This is my second post in the EAT series. Not sure what the EAT series is? Well I am glad you asked! The EAT series is my version of the best places to grab some food and drinks as you explore the world. It’s got the fancy restaurants, the cool bars and maybe the occasional coffee shops – all the places you need to try in a new city.
My first post covered Toronto and keeping with the Canadian theme, this one is all about Vancouver. This coastal seaport city located in the British Columbia is one of my favourite cities in the world. If I wasn’t living in London, I would happily call Vancouver home – it’s got so much going for it. Vancouver offers travellers both outstanding opportunities for outdoor adventure and the sophisticated amenities of a world-class city. It’s got a bustling food scene plus the mountains and oceans near the city ensure you have plenty of options to burn it all off. Vancouver is one of the few places in the world where it’s possible to ski in the morning and sail in the afternoon. Beat that London (just kidding, still love you London!). It’s no surprise that Vancouver is consistently named as one of the top five worldwide cities for livability and quality of life.
So what do you to if you find yourself in this wonderful city? Try my recommendations ofcourse!
Located in the ever popular Gastown, Catch 122 is a well know local institution, famous for their contemporary Canadian-influenced brunch menu and their seasonal cocktail bar. Although Catch 122 has a decent lunch/dinner menu, I would highly recommend booking a table for brunch. Their brunch menu is epic with options like Truffle Scented Mushroom Omelette and my personal favourite, the Dirty Breakfast 2.0 which is a delightfully large portion of duck confit, duck fat toast croutons, poached eggs, maple beans cassoulet and yukon nugget potato hash. They also serve up a mean Expressotini on their brunch menu to help wash all that food down. Sounds great right? Told you so!
122 West Hastings St.
Fancy Tacos? Go to Tacofino. Simples! The restaurant brand that started as a modest food truck operation in Tofino has flourished into a tiny taco empire with two food trucks in Vancouver, a brick and mortar in Victoria and their latest addition, Tacofino in Gastown. Enter from Cordova Street and you’re in the takeout Burrito Bar. Enter off Blood Alley Square and you’re in the more substantial Taco Bar. They both have very different menus so choose carefully what you would rather eat. Definitely order the Fish Taco and the Lamb Birria Taco (pictured above) along with Nachos Sharing Plate (too good to be sharing if you ask me). Highly recommended especially if you are on budget.
15 W. Cordova St
Like your eggs? You are going to love Medina Cafe in the boutique L’Hermitage Hotel. Since opening in 2008, Café Medina has carved out a niche as a truly exceptional breakfast, lunch and weekend-brunch destination that effortlessly blends eclectic bistro fare, connoisseur-savvy coffee and sweet nourishment via the city’s best Belgian waffles. The pan-Mediterranean menu – spicy Moroccan meatballs, creamy orzo paella, slow cooked clay-pot tagines and almost everything topped with eggs definitely stands out in the crowded Vancouver food scene. This explains the 90 minute wait to get a table but tell you what, I think it’s worth the wait.
780 Richards St.
Granville Island Brewing
Moving away from Gastown now to something slightly different; Beer Tasting. Granville Island Brewing is one of Canada’s first microbreweries opening way back in 1984 on Vancouver’s trendy (and touristy) Granville Island. If you are in the area, it is a given that you visit GIB and if you are not, I would recommend making some time to try this micro brewery. The bar is in the middle of the brewery surrounded by spotless glass walls that give patrons a view into the world of beer making. They offer a unique beer tasting experience and a reasonably priced menu to go along with it. Definitely a winner in my eyes!
1441 Cartwright Street
The Flying Pig
The growing popularity of this restaurant has seen it open three locations in the city and The Flying Pig shows no signs of stopping there. It’s not quite a bistro, but the comforting options on the menu will make you feel as though your mom is back in town and has decided to cook up heaven on a plate for you. The atmosphere is casual, yet trendy, and the service is warm and inviting. The locally sourced Canadian inspired menu is bound to make you drool. You need to try the Bone Marrow Cheesy Bread and Andrew’s Pulled Pork Poutine which are absolutely divine. The Flying Pig is one of my favourite restaurants in Canada. There I said it.
1168 Hamilton Street
Twisted Fork Bistro
The Twisted Fork is classic french dining made simple. All the flavours, all the tender care but with a little less fuss. Designed with plenty of wood, warm colours, comfy booths and an abundance of pillows, the dining room that endeavors to match the menu. Speaking of the menu, with options like Gruyere Baked Eggs, Croque Monsieur and French Toast, you are definitely not going to be disappointed. The menus also come with a twisted fork *obvs*
1147 Granville St
UYU Ice Cream
UYU is soft serve ice cream parlour located in Gastown. So why does an ice cream parlour make my list of top recommendations? Well why not? If you find yourself in Gastown for a meal (which is highly likely), I would recommend walking up to Abbott Street and trying this little gem for some post meal happiness. UYU means milk in Korean and that is their base for everything they serve up here. With options ranging from vanilla all the way to black sesame, there is something for everyone. I tried the Black Ice Cream Swirl with Freeze Dried Banana and Strawberry Sauce (pictured above) and loved every single bite of it! Highly recommended.
433 Abbott Street
If you find yourself in Vancouver, you now know where to go. You are welcome! As usual, let me know if you end up trying any of my recommendations – I would love to hear from you. Follow me on Instagram if you fancy drooling at even more food as I discover hidden gems from around the world but in the meantime, EAT Vancouver, EAT!