The Getaway
Best Vancouver Restaurants and Foodie Adventures

Start a food adventure in Vancouver, a city renowned for its thrilling and varied culinary scene. From upscale dining spots to quaint local cafes and active food trucks to genuine ethnic restaurants, Vancouver provides a wide range of tastes and experiences to fulfill any food enthusiast's desires.

Whether you're a resident keen to try new dining options or a tourist wanting to experience the city's finest, Vancouver's dynamic food scene offers something for all. Experience the enthusiasm and innovation of the city's leading chefs, who utilize the best local produce and are inspired by worldwide food traditions.

Prepare to enjoy irresistible meals, from delicious seafood to freshly made pasta, homemade chocolates to unique cocktails. Along the way, discover the stories of the eateries, connect with the creative individuals who make these culinary dreams a reality, and pick up tips on the top dishes to try at each location.

So arrive with an appetite, and let's discover the top dining experiences and foodie delights Vancouver has to offer, one tasty morsel at a time.

Advertisement

01 Top fine dining restaurants

Hawksworth Restaurant is a true gem in Vancouver's fine dining scene, known for its exquisite contemporary Canadian cuisine. Chef David Hawksworth's innovative menu showcases the best local and seasonal ingredients, with dishes like the 48-hour beef short rib and the smoked sturgeon with caviar. The elegant dining room and impeccable service make for an unforgettable experience.

For seafood lovers, Blue Water Cafe is a must-visit. This acclaimed restaurant boasts an impressive raw bar and a menu that highlights the freshest catch from the Pacific Northwest. Don't miss the signature seafood tower, featuring a stunning array of oysters, sushi, and ceviche.

Le Crocodile has been delighting diners with its classic French fare for over three decades. The cozy, romantic atmosphere and attentive service create the perfect setting for savoring dishes like the lobster bisque, foie gras terrine, and the famous roasted free-range chicken with truffles.

Advertisement

02 Best casual eateries

For a casual bite that packs a flavorful punch, head to Meat & Bread. This popular sandwich shop is known for its gourmet creations, with the porchetta sandwich being a standout. Slow-roasted pork, crispy crackling, and salsa verde are placed in a fresh ciabatta roll, creating a symphony of textures and tastes.

Phnom Penh is a local favorite for Vietnamese and Cambodian comfort food. The restaurant's butter beef, a dish of thinly sliced beef seasoned with a tangy lime and pepper dressing, is a must-try. Equally legendary are their crispy, garlic-flecked chicken wings, which have earned a cult following among Vancouverites.

Tacofino, which started as a food truck in the surf town of Tofino, BC, has grown into a beloved chain serving up Baja-inspired tacos and burritos. Their Crispy Chicken Burrito, stuffed with juicy fried chicken, rice, beans, and chipotle mayo, is a satisfying handheld meal that will leave you craving more.

Advertisement

03 Ethnic eats: Chinese

Bao Bei Chinese Brasserie is a trendy spot that puts a contemporary twist on traditional Chinese cuisine. The menu features inventive shared plates like the shao bing, a crispy flatbread with cumin lamb sirloin, pickled red onion, and salted chilies. Bao Bei's sleek, inviting atmosphere and creative cocktails have earned it accolades, including being named enRoute magazine's Best New Restaurant in Canada.

For a more traditional Chinese dining experience, head to Dinesty Dumpling House. With multiple locations across Vancouver, Dinesty is known for its xiao long bao (soup dumplings) and northern Chinese specialties. The pan-fried pork buns and the spicy wontons are not to be missed.

If you're craving authentic Hong Kong-style barbecue, HK BBQ Master is the place to go. The succulent barbecue pork, known as char siu, is some of the best in the city. Pair it with the crispy pork belly and a side of garlicky yu choy for a satisfying meal that will transport your taste buds to the streets of Hong Kong.

Advertisement

04 Ethnic eats: Japanese

Miku Restaurant is a must-visit for sushi lovers, thanks to its innovative Aburi-style sushi. The chefs lightly flame-sear the top of each nigiri, creating a delicate smoky flavor and creamy texture. Paired with stunning waterfront views, Miku offers an unforgettable dining experience. Don't miss their signature Salmon Oshi Sushi, featuring pressed BC wild sockeye salmon with a sliver of jalapeño and a melt-in-your-mouth Miku sauce.

For a comforting bowl of ramen, head to Marutama Ra-men, where they specialize in authentic Hakata-style tonkotsu broth. The rich, creamy pork bone soup is simmered for hours, resulting in a deeply flavorful base for their springy, house-made noodles. Customize your bowl with toppings like soft-boiled eggs, tender chashu pork, and crisp bean sprouts.

Kingyo Izakaya offers a lively atmosphere and creative tapas-style Japanese pub fare. Must-try dishes include the ebi mayo, succulent deep-fried prawns in a creamy chili mayo sauce, and the tan-tan noodles, a spicy and savory ramen topped with ground pork and bok choy. With an extensive menu and friendly service, Kingyo is perfect for a fun night out with friends.

Advertisement

05 Ethnic eats: Italian

For handmade pasta in a cozy, intimate setting, head to Ask for Luigi. This charming neighborhood spot is known for its authentic Italian fare, with dishes like the pappardelle with duck ragu and the ricotta gnocchi with brown butter sage sauce. The restaurant's popularity means they don't take reservations, so be sure to arrive early to snag a table.

Savio Volpe, named Canada's Best New Restaurant by enRoute magazine, is a rustic Italian "osteria" and "enoteca" that celebrates the simple joys of Italian cooking. The menu changes daily based on seasonal ingredients, but standout dishes include the grilled octopus with chickpeas and the tagliatelle with milk-braised pork. The warm, inviting space and knowledgeable staff make for a memorable dining experience.

For upscale Tuscan-inspired cuisine, Cioppino's Mediterranean Grill is a must-visit. Chef/owner Pino Posteraro, a local culinary icon, crafts exquisite dishes like the handmade ravioli filled with roasted veal and the grilled branzino with lemon and herbs. The extensive wine list and impeccable service make Cioppino's perfect for a special occasion or a romantic night out.

Advertisement

06 Farm-to-Table favorites

Forage is a standout farm-to-table restaurant that celebrates sustainable, locally sourced West Coast cuisine. The menu changes seasonally, showcasing the freshest ingredients from nearby farms and foragers. Standout dishes include the BC salmon with stinging nettle and the roasted root vegetables with hazelnut and honey. Forage's commitment to sustainability extends beyond the menu, with eco-friendly practices like composting and using biodegradable takeout containers.

Burdock & Co is another must-visit for farm-to-table fare, focusing on organic, seasonal plates and natural wines. Chef Andrea Carlson's inventive dishes highlight the best of BC's bounty, such as the charred brassicas with miso and the grilled pork belly with fermented plums. The restaurant even has a rooftop garden where they grow their own herbs and vegetables, ensuring the freshest flavors on every plate.

For an upscale vegetarian dining experience, head to The Acorn. Named the best vegetarian restaurant in the world by The Daily Meal, The Acorn crafts innovative, beautifully plated dishes that will satisfy even the most ardent meat lovers. Must-try items include the beer-battered halloumi with smashed peas and the king oyster mushroom "calamari" with black garlic aioli. With its cozy, intimate atmosphere and attentive service, The Acorn is perfect for a special occasion or a memorable meal with friends.

Advertisement

07 Best brunch spots

Cafe Medina is a beloved brunch spot known for its Mediterranean-inspired dishes and decadent Belgian waffles. The light-filled, bustling cafe is the perfect place to start your day, with standout dishes like the fricassée, a hearty stew of braised short ribs, roasted potatoes, and baked eggs. Don't miss their signature lavender latte, a soothing and aromatic twist on the classic coffee drink.

For a more laid-back, diner-style brunch, head to The Red Wagon. As seen on the Food Network's Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, this cozy spot offers traditional breakfast dishes with a contemporary flair. The pulled pork pancakes, topped with Jack Daniel's maple syrup, are a fan favorite, while the crispy pork belly Bennys showcase the restaurant's commitment to bold flavors and creative combinations.

If you're looking for a stylish, upscale brunch experience, Chambar is the place to be. This Belgian restaurant offers a weekend brunch menu that highlights both sweet and savory dishes, along with an impressive selection of craft cocktails. Must-try items include the paella, studded with chorizo, mussels, and prawns, and the short rib fricassee, a rich and comforting dish served with creamy polenta and a poached egg. With its chic atmosphere and attentive service, Chambar is the perfect spot for a leisurely weekend brunch with friends or family.

Advertisement

08 Foodie neighborhoods to explore

Gastown, Vancouver's oldest neighborhood, has transformed into a trendy foodie destination. This historic district is home to some of the city's best cocktail bars, like Pourhouse, known for its creative concoctions and speakeasy vibe. For a taste of the Pacific Northwest, head to L'Abattoir, where locally-sourced ingredients shine in dishes like the baked Pacific oysters with truffle and the smoked steelhead trout.

Main Street offers an eclectic mix of global cuisines and cozy cafes. Recently voted one of North America's coolest streets, this vibrant neighborhood is a must-visit for food lovers. Don't miss the authentic Neapolitan pizzas at Pizzeria Farina, the flavorful Lebanese plates at Nuba, or the artisanal ice cream at Rain or Shine.

For a mouthwatering Asian food adventure, head to Richmond, where you'll find a vibrant collection of Chinese, Vietnamese, and Korean eateries. Alexandra Road, also known as "Food Street," boasts over 200 restaurants within just three blocks. Indulge in steaming bowls of pho at Pho Lan, savor the succulent Peking duck at Kirin Seafood Restaurant, or sample the spicy Szechuan fare at Szechuan Delicious.

Advertisement

09 Food truck frenzy

A shot of several food trucks including the world famous Japadog street food vendor lining a street in the hip Olympic Village neighbourhood of Vancouver CineCam / Shutterstock.com

Vancouver's food truck scene is a vibrant and exciting way to experience the city's diverse culinary offerings. Japadog is a must-try for its unique Japanese-inspired hot dogs. Their creative toppings, like seaweed, teriyaki sauce, and bonito flakes, elevate the classic hot dog to new heights. Featured on Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations, Japadog has become a Vancouver institution.

For comfort food cravings, head to Mom's Grilled Cheese Truck. Using artisanal bread and cheeses, they craft gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches that are sure to satisfy. Don't miss their signature sandwich, which features a perfect blend of gooey cheeses and caramelized onions.

Celebrity chef Vikram Vij brings his famed Indian cuisine to the streets with Vij's Railway Express. The menu changes daily based on fresh ingredients, ensuring a delightful surprise with each visit. Savor aromatic curries, flaky paratha bread, and tender meat dishes that showcase the flavors of India.

Advertisement

10 Sweet treats and desserts

For a delightful bakery experience, head to Purebread, a charming cafe with an impressive array of pastries, cakes, and bread. With two locations in Vancouver and three in Whistler, Purebread offers something for every sweet tooth. Must-try items include their decadent brownies, flaky croissants, and unique loaves like the Fig & Anise. The cozy, rustic atmosphere and friendly staff make Purebread the perfect spot for a leisurely breakfast or an afternoon treat.

If you're craving a cool, creamy treat, Soft Peaks is a must-visit. This popular spot serves up organic soft-serve ice cream with a variety of unique toppings. Their milk soft serve, made with Avalon organic milk, boasts a rich, velvety texture that's sure to satisfy. Try their signature Honeycomb Peak, topped with honeycomb toffee, or the Mudslide, with Tim Tam cookies and chocolate syrup. With its commitment to quality ingredients and creative flavor combinations, Soft Peaks is a favorite among locals and visitors alike.

For a truly indulgent dessert experience, head to Beta 5 Chocolates. This artisanal chocolate shop crafts stunning confections that are as beautiful as they are delicious. Their signature polygons, named one of Vancouver's most iconic dishes, feature silky smooth chocolate ganache in flavors like passionfruit and Earl Grey. Beta 5 also offers a selection of cream puffs, truffles, and chocolate bars that showcase their commitment to innovation and quality. With its sleek, modern space and knowledgeable staff, Beta 5 is the perfect spot for a special treat or a gift for the chocolate lover in your life.

Advertisement

11 Coffee culture

Vancouver's bustling coffee culture reflects the city's appreciation for high-quality coffee and warm, welcoming coffee shops. 49th Parallel Coffee Roasters is a standout, known for their expertly roasted beans and inviting cafes. Don't miss their unique collaboration with Lucky's Doughnuts, featuring mouthwatering creations like the PB&J doughnut.

For a more minimalist experience, head to Revolver, where pour-overs from top global roasters take center stage. Their tasting flights allow you to sample a variety of roasts and discover new favorites.

Nemesis Coffee is another must-visit, with its stylish interior and innovative drinks. Try their signature Nemesis Latte, a silky smooth blend of espresso and steamed milk. Be sure to pair your coffee with a pastry from their in-house Dope Bakehouse, like the decadent brown butter cinnamon roll.

Advertisement

12 Craft beer and cocktails

Vancouver's craft beer and cocktail scene is thriving, with numerous breweries and bars offering unique and innovative creations. 33 Acres Brewing is a must-visit for beer enthusiasts, boasting a stylish, minimalist tasting room where you can sample their rotating selection of seasonal and experimental brews. Don't miss their 33 Acres of Sunshine, a refreshing French Blanchè-style beer perfect for summer sipping.

For an impressive variety of local and imported craft beers, head to The Alibi Room, a modern tavern with 50 rotating taps. The knowledgeable staff can guide you through the constantly changing beer list, helping you discover new favorites from BC and beyond. Pair your pint with one of their delicious pizzas or charcuterie boards for a satisfying pub experience.

If cocktails are more your style, The Keefer Bar in Chinatown is a must-visit. This apothecary-style bar crafts inventive cocktails that incorporate traditional Chinese medicinal ingredients, creating unique and flavorful concoctions. Try the Rosemary Gimlet, a refreshing blend of gin, lime, and rosemary, or the Dragonfly, with vodka, dragon fruit, and ginger. The intimate, dimly-lit space and expert mixologists make The Keefer Bar the perfect spot for a memorable night out.

Advertisement

13 Unique culinary experiences

For a truly unique dining experience, head to Salmon n' Bannock, Vancouver's only Indigenous restaurant. This cozy spot celebrates the traditional ingredients and flavors of the First Nations with a menu featuring wild fish, game, and bannock, a traditional Indigenous flatbread. Don't miss their bison pot roast, slow-cooked to tender perfection, or the sockeye salmon served with a sweet and tangy berry glaze. The warm, welcoming atmosphere and knowledgeable staff make Salmon n' Bannock a must-visit for those seeking to explore the rich culinary heritage of Canada's Indigenous peoples.

If you're looking for a dining experience that engages all your senses, Dark Table is a must-try. This innovative restaurant offers a blind dining experience, where patrons enjoy their meal in complete darkness, served by visually impaired staff. Without the sense of sight, diners are encouraged to focus on the flavors, textures, and aromas of each dish, heightening the overall dining experience. The menu features a variety of international cuisines, ensuring there's something for every palate. Dark Table is a unique and eye-opening experience that challenges diners to rethink their relationship with food and the role of sight in our daily lives.

For a modern take on Asian cuisine, head to Torafuku, where innovative dishes and creative cocktails come together in a sleek, stylish setting. The menu features a mix of small plates and larger dishes, perfect for sharing with friends. Don't miss their signature "Rye So Messy" chicken wings, named Vancouver's best bar snack, featuring crispy fried chicken tossed in a sweet and spicy rye whisky glaze. Other standout dishes include the Kickass Rice 2.0, a comforting bowl of rice topped with pork belly, egg, and nori, and the Everyday I'm Trufflin', a decadent pasta dish with miso-butter sauce and shaved truffles. With its inventive menu, expertly crafted cocktails, and vibrant atmosphere, Torafuku is a must-visit for those seeking a memorable and delicious dining experience.

Advertisement

14 Food events and festivals

Vancouver's vibrant food scene comes alive through its exciting annual events and festivals. Dine Out Vancouver, the city's premier dining event, takes place each January, offering food lovers a chance to explore the city's top restaurants with specially curated prix-fixe menus at discounted prices. With over 200 participating restaurants, from casual eateries to fine dining establishments, this 17-day festival is a fantastic opportunity to sample the best of Vancouver's culinary scene without breaking the bank.

For a taste of Asian street food, head to the Richmond Night Market, a massive outdoor market that runs from May to October. With over 100 food vendors, this bustling market offers an incredible array of dishes from across Asia, including sizzling skewers, steaming dumplings, and refreshing bubble tea. The lively atmosphere, complete with live entertainment and colorful stalls, makes the Richmond Night Market a must-visit for food lovers and culture seekers alike.

Beer enthusiasts won't want to miss Vancouver Craft Beer Week, a 10-day celebration of the city's thriving craft beer scene. Taking place each May, this festival features over 100 events at breweries and venues across the city, including tastings, pairings, and educational sessions. With a focus on local and independent breweries, Vancouver Craft Beer Week is a fantastic opportunity to discover new favorites and meet the passionate brewers behind Vancouver's best beers.

Advertisement

15 Culinary classes and food tours

Granville Island Public Market on May 17, 2007 in Vancouver, Canada. It's home to over 100 vendors offering fresh seafood, meats, sweets and European specialty foods. DeymosHR / Shutterstock.com

For those looking to dive deeper into Vancouver's culinary scene, consider taking a hands-on cooking class or joining a guided food tour. The Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts offers a variety of classes for home cooks, ranging from basic knife skills to specialized courses on baking, pastry, and wine pairing. Learn from experienced chefs in a professional kitchen setting, and take your culinary knowledge to the next level.

Vancouver Foodie Tours offers guided walking tours through the city's most exciting foodie neighborhoods, providing insider knowledge and historical context along the way. Their popular Gastown tour, named a Canadian Signature Experience, showcases the area's rich history and vibrant food scene, with stops at local favorites like Meat & Bread and Purebread Bakery.

For a truly immersive experience, join the Granville Island Market Tour, a chef-guided exploration of one of Vancouver's most iconic food destinations. This tour includes over 20 tastings from market vendors, a 3-course lunch at a top Granville Island restaurant, and a hands-on cooking class where you'll learn to prepare a gourmet meal using fresh, locally-sourced ingredients. With its blend of education, tastings, and hands-on experience, the Granville Island Market Tour is a must for any serious food lover visiting Vancouver.

Share

Scroll Down

for the Next Article

The Getaway Badge
Sign up to receive insider info and deals that will help you travel smarter.
Advertisement
Advertisement