Wild game is nothing to be afraid of, and in fact it can be more tasty that what we're used to seeing on our plate. You could say that Vancouver is full of many adventurous eaters who are not afraid to try new things, so it's not surprising that menus around town reflect this. You don't have to go to an obscure restaurant to try out wild game in Vancouver, nor do you have to spend a fortune. Here are some restaurants that can ease you into the world of wild game, and some even offer up odd bits of the animal, as in offal.
Kangaroo can be found at Chill Winston — Photo courtesy of freeaussiestock.com
Chill Winston serves a juicy bison burger at lunch and brunch which is full of flavor, and you may not even recognize that you're tucking into anything other than beef. Bison is much more lean than beef, so it's a great burger alternative for those that crave red meat but want something slightly healthier. They also serve stuffed quail, kangaroo steak, bison ribs and a bison steak on their dinner menu. The price point here is very reasonable and they have plenty of beers on tap to wash it all down with.
Bishop's in Kitsilano is a higher price point, but the service and quality are excellent. They focus on things that are local and seasonal, so the menu changes accordingly. On the summer menu, they offer a wild boar terrine that is served with summer fruit, grilled brioche, wild rice and pumpkin seed. Random fact: in Laos and parts of China, wild boar is considered an aphrodisiac. You will also find some duck and lamb on Bishop's current menu, which are both worth ordering.
Rio Brazilian Steakhouse offers rodizio, or carved meats served tableside. There is a hot and cold bar that you can tuck into, and when you're at your seat, servers will bring around freshly grilled meats. They have familiar cuts of beef, chicken and fish, but then there are a few wild cards. Have you had grilled chicken hearts before? If not, Rio can rectify that situation. They also have bison, lamb and wild boar. The beauty of this style is that you can tell them how much of each meat you would like, so it's a safe place to try a few new things and if you don't like it, you're not committed to having an entire plate of it.