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May 24, 2014 04:51 AM

NJ Hound looking for the best

Hello Vancouver Hounds!

We will be in Vancouver for 6 days from June 30 through July 5. Through my research I am thinking about Kirin and Vij for our two nice meals and visiting the Richmond night market. We are also looking to eat at some food trucks and have dim sum and maybe take a day trip one day.

I welcome any and all thoughts as my fellow hounds have never let me down yet. If you only had six days to eat and visit Vancouver, what would you do? No dietary or monetary restrictions - we like it all from a hole in the wall to fine dining.


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  1. where are you staying? (downtown?)

    remember that our federal national birthday is Canada Day - July 1st (like you have July 4) so that may change some schedules, operating hours etc.

    for inexpensive, great view, casual - Anatolia Express - on the north side of the newest convention center - great views of the harbour and the sea planes and the mountains. make sure you check their operating hours ahead of time ------

    Italian ice cream nearby ---- help me CH's? Name? - is it Bella Gelateria?

    take the SeaBus from downtown over to Lonsdale - there is a semi-vibrant public market with boutiques, bakeries etc - it's also got great views -

    day trips - I suppose a lot of people make a day trip to Whistler - search this board for Whistler. Also look for term "Squamish" which is a small town on the way to Whistler.

    Or take the West Van blue bus to Horseshoe Bay (257 Horseshoe Bay Express) - there is a chain upper mid-price range seafood restaurant with fantastic views, outdoor seating over the ocean, decent-enough food -

    if you want to venture further - get on a BC Ferry from Horseshoe Bay to Langdale (Gibsons, Sunshine Coast) - no car required - just get to Langdale (a very scenic "ferry cruise") ... and take a taxi or transit to "Molly's Reach" ---- there are several little restaurants, including Smittys Oyster House (see Urban Spoon), lots of shops and galleries, a picturesque harbour, etc --- it's an easy day trip - many people commute from Gibsons to work in Vancouver every day.

    ps - in Gibsons, a lot of people are cottage wkd, so it's a bit touristy, however, still has small town appeal- another restaurant that is popular is Sweetwater Bistro.

    9 Replies
    1. re: Georgia Strait

      Tyvm. We are definately going to look into a ferry to Langdale!

      And that Gelatoria sounds great. We've had some excellent gelato all over the world and we have the waistlines to prove it ;o)

      Oh, and so far we are booked into a downtown hotel, but we are still thinking about other options including Hotel Sylvia, or is that still downtown?

      1. re: seal

        I love the Sylvia because it is a bit down at heels (it's quite old by Vancouver standards), at least the original part, and it has quite a few rooms with kitchenettes. It does book up quite far in advance with annually returning visitors. It also is in a lovely location right by the water nearish one entrance to Stanley Park in the West End, which is downtown but not Downtown.

        There are a number of izakaya on Denman and Robson that you might want to check out for a crawl, especially if you end up at the Sylvia. Also on Robson is perhaps my favourite sushi bar, Miko (not to be confused with Miku). They also have great and unusual/more traditional robata
        items. Order a la carte (not the "packages") and bring money. And then the next day go to Santouka for a toroniku ramen lunch, arriving well before noon to avoid the inevitable lines.

        Farmers Apprentice is fun for locavore/experimental. Sometimes the experiments are a bit off and other times they are fabulously spot on. Small plates so an occasional miss is not a huge deal. L'abbatoir is a favourite and gets you into Gastown which is fun for a wander around. Mamie Taylor's impressed me and is a worthy spot in Chinatown, where you should really not eat Chinese food, alas. Best pozole I've had outside of Mexico, great nettle perogies and fine fried chicken. Just the fish dish wasn't stellar. No resos but easy walkin on a weekday before 7.

        Anatolia's Express is a good rec, but if you have a car, the mother ship in Burnaby has a great wood fired oven that produces great pides and the most iconic lavash I've had yet. Also in Burnaby is the Pear Tree, a totally unexpected traditional yet modern upscale restaurant which I'm kicking myself I didn't make it out to sooner (it's been there 17 years but you'd never know that from the contemporary d├ęcor and service).

        A ramble around the food courts in Richmond is lots of fun but you need a car for that too.

        1. re: grayelf

          yes - agree with Sylvia for a more local kind of experience - at one point it was an apartment building - we have a senior family friend who grew up in the West End (delivered groceries by bicycle as a kid in the 40's - a supermarket at Thurlow and Davie approx) - he told me that their one big special restaurant outing as kids with parents together was to go to the Sylvia - i think the resto was on top floor.

          nice sunset views from lounge/restaurant at Sylvia - beach across the st. Book soon - get a bigger room with nice view - some of the rooms are all divided up from former apartments so kind of small and cramped.

          it's definitely a character property.

          (if you are a cat fancier - look up the cute book called Mr Got-to-Go)

          1. re: Georgia Strait

            If we stay there we will surely check out the book as we have two cats.

            Grayelf - thanks for weighing in. If my old memory serves I believe I have seen some of your posts on the NYC and/or Vegas boards as well. We love Raku in Vegas and will look into Miko.

            Thanks for the link Charles Yu, that site looks like a worthwhile read and I'm glad for the english as my Cantonese is limited to some food words and hello and thank you ;o)

            1. re: seal

              well ... apparently there are three (3) cat books involving the venerable Sylvia Hotel

              1. the original Mr Got To Go
              2. then Mr Got to Go and Arnie (Arnie being a yapper lapper yorkie ; )
              3. and then - Mr Got to Go - where are you - sounds sad. Don't want to say more. (spoiler)

              our so cal family & friends like the sylvia very much - they are low key - very unstructured - so this suits them - it is like any vintage building (or car or person) - has it's quirks, eccentricities, and loveabilities ; )

              the breakfast is decent - predictable - great view of ocean from some tables.

              if you're low-key people, I'd check it out. And soon ... as it books up with all the return / fodors type people.

              start here re: books

              1. re: seal

                seal, I haven't done more than drop by NYC and Vegas boards but I do post on SF Bay Area and Portland, Oregon frequently. Perhaps that is where you saw my name? Anyhoo, I'm not sure how Miko would compare to Raku. It's very old school/traditional in that you don't really interact with the itamae, and the servers will know what is best today. The room is really casual, with pictures of the celebrities who've dined there and blond wood booths. Pretty small too so grab a reso if you can. Here's an old menu but it's pretty representative: There may be a few specials on the white boards as well.

                1. re: grayelf

                  Tyvm for the menu. It looks interesting and there was none to be found online in my limited search.

                  Looks like my old brain is failing me on where I saw your name, as I have been to both Portland and SF - guess I need to train my brain some more with some Purplearn. Do they have Purplearn by you?

                  Anyway, thanks all for the great ideas.

                  1. re: seal

                    You're welcome, and don't beat yourself up about your memory. Just this morning, I was reading an article that posited our older brains take longer to retrieve information correctly because there is so much more data on the "hard drive." Seriously.

                    Miko has almost no online presence, another facet of their old schoolishness I guess.

                    Off to google Purplearn...

                    1. re: grayelf

                      My memory is like a flash memory stick. In now, gone nanoseconds later .....

      2. GrayElf - what is that restaurant - would be walking distance thru the leafy side streets of West End from Sylvia - has a patio - I remember it's been mentioned on the "best outdoor patios" kind of threads in the past summer or maybe 2012. I believe it is just west of Denman St.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Georgia Strait

          answering myself here - I think I am thinking of Adesso

          I have never been to Adesso - does anyone have recent experience there?

          however, I have been to the nearby italian Tavola a couple of times - so I've probably done my duty there ----

          1. re: Georgia Strait

            I live close by and would call Adesso a neighbourhood restaurant. It's got a nice patio, quiet and leafy. If you are in the area it is worth a visit. So is the English Bay Cactus Club for a bottle of wine and sunset watching right on the beach.

        2. Check out this website for best award winning Chinese food/dishes/ideas.

          1. here's a recent news item about the gelato shop I mentioned in a prev post on your thread

            CBC is our public broadcaster in Canada


            1. James, of Bella Gelateria, was recognized at the international gelato awards in Florence, 2013 and 2014. He has some lovely, lovely flavors. And espresso :)