. gal. Having lived on the west coast most of her life, except for several years in the Kootenay's where she canoed and fished and lived in a tipi, she's very much at home outdoors and in the kitchen. ...

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