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Restaurants Vancouver

A+ Activities: Our Favourite Reasons to Visit UBC

Find the best places to eat, explore and be entertained at the University of British Columbia. School may be out for summer, but this lush coastal campus is packed with hidden gems for every visitor, from orchestra aficionados and art connoisseurs to golfers and nature lovers

By CHLOË LAI

The Museum of Anthropology is home to an impressive collection of totem poles. (Photo: KK Law)

The Museum of Anthropology is home to an impressive collection of totem poles. (Photo: KK Law)

Art History

Fancy a bit of a scavenger hunt? This campus is a veritable outdoor gallery, featuring an ever-evolving collection of art installations just waiting to be discovered. The most recent addition is the Reconciliation Pole, a towering 17-m (55-ft) totem pole carved by James Hart, a Haida master carver and hereditary chief. Intricate details etched into the 800-year-old red cedar tell the story of First Nations communities’ experiences before, during and after the traumatic residential school system—thousands of copper nails are hammered into the wood, each commemorating a child who died at a residential school. Other totem poles around campus include the Musqueam Post by Brent Sparrow Jr., and the Victory Through Honour pole by Calvin Hunt and Merv Child.

For contemporary art, step into the crisp white rooms of the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery, where avant-garde artists and innovative exhibitions take centre stage. Download or print their info sheet to take a sunny self-guided outdoor art tour—and keep an eye out for the delightful Classical Toy Boat by Glenn Lewis, which isn’t on the list. If you’ve only got time for one destination, venture across Marine Drive to find the Museum of Anthropology tucked away amongst the trees. With one of the finest collections of First Nations art and artifacts in the world, as well as impressive exhibits spanning every culture from Asia to the Amazon, it’s an absolute must-see. (more…)

North of Robson: Downtown Dining

By TIM PAWSEY

French fare at Tableau Bar Bistro tastes as good as it looks. (Photo: KK Law)

French fare at Tableau Bar Bistro tastes as good as it looks. (Photo: KK Law)

Some of the city’s best tastes are found just a block or two off Robson Street. For elevated French bistro fare, wander north to Melville, to Tableau Bar Bistro (pictured) for onion soup, moules frites, chicken supreme and addictive mushrooms on toast in an authentic setting. A block north on Denman, Nook is a popular haunt for Italian fare with fresh pasta made daily, plus pizza, good charcuterie and smart wines. Or, for excellent ramen, head to Marutama, a bustling spot a few steps along Bidwell, where fans return for the flavourful house chicken broth and especially the tamago original bowl. Order it mild or, for purists, robustly spiced.

For more by Tim Pawsey, visit hiredbelly.com

2017 Where to Dine Awards: Vancouver

By TIM PAWSEY

Seafood tower at Ancora. (Photo by KK Law)

Seafood tower at Ancora. (Photo by KK Law)

Welcome to our 21st annual awards issue. Much more than merely a contest, Where to Dine celebrates Vancouver as a global dining destination. This is a city that validates the openness, cultural awareness and exuberant curiosity that define Canada, through acceptance and exploration of all cuisines. We salute the chefs, servers, sommeliers and restaurateurs who make this place such a food-lover’s paradise.

Critics’ Choice 

LES CLEFS D’OR CANADA SILVER SERVICE 
Ancora

When it comes to the inside scoop, the concierge is your best friend. Vancouver’s Les Clefs d’Or are tireless in their search for dining excellence—and happily recommend those who consistently over-deliver.

This waterfront gem on the downtown side of False Creek blends Peruvian, Japanese and other influences with fresh West Coast ingredients. Such licence yields Aji-panca-glazed sablefish, seared scallops with pork belly, and grilled steak with yuca fries, autumn vegetables and chimichurri. (more…)

Leadership Award: David Hawksworth

By TIM PAWSEY

Chef David Hawksworth.

Chef David Hawksworth.

Few individuals have had as much impact on Vancouver’s dining scene as David Hawksworth. Arguably the city’s most high-profile chef, Hawksworth is pre-eminent as the driving force behind Hawksworth Restaurant and the recently opened, more casual Nightingale.

With the first restaurant’s launch and enduring success (Vancouver Magazine named it best upscale restaurant five years in a row), he helped cement the return of fine dining in the post-recession era. Not content to rest on his laurels, in 2013 he launched the Hawksworth Young Chef Scholarship Competition, which annually awards $10,000 to the winner and provides considerable exposure. The chef says his motivation for establishing the competition and scholarship stemmed from his time in the UK, where “there are lots of great cooks.” (more…)

Delicious Deeds

By CHLOË LAI

Mouth-watering salmon at Joe Fortes. (Photo: Dining Out For Life)

Mouth-watering salmon at Joe Fortes. (Photo: Dining Out For Life)

At Dining Out For Life, you can have your cake and let someone else eat it, too—in a manner of speaking. On Mar. 30, restaurants throughout the Lower Mainland donate 25% of each food bill to local not-for-profit A Loving Spoonful, which provides free, healthy meals and nutritional counselling for Vancouverites living with HIV/AIDS. The more you indulge, the more you help. So go ahead and order that chocolate molten cake (Dockside), praline mousse (Forage) or traditional tiramisu (Joe Fortes) after dinner. It’ll feel as good as it tastes.

Top Teas

By SHERI RADFORD

It's tea, tea and more tea at TWG.

It’s tea, tea and more tea at TWG.

Floor-to-ceiling windows that let in an abundance of natural light, wall after wall of premium teas stored in bright yellow tins, tea-infused cocktails and mocktails—this is definitely not your grandmother’s tea salon. The flagship North American store for TWG Tea opened downtown last month, and it features more than 500 teas, along with a food menu sure to get gastronomes atwitter. Tea is infused into sauces, vinaigrettes, desserts, maracons and more, all with delicious results. Whether you’re a fan of black, green, white, oolong or all of the above, you’re sure to find exactly your cup of tea.

Happy Hour Heaven

By LUCAS AYKROYD

Cheers! Raise a glass to happy hour at Ancora. (Photo: Allison Kuhl)

Cheers! Raise a glass to happy hour at Ancora. (Photo: Allison Kuhl)

Ah, afternoons. You could take a nap, catch up on email—or party like the sky’s the limit at Vancouver’s thriving happy hours. Here are five of the best:

Ancora
M-F 3:30-5 pm
Fusing Peruvian and Japanese flavours with West Coast ingredients, airy Ancora also delights with its location, facing Granville Island across False Creek. Get comfy at the bar with an $8 barrel-aged cocktail (the Angel’s Share or the Diavolo in Manette) and fresh oysters, spicy albacore tuna rolls or sablefish croquettes with cilantro pumpkin sauce. (more…)

Beyond Sushi

By TIM PAWSEY

Indulge at Kobe Japanese Steakhouse. (Photo: KK Law)

Indulge at Kobe Japanese Steakhouse. (Photo: KK Law)

Long-running Kobe Japanese Steak and Seafood House preceded the sushi craze by a few decades. Ingredients are freshly prepared, presented tableside and cooked teppanyaki style with tremendous flair. Go for the impossibly tender Wagyu beef, teriyaki chicken, and seafood combo. For more casual fare, head to pub-style Zakkushi on Denman to find an abundance of charcoal-grilled meat, seafood and vegetable skewers. Hunker down at local faves Gyoza King or Guu, both on Robson, for good Japanese home-style dishes in a cheerful and friendly setting.

For more by Tim Pawsey www.hiredbelly.com

A Sweet Story

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Jackie Kai Ellis creates tasty treats at Beaucoup Bakery. (Photo: KK Law)

Jackie Kai Ellis creates tasty treats at Beaucoup Bakery. (Photo: KK Law)

Biting into a perfectly crisp, flaky pastry can certainly feel like a life-changing experience, but in the case of Jackie Kai Ellis, that indulgence actually helped the Beaucoup Bakery owner whip up a new life. When Ellis flew to Paris to study pastry making at École Gastronomique Bellouet Conseil, she left behind her life as a graphic designer with her own firm. The catalyst? A cookie. (more…)

Downtown Delight

By TIM PAWSEY

Roasted semi-boneless half chicken. (Photo: KK Law)

Roasted semi-boneless half chicken. (Photo: KK Law)

Tucked away in the Moda Hotel, Cibo Trattoria is a gem of a bistro in a sensitively restored heritage setting. The classic Italian dishes have a bit of a modern twist and use organic ingredients. House favourites include chitarra con vongole of saffron pasta with Salt Spring Island clams, an excellent charcuterie and salumi platter, short ribs braised with tomatoes and red wine, and pan-seared Mediterranean sea bass. The cellar yields a wealth of serious Italian drops, as well as regional and global offerings.

For more by Tim Pawsey visit www.hiredbelly.com

Due South

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Mamie Taylor's ham grenades

Mamie Taylor’s ham grenades

For the best down-home Southern fare this side of the Bayou, head to Mamie Taylor’s. The walls of this hip Chinatown eatery are adorned with a formidable collection of taxidermy, while the menu is decked out with classic American dishes. You can’t go wrong with the finger-licking-good fried chicken with chilli-honey drizzle, or the blissfully addictive ham grenades. The restaurant is named for a classic cocktail—and a turn-of-the-century opera singer—so don’t miss the namesake tipple or the Talladega Nights Julep. It’s southern hospitality at its best.

Edgy Asian

By TIM PAWSEY

Delicious dishes are served up at the Heritage Asian Eatery. (Photo: Amy Ho)

Delicious dishes are served up at Heritage Asian Eatery. (Photo: Amy Ho)

A new generation of chefs is pushing the boundaries of traditional cuisines. At downtown’s Heritage Asian Eatery, regulars revel in Felix Zhou’s breakfast crepes such as shiitake mushroom or pork jowl, as well as a plethora of bao, rice bowls and salads. On Main Street, Clement Chan’s minimalist but cozy Torafuku uses local ingredients in cheekily names plates such as Rye So messy (chicken wings) and Quack Addict (barbecue-duck spring rolls). In Chinatown, Tannis Ling’s Bao Bei rocks modern small plates with Taiwanese, Sichuan and Shanghainese influences, plus savvy wines and cocktails. Meanwhile, Kissa Tanto, Ling’s Japanese-Italian collab with business partner and chef Joel Watanabe, looks to be the most popular table in town.

For more by Tim Pawsey, visit www.hiredbelly.com