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Vancouver’s ideal location on a major sea port along the Pacific coast, combined with its mild climate, gives food lovers easy access to fresh, locally sourced ingredients. Unsurprisingly, the dining scene here is varied and excellent; we list some of the best places to eat in this Canadian city.
Chambar is a Belgian themed, fine dining establishment free of the pretentious attitude symptomatic of so many upscale restaurants. Chambar is housed in a historic, late nineteenth/early twentieth century structure boasting rustic pine and red birch features which make for a cosy dining experience. Chambar is a leader in sustainability, and hopes to become Vancouver’s first carbon neutral restaurant.
L’Abattoir is setin a nineteenth century structure built on the location of Vancouver’s first jail. The refurbished brick and beam building combines unique mosaic tile work and natural wood with the exposed brick of the original architecture. The resulting ambience is informal yet classy, creating the ideal space in which to enjoy a memorable meal.
Blue Water Café is located in a warehouse conversion building, an elegantly designed dining room combines rustic elements with warm lighting and classically simple furnishings. The restaurant’s raw bar is truly unique, serving Japanese inspired seafood, with fresh flavours and stylish displays.
The food at Bao Bei in Chinatown takes influences from Taiwan, Shanghai and Sichuan. The resulting menu features small sharing plates infused with traditional flavours, combined with a modern approach to Chinese cuisine. The intimate dining space is both classy and comfortable.
Hawksworth Restaurant serves impeccable cuisine against a contemporary backdrop. Each room is given a different theme, although all are united through the consistently classic design of the space. Meanwhile the Canadian cuisine served takes advantage of the highest quality local ingredients, blending culinary expertise with the diverse tradition’s of Canada’s heritage.
Cioppino’s is commonly acknowledged as the best Mediterranean restaurant in all of Canada. The restaurant is perhaps most famous for its light yet luxurious pasta dishes. Refered to as ‘Cucina Natural’, Pino uses only the freshest ingredients, and prepares them in ways that allow their strong natural flavours to emerge without the addition of animal fats and other heavy ingredients.
Le Crocodile has been the recipient of Best French Restaurant in Where Magazine, The Four Diamond Award, and Best Upscale French Restaurant in Vancouver Magazine, among others. Chef and owner Michel Jacob of Strasbourg, brought his dreams of becoming a chef to Vancouver, and opened up a restaurant named for Au Crocodile, his preferred establishment in his French hometown. Jacob’s goal was to match the standard of excellence he found at Au Crocodile, which he has succeeded in doing with an honorable level of consistency over the past 30 years. This elegant, yet modest restaurant has been host to some of Hollywood’s biggest names, and remains relatively affordable when compared to other restaurants of similar caliber.
The Acorn is an all-vegetarian restaurant which offers an additional selection for vegan and gluten-free diners. The focus on fresh local ingredients means that menus are seasonal. The restaurant décor reflects the modern, yet earthly vibe of the cuisine served.
Hy’s Encore harkens back to the vintage steakhouses of the 1960s. Dark wood walls, red velvet chairs and European style portraits dominate the décor at this Vancouver classic. An open kitchen lets diners watch the expert chefs as they prepare the char-grilled, succulent steaks, which can be enjoyed together with one of Hy’s signature cocktails.
Vij’s approach to Indian cooking combines ingredients and techniques from diverse areas of the country within a single dish. Although it maintaints a traditional dedication to Indian flavours, the cuisine at Vij’s leans toward the contemporary through the importance placed on the aethetics of presentation. The menu rotates seasonally in order to feature the best quality locally sourced ingredients.