Tag Archives: Vancouver

Canadian Restaurant Locations from Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives

Guy Fieri’s road tripping adventures on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives have taken him all across the United States and beyond. More recent seasons included stops in Cuba, Spain and Mexico, but before he ventured to those countries, he headed north of the border to Canada.

Guy has sampled some of the most eclectic cuisine that reflects our country’s diversity, from Chinese hand-pulled noodles to Jewish deli-smoked meats. Here are the Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives Canadian locations that you can visit in Toronto and Vancouver.

Jethro’s Fine Grub (Vancouver, BC)

In Season 12, Guy was treated to homemade pulled pork with slaw at Jethro’s Fine Grub. When you’re in Vancouver,  stop by for breakfast and try the Gold Rush; pancakes stuffed with bananas, pecans and streusel.

The Rosedale Diner (Toronto, ON)

Season 17 brought Guy to Toronto with a visit to the Rosedale Diner for Asian pork ribs. Brunch is a popular time to visit this diner for a classic Eggs Benny or scrumptious chicken and waffles.

No waffling about today’s brunch choice.

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The Tomahawk (Vancouver, BC)

Season 13 included a visit to Vancouver’s Tomahawk for some roast beef, a French dip, and a steak and mushroom pie. This legendary diner is also known for its Skookum Chief Burger, made with an organic beef patty, Yukon-style bacon, a free-run egg, aged Cheddar and a sliced hot dog.

Have you ever tried our Skookum Burger? #Tomahawk BBQ #Burgers #North Vancouver

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The Stockyards (Toronto, ON)

The Stockyards was one of Guy’s Toronto stops in Season 17. They were excited to show off their burgers, fried chicken and mouth-watering BLT, but their BBQ smoked ribs are one of the main reasons that locals flock to this smokehouse and larder.

Falconetti’s (Vancouver, BC)

While in Vancouver during Season 13, Guy sampled the handmade Thai chicken sausage at Falconetti’s. This east side bar and grill is known for its delicious eats and live music to entertain you throughout the week.

The Ace (Toronto, ON)

A Season 16 episode, ‘Layers of Flavor’ included a visit to The Ace in Toronto. Guy tried their pork belly, the mac and cheese burger, and a Christmas burger, but their Clubhouse is where it’s at when lunchtime rolls around.

Meat and Bread (Vancouver, BC)

In Season 13’s “Old Faves, New Craves,” Guy paid a call to Vancouver’s Meat and Bread. The porchetta sandwich was on the menu, followed up by a decadent maple bacon ice cream sandwich.

The Lakeview (Toronto, ON)

During Guy’s Season 16 trip to Toronto, stuffed French toast, a cornflake chicken club and a pie milkshake were ready to be devoured at The Lakeview. This restored diner serves up diner classics, including a banana split perfect for sharing.

Peaceful Restaurant (Vancouver, BC)

Family kitchens were the focus of the Season 13 episode that brought Guy to Peaceful Restaurant in Vancouver. Some of their recipes have been passed down from generations, including their fresh hand-pulled noodles and beef rolls.

#dandannoodles #foodie #fodgasam #chinesefood #spicy #delicious???? #sichuan #nomnom

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The Red Wagon Cafe (Vancouver, BC)

Guy dug into some pulled pork pancakes with a side of Jack Daniels syrup at Vancouver’s Red Wagon Cafe in Season 13. The savoury shredded pork is featured in other dishes on the menu, including their ooey, gooey mac and cheese.

Caplansky’s (Toronto, ON)

Authentic Jewish deli fare was the star of Season 16’s ‘Real Deal Roots’ that brought Guy to Caplansky’s Deli. Their College Street location has closed, but you can still sample smoked meat sandwiches, knish and brisket at Toronto’s Pearson Airport.

The Reubenesque @ #caplanskys #reuben #deli #meaty ????: @hmdfood666

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Save-On-Meats (Vancouver, ON)

Vancouver’s butcher shop, turned bakery and diner, Save-On-Meats, welcomed Guy in Season 13. Their menu includes classics like turkey pot pie and decadent burgers, but selections like this Ranchero Shrimp Benny really shine.

Ranchero shrimp benny for the win!

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Best Places to Eat in Vancouver: Top Chef Canada’s Felix Zhou

As a classically trained chef and the co-owner and chef at Heritage Asian Eatery in Vancouver, Felix Zhou knows a thing or two about using his creativity and background in order to take a dish to the next level. It’s something he’s been doing since he was a kid when he won a scholarship for a cooking class and realized what he was destined to do.

At his eatery, Felix is all about offering a new perspective on Asian fast food and snacks, something he hones while eating out as some of the city’s other delicious, Asian-inspired restaurants. When it comes to a delicious night out on the town, here are Felix’s top picks.

Related: Read Felix Zhou’s full bio here.

PiDGiN

A restaurant in historic Gastown, PiDGiN refuses to sway towards either casual or fine dining. Instead, it attempts to redefine the language of dining altogether with a menu that encompasses multiple cuisines and cultures all at once.

“My favorite dish at PiDGiN is Korean rice cake, gochujang Bolognese and spiced hazelnut,” Felix raves.

korean rice cake, gochujang bolognese, hondashi, hazelnut // #pidginfood

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Maenam

If it’s traditional Thai food you’re seeking, look no further than Chef Angus An’s fresh and seasonal menu, which boasts everything from family-style dining to his own riffs on popular Thai street food. This one gets bonus points for a Chef’s tasting menu that can also accommodate the vegetarians out there.

“My favorite dish at Maenam is pad Thai,” Felix says.

Phnom Penh

You won’t have trouble spotting this family-run restaurant in the heart of Chinatown. It’s  traditional Cambodian or Vietnamese fare draws lines at the door, making it a must-visit spot.

“My favorite dish at Phnom Penh are the chicken wings,” says Felix.

The Pear Tree

Owners Scott and Stephanie Jaeger run a relaxed and comfortable dining room that’s perfect for special occasions, catch-ups, or a fancier weeknight meal. Their seasonal and sustainable menu of Canadian fare has been impressing diners since 1998; in fact, in 2005 the duo had to shut down for 40 days in order to double the size of their dining room in order to accommodate all of the guests.

“My favorite dish is the lobster cappuccino,” says Felix, referring to the lobster bisque foam with dashi custard and poached lobster.

Santouka

The Vancouver location of this worldwide franchise imports big and bold Japanese flavours into small, signature bowls of heaven. Hokkaido Ramen Santouka is renowned for his delicate shio ramen, which to this day remains handcrafted with minimal salt or artificial seasonings.

“It’s comforting to walk into a ramen house; the warmth and smell reminds me of being back home [in China],” Felix says. “Noodles have a very dear place in my heart. My favourite dish is the santouka ramen, spicy miso extra char siu. You can have it all in one bowl of ramen. [It’s] delicious, warm [and] a little spicy.”

Get Chef Mark Singson’s Top 5 Eats in Vancouver

See Chef Trevor Bird’s Top 10 Eats in Vancouver

Best Places to Eat in Vancouver: Top Chef Canada’s Mark Singson

Vancouver’s Mark Singson knows what goes into a great menu. He did, after all, help to curate the menu for AnnaLena, a place critics have called one of the country’s best new restaurants.

These days the Top Chef Canada hopeful is striking out on his own as a caterer, but he’s scoping out the best and brightest culinary hot spots in hopes of one day opening his own eatery. Given his personal investment in learning what makes a restaurant truly great, you know that this chef’s picks for the best places to eat in Vancouver are on point.

Related: Read Mark Singson’s full bio here.

Zakkushi on Denman

Charcoal grilled skewers are the name of the game at this Japanese “Izakaya” style restaurant. There are more than 30 different kinds, from meat and seafood to vegetables and everything in between. Craving something different? Mark swears by the small plates with big flavour.

“If you order 12 items it’s like having a cheeky 12-course dinner. I basically just love to snack,” he says. “Most of the items on the menu are snacks on a stick cooked over charcoal: grilled dried squid, grilled chicken hearts and liver, raw octopus with wasabi stems and nori.”

담에는 1인 1도쿠리????

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Guu Garden

Warm woods and lots of natural sunlight greet customers at this Nelson Street location of the popular franchise, where a menu of Japanese creations and tapas are the perfect thing for groups and dates alike. And don’t forget to order some of the garden’s original beer or sake.

“I really like the pork jowl with yuzukosho and mozzarella with a dashi broth,” Mark says. “Most of the items on the menu are really tasty.”

Mr. Red Café

Chef Hong Duong’s main goal at this eatery is to bring the flavours and memories of Northern Vietnam to Vancouver, one plate at a time. That includes traditional dumplings, salads, noodle soups and various vermicelli.

“Mr. Red Cafe serves a steamed rice cake dish with ground prawns, topped with crunchy bread bits and fried shallots,” Mark says, explaining the nostalgic dishes remind him of food he used to eat in the Philippines.

Phnom Penh

This family-run restaurant in the heart of Chinatown may have started out as a noodle bar, but today it’s a must-hit spot for anyone looking to sample traditional Cambodian or Vietnamese fare. It’s no wonder people are often lined up out the door to eat here.

“Chicken wings and luk lak beef on rice with a fried egg [are my favourite dishes],” Mark raves.

Kumare Restaurant + Bakery

This Filipino eatery is a place where good friends can come together over great food. With culinary inspirations from Philippines and Thailand, these dishes are as varied as they are flavourful, and the menu boasts something for everyone, from boiled chicken and fresh coconut meat to various incarnations of noodles.

“Kumare serves Filipino food that is almost as good as my mom’s,” says Mark.

Read Chef Felix Zhou’s Top 5 Eats in Vancouver

See Chef Trevor Bird’s Top 10 Eats in Vancouver

7 Most Indulgent Desserts You Need to Try from The Baker Sisters

There are desserts, and then there are unforgettable, show-stopping masterpieces that are so good you can’t get them out of your head. Considering that Rachel Smith and Jean Parker have travelled far and wide in search of the best bakeries for their series The Baker Sisters, it’s safe to say that when it comes to indulgent desserts they definitely know a thing or two.

From deep-dish dessert pizza that’s so indulgent you won’t be able to stop yourself after just one slice, to a mousse cake that’s like a giant chocolate-wafer-hazelnut confection that goes by a certain name, here are some of their top picks from across the country.

1. Chocolate Peanut Butter Caramel Corn Crunch Cupcakes at Crave Bakery in Calgary


Click here to get the
Caramel Peanut Popcorn Topping recipe.

It’s like the bakers at Crave took the wishes of every sweet-toothed consumer out there and combined their cravings into one delightful cupcake with this mouthful of a concoction. Between the chocolaty peanut butter, the salty popcorn and the sweet caramel, this is exactly what we picture an explosion of flavours to physically look (and taste!) like.

“It had the biggest name and in one little cupcake, it delivered,” Jean says. “You had your two frostings playing with each other, the chocolate and the peanut butter. Their cake recipe itself was like grandma’s and it was spot-on perfect…Then we made our own caramel corn, and put that on top of it. It was little and stacked up, but it was crazy good.”

2. The Dark Knight Cake at Chess Piece Patisserie & Café in Fredericton

This Fredericton-based Parisian style café may offer a wide range of baked goods and pastries, but for the Baker Sisters one thing truly stood out: the Dark Knight Cake that Jean got to recreate for the show.

She raves:  “It’s a mousse cake, praline in the inside, and covered in a chocolate glaze. The flavours, the textures, everything about it…”

“Your fork slid through it,” Rachel adds. “It was so indulgent because of those layers of chocolate.”

3. The London Fog Cake at Cadeaux Bakery in Vancouver

In terms of making classic hot beverages come to life in cake form, Eleanor Chow Waterfall has an instant, indulgent winner with her London Fog cake.

“There were 37 steps to make it,” Jean recalls. “Eleanor was awesome. One cool chick, but very precise and would not skip or take any shortcuts. It took a long time. I think there were nine layers of cake; it was huge, and it was perfect. It was infused with this tea, silky, light and fluffy, really high.” No wonder the sisters thought it was to die for.

4. The Amazing Schnecken at Trafiq in Vancouver

We may never be able to look at cinnamon buns with a fair eye (or taste them with the same palate) again after witnessing the magic that went into making the Schnecken at this cafe. Rachel goes so far as to call the treat, which is reminiscent of a Chelsea bun, “insane.”

“Even in the show when I’m doing my tasting, I turn to the baker and I’m like, ‘I need to take a private minute,’” she says. “It was buttery. It was ooey goey. You pour your caramel on the bottom and then your nuts, and then you put your buns on it. He actually froze his buns and then sliced it, and then baked it frozen because what ends up happening is it doesn’t over-bake the dough. So the dough is still really soft and the outside of it gets that firm, crispy that you want. And it was huge.”

Get the recipe for the amazing schnecken here. 

5. The Deep Dish Pizza at Junked Food Co. in Toronto

You don’t have to travel to Chicago to experience delightful deep-dish pizza, especially if you’re looking for a sweeter riff on the original. The crew at Junked Food Co are renowned for their sweet eats, especially since they’re open late and speak to a very specific, sweet-toothed crowd.


Rachel eyeing a slice of that dessert deep dish pizza made by Junked Food Co.’s Brian McKilligan.

“That deep dish pizza was crazy. These men know exactly what they’re doing and who they’re selling to,” Rachel says. “This deep-dish dessert pizza had everything—marshmallow goo, chocolate, caramel, gummy candies. It’s got it all.”

6. Wild Strawberry Brioche Bun with Cream Cheese Icing at The Old Apothecary Bakery & Café in Halifax

Sometimes the most indulgent offerings are the ones that actually bring us back to the basics thanks to the simplicity of their ingredients. That was definitely the case for the sisters when they travelled to Halifax and made these wild strawberry brioche buns.

“It’s not terribly fancy, but it was a brioche wild strawberry bun, like a cinnamon roll, but it was made with wild strawberries from Halifax,” Jean recalls. “The brioche dough was slathered in this cream cheese icing. It was so fresh and lovely and decadent.”

Want to see more indulgent treats? Take our delicious quiz: Pick a Dessert and We’ll Tell You Where You Should Live. You’re gonna want some cake after, though.

Canada’s Multicultural Food City Is…

With its soaring mountains and beautiful ocean views, Vancouver boasts an enviable landscape, but for You Gotta Eat Here! host John Catucci, big mountains are a small part of Vancouver’s appeal.

“Sure, Vancouver’s a beautiful city, but you can’t eat scenery!” he says. “Lucky for me, it’s also one of the country’s most exciting food cities. Vancouverites can enjoy food from all over the world without having to leave the Lower Mainland. When you’re this good looking, the whole world comes to you.”

Here, in no particular order, are some of the Vancouver eateries that inspired him to name Vancouver his favourite Canadian city for multicultural dining.

IMG_3459---Calabash_Jerk-Poutine

Calabash Bistro (Caribbean)
Fusion treats like the calabash poutine — jerk-dusted fries topped with melted Brie and jerk chicken — are washed down with delicious rum drinks at this laid-back Caribbean bistro. Visit late at night to enjoy your Caribbean meal with a side of live entertainment; Calabash hosts live reggae, hip hop, funk and poetry five nights a week.

IMG_1014---The-Reef---Island-Thyme-Chicken-SIG

The Reef (Caribbean)
Trini Roti, Domenica Beef, and Maracas Bay Mahi showcase the Caribbean’s diversity of flavours. Can’t get to The Reef? We’ve got their recipe for Island Thyme Chicken boasting juicy bone-in chicken breasts marinated in coconut milk.

Lemongrass-Chicken-Banh-Mi-2

DD Mau (Vietnamese)
Bahn Mi, or Vietnamese sandwiches, are the specialty at downtown Vancouver’s DD Mau. Favourites include the BBQ Roasted Duck, Crispy Roasted Pork and Lemongrass Tofu, washed down with an avocado smoothie. For a taste of DD Mau at home, try their recipe for Lemongrass Chicken Banh Mi.

Enchiladas-Classicas---IMG_5799

La Mezcaleria (Mexican)
This stylish spot on Commercial Drive is beloved for its organic brunches and fresh margaritas. Serving inventive creations like BBQ Tamarind Squid and Barbacoa de Cordero (lamb shoulder roasted in banana leaves and served in volcanic rock) alongside favourites like Enchiladas Classicas and Queso Fundido, La Mezcaleria has something for everyone. Try their recipe for Enchiladas Classicas at home!

Nuba---Halloumi---IMG_6371

Nuba (Lebanese)
With several downtown locations, it’s easy to find a Nuba to satisfy your cravings for Lebanese treats. Favourites include standards like Chicken Tawook, Falafel and Hummus, as well as Grilled Halloumi Cheese served with fresh tomato, nuts and pomegranate mint dressing and Lamb Hushwie (sautéed minced lamb with onions and pine nuts, served on a creamy base of fresh hummus).

Campagnolo-Roma---Bucatini-all-Amatriciana---IMG_5451

Campagnolo Roma (Italian)
Simple, unfussy Italian is on the menu at Campagnolo, a busy East Hastings establishment serving comforting classics like Bucatini all Amatriciana (bucatini noodles with cured pork, tomato and Parmesan cheese), as well as fresh pizzas and house-made meatballs.

IMG_6504---Rangoli_Spicy-Pulled-Pork

Vij’s Rangoli (Indian)
Vancouver has many Indian restaurants, but Vikram Vij’s namesake spot, which features a fusion of classic Indian spices and local delicacies, is one of the most celebrated. Some favourites from You Gotta Eat Here!’s visit include Spicy Pulled Pork on Sautéed Greens with Sour Cream Chutney and Naan, and Split Pea, Lentil and Spinach Mash with Mogo Fries and Bengali Curry. For visitors on the go, Vij’s has an extensive menu of boil-in-the-bag takeout treats.

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Longtail Kitchen (Thai)
Fresh B.C. seafood meets classic Thai flavours in this New Westminster restaurant that serves modern versions of Thai street eats. Enjoy the variety of Thai curries, the classic Pad Thai with Prawns, or try the Som Dtam Green Papaya Salad at home.

Catch all new episodes of You Gotta Eat Here! Fridays at 9 E/P. Be sure to visit the location map to plan your next  multicultural dining experience.