After visiting Vancouver , it's not secret that this city loves its food and in each neighborhood you'll find a variety of cuisines that provide something delicious to sink your teeth into. Gastown, the West End, Kitsilano, and Yaletown all have incredible restaurants that you should explore, but if you find yourself in the downtown core, you've gotta start with these delicious options.
Whether it's a special occassion or 'just because', every now and then it's nice to splurge on a memorable meal. When the moment strikes, you should make your way to Hawksworth Restaurant. Chef David Hawksworth is incredibly skilled and diners will enjoy his beautiful creations that are seasonally driven.
For over a decade, Chambar restaurant has been serving tasty Belgian food that's complemented with Belgian beer, craft cocktails, and a juicy wine list. Bordering the edge of downtown Vancouver, this buzzing restaurant is a great spot for a date night or a meal with friends.
Deco-inspired decor, soaring ceilings, and the most flavorful steaks can be found at Gotham Steakhouse. This old-school steakhouse has a time-tested menu and an incredible wine list with rare bottles that can be enjoyed by the glass, or bottle.
Regardless of where you end up, you're in good hands at any of these downtown restaurants.
Chef Michel Jacob's Alsatian-style cuisine is one for the books and absolutely worth the splurge. From the warm and inviting atmosphere to the impeccable service and incredible dishes, Le Crocodile continues to be a local favorite for special occasions.
The menu boasts plenty of sumptuous hot and cold starters that set the stage nicely for the main event. Finish your meal with French cheeses or a sweet treat to complete your experience.
Le Crocodile is a Vancouver institution and has been around forever. Locals know they can go to Le Crocodile for a consistently good meal and that old school French charm, making it one of the best restaurants in the downtown core. (604-669-4298)
When you combine an incredible room, delicious food, hospitable service, and an impressive wine list, you really can't go wrong. Gotham Steakhouse & Cocktail Bar checks all of these boxes, making it the best steakhouse in downtown Vancouver.
This high-end, deco-inspired restaurant has soaring ceilings and dim lighting that create a sultry space. Wherever you are in the restaurant, there's a cozy corner or intimate booth to enjoy your meal.
From a fork-tender petite filet to a mouthwatering tomahawk steak that could feed a crowd, you'll find just about every cut of steak imaginable. Steaks are cooked to perfection on an infrared grill that cooks at 1800 degrees. It doesn't get much better when you pair your steak with classic sides like creamed spinach and mashed potatoes, and a glass of wine, of course. (6046058282)
The Pacific Northwest's bounty is varied, plentiful and one to be celebrated, and that's exactly what Chef David Gunawan is renowned for. Locals are likely already familiar with his award-winning restaurant, Farmer's Apprentice, and natural wine bar, Grapes & Soda, and his newest venture, Royal Dinette, is a beautiful addition and partnership with the Donnelly Group.
The menu is seasonally driven with small plates that are perfect for snacking and a la carte options that cover all the bases with plenty of vegetable options and a couple of fish and meat options. If you've got the appetite, exploring the tasting menu (with an optional drink paring) is a solid choice and an awesome way to try a few different dishes. That being said, the small plates and a la carte options are great for sharing. ((604) 974-8077)
Boulevard Kitchen & Oyster Bar
Step inside this swanky spot and enjoy a beautiful meal. Located in The Sutton Place Hotel, Boulevard Kitchen & Oyster Bar is a beautiful space with an equally beautiful menu.
The decor showcases art from local artists with beautiful natural stone, imported Italian marble, white oak flooring and accents of gold and bronze decor. The up-cycled and refurbished antique chandeliers are stunning and help set the mood.
On the menu expect to find dishes that feature plenty of seafood (we are in the Pacific Northwest, after all), locally sourced, and farm-fresh ingredients. The menu is broken down into starters, share plates (think stunning seafood towers), soup and salad, sea, pasta and risotto, land, and enhancements. With so many delicious options, the biggest challenge is deciding what to order. ((604) 642-2900)
If you've ever walked down Robson Street before, you're probably familiar with the alluring scent of CinCin Ristorante's wood-fired oven. Follow your nose and make your way up the winding stone stairway to this contemporary Italian restaurant. While the warm and sophisticated room beckons, the service and incredible food are sure to keep you coming back.
The menu tempts with seasonal dishes that use well-sourced ingredients, making each dish shine. CinCin's drink scene is solid and their craft cocktails are the perfect way to start your evening. When your dishes arrive, the stocked wine list is sure to complement your meal. Having been around for over 30 years, CinCin is a Vancouver favorite. (604-688-7338)
YEW seafood + bar
Exceptional fine dining and stellar service are the hallmarks of this excellent restaurant inside the Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver, making it one of the best restaurants in Vancouver's downtown core.
Special features include a contemporary raw bar, a pastry chef that creates pure magic in the kitchen, and a solid wine and cocktail program.
YEW has a seafood heavy menu that's crafted by Chef Ned Bell. He's passionate about sustainability and using what's available to us and each dish he makes is a joy to eat. The menu changes seasonally so you're always in for a new treat.
Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, a delicious meal can be enjoyed any time of day here. (604-689-9333, 604-844-6715)
Cibo Trattoria specializes in rustic Italian cuisine and can be found in the heart of downtown Vancouver.
Cibo uses only fresh ingredients with a heavy emphasis on organic ingredients. When it comes to meat and fish, they make sure it's sourced from ethical, organic. and sustainable suppliers.
Something totally unique about Cibo is that they don't shy away from offal cuts of meat so don't be surprised if you see interesting cuts on the menu from time-to-time. If you prefer to stick to more traditional ingredients, fret not. The menu is thoughtfully created so that there's something for everyone. Cibo Trattoria's wine program is impeccable and complements the dishes beautifully. ((604) 602-9570)
Chambar has been open for over a decade and continues to be a favorite spot to eat and drink amongst Vancouverites. When you walk into Chambar, the buzz of happy diners, beautiful light fixtures, and earthy wood details greet you. The room is lively, but not overly so that you can't enjoy the conversation at your table.
Chambar's Belgian menu is the creation of three-star-Michelin-trained Chef Nico Schuermans. While at Chambar, you have to make sure that an order of the mussels and frites makes their way to your table. The lamb tagine is another favorite dish; it's a lamb shank that's braised with honey, figs, cinnamon and cilantro, served with cous cous and zalouk. Finish your meal with one of their desserts that are made in-house. (604 879 7119)
Miku restaurant has made a name for itself in Vancouver and is known for their incredible Japanese dishes. Miku was the first restaurant in the city to start serving aburi sushi and it has since become a popular style of sushi that other restaurants serve, but none compare to the original. The Ebi Oshi or Salmon Oshi are excellent! The charcoal flame gives a hint of flavor without compromising the fresh fish.
Miku has a creative menu that features items like ebi fritters to start, a delicious saikyo miso baked sablefish to follow, and their famous green tea opera cake to follow. Feeling adventurous? Order from the kaiseki menu and let chef prepare a special meal for you.
While the food is top-notch, diners will also enjoy the views of the water and North Shore mountains from Miku. (6045683900)
Chef David Hawksworth is well-known around the world for creating beautiful and delicious dishes. Through dedication, consistency and a love for food, each plate is a piece of culinary art that'll make for a meal to remember. The menu sources the best seasonal ingredients from local purveyors first and then from across Canada so there's always something new to look forward to.
Located inside the gorgeous Rosewood Hotel Georgia, Hawksworth's dining room exudes sophistication and style, while the service is gracious and warm.
They are open for breakfast, lunch and dinner so diners can enjoy a lovely meal any time of day. If you're just popping in for drinks, they also offer a bar-dining menu that will curb your appetite while you sip on a hand-crafted cocktail in the lounge. (604-6737000)
About Natasha John
Natasha is not born and raised in Vancouver, but is pretty certain it's her spirit hometown. After jumping around Canada, Texas, Arkansas and the UK, she has her feet firmly planted in Vancouver's beaches.
When Natasha's not freelance writing and copywriting, she's either cooking up a storm in her kitchen, kicking back with friends over a glass of wine or exploring the North Shore with her fiancé.
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