HOME > Chowhound > B.C. (inc. Vancouver) >

recommendations for a nice dinner and dim sum

abbydh Jun 18, 2014 07:07 PM

My husband and I are in town for two nights and want to dine one night at an upscale restaurant and the other night at a local favorite. We hear the dim sum is great in Vancouver!
For the nice evening, we like unique flavor mixes and unusual twists on classic food. Can't do sushi (pregnant), not too interested in Italian. Looking for the second night to be Asian food, someplace casual. Looking forward to hearing y'all's recs!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. c oliver RE: abbydh Jun 18, 2014 09:11 PM

    I'm looking forward to replies regarding dim sum for dinner. Dim sum in the cities I've visited is a breakfast/lunch meal so will be interested to read about how it differs in Vancouver.

    1. LotusRapper RE: abbydh Jun 19, 2014 12:15 AM

      Where in town will you be staying, and is a car available to you ?

      3 Replies
      1. re: LotusRapper
        abbydh RE: LotusRapper Jun 19, 2014 04:26 AM

        We are downtown and have a rental car. Thanks!

        1. re: abbydh
          Florentine RE: abbydh Jun 19, 2014 10:59 AM

          Dinesty (on Robson, one block east of Denman Street) could be fun for casual Shanghainese Taiwanese. They're famous for their xiao long bao (soup dumplings).


          1. re: Florentine
            abbydh RE: Florentine Jun 19, 2014 02:19 PM

            that sounds delicious! thank you!

      2. grayelf RE: abbydh Jun 19, 2014 01:00 PM

        Take a look at L'abbatoir for your first evening. Ask for the back area if you want it a bit quieter. Cantonese dim sum is typically limited to the morning/lunch. There are some Shanghainese dimsum items at those restos available at night eg Dinesty as mentioned.

        9 Replies
        1. re: grayelf
          abbydh RE: grayelf Jun 19, 2014 01:11 PM

          Great rec! What do you think of West or Le Crocodile (which is not very modern)?
          If we want casual the second night, I understand Asian food in your city is AWESOME. Instead of Dim Sum, what's a good Asian restaurant?
          If you would also recommend lunch Dim Sum...what's a good place?

          1. re: abbydh
            grayelf RE: abbydh Jun 19, 2014 01:23 PM

            West hasn't blown me away but I've only been once in the last two years. Le Croc is great "true French" but not perhaps terribly specific to Vancouver. Neither strike me as likely to fulfil your request for unique flavor mixes and unusual twists on classic food.

            Going out for most Chinese cuisine here at dinner is a bit challenging if there are just two of you. Dim sum is easier in a duo as the dishes are much smaller. I like Kirin at 12th and Cambie -- be sure to make a reso if you are going on the weekend (that goes for any dim sum place; sometimes you will wait even WITH a reso!)

            1. re: grayelf
              abbydh RE: grayelf Jun 19, 2014 01:57 PM

              You would describe L'Abattoir as Vancouver-Frenchish?
              Actually, for lunch, my mom will be joining us and a baby as well. It will be during the week. :) So still try Kirin?

              1. re: grayelf
                abbydh RE: grayelf Jun 19, 2014 01:58 PM

                how would you describe food that's specific to Vancouver?

                1. re: abbydh
                  Sam Salmon RE: abbydh Jun 19, 2014 06:30 PM


                  1. re: Sam Salmon
                    abbydh RE: Sam Salmon Jun 20, 2014 08:47 AM

                    this is a heavy on alcohol place, right? Ill be too jelly (prego)

                    1. re: abbydh
                      Sam Salmon RE: abbydh Jun 20, 2014 03:02 PM

                      Yes it's a bar with food but the food and the atmosphere are-as an adept here once posted- 'very Vancouver'.

                      No one will force you to order a drink it's not that kind of a place.

                2. re: grayelf
                  abbydh RE: grayelf Jun 19, 2014 02:00 PM

                  what about Rain City?....overhyped?
                  Is it worth eating at the Teahouse in the park?
                  What about the Observatory on Grouse?
                  Thanks a bunch!

                  1. re: abbydh
                    Sam Salmon RE: abbydh Jun 19, 2014 06:29 PM

                    Tourist traps all-avoid, avoid, avoid.

            2. moyenchow RE: abbydh Jun 19, 2014 02:05 PM

              In addition to Greyelf's excellent recommendations, I would like to suggest the following for your consideration:

              Dim Sum:
              - Dynasty Seafood Restaurant http://www.dynasty-restaurant.ca/

              For Traditional Chinese Dinner:
              - I would also recommend Dynasty Seafood Restaurant
              - Jade Seafood Restaurant in Richmond, especially if they still have their Tapas Menu http://www.jaderestaurant.ca/menu_din...

              For maybe modern Chinese which may work for you as a couple:
              -Bao Bei http://bao-bei.ca/
              -Bambuddha http://bambudda.ca/

              For Upscale, are you avoiding seafood all together or just raw seafood?
              If cooked seafood is ok, I would recommend
              -Blue Water Cafe http://bluewatercafe.net/
              - Yew http://www.yewseafood.com/?src=ppc_go...

              5 Replies
              1. re: moyenchow
                abbydh RE: moyenchow Jun 19, 2014 02:21 PM

                WOW, awesome. You Canadians are the NICEST ppl! (right next to us Texans :)

                No raw, and some seafood is ok when pregnant, depends on mercury levels.

                1. re: abbydh
                  moyenchow RE: abbydh Jun 19, 2014 02:49 PM

                  Then NO TUNA for you then ;)

                  Both Blue Water Cafe and Yew will work fine. Please consider our local seafood of Sablefish, Halibut, Salmon and Dungeoness Crab which all should be OK regarding Mercury.

                  I would describe Vancouver food as one that focuses on local ingredients (land & sea) with an Asian influence.

                  I like the view of the city you can get from the top of Grouse Mountain, not so much the food.

                  1. re: moyenchow
                    abbydh RE: moyenchow Jun 19, 2014 02:59 PM

                    I figured it was one of those places where the view is great, and they know it so the food is just overpriced. LOL.

                    I guess we can go in and my hubby and mom can have a cocktail! milk for me and baby!

                    1. re: abbydh
                      KarenDW RE: abbydh Jun 20, 2014 12:16 AM

                      lots of mocktails in this town :)

                    2. re: moyenchow
                      LotusRapper RE: moyenchow Jun 19, 2014 04:49 PM

                      "Then NO TUNA for you"

                      Do that again, as if you're on Seinfeld ;-)

                2. i
                  islandgirl RE: abbydh Jun 20, 2014 02:00 PM

                  I'll throw Chambar into the mix for the more upscale night out option. I remember having some fantastic "mocktails" there when I was pregnant. Not on the bar list but when I asked for something non-alcoholic they asked if for my drink preferences (fruity/sour/citrusy, etc) and then surprised me with the bartenders creations. Delicious everytime and I love the food, service and atmosphere.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: islandgirl
                    abbydh RE: islandgirl Jun 20, 2014 02:05 PM

                    nice! Yelp says its Belgium Moroccan...how does that worK?

                  2. a
                    abbydh RE: abbydh Jun 20, 2014 02:15 PM

                    OK I booked Chambar and L'Abattoir for dinners. woohoo! super excited. now need help with a lunch that would work between Granville Island and Grouse. Should we just eat at the market? Is Go Fish Ocean Emporium good?

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: abbydh
                      jerkstore RE: abbydh Jun 20, 2014 02:54 PM

                      I think Edible Canada is a perfectly decent spot for lunch on Granville Island:


                      Though it's been a year or so since I've visited, perhaps others have more up-to-date recommendations.

                      1. re: abbydh
                        Philx RE: abbydh Jun 20, 2014 03:00 PM

                        I like Go Fish myself but if you are in the area call ahead and order so that you can avoid the lineup. Very casual but sitting outside by the wharf on a nice day is pretty sweet. I like their tacos and oyster po' boy as well as the regular fish and chips. Recent report by a friend was that edible canada was just ok and overpriced for what he got - just one man's opinion though.

                        1. re: Philx
                          abbydh RE: Philx Jun 20, 2014 03:06 PM

                          Thanks!! Although being a Texan married to a Cajun from New Orleans we better skip the tacos and PO boys lol;)

                      Show Hidden Posts