Summertime—if we ever get it, galdangit—is an awesome time to be a Vancouverite. The beach, the patios, the long afternoons with a cold beer in hand…nothing beats it. But one thing that also tends to happen in summer here is the opening of new restaurants. No one wants to do construction in the dark of winter, after all, and summer is the best time to grab crowds of relaxed Vancouverites and tourists wanting to try something new.
I am excited by a lot of new restaurants I’ve seen popping up lately, but there are three I’m REALLY excited about. My top new grub spots are below.
1. Acorn on Main
No prices yet, but likely mid-range or on the cheap side.
This new vegetarian spot—stay with me—is opening where old school Italian joint Cipriano’s used to be on Main Street near King Edward. I peeked in the other day while walking by, and it looks like it’s going to be a lovely revamp of that space. Not to mention that some online digging told me that the food is not going to be your typical veggie fare, but rather some new innovative cooking with an emphasis on flavor and experimentation that just happens to be meat-free. They’re set to open soon, and they have a 2am liquor license. Yippee!
2. Fable on Fourth
Pricier, three-course kinda meals. Save it for a date.
I was a pretty big fan of Refuel on 4th Avenue, but when I moved to East Van I lost track of it a bit. I was initially saddened to hear it was closing, but then I heard it was to divert resources to a new restaurant run by that same group (see below). And now, I’ve seen a bit of info about Fable, the restaurant that’s taken its place. While I haven’t made it over there yet, rumours of a tasty farm-to-table movement-based menu make me want to check it out (the name is a play on farm-to-table). I will report back, but they definitely had me with “Top Chef contestant Trevor Bird.” Mmm.
3. Fat Dragon in Chinatown
Mid-range pricing, with plenty of cheap appies.
And now the reason for dumping Refuel—at least, that’s the foodie rumour. The group that owned and operated Refuel, as well as the two Campagnolo spaces (my faves in the city, hands down) wanted to move away from the expensive, increasingly uncool Kits hood and try something new. Hence, Fat Dragon, a Chinese-meets-BBQ joint in the newly vibrant Chinatown area. Rents are cheaper, the hood is cooler, and the clientele might be a little more adventurous. It’s been open for a bit, but this busy girl hasn’t been there yet. I’m planning on going this weekend…wanna join me? Not sure? Check out the menu. Crunchy squid Bao Bun? Yes please!
Tried any hot new Vancouver restaurants lately? Let us know in the comments.