Ringed by soaring mountains, with gleaming glass skyscrapers reflected in the still waters that surround its downtown core, Vancouver is easy to love. And as the thriving urban hub of British Columbia and a proudly immigrant city, there are plenty of people around to love it. Over 40 percent of Vancouver’s residents were born outside of Canada, and the city is home to robust Chinese, Indian, and Filipino communities, to name a few.
The city’s most beloved and vital dining experiences reflect this blend. Chefs from around the world apply culinary traditions to exceptional produce from the Lower Mainland and superb seafood from the cold, clean waters around Vancouver Island, creating a unique style of West Coast cuisine. Vancouver is especially spoiled for choice when it comes to Asian dining: pan-Asian flavors pair with French techniques at Pidgin, Bread X Butter, and Patisserie Remi; Vietnamese and Cambodian culinary traditions joyfully collide at Phnom Penh; and neighboring Richmond boasts some of the very best Chinese food in the world outside of China. Meanwhile, the city’s signature plant-forward, locavore cuisine thrives at restaurants like Forage and Burdock & Co, and sustainable seafood shines at Sashimiya. Add in mushrooming brewery and distillery scenes, globally awarded, fresh fruit-forward wines from the nearby Okanagan and Similkameen Valleys, and a creative cocktail culture that’s second to none, and you’ll see why Vancouver deserves its reputation as one of the world’s best places to eat and drink.
Updated, August 2022:
After a soaking wet, freezing cold spring (even by urban rainforest standards) that outstayed its welcome by almost six weeks, summer has finally arrived in Vancouver and its residents couldn’t be happier. Patios are packed, cruise ship passengers have returned, and the city is teeming with visitors. Everyone is eager to dive into seasonal treats, such as the absolute best peaches in the world from the nearby Okanagan, which pop up in everything from salads to gelato, and icy bottles of savory dry rosé from the Similkameen Valley.
Nikki Bayley is an award-winning freelance travel, food, and wine writer whose work has appeared in The Daily Telegraph, National Geographic Traveler, The Globe and Mail, and The Guardian.Read More