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Check out some of the top-rated restaurants in Vancouver in the heart of Kitsilano
The Khatsalano Street Party is the city’s biggest, funnest, most awesome and delicious free music and arts festival—and it’s happening on Saturday July 9th from 11 a.m. until 9 p.m. on West 4th (between Burrard and Macdonald).
In between checking out the work of local artisans, dancing to live music, cheering on street performers and enjoying the beer gardens, make sure you factor in time to check out some of the superb restaurants along the way because West 4th is packed with award-winning spots.
Eat your way around the world in just a few blocks—from Thai food at Maenam to a taste of France at Au Comptoir, then dive into Canadian classics at Fable and gluten-free ice cream at Rain or Shine.
Click through for 10 of our favourite spots to eat on West 4th…
I’ve adored Fable ever since I stopped in for brunch in 2012. Chef Trevor Bird and team whip up some of the city’s most reliably tasty food with service that’s always on point. Open for brunch, lunch and dinner, T-Bird’s ‘canned tuna’ is a Vancouver classic and I have nothing but drooling, swooning things to say about his bacon game.
PS: Grab a pot of the black pepper jam to take home. Your steaks and taste buds will thank you.
Oh man, if you haven’t checked out the magic that chef Curtis Luk and his crew are weaving every night at Mission, you are seriously missing out. One of the best deals in the city are their tasting menus of four ($45) and six courses ($69) of vegetarian and meat-eating locavore treats. Luk’s delicate and comforting signature cauliflower porridge dish comes with a textural snap of salty kale chips and soothing chew of farro. A sweet slither of spot prawn sashimi was served inside a tube of Haida Gwaii seaweed with an umami pop of dashi gel rolled over the top (pictured). Oh, and best of all for non-drinkers, the bar team will create a ‘temperance drinks’ pairing for you so you can drink something special and drive home.
Ever since I tasted the yam naam fermented sausage salad at Maenam, I was a raving convert to the cult of chef Angus An. Truly it is the best dish in the city: sweet and spicy with a herbacious hit of lemongrass and a tongue-tingling punch of garlic and chili. It’s chewy and juicy, but also crispy with rice puffs. It ticks every single box and dammit, I can’t even write about it without salivating! An’s menu takes in classic Thai recipes using the best West Coast produce to create something wonderful and new.
For a short while I lived in Paris, and oh, how I miss it, especially the cafés where I’d idle over coffee and croissants with a fresh jus d’orange pressé. The fine folks behind Au Comptoir have done something rather remarkable and recreated a Parisian café on West 4th—with all of the accompanying excellent classic French cuisine, pitch-perfect decor and even the roasted coffee smell is spot on. Go in the morning for their lighter-than-air omelette aux fines herbes, stop by for lunch for a crunchy filling croque-monsieur or dig in at dinner and splurge on the best damn entrecôte-frites in the city with a buttery sauce béarnaise.
So, this is where Ryan Reynolds hangs out when he’s back in town with Blake Lively. Do I need to say much more than that? Probably not, but I will. Divine celeb endorsements aside, Sophie’s has been serving up fantastic family-friendly food to Kits locals since 1988. With one of the best people-watching patios in town and a super-fun rainbow-bright retro diner interior, Sophie’s is always an excellent plan rain or shine. I’m a fan of their ‘Fourth Ave Lumberjack’ breakfast (mmm, pancakes!), but gluten-free friends swear by their Ashoura Wheat Middle Eastern-style brekkies too. Open for brunch, lunch and dinner every day with great veggie options and plenty to tempt fussy kids, this is a Kits classic which can’t be beat.
You’d assume that there’s something special inside when you see folks queuing down the block on a regular Sunday night, mad to get their ice cream fix—and you’d be absolutely right. Rain or Shine’s egg-free Philadelphia-style ice creams are made “from scratch in-house using fresh, natural and sustainable whole ingredients sourced locally, seasonally and organically whenever possible”—and yum, you can taste the difference! There are plenty of vegan and gluten-free ice creams here, and thanks to their commitment to keeping it seasonal, you’ll always find a new flavour, whether that’s Citra Hops or Chamomile with Honey Roasted Sunflower Seeds. From sundaes to milkshakes and ice cream tacos, Rain or Shine is always a great dessert plan. Take a cone to go or chill on their cute parklet right outside on West 4th.
This list wouldn’t be representative of West 4th without a super healthy selection. Kits, after all is the home of Lululemon, and the natural stomping ground of all yoga mat-toting yogis, so embrace the good energy of fresh, healthy fare and head to Tractor to scoop up their selection of ultra-nutritional soups, salads and sandwiches. Served up cafeteria-style, you can plow your way through Tractor’s well-priced menu and thanks to temptations such as their kale, borlotti bean, pumpkin seed, dried cranberry and asiago salad, not feel a trace of guilt as you maybe double down and make it a two-helpings lunch after all.
Known famously as “the grandaddy of locavore dining,” celebrated chef John Bishop’s West 4th restaurant has won every award in the city and rightly so. This is one of the best restaurants in B.C., consistently serving up dazzling Pacific Northwest cuisine that showcases the very best our region has to offer, including pine-cured Bella Coola salmon, Fraser Valley lamb, new-season beets from North Arm Farm in Pemberton and fresh salad greens from Hannah Brook Farm in Maple Ridge. Make a reservation and see why Bishop’s has been on every foodies must-visit list since 1985.
We stopped by for Sunday dinner at Oakwood a few weeks back, and it’s such a buzzy neighbourhood favourite. The place was packed with happy families, date-night couples and solo diners chatting cheerily at the bar. Get a bowl of the addictive scallop cracklings for the table and then start arguing over what you’ll order, which will take a while as you’ll basically want to order everything. Most dishes are good to share, aside from the very excellent burger 2.0, which I still managed to snatch a bite of. Their poutine is terrific and the olive oil poached salmon is one of my favourites, too. Catch the sunset on the patio and raise a glass to another great Khats-fest.
This is the best place for a refuel of that much-needed caffeine to keep you partying Khatsalano-style all day and evening long. The chaps at 49th Parallel will have an outdoor table set up outside their cafe between Yew and Arbutus, serving all three of their bottled products: Cold Brew Coffee, Sparkling Cascara Tea and Iced Tea. I love their Cascara, perfect for a hot day. If that’s not enough. each year co-founder Colter Jones and the Lucky’s team create a *surprise!* treat for the festival. so pop by to see what they’ve cooked up this year.
Come see us at the BCLiving lifestyle stage (West 4th and Yew) for Khatsahlano Street Party on July 9th