If you haven’t yet made your reservations for Dine Out Vancouver, you’d better hurry, as we’re sure that “sold out” signs will start to appear soon, if they haven’t already.
Over the next few days we’ll give you our suggestions as to where we’d spend our Dine Out dollars.
What does it take to get a ‘Belly’s Best’ pick?
Here’s the criteria:
First of all, we looked at value (food, ambiance, service), based on what we’ve found at the restaurant before and on their Dine Out menu; we also looked at the calibre of cuisine, and creativity behind the menu—and that includes the wine suggestions and how well they’re paired. And, if you’re on a budget, ask about the wine prices in advance … See our comments here.
If the resto is Zagat rated they also likely made the cut …
No, we don’t have time to check everyone’s wine program but our advice is that you do pay attention to the quality of the wine on offer and the price per glass. Some restaurants are pouring ‘flights’, that is: three small (usually two ounce) pours for, say, around $10. It’s a smart idea, as it allows you to enjoy a small taste of wine with each course—and not drink too much.
Bottom line: If the restaurant hasn’t selected any wines to go appear on their Tourism Vancouver Dine Out menu listing, you won’t find it here.
Given the new reality of the more rigorous .05 anti drinking and driving enforcement, we encourage you to use Tourism Vancouver’s search by neighbourhood feature, as it just makes sense to walk home if you can.
You’ll have a much more enjoyable evening if you don’t have to worry about driving—so consider transit or taxis if you’re going any distance. Or, if you’re coming in from out of town (especially if you work downtown) make use of Dine Out’s hotel discount program. A good night’s sleep easily trumps an expensive cab ride …
Here are our 10 selections from the $18 category
Ashiana Tandoori – One of Vancouver’s original and more authentic Indian rooms
Au Petit Chavignol – Go for the cheese. Stay for the Riesling.
Bistro 101 at PICA – If dinners are sold out, book in for lunch. Best deal going.
Chutney Villa – Welcoming and progressive South Indian with good vegetarian options
Hidden Tasting Bar – Aptly name secret spot tucked away in the Westin Grand
Rocky Mountain Flatbread – Sustainable, healthy, Ocean Wise. Overall smart. Kid friendly, too.
Society Dining Lounge – Different. Zany Yaletown hotspot. Fun, tongue in cheek comfort food. Go for the Salisbury steak.
Trattoria Italian Kitchen – Smart ‘n sassy neighbourhood Italian. No reservations though.
Westward Ho at UBC Golf Club – Worth the trek for this kind of value in a scenic setting
Wild Rice – Smart, east meets west on Chinatown’s edge. Wine Savvy too.
Looking for a great way to taste a cross section of solid Dine Out deals with some serious BC VQA wines—and help out a good cause at the same time?
Grab a ticket to Inside Taste—Jan 20—where ten of Dine Out’s best go head to head at the Vancouver Aquarium for the best ‘sustainable plate’ food and wine pairing. Great space. Good tastes. Proceeds to Ocean Wise…
Plus, The Hired Belly is judging, so come say ‘hi’.