Nanoose’s Rusted Rake Farm café

Sign at Rusted Rake Farm, Nanoose Bay, Vancouver Island, British Columbia Canada

To say that Nanoose’s newest eatery is off and running is an understatement. Opened in late July of this year, Rusted Rake Farm has been packed with patrons each time we have enjoyed a meal there.

Entry way at Rusted Rake Farm, Nanoose Bay, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada

A unique and distinctive entry way

Located off Northwest Bay Road just a spit from the Petro Can station on Highway 19, the Rusted Rake’s purpose-built home is an easy and central find for anyone exploring the wilds of Nanoose. The building is long and low, with an entryway flanked by two massive tree trunks. This is a farm-to-table style establishment, so you line up to order off the menu, find yourself a seat indoors or out and sit down to wait for the day’s offering. Happily, service is generally quick.

Interior of Rusted Rake Farm Cafe, Nanoose Bay, Vancouver Island, British Columbia

Interior seating

We have enjoyed lunch at the Rusted Rake a couple of times, opting for a couple of different soups (both flavourful) and sandwiches that were jam-packed with ingredients. I keep trying for their daily quiche but each time we have been there they are sold out – not a surprise for a new restaurant that has been in business for less than three months. Menu management is often a stumbling block for newer enterprises but I am confident that the folks at the Rusted Rake will have it sorted in short order.

Deck at Rusted Rake Farm cafe, Nanoose Bay, Vancouver Island, British Columbia

From the deck….

Covered patio at Rusted Rake Farm cafe, Nanoose Bay, Vancouver Island, British Columbia

The covered patio

Much of the food that arrives at tables at the restaurant is produced right on the farm, and many of the offerings are gluten free and/or vegan.

The building itself has much to offer those looking for a casual coffee or lunch experience. The interior is spacious, and features a fireplace and one of those huge glass garage-style doors that can be opened during fine weather. There is an attractive live-edge farm-style long table as well as many seating arrangements that will accommodate smaller parties. My only criticism of the design is that it is noisy when things are busy – it would be nice if the owners could figure out a way to muffle some of the clatter and chatter. But, the high ceilings and plenty of natural light contribute to the spacious feel of the place.

Broccoli Cheddar Soup at Rusted Rake Farm cafe, Nanoose Bay, Vancouver Island, British Columbia

Broccoli Cheddar Soup and a scone

Our favourite spot to dine is on the long covered patio at the back of the building. One end features a seating area in the open for those who prefer to enjoy a sit in the sunshine, but the large majority of the patio is covered. Views of open fields and trees add to the country ambiance, making for a less frenetic experience than dining indoors.

So, to the food. Our first visit was for a quick lunch that included a large bowl of fragrant onion soup and a generous ‘cup’ of creamy broccoli-cheddar soup. Each dish was accompanied by a large, freshly-baked scone. Although we had just completed a vigorous hike and were ravenous our appetites were sated by this simple (and inexpensive – $11.50 for everything) indulgence.

Montreal smoked brisket sandwich at Rusted Rake Farm cafe, Nanoose Bay, Vancouver Island, British Columbia

Montreal smoked brisket sandwich

Our most recent visit found us ordering one of the sandwich specials of the day – Montreal smoked brisket with sauerkraut – and a turkey/cranberry combo off the regular menu. Each sandwich was packed with the starring protein ingredient, to the point where a single one would probably have satisfied both of us. However, they were both so good that it was no hardship to share and devour both of them. We finished up with a shared piece of excellent chocolate cake with mocha icing (recommended by our waitress, and justly so).

Roast turkey sandwich at Rusted Rake Farm cafe, Nanoose Bay, Vancouver Island, British Columbia

Roast turkey sandwich with house-made cranberry sauce

It’s pretty clear that Nanoose residents have welcomed this new addition to their limited dining out scene with open arms. Things at the Rusted Rake will no doubt only get better as the word spreads and the staff gains experience. We look forward to patronizing them in the future – hopefully there will be some quiche still available next time we visit!

Further information on the Rusted Rake can be found on their Facebook page. There is a web site in the works but it is not up and running as we write this.

Price rating: $-$$

Rusted Rake Farm is located at 3106 Northwest Bay Road, Nanoose.

GPS co-ordinates are:

Lat. 49.270566 Long. -124.192688

49° 16′ 14.0376” N      124° 11′ 33.6768” W


About Shirley

More years ago than I like to remember, I completed the Journalism program at Vancouver Community College and launched straight into a career as a newspaper reporter (thanks to my journalism professor Nick Russell and an opening at the venerable daily Alberni Valley Times.) My work as a news reporter/feature writer/columnist and ultimately, newspaper and magazine editor, took me to many interesting places and introduced me to hundreds of interesting characters over the years. I loved every minute of it, but burnout caught up with me while I was trying to juggle the simultaneous editing of five trade magazines, and for 27 years I abandoned my keyboard (on a professional basis, at least) and followed my heart in a variety of other careers. In 2010 I returned to the journalistic fold, thanks to the encouragement (nay – nagging!) of my husband. I feel no regret – only great joy to be back at the keyboard, and to be spending time interviewing interesting folks and discovering great places.
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