Are you planning an upcoming trip to Vancouver?
Vancouver is one of the few cities in the world where its urban beauty rivals its surrounding natural beauty. It’s no wonder that each year, over 10 million people visit this city. From hiking the Grouse Grind to cycling around Stanley Park to windowshopping in Gastown, there’s a lot to see and do in Vancouver.
During all of your exploring, you’re undoubtedly going to work up an appetite.
So, where should you grab a bite to eat?
Check out this guide to discover the best restaurants in downtown Vancouver.
1. Kintaro Ramen Noodle Bar
If you think ramen is just a cheap dish for poor college students, be prepared for the Kinatro Ramen Noodle Bar to change your mind.
Located near the southeast end of Stanley Park, this tiny hole-in-the-wall restaurant serves up some big flavors. Here you can enjoy noodle bowls containing beef, pork, or vegetarian ramen. While the wait can sometimes be a bit long, it’s definitely worth it for a taste of the crispy gyoza or rich broth.
This was actually one of the first ramen shops to introduce the Japanese noodle to the city of Vancouver, so you know you’re getting the real thing.
2. Guu With Garlic
For some East Asian flavor with a twist, we recommend heading to Guu With Garlic. With a mix of sushi and tapas on their menu, this is the perfect spot to go if you’re looking to share a bunch of small, cheap bites.
Here you can try some East Asian favorites with an innovative twist such as octopus balls, pork cheek with ponzu sauce, sashimi salad with plum dressing, or deep-fried takoyaki.
Plus, if you’re a garlic lover, this is clearly the restaurant for you, as each dish is built around this root vegetable.
3. Simba’s Grill
If you enjoy trying unique fusion restaurants, Simba’s Grill is the place to go. This restaurant offers a blend of Indian, Middle East, and East African dishes.
You’ll see a lot of menu items that you won’t get to try in other parts of North America. But, don’t let the menu intimidate you, as the knowledgable servers are always eager to explain their dishes.
Some of the most popular dishes on the menu include the chicken surwa, the lamb machicha masala, and the for the vegetarian, the Kunde curry.
4. Acacia Fillo Bar
Speaking of unique cuisines that you don’t get to try every day, the Acacia Fillo Bar serves up some delicious Eastern European food that’s hard to come by in other parts of the country.
This is a cozy, family-owned business that serves familiar dishes like open-faced sandwiches and English muffins but with an Eastern European twist.
Undoubtedly though, the star of the show is the banitsa section of the menu. Banitsas are Bulgarian pastries made from flaky filo dough. This dough is then rolled up with the filling of your choice. You can fill your banitsa with everything from green onion to lamb to spinach.
While it can be fun to try cuisines from all over the world, you, of course, can’t forget to try some classic British Columbian dishes as well.
For the best of British Columbian cuisine, we suggest heading to Forage. This is a farm to table restaurant that offers different specialties for every meal of the day. Some famous selections have been the foraged mushroom salad, the award-winning seafood chowder soup, and the bison ribeye.
This place also has a unique rustic charm that is hard to find anywhere else, with their cast-iron pan preparations and wooden tables.
6. Nero Belgian Waffle Bar
If you’ve saved room for dessert (or if you just want to give in to your sweet tooth for dinner), we suggest heading to the Nero Belgian Waffle Bar.
This is a very homey cafe that makes you want to kick back and rewind after a long day of seeing the sights. You can choose between a Belgian- and Liege-style waffle, and of course, the assortment of toppings is practically endless. Some of the best waffles to try include the Rudolph waffle (comes with dark chocolate, chocolate mousse, and raspberry), the Biscuit waffle (comes with oreo crumble and Belgian dark chocolate), and the Berry & Marscapone waffle.
7. Boulevard Kitchen and Oyster Bar
If you’re looking for a romantic date night spot, Boulevard Kitchen and Oyster Bar is the place to go.
The vintage style dining room will make you feel like you’re eating in a European bistro. But, the menu will remind you that you’re right where you should be: enjoying some of the world’s best seafood caught freshly off the Vancouver shoreline.
Obviously, you have to order a selection of seasonal oysters. Besides that, we suggest trying the truffle scented roast mushrooms, the seafood linguine, and if you’re really hungry, the seafood tower for two.
We also recommend saving room for one of their delicious dessert items, such as the pear mont-blanc, the chocolate souffle, or the salted sesame praline bar.
8. Basil Pasta Bar
Delicious dishes don’t have to be pricey, and Basil Pasta Bar proves that with their fresh pasta selection. If you’re picky about your pasta dishes, this is the place to go.
You pick your own pasta, then select a sauce, then select a protein and some veggies. There are also some delicious house specials to choose from such as the maple bacon conchiglie or the salmon fettucini.
And of course, don’t forget to save some room for tiramisu.
Are You Ready to Try These Restaurants in Downtown Vancouver?
As you can see, there are a lot of restaurants in Downtown Vancouver that are worth trying. Hopefully, you’ll have time to eat at all of them!
Also, if you’re still looking for accommodation in the Downtown Vancouver area, check out our selection of rooms today.