Recommendations needed near Hotel Le Soleil
I'll be at Hotel Le Soleil for a few days.
567 Hornby St
Does anyone have some good recommendations for food in this neighborhood?
Walking distance is preferable.
I'd love to find some ethnic restaurants and whole in the wall type places that are not necessarily on the usual tourist tour.
You are right downtown, so holes-in-the-wall are a bit thin in that zone. The most pervasive ethnic in that area is probably Japanese (I don't even consider Japanese "ethnic" anymore). Walk about 15 -20 mins to the izakaya zone along Robson St for izakaya and ramen-ya. Also in that area are some decent Korean places (Norboo for homestyle Korean, and a bunch of others.).
There quite a lot of other restaurants there. For non-ethnic: Market at the Shangri-La has some pretty decent set lunches, etc. Or head over to Gastown for some of the newest, buzziest places in town (Pourhouse, Acme, Salt, Judas Goat, etc.)
actually, you're in luck! i work next door to that hotel, and there's a great little hole-in-the-wall food court (they call them "food fairs" here) right across the street. it has a little sandwich place with a great and very cheap breakfast special (run by a friendly, hardworking couple). i always get their egg muffin sandwich (tho minus the ham, b/c i'm a veggie), and it's around $3 and very fresh. for lunch, i'd recommend the same sandwich place or, better yet, the copper pot for very fresh italian food, or the super-popular indian place, which sometimes has a line out the door. you can go veg or meat for any of these options, and they're all $7 or less, in some cases. all the food is quite fresh and made by the people that dish it out to you.
on a different front, i also recommend caffe artigiano for your coffee and even lunch. the location on hastings and howe (about 2 or 3 blocks from your hotel) has the most food offerings. their soup is great, and they have panini and big salads too. amazing coffee--even better than some i had in italy.
for dinner, i highly recommend nuba. it's this wonderful, fresh, inventive lebanese food that's made very healthily (very flavourful falafel to order, as well as meat offerings and wraps for lunch). the one on hastings and cambie (downstairs) has a liquor licence and great atmosphere. my favourite is the najib's special (cauliflower that's flash-fried and tossed with lemon juice and salt), tho their lentils are better than you would guess. ask them to add crispy onions to anything, and say yes to the hot sauce (it's not that hot, and adds a wonderful zesty flavour). you could go all out for the feast they offer, or get a wrap pita. the garden falafel is much better than your average falafel stand. LOVE this place.
oh, and one more: mink chocolate cafe is just down the street from you if you keep walking on hornby towards the water. i love the fondue here (ask for more fruit and no cake is my recommendation), tho i've also tried the drinking chocolate, which was quite good.
Thanks for the tip on Le Soleil, shellback. I waited for a bus in the rain in front of it not long ago and dismissed it as a typical soup and sandwichy place, never guessing there were Vietnamese dishes to be had. I still haven't found a Viet place downtown that I would return to so maybe this will be the one -- on my list for Doxa and VIFF for sure!
Walk to Pender St, go eastbound (downhill) all the way into Chinatown. Less than 2 clicks walk:
Sure, Chinatown can be touristy but Vancouver's Chinatown has not (yet) made a caricature of itself. Real hole-in-wall places I recommend:
- New Town Bakery (Pender)
- Ba Le Sandwich Shop (Main @ Georgia)
- Pho Van (upstairs to Ba Le)
- Phnom Penh (Georgia, 1/2 block east of Main)
- Gain Wah (Keefer, 1/2 block east of Main)
- Hon's (Keefer, midblock btwn Main & Gore)
If the OP is schlepping into Chinatown, another option for banh mi is at Golden Garden/Kim Saigon Golden Garden 509 Main St. just south of Pender, 604-685-5623
I'm kind of addicted to their "chicken seasoning" banh mi. They get their bread from Paris Bakery and they do toast it so if that puts you off... I like 'em just fine for $3.25 to go. Grab a Foco basil seed drink to freak yourself out as well.
You can also dine in with a full menu of Vietnamese offerings. The frogs legs are pretty good, and I like the papaya salad but not every item is a home run. Very clean room though and super nice owners (a brother/sister team)
Golden Garden Restaurant
509 Main St, Vancouver, BC V6A2V1, CA