Best Gastown Restaurants – Vancouver, BC – A Local’s Guide

October 16, 2018

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gastown restaurants where to eat vancouver gastown restaurants vancouverGastown Vancouver Restaurants - Where to EatPlaces to Eat Gastown Best Gastown Restaurants

This comprehensive guide to the best Gastown restaurants gives you a local’s take on the must-visit spots in this lively area! Not only was Gastown Vancouver’s first downtown core but it’s also the city’s original settlement site.

Gastown is a foodie’s nirvana, with an amazing coffee culture, cozy brunch spots, flavourful dinner restaurants and a plethora of speakeasies to sip the night away. It was difficult for me to narrow it down, but with the help of a few other locals, I truly believe we have created the ultimate guide to the best restaurants Gastown has to offer. In each category, you will notice a few *, indicating my personal favourite spots!

Dive in for a round-up of the best Gastown Restaurants in Vancouver!

 

Coffee in Gastown

Revolver*

Revolver is a cult classic, perfect for spending a rainy morning working, or connecting with a friend. They have a rotating menu of their favorite brews from around North America and beyond. You can visit their website for their current menu!

Prado

There are a few Prado’s around town (Commercial Drive and Fir Street being the others), and they are always packed! The owner has a serious track record for being sliiightly into coffee.

A few of his accolades include four-time Canadian Barista Champion, first ever winner of the World Latte Art Championships, winner at the Coffee Fest Latte Art Championship, and four-time top three placement for Canada at the World Barista Championships (Source: Prado). Needless to say, you’re in good hands at this café!

Nemesis

A coffee shop for creatives. Take one look inside this trendy spot and you’ll want to cozy up all afternoon. Try something from the espresso bar and grab a bite from their well-balanced menu. Anyone up for mushroom toast featuring wild and foraged mushrooms sautéed in caramelized whey and smashed white beans? Yah I thought so.  For other delicious bites, see their full menu.

Revolver Gastown

Breakfast in Gastown on the go

Body Energy Club Smoothies*

Chances are you have seen a local adorned in yoga pants and a Patagonia jacket with a yoga mat strapped around their shoulder, with a Body Energy smoothie in their hands. I am so mad I didn’t think of opening a spot like this. Talk about a goldmine.

Order the Breakfast Smoothie or Almond Monkey with vegan protein. This Gastown location is right next to Eastwood Cycle and One Yoga, so if you’re visiting and looking for a good sweat, check out these studios and grab a smoothie afterward! Great way to start the day.

Purebread

Do not walk in here unless you are prepared to eat one too many pastries than your diet allows. The spread in this place is like walking into a room full of shirtless Ryan Gosling lookalikes that also happen to know how to fix your kitchen sink. You won’t know which one to choose so I give you permission to eat anywhere from 2-8 of them.

Purebread Gastown

Brunch in Gastown

Catch122*

This space is the quintessential Gastown Restaurant, rustic with brick walls, meals served in skillets, craft beers and brunch items featuring local ingredients. I just looked at their new menu and now I’m starving. So many great vegetarian items!

Birds and the Beets*

I really love the simplicity of their breakfast menu, and the space is absolutely stunning. I could work here sipping a latte for hours. It is especially vibrant when the Wild Bunch delivers a fresh batch of flowers to take home!

Birds and the Beets Coffee Shop in Vancouver

Deacon’s Corner – Dirty Breakfast

Deacon’s Corner is the perfect spot if you partied a liiiittle too hard the night before. They serve up your typical diner food inspired by Southern comfort. Including Carolina pulled pork pancakes and a variety of benny’s.

Jam Cafe

Just look for the line! Get there early or expect to wait 1-2 hours for this little brunch spot. The ultimate comfort classics including Naan breakfast burritos, bowls featuring crumbled biscuits and hashbrowns, and a variety of pancakes and french toast.
Jam Cafe Vancouver

Lunch in Gastown

Meat and Bread

If you’re craving a sandwich, look no further than this popular Gastown lunch restaurant. There is usually a line during the week around lunchtime, but it’s always worth it! Note: Not very vegan-friendly, but a favorite amongst meat eaters!

Nelson the Seagull*

Offers a variety of toasts, soups, and salads. I’m obsessed with the decor at Nelson. And do NOT get me started on their bread. If you’ve been following me for a while you know what a carb connoisseur I am. Their bread is no joke. Priced that way too, but worth every mouth watering bite. *packs up laptop and runs to Nelson the Seagull*

Nelson the Seagull Gastown

Brioche

A cozy spot for soup and a sandwich, which is really the best lunch you can possibly eat right? Nothing beats a good soup and sando, and Brioche delivers. It is centrally located and surrounded by a ton of cute boutiques so you can shop off the calories.

Finch’s Tea House*

Famous for their baguette sandwiches. Lots of vegetarian options too. Order a salad or sandwich and watch the people go by. Head to MacLeod’s bookstore afterward to browse their collection of rare vintage books.

Happy hour in Gastown

La Mezcaleria

Cheap wine, beer, palomitas and discounts on their ceviche and quesito fundido (their famous molten cheese fondue served in a mini volcanic stone bowl). I really love this restaurant for a girls night in Gastown. Full Happy Hour menu here

Cuchillo*

HALF PRICE TACOS!! Sorry for yelling, just needed to make that clear. Just look for the purple skull. Order the saganaki tacos, some share plates, and of course a few margaritas! Full menu here

Tacofino*

I’m just going to keep this mexican theme rollin’ with a Vancouver fav. Burritos, margaritas, tater tots. This is pretty much describing my staple diet. They don’t have happy hour info on their website but I do know they have it. I guess I’ll just have to go visit to find out the details. I will report back!

The Sardine Can

Such a cute little hole in the wall. Perfect spot to come before dinner or if you’re waiting for a table elsewhere! Spanish tapas, beers and sherry.

Alibi Room

Perfect place to grab a flight of beer with 50 taps of local and imported craft beer. Not a beer fan? They also have a great mix of boutique wine and cocktails. Great spot to come when it’s sunny as they open up the big garage doors to let the sunshine in.

Salt Tasting Room

Lovely Gastown restaurant for date night! This spot is a little hidden (part of the charm) and is known for its incredible selection of wine paired with small-batch cured meats and artisanal cheeses. Choose from their chalkboard selection of 10 cheeses, 10 meats and 10 condiments.

Dinner in Gastown

Pourhouse*

I’m just going to file this one under “hip gastown restaurants for a rainy afternoon”. Amazing cocktails (they take a while because the bartenders craft each by hand. Sit at the bar to watch their art at work). It’s cozy, dark, loud and lively in peak hours.

Nicli Antica Pizzeria*

The first VPN certified Neapolitan pizzeria in Vancouver. What is VPN certified? They explain the certifications roots on their website: “The Register was created to protect and to professionalize the Pizza Makers in Italy and abroad that will undertake to make the Vera Pizza Napoletana (true Neapolitan pizza), according to tradition, thus ensuring the quality of the production process and products used.”

Mackenzie Room

Mackenzie Room features a chalkboard menu that rotates seasonally. They pride themselves on sourcing out local ingredients, and believe in the adage “sharing is caring”. They offer an “I want it all” option, where your whole table gets to try the ENTIRE menu. Their vibe: “It’s like having a big family dinner without needing to do any dishes afterward.” Sold.

Wildebeest

The staff at Wildebeest live by the Japanese term “omakase”, roughly meaning “trust the chef”. This is why they usually suggest allowing them to order a few plates for you to share. The menu is very meat-heavy, so as a vegetarian I haven’t been visiting as much lately but I do love the space, and it’s worth a visit for the craft cocktails alone.

Tuc*

One of my favorite places to eat in Gastown (and in Vancouver in general!) I love the atmosphere, the staff is always lovely and the food is always good. Tuc is the perfect spot for a fall or winter dinner in Gastown.

St. Lawrence 

French food with a Canadian accent. This beautifully designed space used to be a butcher shop. Ironically, it is now the perfect date night spot. They have a very select wine list and cocktail bar, so don’t expect your usual vodka martini or negroni. Ask the servers for their recommendations, put your phone away and eat slowly.

L’Abbatoir

Described on their website as an industrial-chic setting for Pacific Northwest fare with a French touch, complete with delicious craft cocktails. A local fav for group dinners or cozy brunches.

Di Beppe

A newer Italian restaurant in Gastown with a great reputation. Feels just like stepping into your Nonna’s kitchen, only without the awkward questions about when you’re getting married..Awesome for happy hour too.

Flying Pig

The Flying Pig is always a go-to for us when we want comfort food, good wine and a cozy atmosphere. Pack a couple of lactose pills, their menu is very dairy heavy. Items like the truffled jumbo macaroni and the lobster and prawn risotto are always popular. Don’t forget to order a side of crispy brussels sprouts. Trust me.

Flying Pig Vancouver Dinner

Good Vegetarian Restaurants in Gastown

MeeT*

I know, what a cheeky name ;-). Everything from nachos, to beyond meat burgers, to “chiggin” wings. Comfort food classics turned vegan. They have a few locations all over Vancouver, with the original located on Main street.

Nuba

Flavourful Lebanese food that is healthy and delicious. I actually prefer their other locations (in Mount Pleasant and Yaletown) just because I don’t love the “underground” feel to this one, but some people love it. Either way, the food is incredible. Try the cauliflower and a plate or two! I always order the falafel plate with their homemade hot sauce.

Sports Bars in Gastown

Charles Bar*

Great place to watch NFL in Gastown. Get there early and request your game of choice.

Black Frog Eatery

A french sports bar known for football (soccer).

Local Public Eatery

Fish tacos and caesars in a boot! I still prefer the OG Local in Kitsilano, but Local Gastown is a great spot to people watch (their patio is massive and spills into the streets of Gastown).

The Pint

A younger, rowdy crowd. Not my scene but a popular spot for UFC and Canucks games.

Where to watch NFL Vancouver Charles Bar

Cocktails Lounges in Gastown

Clough Club*

Such a hip spot in Gastown. The google description nails it: “Trendy low-lit lounge with old-timey flair, craft drinks, elevated pub grub & occasional live music.” Order the Apiary. It’s my favorite cocktail in Vancouver. Also, you might even spot a celebrity or two.

Revel Room

I love the live music at Revel Room. Every time I walk in, it transports me to a bar in New Orleans.

Diamond*

Super trendy spot in Gastown. It can be tricky to get a table on the weekend, but is fun to come for drinks regardless. I love going for the (not-so) secret back room. It used to only be accessed by a hidden door, but they have been keeping it open lately for spill-over from the restaurant.

Six Acres

A gastropub featuring European share plates. Olives, house fries, risotto, mini burgers. Grab one of each and chow down with friends.

The Irish Heather

Great spot for a beer or bourbon in Gastown.

Live music and drinks

Guilt and Co

Live music, swing dancing, board games, great cocktails. Recipe for a fun night, right?

Calabash*

This Caribbean restaurant and bar has amazing nightly live music downstairs! Peep their website for the schedule and order a dark and stormy when you arrive!

Bars/ Nightclubs in Gastown

The Hastings Warehouse*

Everything on the food menu is $4.95. Come here for the booze and a good time though, and maybe a late night snack or two.

Hastings Warehouse Gastown

Lamplighter

The first establishment to ever get a pub license in Vancouver! Lamplighter originally opened its doors in 1899, and is said to be haunted. Both a bartender and a server have reported incidents of glasses mysteriously clinking, and a beer that levitated before smashing to the ground. Better visit for yourself! Hang onto your drinks.

A few other bars for the 20 year old, vodka slime drinkin’ crowd ready to make questionable decisions. Not that I’m speaking from experience…

Dessert in Gastown

Hope that gives you plenty of choices for your dining experiences while in Vancouver! These are the best Gastown restaurants from a local’s perspective. If you have another favourite spot, let me know by sending me a DM on Instagram

Download this complete list to reference on your travels, no wifi required!

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