Dine Out Vancouver 2012 -picks & tips

Here is a primer on how to choose the best restaurants in Vancouver for Dine Out that runs January 20 – February 5th. This year there are 231 restaurants participating which is the largest ever for Dine Out Vancouver, that means there are a lot of choices for you all to discover! The prix-fixe menu are in one of three price points – $18, $28, or $38. For a full list of restaurants and menus, look HERE but come back after you have finished reading this article.

Crispy Ceci at Campagnolo

Buttercup Squash Risotto at Campagnolo

I took part in a media tour the other night to preview a few of the restaurants dishes for Tourism Vancouver’s 10th Anniversary Dine Out. On the tour our group visited Campagnolo (I loved the Crispy Ceci and I would have eaten the whole bowl if I did not have to share; as well the Risotto was rich in taste and delicious), Kitsilano Daily Kitchen (the Cauliflower soup was divine and more so with the house baked bread they served, dipping the bread in the soup was yum) and Bacchus in the Wedgewood Hotel for dessert.

Roasted Cream of Cauliflower Soup at Kitsilano Daily Kitchen

Cornish Game Hen at Kitsilano Daily Kitchen

Here is my take of the restaurants you should try, the buzz, the value and why.

I have read all the restaurant menus, and all the restaurants that I am telling you about are ones that I have eaten at myself, for many you may find reviews of those restaurants at VancouverFoodster.com, by going to the search box in the top right corner of the page and searching the respective restaurants.

First off – some tips – choose different times than you would normally dine out, by selecting earlier 5pm or later after 8:30pm times you will have a better chance in getting in to some of the popular restaurants than hitting refresh on the 6-7pm time slot. If you have kids and you need to get a baby sitter so that you can enjoy date night, change the night and look at Monday-Wednesday so that you get the restaurant that you want as opposed to settling for the restaurant you don’t want on a Friday or Saturday night.

Many of the restaurants are offering BC VQA Wine Pairings as well as Kronenbourg Beer Pairings for an extra cost with the meals, and in many of the restaurants the pairings provide great value.

Second — my picks on the restaurants that provide the best value for the money as well as the best menu, in my opinion.

$18 Menu (3 courses)

Beachside Forno

Doolin’s Irish Pub

Dunn’s Famous

Irish Heather Gastropub

Mahony & Sons Coal Harbour

Pink Elephant Thai

Rocky Mountain Flatbread Co

Sanafir Restaurant and Lounge

Trattoria Italian Kitchen

Urban Thai Bistro

Westward Ho

Wild Rice

$28 Menu (3 courses)

Abigail’s Party

American Grille at Vancouver Airport Marriott

Banana Leaf in Kitsilano

Baru Latino

Bistro Pastis

Café Pacifica at Pan Pacific Hotel

Campagnolo Restaurant

Carthage Café

Cento Notti at the Opus Hotel

Cork & Fin

Dockside Restaurant at the Granville Island Hotel

EBO Restaurant

Edible Canada

Fleuri Restaurant in Sutton Place Hotel

Fraiche Restaurant

Gusto di Quattro

Hamilton Street Grill

Hapa Izakaya Kitsilano

Lobby Restaurant at the Pinnacle Pier Hotel

Maenam Restaurant

The Oakwood

O’Doul’s Restaurant at the Listel Hotel

Refuel

Salmon & Bannock

The Teahouse

Via Veneto

$38 Menu (3 courses)

C Restaurant  (*4 courses)

Café Il Nido

Carver’s Steak House at Executive Airport Plaza Hotel

Diva at the Met

Federico’s Supper Club

Fraîche

Glowbal Grill

Goldfish Pacific Kitchen

Hapa Umi

Joe Fortes Seafood & Chop House

Kitsilano Daily Kitchen

MARKET by Jean-Georges at Shangri-la Hotel

Miku Restaurant

Provence Marinaside

Provence Mediterranean Grill

Q4 al Centro

Raincity Grill

Q4 Ristorante

Tramonto at the River Rock Hotel

West Restaurant

Yew Restaurant at the Four Seasons Hotel

View Menus Online

Honey and Poached Pear Creme Brulee at Bacchus in Wedgewood Hotel

Following our visit to Kitsilano Daily Kitchen we headed back to Bacchus in the Wedgewood Hotel for dessert and I indulged on a Honey and Poached Pear Creme Brulee along with a Dark Chocolate Ganache & Praline Tart. This was my first Tourism Vancouver Media Dine Out preview which provided me with a taste of what is to come in Dine Out 2012.

By: Richard Wolak