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Vancouver Restaurant Reviews
From inventive neighborhood bistros to glamorous downtown dining rooms to Asian restaurants that rival those in the capitals of Asia, Vancouver has a diverse array of gastronomic options.
Many cutting-edge establishments are perfecting Modern Canadian fare, which—at this end of the country—incorporates regional seafood (notably salmon and halibut) and locally grown produce. Vancouver is a hotbed of "localism," with many restaurants emphasizing the provenance of their ingredients and embracing products that hail from within a 100-mile-or-so radius of the city, or at least from within B.C.
With at least a third of the city's population of Asian heritage, it's no surprise that Asian eateries abound in Vancouver. From mom-and-pop noodle shops, curry houses, and corner sushi bars to elegant and upscale dining rooms, cuisine from China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Japan, and India (and to a lesser extent, from Korea, Thailand, Vietnam, and Malaysia) can be found all over town. Look for restaurants emphasizing Chinese regional cuisine (particularly in the suburb of Richmond), contemporary Indian-influenced fare, and different styles of Japanese cooking, from casual ramen shops to lively izakayas (Japanese tapas bars) that serve an eclectic array of small plates. Even restaurants that are not specifically "Asian" have long adopted abundant Asian influences—your grilled salmon may be served with gai lan (Chinese broccoli), black rice, or a coconut-milk curry.
British Columbia's wine industry is enjoying great popularity, and many restaurants serve wines from the province's 150-plus wineries. Most B.C. wines come from the Okanagan Valley in the province's interior, but Vancouver Island is another main wine-producing area. Merlot, Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, and Chardonnay are among the major varieties; also look for ice wine, a dessert wine made from grapes that are picked while they are frozen on the vines.
If you enjoy strolling to scope out your dining options downtown, try Robson Street for everything from upscale Italian dining rooms to cheap, friendly Asian cafés and noodle shops, or explore Denman and Davie streets for a variety of ethnic eats. Gastown, which used to serve up mainly mainstream tourist fare, now has many more creative dining spots. In Yaletown, Hamilton and Mainland streets are full of restaurants and upscale bars, many with outdoor terraces. In Kitsilano, West 4th Avenue between Burrard and Balsam streets has plenty of restaurant choices.
An intriguingly diverse food district is Main Street, particularly between King Edward and 33rd avenues. Farther on the East Side, Commercial Drive has a plethora of cafés, world-beat eateries, and other casual options.
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