Right on the water, Canoe boasts a fabulous deck that's perfect for outdoor relaxing, nearly year-round. Inside, the beautifully restored brick building has soaring ceilings with skylights, hardwood floors and giant copper cauldrons where the house beers are brewed – try the "beer fleet" (five five-ounce samples) to find one that suits you. The food is a cut above, with options like harissa chicken salad, lamb shank with polenta, steamed mussels, and salmon with shrimp risotto.
Friendly, efficient service and great views of Oak Bay marina are just the beginning. The Marina Restaurant is where locals go when they want seafood. For starters, try freshly shucked oysters, clam and shrimp chowder or the salmon sampler that features house-cured and smoked sockeye salmon with dill potato pancakes and dill sour cream. Favorite entrees include pan-fried local sole fillet served with shrimp toasts and maple-glazed Alaskan scallops with vanilla orange essence. Non-seafood eaters, have no fear – the menu also features chicken, lamb, pasta and beef dishes. Other highlights? A full sushi bar and a relaxed coffee house.
The chalet is a bit of a drive from Victoria, but a waterfront location on Deep Cove and a classic menu make it worth the trip. This traditional restaurant beautifully presents all of your favorites, including escargot, cheese soufflé and beef Wellington. For something a bit different, try scrambled eggs with caviar or a bowl of exquisite truffle soup. Delicious desserts include cherries jubilee and crêpes Suzette. Reservations required.
From its vantage point at the Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe Resort, Lure offers amazing views of the busy Inner Harbour. Seafood, fruits, vegetables, meats and dairy products are procured from local farmers and fishermen and the menu changes frequently based on what regional products are freshest. A recent menu included butternut squash-apple soup with pumpkin seed-sage pesto meringue; an amazing duck and pineapple tasting that featured foie gras with pineapple jelly and duck confit ravioli with pineapple chutney; seared rockfish with tempura honey mussels and a purple potato-caper-green bean salad; and panko-crusted house-smoked trout.
Along with a fabulous assortment of fresh seafood dishes, Beacon Landing offers fantastic ocean views. The hotel dining room is casually comfortable, but stylish enough for a date or special occasion. Lunch fare consists of fish and chips, sandwiches, pizza and burgers. Dinner is more upscale, with a number of excellent seafood options from which to choose. Specialties include macadamia-crusted halibut, cedar plank roasted wild salmon and grilled steaks.
When this cozy restaurant opened in 1946 high up on Malahat Mountain, it quickly became a popular stopping place for travelers and locals. Purchased and completely renovated in 1997 by experienced restaurateurs, the property has expanded to include an 11-room B&B. The restaurant offers an eclectic menu: pear and sweet potato soup, roasted garlic bulbs with Cambazola cheese, seafood tempura, pasta, burgers, quiche, steaks and several vegetarian dishes such as tortilla pie (layered black beans, veggies, cheese and tortillas). For the best views, you'll want to sit on the patio, but even from inside the vista is impressive.
What a view! From the top of the Chateau Victoria Hotel, Vista 18 showcases the beauty of Vancouver Island from the ocean to the mountains, and there's not a bad seat in the house. Linger over cocktails while you peruse the menu, a far-reaching tome that's divided into Earth (vegetarian), Ocean (seafood), Air (fowl), and Land (beef, pork, lamb) sections. Order from just one section or mix it up, whatever appeals to you. The food is colorful, artfully presented and fabulous. A tapas menu, consisting primarily of smaller tidbits of main course dishes, is available at the bar, and there's live jazz on Friday and Saturday evenings.
Known as one of the top restaurants in Victoria, Aura is a terrific experience that features stunning waterside views from their outdoor patio. Once you're done admiring the Inner Harbour and the city's skyline, relax and enjoy fare such as zucchini and cannellini bean ravioli, duck breast glazed in sour cherry sauce or even AAA Alberta New York Steak. Aura also offers an impressive wine selection and premium spirits. Breakfast, Sunday brunch and lunch served as well.