Tojo’s – Hidekazu Tojo is Vancouver’s undisputed sushi master. Each night, in his sprawling, elegant space on West Broadway, he and his team craft sushi, sashimi and cooked items of superior quality. Over 75 per cent of the fish is local, and all is sustainable. Private room seats 40 for corporate business dinners; another section can be devoted to groups of up to 100.
Vij’s – Perhaps Vancouver’s most famous restaurant, Vij’s skillfully blends Indian and western influences into deliciously unique dishes (for instance, curried deviled eggs with bell-pepper fritters and baked jackfruit). Reservations are not accepted, and the line starts early, so arrive in good time – or be prepared to wait.
West – A sleek room sets the scene for West Coast seafood – say, supremely moist steelhead trout – simply and expertly prepared. The three-course, $45 pre-theatre menu is a superb deal, and, coupled with professional service, makes for a night to remember. No private room, but West will accommodate group event buyouts (restaurant seats 66 and chef’s tables seat eight).
C Restaurant – Robert Clark is passionate about seafood and advocates tirelessly for sustainability through the Ocean Wise programme. At his airy space, whose patio overlooks False Creek, such treasures of the sea as buttery cumin-roasted sablefish are the order of the day. The upstairs wine room seats 20, while the mezzanine level hosts groups of 26.
Kingyo – Dominated by a large communal table, with smaller tables ringing the perimeter, Kingyo izakaya bustles with energy. Favourites include melt-in-the-mouth yellowtail sashimi salad with avocado, and thick cubes of creamy tofu jazzed with mild, house-made chile oil and topped with moist chicken. No private room, but can accommodate groups.
Market by Jean-Georges – Nestled in the glittery Shangri-La Hotel, this is the Vancouver outpost of New York superchef Jean-Georges Vongerichten. At breakfast, the beige-toned room is bright and pleasant, and the crisp French toast with caramelized apples starts the day off right. Two private rooms, seating 10 and 15.
Oru – The second-floor room in the Fairmont Pacific Rim is an ideal place for breakfast meetings. Choose from the buffet ($28 and available seven days) or the a la carte menu – perhaps the respectable pancakes with strawberry-rhubarb compote. Private dining room seats 14; the chef’s table, 15.
Joe Fortes – A big, American-style seafood and chop house (acres of dark wood, brass, mirrors) beloved by Vancouver foodies. The oyster bar is considered among the city’s best, and no wonder, when it dishes up creamy Kusshi bivalves from the West Coast. Semi-private wine room seats 20; mezzanine can accommodate groups over 50.
Go Fish – Perched on the False Creek fisherman’s wharf, this popular shack dishes up fish and chips, fish sandwiches and tacos – say, hoisin-inflected Pacific cod, halibut and salmon stuffed into soft shells along with crunchy slaw, coriander-inflected salsa and chipotle crema. Lineups form early.
Granville Island Public Market – Don’t miss this fascinating collection of stalls and shops showcasing gastronomic goodies ranging from fresh produce, seafood and meats, to teas and coffees and prepared items (baked goods, smoked fish, soups, chocolates, gelato, pierogies, cabbage rolls and vegetarian delights, to name a few). Group tours available.