10 Can’t-Miss Culinary Experiences on Canada’s West Coast
1. Dinner in the Sky
The restaurant with the best view of the city, the ocean and the mountains all at once has only one table and no walls. Dine on a 3-course meal in the open air, suspended high above the ground made with seasonal local ingredients and punctuated by cocktails while you take in the 360-degree views.
2. Dine Blind
They say that when one sense is lost the others become more intense. Test that theory at Dark Table where the lights are turned all the way out, and you no longer can rely on your sight to guide you. Visually impaired servers assist you through the experience.
3. Catch your own Crab Dinner on a Sunset Sailing Trip
If you’ve ever dreamed of sailing on the ocean, catching your own crab dinner, and preparing it with help from a seasoned chef, this is the coastal adventure of a meal for you. In just four hours you’ll set sail from Vancouver with Swallow Tail Tours, catch your own Dungeness crab, cook and dine outdoors on a nearby island, and be back in time for a nightcap in the city.
4. Feast of Fields
A rustic autumn harvest festival meets gourmet tastings at this gathering of some of Canada’s best west coast chefs, farmers, vinters and distillers. With a linen napkin in hand, stroll past chicken coops and farm animals tent-to-tent, taste-to-taste. Farm-to-table at this event is just a stroll.
5. Winery Tour by Helicopter
Arrive by chopper to BC’s sprawling wine region and try something you won’t find in stores in the USA. Sky Helicopters will take you from downtown Vancouver on a scenic trip to nearby wineries in Langley or over the coastal mountains to hop you from winery to winery in BC’s Okanagan Valley.
6. Lunch at a Secluded Mountain-Top Lake
Accessible only by float plane, Phantom Lake is glacier-fed, pristine, and hugged by mountains and wilderness; and all that fresh air makes a gourmet picnic lunch taste even better. Evergreen Adventures lands you there, along with a tour from waterfalls to mountaintop trails.
7. Indigenous Canadian Cuisine
Long before people from all over the world brought their own histories and dining traditions to the tables of Vancouver, several peoples this side of the Rocky Mountains had their own indigenous ingredients and recipes that had been perfected over generations. For a taste, head to Salmon n’ Bannock; it doesn’t get more local or authentic.
8. Celebrity Chef, Vikram Vij
Acclaimed chef on and off TV, Vij’s authentic multi-regional Indian cuisine at My Shanti is set in Bollywood glamour. Eastern spices and recipes meet Western ingredients of freshly grown foods from local organic farmers.
9. 200 Restaurants in a 3-Block Stretch
The community with the highest Asian population in Canada is Richmond, and the people who live here certainly brought their A-game when it comes to authentic, multi-regional cuisine from Singapore, Hong Kong, Chongqing, Taipei, Hainan… you get the idea. There are over 200 Asian restaurants on Alexander Street in Richmond, so to try many regions at once you don’t have to go far.
10. Tour Farm-To-Glass
Just an hour away from Downtown Vancouver is a local region of wineries, distillers, and meaderies whose product starts by growing on their soil and ends in a glass on the same property. Start with Festina Lente, who fuses their meads with home grown herbs such as lavender and basil, then try Roots and Wings where the potatoes they grow end up in their vodkas and gins, and make sure to see Fort Wine Co’s sprawling red autumn cranberry fields that are the start of some of their fruit wines.