A school for aspiring distillers in North Vancouver. Plus: new restaurants in old locations

Classes start this month at the new Distillery School located in North Vancouver’s Sons of Vancouver Distillery. Launched last summer by Alex Hamer, founder of the BC Distilled micro-distillery festival, and Sons of Vancouver co-founder James Lester, the five-day program will give aspiring distillers hands-on experience in every aspect of opening and operating a distillery from production and packaging to marketing and funding. From Central City Brewers + Distilling, there is more than beer brewing in downtown Vancouver: its Red Racer Restaurant opened this summer at 871 Beatty, former home of Dix BBQ & Brewery. The barbecue-inspired menu features a build-your-own-burger, and there are craft beers from Central City and other B.C. brewers plus wine on tap as well as Seraph distilled spirits. Sour beer ages in a cherrywood foeder barrel at the heart of the restaurant. On Denman in Vancouver’s West End, the space once occupied by Raincity Grill is now home to Beach Bay Café, owned by Viaggio Hospitality Group. The new menu from executive chef Scott Korzack, formerly at L’Abattoir and Bambudda, focuses on, but is not restricted to, locally sourced ingredients plus sustainable seafood. The restaurant’s open kitchen is up front with a takeout window onto the street, and the revamped interior is airy and contemporary, opening to a heated patio overlooking English Bay. –Felicity Stone