Eat your way around the world in Vancouver

Craving something different for dinner? The city’s abundance of culturally diverse restaurants can take your palate on a world tour – no passport required. [Thai dish at Maenam. Photo by Hamid Attie]

Maenam

1
1938 4th Avenue W, Vancouver, BC V6J 1M5

There’s a very good reason Vancouver Magazine awarded Maenam the coveted Restaurant of the Year title for 2016 – the food is simply incredible. Owner and chef Angus An expertly balances the sweet, sour, spicy and salty flavours of Thai cuisine. Based on traditional recipes, his dishes use modern techniques along with as many local, sustainable, organic ingredients as possible. Each year, An returns to Thailand for several weeks, to discover new flavours and rediscover old favourites.

Vij's

2
3106 Cambie Street, Vancouver, BC V5Z 2W2

Vikram Vij is Vancouver’s undisputed champion of Indian cuisine, with his long-running Vij’s restaurant, more casual Rangoli, My Shanti in Surrey and Vij’s Railway Express food truck. Despite his busy schedule – opening new eateries, writing books, appearing on Dragons’ Den – he often welcomes diners in person to his establishments. Top pick at Vij’s is the lamb “popsicles” in fenugreek cream curry, but you can’t go wrong with anything from the inventive menu. The restaurant doesn’t accept reservations (not even from the likes of Harrison Ford or Pierre Trudeau, reportedly), but Vancouverites and celebrities agree that the food is worth the wait.

Tojo's Restaurant

3
1133 Broadway W, Vancouver, BC V6H 1G1

Way back in 1988, when Vancouver hadn’t yet dreamed of becoming an international culinary destination, Hidekazu Tojo opened the original Tojo’s Restaurant, a few blocks from its current location. Since then, the charismatic chef has seen the popularity of Japanese cuisine skyrocket on the West Coast, thanks in part to his award-winning eatery. For an unparalleled treat, order the omakase, in which the chef chooses and creates all the dishes, inspired by the day’s fresh ingredients. Fun fact: Tojo invented both the California roll and the B.C. roll.

Forkhill House Irish Bistro

4
1616 Alberni St, Vancouver, BC V6G 1A6

If you think Ireland’s only contribution to world cuisine is green beer, then you need to visit Forkhill House to reeducate your taste buds. On offer are old Irish favourites with a contemporary twist. Always popular is the Irish seafood chowder (a creamy mix of salmon, cod, mussels, prawns and bacon), as well as the lamb shank, beef tenderloin and Irish stew. And of course no menu from the Emerald Isle would be complete without yorkies or the Scotch egg.

The Greek by Anatoli

5
1043 Mainland St, Vancouver, BC V6B 5P9

Downtown dwellers often seem reluctant to venture across the ocean – to the North Shore, that is – so they rejoiced when the owners of Anatoli Souvlaki in North Van opened The Greek by Anatoli in Yaletown. The newer restaurant lives up to the reputation of its popular older sibling, offering flawless versions of Greek favourites such as souvlaki, calamari, moussaka, dolmathes, keftedes and spanakopita. For the sweet tooth, decadent dessert offerings include baklava and lukomathes.

Osteria Savio Volpe Italian Restaurant

6
615 Kingsway, Vancouver, BC V5T 3K5

Vancouver Magazine’s Best New Restaurant for 2017 truly is as good as all the hype. Located in the foodie hub of Fraserhood, Osteria Savio Volpe serves simple Italian fare, without pretension or fanfare, made from fresh local ingredients. The menu changes frequently, but always features handmade pastas, homemade gelato and rich coffees with an old world feel. If Nonna wouldn’t serve it, then you won’t find it here.

Las Margaritas Mexican Restaurant

7
1999 4th Avenue W, Vancouver, BC V6J 1M7

Make a run for the (Mexican) border at Las Margaritas, where tequila is king and enticing dishes are queen. Margaritas range from classic to pomegranate to jalapeño, while the menu features all the quesadillas, fajitas, tacos, burritos and chimichangas you could hope for. The salsa and guacamole are made fresh each day, and even the tortilla chips are housemade. Buen apetito!

Happy hour. After work. The weekend. Any time can be the time for a cold glass of beer. Raise a glass to these friendly establishments in Abbotsford. Cheers! [Photo courtesy of Field House Brewing]
Good food, good friends, good beer – these hot spots in Chilliwack have it all. Have a seat, grab a pint and let the good times roll. [Photo courtesy of Old Yale Brewing]
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