Eating on the Train

One of the perks of travelling in the Sleeper Plus Class on VIA Rail's The Canadian train is the food. Delicious meals are prepared on-board and served in the Dinner Car so there is little need to worry about food but more on this later. As mentioned in the previous post, my train was delayed so I unfortunately missed out on the on-board dinner, much to my disappointment, thus it is still a mystery to me.

There are a number of tables set up in the Dinner Car, and upon your entry, you'll be asked for your party size and seated accordingly. While the Car's interior could have been more grandiose, like one would imagine it was back in the railway's glory years, it was more than adequate for its intended purpose.


If there is less than four in your party, the dining room set-up takes you back to a more social era when strangers got together to share thoughts and experiences while dining on fine cuisine in a relaxed, peaceful environment. Reminiscent of the good old days, you would take part in typically conversations about the beautiful scenery, your travel experiences, and the weather, in addition to timely and potentially heated debates about politics, the future of energy, and the upcoming water crisis. Yes, those were all topics that came about when four strangers got together for lunch at my table. Those of you who know me will know that most of the time, I'm a man of few words but as much as these opinionated discussions intrigued me, I excused myself from the table as soon as possible to spend as much time as possible enjoying the majestic scenery of the Rocky Mountains from the SkyLine Car. While the Dining Car has windows like the other cars on the train, it cannot compare to the viewing possibilities from the SkyLine Car. Not that I'm anti-social but I did spend good coin for this trip and I was going to enjoy it on my terms as much as possible.

Anyways, back to the food.

If you're like me, you value a good, quality meal, and if you're a picky eater like me, you're always fearful of what weird, mushy concoction you'll get when you're stuck with no cuisine alternatives. To my surprise, the meals were tasty, well presented, and offered over several sittings so that not everyone would be in the Dining Car all at once.

The breakfast menu offered some interesting options:


including the Banana Pecan Pancakes:


Served with real Canadian maple syrup, of course.... Scrumptious indeed!

The Lunch menu looked just as interesting, if not more so:


with the Angus Burger in fresh form


with the dessert option of ice cream or layered cake:


As previously mentioned, there are no dinner photos to show since I didn't get to eat dinner on the train. Since the train was late, I received a $25 voucher to use at a local restaurant in Jasper. But the voucher had several catches. You could not get any cash back, the voucher could not be used to purchase any alcoholic beverages (fine with me) or cover gratuities. It also didn't help that most things on the menu were over $25 but I guess it was a small price to pay to get to spend extra time in Jasper.

That being said, the train trip back to Vancouver ended up including only one meal despite the fact that we didn't arrive at our destination until 5 pm. Instead of serving breakfast, "brunch" was served from 7am to around 1:30 pm with several of the menu items not available.



Being told that we arrived in Vancouver by 2pm at the latest, I sprang up early for breakfast / brunch.  Too bad, you could only go for "brunch" once because I was starving by the end of the trip. Apples can only take a man so far over the rest of the day! So be sure to pack something a little extra for your trip as an emergency food ration in case you get in a similar situation.

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1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the tip about packing an extra lunch due to the train being so late. Good to know for someone like me as I am hypoglycemic. Eating six small meals a day is VERY important! I now know to pack an extra big "lunch" bag for such a trip.
    Thanks again!

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