Lovely Ulla

Photos by Eva Cherneff

Let’s do a little word association. What comes to mind when I mention these four words?

Modern – Creative – Young – Talented.

To me and many others who have had the chance to meet ULLA owners Sahara Tamarin and Chef Brad Holmes, these are the words that best describe them.

ULLA is situated at 509 Fisgard Street, at the bottom of Chinatown. The space is warm and welcoming, yet has a modern feel that works perfectly for the area. High ceilings and the original brick walls add an urban feel.

The comfortable atmosphere is created by the inviting seating, fantastic art pieces on the wall and a great music play list.  When asked why they chose Chinatown as their location for ULLA, I got a refreshing answer. “The re-vitalization of this area and the fact that it is near the fashion district is important. I feel like the fashion scene and cooking have a connection” says Tamarin.  It is interesting to note that most of the construction was done by Tamarin and Holmes themselves, with the help of many family members. “Lots of sweat equity and love,” says Tamarin.  The original construction did not include a bar, but after further review and taking into consideration Victoria’s bar dining culture, they reconsidered.

Tamarin and Holmes collectively have more than 25 years of combined knowledge in the restaurant business. You just know that you’re in for a treat when the owners have worked and been educated at places like Cibo, Chow, Feenies and West. Holmes produces delicious modern dishes yet incorporates classical influences all with a touch of west coast. Local ingredients and ethically raised proteins are used whenever possible. The wine list offers good value and is paired up to go perfectly with menu options.  If you have not tried ULLA yet I encourage you to give them a ring, make a reservation and get down there to try some of Holmes’ deliciously created food and experience Tamarin’s top class service at the front of the house.

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