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Vancouver Restaurant Recommendations


sgschef
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Travelling with spouse to vancouver (both a first trip). Just 3 nights. We will be in Yaletown area. We love seafood, vegetarian, ethnic, ( a trip to Italy is coming in a few weeks time so probably not Italian). We love hole in the walls, ambience and value and hate pretense and show. Any advice? Thanks in advance!

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Maybe try fiction in Kit's. Very good food and Sean the owner does a great job of making everyone feel welcome. Bin 941 may be what you need as well it's close, the food is original and usually well executed and it is a whole in the wall. Be warned it is very popular and does not take reservations.

David Cooper

"I'm no friggin genius". Rob Dibble

http://www.starlinebyirion.com/

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Since you will be in Yaletown, you should try Rodney's Oyster House on 1228 Hamilton. Casual, but great oysters!

For ethnic/vegetarian - check out Tamarind Bistro. New funky Indian restaurant located at 1626 West Broadway owned by the same people as Rubina Tandoori. Prices are reasonable, lots of small plates, wonderful flavours... (many dishes feature tamarind). Interesting drink and dessert selections.

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  • 1 month later...

We'll be in Vancouver in October - staying right downtown (LeSoleil).

We would love so recommendations on where to go to eat for great food.

So far, we've been to Ouest and a couple of great tapas bars (Lickerish and Bin941)

We enjoy Northwest, French, Seafood and great priced prix fixe menus whenever possible :biggrin: - Any suggestions?

"If we don't find anything pleasant at least we shall find something new." Voltaire

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Last time we were in town, we had a great meal at L'Emotion in Western Van. For the quality and level of refinement of the food, I thought that $C45 for their 4-course menu was an outstanding value. Frankly, I'm very surprised this place hasn't gotten more play here on the Vacouver/BC forum.

Most women don't seem to know how much flour to use so it gets so thick you have to chop it off the plate with a knife and it tastes like wallpaper paste....Just why cream sauce is bitched up so often is an all-time mytery to me, because it's so easy to make and can be used as the basis for such a variety of really delicious food.

- Victor Bergeron, Trader Vic's Book of Food & Drink, 1946

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One of the reasons it gets no play is it is kind of off the beaten path. Also La Regalade seems to take most of the french business in West Vancouver. I hear both are excellent but I have been to niether.

Ouest is now West, just a name change, still the best food in town or at worst tied with Lumiere for that honour. For great deals on multi course tasting meals 3 places come to mind. Parkside on Haro, Cru and a relatively new place Fiction.

If you want French though your best bet would be one of the 2 places in West Vancouver. BTW everyone in Vancouver serves fish and seafood but only one place seems to specialize in original seafood preperations and that is C. I leave comment on C to others because I have yet to try the place.

David Cooper

"I'm no friggin genius". Rob Dibble

http://www.starlinebyirion.com/

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Though it's been a little over a year since we last dined there, my husband and I also had a great prix fixe meal at L'Emotion. Cozy room, warm and attentive service. Minna is a fabulous hostess and Jean-Yves is, I believe, a former Michelin three-starred chef. Have also been meaning to try La Regalade.

Coop's choices are spot on. I'd give the nod to West over Lumiere, but both are stellar on very different fronts. Cru, for sure, followed hot on it's heels by Fiction and Parkside, a relative tie in my books.

Caffe Artigiano right downtown for world-class coffee. And Sen5es for remarkable desserts.

If you like seafood Japanese style and don't mind a more casual, reasonably priced meal, why don't you try izakaya or small-plates dining? It's the current rage here in Vancouver. Downtown, there's Hapa Izakaya and Guu with Garlic on Robson Street. Also the original Guu on Thurlow, further east along Robson. And don't miss the often-overlooked Yuji's on West 4th Avenue in Kitsilano. Fabulous food at all of them.

Let us know what you choose! :smile:

Joie Alvaro Kent

"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2,000 of something." ~ Mitch Hedberg

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I agree the izakaya thing in this city is huge. I really like Gyoza king on Robson. It is more old school then the rest. If you go to Sen5es, I really liked the Stilton Cheesecake. I also love Artiggiano, It seems to be the only place in this coffee crazy town that consistently makes great espresso.

David Cooper

"I'm no friggin genius". Rob Dibble

http://www.starlinebyirion.com/

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Go to Parkside. The website is http://www.parksiderestaurant.ca/. Has to be one of the best price/value dinners I've had in BC.

Edited Addition: I meant to add that while Parkside is not in your neighborhood, my experience is that taxis in Vancouver are very cheap and certainly are worthwhile for getting where you need to get -- expecially back to my hotel after too much food and wine!

Hal

Edited by halland (log)
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For a very casual French Bistro, Salade de Fruits at 7th and Granville has an excellent deal on their weekly Table d'Hotes menu - a 3 course meal for $19.95. Take a look at their website http://www.saladedefruits.com/. The October menu is not posted yet.

La Ragalade in West Vancouver is also worth considering - homestyle French comfort food. Generous portions and great value! Large selection of daily specials noted on the chalkboard.

Parkside is a great recommendation. But for something a little more casual in the neighbourhood - try Tapastree on Robson and Denman. West coast tapas - all very reasonable prices in a cozy room.

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I like Salade de Fruites. I think it's great for a casual lunch or dinner. The downside is the food though good is uneventful, the wine list is pathetic and the room is what it is, a small alcove in some sort of government building/school/video store. Good place for mussels. They use packaged frozen crepes!

Edited by Coop (log)

David Cooper

"I'm no friggin genius". Rob Dibble

http://www.starlinebyirion.com/

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I want to second Coops comments on Salade de Fruites they parrot mine almost precisely. Hey man, you mind having an original thought?

The only thing I'd change is that I'd stay away during dinner, and anytime you can't sit outside. The 20 dollar table de hote is not quite the bargin you think it is.

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I agree with the previous posts - don't miss Cru and Parkside. I love West but it is more expensive than either Cru or Parkside so we go there less frequently. But I feel like a million dollars when I walk out. Another thread has mentioned the foie gras - it is addictive. In all of these restaurants, ask them to suggest wine pairings - it will only add to the success of the meal. I have not had as much succes with Feenie's, especially when price was considered. Another treat is to finish the week with a drink at the bar at West and an appetizer. Makes the week quickly recede into a dim memory.

Another favorite is Vij's for the most amazing Indian food you have ever had. The lamb popsicles are a favorite but again, anything on the menu will surpass any other Indian food you have eaten previously.

L'Emotion is great and we have had excellent meals there but for us it is a long way away so we don't get there very often.

I had lunch at Cioppino's the other day and was reminded what an excellent restaurant it is. Our company often has dinners there and we don't get free run at the menu - instead it is prix fixe style. Somehow, when you get to ponder over the menu at length, dithering back and forth until you finally reach that climactic moment of yes, I'll have the... the food doesn't seem the same. I had the beef carpacio and the pasta with Dungeness crab. And, ate every single thing! Pino really does know pasta. It was exquisite and I am trying to wangle a reason to return, sooner rather than later.

We are just about to head out the door to try Pair so will let you know how that is but now that I have written about all these other restaurants that I enjoy so much, I am not so sure where to go. So many restaurants, so little time. Enjoy and please let tell us about your experience.

Cheers,

Karole

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  • 1 month later...

Hello

We're a couple of Egulleteers (DC-based originally) getting married in June (in Madison, WI) and we're planning on honeymooning in Vancouver. We're very very excited by all the talk on this board of seafood and wine, and beautiful views. But we need your help-- neither of us has ever been "up" that way (as George W would say) and there seems to be plenty to learn.

So-- please advise. :biggrin:

We'd like to spend our first 3 days in Vancouver, and then spend the remaining 4 on Vancouver Island. From my reading thus far I'm aware of the following favorites that appeal to our senses and budget:

In Vancouver:

Lumiere

Tojo's

Viji's

Legendary Noodles

Rodney's Oyster House

Sun Sui Wah Seafood Restaurant

Hotels--Opus? Pacific Palisades? West End Guest Home?

On Vancouver Island:

Cafe Brio

Snooke Harbour House

Aerie Resort

Pointe Restaurant

Are these the best choices? Are any outrageously priced and not worth it? What are we missing? What's a good ordering of the options on the Island? We want the best seafood and Asian, and wine options for dinner, with more casual lunches.

Thanks much in advance!

sara and liamdc

Edited by sara (log)

Food is a convenient way for ordinary people to experience extraordinary pleasure, to live it up a bit.

-- William Grimes

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Sara

Elizabeth and I recently spent our honeymoon in Vancouver. We started in Tofino on Vancouver Island. An incredibly beautiful place but the price of everything turned me off a bit. We were both happy to get to Vancouver city.

Of the places you have mentioned I have some thoughts. We always look for the best seafood wherever we travel. The best oysters we had on our trip were at Rodney's. The service was a little strange but the oysters were tip top. They had a choice of 6 different oysters and we told the bartender we would like 2 of each. His reply was "You can't really taste the difference in oysters so I'll just pick out a dozen for you". We insisted on the 2 each and there was a definite difference in all of them.

As for Tojos we've only been once but had a great meal. This was on a previous trip and I don't remember the details but I do remember it was all very good.

Sun Sui Wah for dim sum definitely and get there early.

The other place we went that is not on your list is Chambar. We went there the first night after arriving from Tofino. We completely stuffed ourselves with incredible food and several drinks and it was 1/3 less and 2/3 better than any meal on the trip.

The one place we tried to go and didn't make it was Go Fish. Next time.

Rodney

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There are lots of recommendations for restaurants on this forum so you won't be at a loss. In my opinion, for your expensive meal I would go to West over Lumiere and go to Feenie's instead if you want the "Lumiere" experience. I also highly recommend Cru and Parkside as excellent food and wine restaurants but with much more reasonable/affordable offerings than Lumiere. Vij's for sure if you want Indian food unlike anything you have ever had before- make sure you have the lamb popsicles. As for Asian - I will leave that to the rest of the group but must say that I find Tojo's very expensive. Although, no one else does marinated tuna like Tojo. We have only had the dim sum at Sun Sui Wah but it was good.

For hotels, I like the Wedgewood but the Sheraton Wall Center, if you get a room on the upper floors, has a view beyond compare. The Wedgewood is way, way more romantic. I have never stayed at the Opus so can't comment. Even though we live practically downtown, we like to have a weekend here and there at the Wedgewood - the staff make you feel like royalty.

Personally, I would go up to Whistler over Vancouver Island, unless I was going to Tofino. And I would stay 4 days in Vancouver and 3 in Whistler. If you like outdoor pursuits, Whistler is wonderful. You can hike, bike, play golf, kayak and so on and so forth at Whistler and have time to be pampered at spas and spend some lazy time together. After all it is your honeymoon. :biggrin:

Cheers,

Karole

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sara and liam,

I agree with Foodie's choices for where to have your meals in Vancouver. I was at West last night with a client that eats at great places around the world and he was very impressed. Vij's, Cru and Parkside are also high on my list for impressing out of town guests. As a fellow eGulleter, I am sure that Chef Wyles will welcome you at the HSG and perhaps you can give Certified Angus Beef a try if you feel like having a nice steak in a very trendy part of Vancouver known as Yaletown.

Tofino is a wonderful destination for a memorable honeymoon.

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We're a couple of Egulleteers (DC-based originally) getting married in June (in Madison, WI) and we're planning on honeymooning in Vancouver.
First of all, conratulations on your pending nuptials. As chefrodrigo said, you've picked a wonderful part of the world to honeymoon. Even if the food weren't terrific (which it is) you'd have a great time.
neither of us has ever been "up" that way (as George W would say)
We'll forgive the "W" reference :biggrin:

I agree with Foodie's rec's as well. Without knowing your budget, it's difficult to say what places will be "worth it" for you. For instance, a meal at Lumiere could set you back a couple days' eating allottment. You'd be better off visitng the tasting bar at Lumiere. The food is the same, and you can save a buck.

I'd also add Bin 941 or Bin 942 (same restaurant, 2 locations), Parkside, and (shill alert!) definitely a visit to the Hamilton Street Grill for Gingerbread Pudding. Oh yes, and (another shill) Go Fish! for the best fish & chips EVER!

For hotels ... again, depends on what you're looking for. If you want romantic, go for The Wedgewood. If you want funky, The Opus is awesome. It's right in the middle of Yaletown. Both are centrally located and easy cab rides to most of the restaurants and attractions you'll want to see.

On Vancouver Island:

Cafe Brio

Snooke Harbour House

Aerie Resort

Pointe Restaurant

I love that! It's actuall Sooke Harbour House. :laugh: That place seems to be hit-and-miss lately. I'd probably skip it myself ... besides, it's about an hour drive outside of Victoria.

Add to your Victoria list

  • Brasserie L'Ecole
  • Paprika Bistro
  • Zambri's
  • Deep Cove Chalet

I'd do Victoria over Whistler (no disrespect Foodie) simply because Victoria IMO is a better "tourist" destination. Whistler is impressive, but unless you're into hiking, golf & glacier skiing, there's not much to do. Victoria has many things to do, great places to eat (highly underrated IMO) and then there's the ferry trip through Active Pass. I don't think I'll ever get tired of it!

Hope this helps ... glad to see that you're planning early. You have a LOT of choices to make.

A.

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In Vancouver, definitely the Wedgewood. And, if you have time, you should allocate a lunch munching your way through the Granville Island Public Market. I also vote for the Wedgewood. I haven't been to the Opus, but it was impossible getting reservations the last few times I tried.

We were just at Sooke Harbour House in October. We weren't majorly impressed when we ordered a la carte, but the tasting menu blew us away so much that we had it again (other than the cheese plate it changes *completely* each night) the next night. So, go for the tasting menu!!!!

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  The best oysters we had on our trip were at Rodney's.  The service was a little strange but the oysters were tip top.  They had a choice of 6 different oysters and we told the bartender we would like 2 of each.  His reply was "You can't really taste the difference in oysters so I'll just pick out  a dozen for you".  We insisted on the 2 each and there was a definite difference in all of them.

Sara, first of all congrats.

Sorry to go "off topic" a tad but had to comment concerning Chefrodrigo's anecdote. Oysters all taste the same? What a strange thing for a server to say especially at a spot known for its oysters.

I cannot think of a much more memorable spot to Honeymoon than Vancouver Island. Mind you I am hopelessly and admittedly biased as we head to Tofino annually.

In fact, during the time we used to stay at the Wickaninnish Inn we met two couples from the States who were honeymooning, at least in part, there who first got the idea from reading my raves on other lists or newsgroups...never did a "cut" from Charles McDiarmid :rolleyes:

Yes as chefodrigo mentioned it can be expensive but if you are not intending to be there for an extended period of time several days would be great to be astonished by the sheer beauty and pampered by the Wick's staff.

I'll leave the Vancouver recommendations to others but agree with Daddy-A's advice with regard to Victoria dining. Affordable and delicious with an emphasis on local products.

Edited by merlin (log)
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