Vancouver’s Restaurant Graveyard

With the help of many diners and restaurant industry veterans, we bring you this growing token of remembrance!
Launch Map

Vancouver’s Restaurant Graveyard

Scout focuses on new restaurants so much that it’s easy to forget all the ones that aren’t around anymore; the short-lived flashes in the pan and decades-old icons long retired in success. It takes all kinds to propel our food scene forward. So with the assistance of diners and restaurant industry veterans we offer this growing token of delicious remembrance. They might be gone, but they aren’t forgotten!

Editor’s note: This is an ongoing project that is only just starting; it is woefully incomplete at the time of launch and we need your help. Do you know of a deceased restaurant worthy of respectful internment here that we haven’t yet laid to rest? Let us know in the comments below.

IN MEMORIUM, ALPHABETICALLY

– PHOTOS INCLUDED ON MAP –

Aristocratic
Southwest corner of Granville & Broadway.

A family-oriented chain of diners that would become locally famous for its “courteous service and quality food, all over town”, as well as its wonderful neon sign (with ‘Risty’ character in top hat and monocle). Its most iconic location was at Granville and Broadway, which closed in 1997.

Au Petit Chavignol
843 East Hastings St.

An excellent wine, cheese and charcuterie bar owned by (and next door to) Les Amis du Fromage in Strathcona. They served up delicious raclette and fondues, not to mention one of the best cheeseburgers Vancouver has even seen. It opened in 2009 and closed in 2013.

Aurora Bistro
2420 Main St.

One of Vancouver’s first “locavore” restaurants. Chef Jeff Van Geest’s neighbourhood trailblazer included an all-BC wine list designed by wine scribe Kurtis Kolt. Famed for its superb brunches and excellent soundtrack. It closed in 2008. The address is currently home to Wallflower Modern Diner.

Bambudda
99 Powell St. (Closed)

Bambudda was a 55-seat nouveau dim sum restaurant located at 99 Powell Street in Gastown. It was launched by front-of-house lifer Ray Loy in 2013 and lasted almost four years. Born in Hong Kong and raised in Strathcona/Chinatown, Loy had worked his way up through the ranks at restaurants such as “C”, Joe Fortes, Bacchus at the Wedgewood and Market in the Shangri-La before striking out on his own with this project. Bambudda was by most accounts a very attractive restaurant (designed by Vanessa Rienau), especially in the bar area with its stools lining up to the lip of the room’s convertible frontage (great in summer). The kitchen was a bit of a revolving door, with chefs Keev Mah (later Pidgin, Sai Woo), Scott Korzack (later Beach Bay Cafe, Crowbar) and Curtis Luk (later Mission) all taking turns on the line. The bar program also saw several hands on the tiller, including the talented likes of Max Borrowman (later Torafuku, Juniper). The 3,000 sqft restaurant was forced to close in early 2017, soon after the landlord informed Loy of the building’s need for extensive renovations that would require his exit (not to mention the actual erasure of the 99 Powell St. address itself). Sadly, Loy decided not to search for a new location to continue the promising concept.

Bin 941 Tapas Parlour
941 Davie St.

A massively game-changing, trailblazing, award-winning restaurant conceived and originally cheffed by Gord Martin, who helped to pioneer the small plates craze. An entertaining, often wild gathering place for afterwork oenophiles and industry types. Though its heyday was in the years on either side of the turn of the millennium (former staff members tell crazy stories!), “Bin” held on to last a full 20 years (1998-2018).

Bitter Tasting Room
16 West Hastings St. (Closed)

The beer-focused Bitter Tasting Room was launched on Gastown’s edge in 2011 by the Heather Hospitality Group (see Salt Tasting Room, Irish Heather, etc.). The 100+ seater was located at 16 West Hastings St. — a beautiful heritage space that had been lovingly renovated opposite Pigeon Park.

Dozens of craft brews from home and abroad were served at its unique, semi-circular bar alongside pretzels, sausages, scotch eggs, pork pies and more. Its opening predated the rush of Vancouver’s craft beer renaissance by a year or two, its vision harkening back to the city’s original love affair with beer.

“At Bitter, we want you to join us on a journey to a time when Vancouver had a bustling beer culture. Before Prohibition shut down the taps, the local breweries were countless. Delicious ales, lagers and bitters poured free. A golden era in history, before the rise of the beer monopoly, when brewers made the beer they wanted to make, not the beer they had to make.”

Bitter was purchased by Lightheart Hospitality in 2015 and became Darby’s Gastown later that year.

Boneta
1 West Cordova St.

The original Boneta brought together a group of young first time restaurateurs (Mark Brand, Neil Ingram, Andre McGillivray) to a long suffering address in Gastown in the hot summer of 2007. Famed for its excellent cocktails, industry-friendly atmosphere and the hearty but refined French-inspired fare of its first chef, Jeremie Bastien, the restaurant (named after Brand’s mother) moved to a new location in 2011 (see Boneta 2.0). Currently occupied by a modern German restaurant called Bauhaus.

Boneta 2.0
12 Water St.

The short-lived (2011-2013) second coming of a Gastown favourite. A concrete and glass box that was exuberantly home to excellent poutine, decadent Daube de Boeuf, an always interesting by-the-glass list, a brass stripper’s aid and a back bar filled with thousands of spent corks.

Brave Bull
1298 East Hastings St. (Closed)

A place for cheap steaks ($10 sirloins at the time of closing) and no bullshit on the edge of Strathcona; a magnet to posties, longshoremen and neighbourhood families from 1985 to 2012. The decrepit space that housed it later became the first brick and mortar iteration of the Yolks chainlet. Now long vacant and presumed to be awaiting demolition.

"C" Restaurant
1600 Howe St.

Harry Kambolis’ ambitious local seafood restaurant on the False Creek seawall. The game-changing fine dining icon helped define Vancouver’s food scene from 1997 to 2014. Over the years it employed the talented likes of Robert Belcham, Rob Clark, Ted Anderson, Quang Dang, Sean Cousins, JC Poirier, Cate Simpson, Annette Rawlinson, Tom Doughty, Michael Dinn and Leonard Nakonechny. As the founding restaurant partner of the Vancouver Aquarium’s Ocean Wise program, its memory echoes in the nightly services of countless Vancouver establishments. Now home to a Peruvian-inspired fine dining restaurant (of comparable deliciousness) called Ancora.

Cafeteria
2702 Main St. (Closed)

Cafeteria was a short-lived, 30 seat restaurant from serial restaurateurs Chris Stewart and Andrey Durbach (see also “Parkside” and “Etoile” in the Restaurant Graveyard). It lasted two years in the heart of Mt. Pleasant at 2702 Main Street, opening in the summer of 2010 and closing in 2012. Previously, the address was home to a cult-hit looker called Ping’s Cafe. Though definitely expressed with a European accent, Cafeteria’s concept cleaved close to no particular cuisine style. Stewart and Durbach wanted a no-frills, “super casual” eatery with a short and sweet wine list to compliment an ever-changing menu featuring dishes that never exceeded $20. The design, simple but slick, kept customer focus on what was on the plate and in the glass. The opening day menu included the delicious likes of “Nobu-style” tuna and prawn sashimi, chicken schnitzel with spaetzle, Dungeness crab tortelloni, and butterscotch pudding. (I still vividly remember the schnitzel, which was superb.) Stewart and Durbach sold the space to chef Andrea Carlson and her partner, Kevin Bismanis, who would soon thereafter open the award-winning and critically acclaimed Burdock & Co. in its place.

Cave, The
626 Hornby St.

Open from 1937 to 1981, this cavernous night club (complete with fake stalactites) was the first in the city to score a liquor license. This was back in 1954, when Vancouver’s “culture of no” frowned upon the sinful combination of drinking and entertainment.

Century
432 Richards St. (Closed)

A short-lived “Modern Latin Cowboy” themed restaurant in the old Lola’s/Ballantyne’s address. It’s certainly not very often that a restaurant with a Che Guevara mural opens in an old Edwardian bank building! Especially one that came pre-loaded with a ridiculous amount of original character (wine-stained marble floors, Italian Skyros marble walls, gorgeous door frames, mirrors, chandeliers, wainscotting, bank vault, etc.), not to mention its very own ghosts (among them a murdered teller, if I recall correctly). It’s still very much there, of course, lying either dormant or beyond my field of vision as a nightclub or private function space. Too bad.

Chow
3121 Granville St.

Chow was the short-lived first restaurant from chef JC Poirier (now co-owner of Di Beppe, Pizzeria Farina, Ask For Luigi, St. Lawrence). Though it was celebrated as one of 2007’s Best New Restaurants in Canada by enRoute Magazine (and lauded by most local critics, myself included), it opened just before the global financial crisis hit and suffered its jittery aftermath. Chow ended up closing its doors on May 10th, 2009, not yet two years old.

Circolo
1116 Mainland St. (Closed)

Located in Yaletown in the voluminous space that now houses Minami, this was a stylish, high-end Italian eatery from legendary restaurateur Umberto Menghi (see Il Giardino). Opened in 2000 and sold to Bud Kanke (The Cannery, Joe Fortes) in 2006, who opened the short-lived Goldfish Pacific Kitchen in its place.

Cork & Fin
221 Carrall St.

Cork & Fin was a charming, unpretentious, seafood-focused wine bar located in the heart of Gastown at 221 Carrall Street. It was much loved for its seafood boils, freshly-shucked oysters and accessible price points. Launched in 2010 by industry veterans Francis Regio and Chef Elliot Hashimoto (both formerly of Tapastree), the two-level eatery concluded its six year run in 2016, changing gears and rebranding as the short-lived, Hawaiian-Japanese hybrid ONO restaurant.

Corner Suite Bistro De Luxe
850 Thurlow St. (Cursed) (Closed)

The name was a bit of a mouthful and their chef (Anthony Sedlak) quit four days before the 2010 opening (which was delayed 8 months), but Corner Suite Bistro De Luxe was refreshingly different with its encyclopedia of cocktails, blue chairs and unrelenting gumption. Too bad it didn’t last a year.

Cru
1459 West Broadway

The duck confit, “cellar door” Caesar salads, and Syrah-braised beef short ribs at this wine bar are as impossible to forget as its bizarre, blue-lit threshold. It was home to such talents as wine/service guru Mark Taylor and chefs Dana Reinhardt, Alana Peckham and Tim Evans. Cru lasted 9 years, opening in 2003 and closing in 2012.

DB Bistro Moderne
2563 West Broadway (Closed)

The West Side’s DB Bistro Moderne was the surprisingly short-lived casual fine dining cousin of the New York original. It saw international superstar chef Daniel Boulud pair up with David and Manjy Sidoo after their falling out with chef Rob Feenie. Some background from designer Janson Goldstein’s website:

“The bar area features herringbone travertine flooring, a zinc bar top and, behind the bar, woven, polished stainless-steel surfaces framed in red eel skin. Custom handcrafted glass pendants, based on a 1960s Italian design, illuminate the space. Beyond a screen of saw-tooth-textured bronze glass, rolled-steel channeled fixtures illuminate the dining room, where custom-designed distressed oak-and-ox blood leather chairs complement banquets in chocolate-brown- and copper-colored woven leather. A private dining-and-wine room presents oil-quenched-steel wine racks and a wall covered in rich red- and brown-leather tiles.”

Located in the old Feenie’s address at 2563 West Broadway, the slick 106 seater launched in the midst of the 2008 global financial crisis; its unfortunate timing was complicated further by the advent of a new tax (HST) and the rollout of stricter drunk driving laws that scared diners. Though it met with some critical success it never really found its footing with Vancouver diners, some of whom loudly sided with Feenie in the and swore to avoid it.

It closed in 2011 to the frustration of many, including Globe & Mail food writer Alexandra Gill, who memorably (and accurately) lamented its demise thusly:

“This is excellent, innovative, labour intensive and lusciously layered food that is in a different – world-class – league from the standard fare at any other French bistro in town. If Vancouver couldn’t recognize that, we don’t deserve it.”

Deighton House, The
2 Water St.

John “Gassy Jack” Deighton’s hotel and saloon on the southwest corner of Carrall St. and Water St. — the hospitality foundation of Gastown. Launched in 1867 and burned down in the Great Fire of 1886. The smoking wreck was immediately removed to make way for the Byrnes Block, which stands to this day (now home to Peckinpah BBQ).

Dona Cata
5076 Victoria Dr. (Closed)

In 2006, long before Vancouver was overrun with taco joints, it welcomed Dona Cata. The small, unassuming, family-run Mexican joint deep in East Van served up $2 tacos alongside free tortilla chips (bonus: extensive salsa bar). Sadly, it closed in 2012.

Étoile
1355 Hornby St. (Closed)

The first restaurant by Andrey Durbach. The little thing didn’t last long (1996-1999) but it was popular with the early foodie set and a foreshadow of delicious things to come (Parkside, Pied-a-Terre, La Buca, Sardine Can, Cafeteria). It was followed by the even more short-lived Bis Moreno, and later by chef Brian Fowke’s Rare.

Fat Dragon, The
566 Powell St.

The people behind the Campagnolo restaurants opened this Asian-meets-American BBQ joint in 2011. It served up fat-slicked noodles, chicken-fried oysters, crab fried rice, Korean BBQ pork and many other delicious things besides. It closed in 2012, lasting a mere nine months. It later became the Groundswell Cafe and is now an awesome homestyle Japanese spot called Dosanko.

Fiction
3162 West Broadway

Owned and operated by Sean Sherwood (see also Lucy Mae Brown and Century), this was a fun, boisterous, casual fine dining restaurant on the West Side that launched in 1999 and closed in 2007. The location has seen several restaurants come and go since, most notably The New Bohemian.

Foo's Ho Ho
102 East Pender St. (Closed)

This two-storey amalgam of Foo’s and Ho Ho (1998-2015) has been closed for a few years now but there’s talk of the old Cantonese restaurant making a glorious comeback before the end of the decade. Cross your fingers!

Fuel/Refuel
1944 West 4th Ave. (Closed)

Launched as “Fuel” in 2006 by first-timers Robert Belcham and Tom Doughty, the fine dining restaurant would morph into the more accessible (but no less refined) comfort food spot “Refuel” in 2009 (great fried chicken). It closed in 2012. Now Trevor Bird’s “Fable”.

Gastropod
1938 West 4th Ave.

The short-lived, multiple award-winning first restaurant effort from chef Angus An, who would later open the wildly successful Maenam in its place (also Sen Pad Thai, Freebird, Longtail Kitchen, Fat Mao and Popina). The concept was modern French meets West Coast. Sadly, Gastropod – designed and financially supported by local artist Ken Lum – was a victim of the recession, lasting just two years (2007-2009).

Green Door
Alley behind 111 East Pender St.

A fabled underground restaurant in Chinatown that served cheap and cheerful Chinese food for over 60 years (1930s-1990s). It was accessible via – ahem – a green door in the alleyway behind 111 East Pender Street. The building – now home to Fuling Gifts & Housewares – used to house a gambling establishment and a trading store. During the counter-culture era of the 60s and 70s it proved magnetic to non-Chinese, particularly students and bohemian types (who would largely abandon it when the alleyway, once commonly known as Market Alley, started to draw hard drug users in the 80s and 90s). The door itself has long since been painted other colours; for a while it was blue and now (at the time of writing) it is red. Note: There were a few other “Door” restaurants in Chinatown (eg. Red Door, Orange Door), but the Green Door lasted the longest and served the best food.

Gyoza King
1508 Robson St.

Once upon a time (in the 2000s), this was the go-to place for restaurant industry workers looking for a delicious, cheap and cheerful food experience with beer after work. The boisterous, late night eatery closed in the autumn of 2017 after 24 years in operation.

Judas Goat
27 Blood Alley (Closed)

Opened in Blood Alley in the Spring of 2010, this tiny, Spanish-inspired restaurant/wine bar came to us from Sean Heather and Scott Hawthorn, co-owners of Salt Tasting Room (also in Blood Alley). It was cheffed for a time by Lee Humphries. The 21 seat hole-in-the-wall featured a striking mural by local artist Robert Chaplin that spelled out the unlikely tale of a goat that led countless unwitting animals to the slaughter until one day it suffered a nervous breakdown and decided to open and operate a wine bar instead. The name wasn’t a Chaplin fantasy, however. “Judas” goats are real, as Heather explained to me long before the artist got to work on the embellishment:

“When animals are trucked to a slaughterhouse they are often reluctant to get off the truck…..go figure! Most abattoirs have a resident older goat living on the property. The goat is trained to make nice with the animals, and then lead them off the truck to the obvious conclusion. Because of the goat’s treachery, and abuse of his position of trust, he is nicknamed the ‘Judas Goat’. The tragedy of it all is that the goat is ignorant of what is happening around him and his role in it. He is just being friendly. […] The Judas Goat in Blood Alley — for numerous reasons, we couldn’t resist.”

Judas Goat closed in September of 2013. The space would become the irreverent Gringo shortly thereafter.

Kozmas
801 Pacific St. (Closed)

Kozmas was a leafy, sunny, multi-level Greek restaurant located at 801 Pacific St. from 1974 to 1982. It had a beautiful courtyard, a long bar, a fireplace, white-washed walls and lots of terracotta tile — squint at it after a drink or two and you could have been in the Aegean. It was owned by Kosta Syskakis, Larry Syskakis, Sophie Dikeakos (of Sophie’s Cosmic Cafe fame), and the artist Christos Dikeakos, who assisted Jim McGregor with the décor and interior design. The restaurant was a game-changer in Vancouver, setting a standard for Mediterranean fine dining that would be emulated by many. “At the time,” Christos remembers, “Greek restaurants were the most exotic form of dining experience in frontier fine dining of Vancouver.”

I remember it well. Kozmas was the first restaurant that ever genuinely charmed me. I was still just a baby in 1974 when it opened, but my mother was good friends with the owners and we would go in often. It was there – at four or five years old – that I witnessed a bellydancer  – Christos’ sister, Alexandra – in action for the first time, and I was enthralled in the way that only very young and impressionable children can be. I will never forget it (and still blush a little whenever I see her).

A photo of Kozmas (click on “MAP” to see) was featured in the Dream On, Vancouver feature story found in the April, 1978 issue of National Geographic magazine (Vol. 154, No. 4).

La Bodega
1277 Howe St. (Closed)

A long-running Spanish tapas restaurant that provided lively, affordable nights out from 1971 to 2014. Spread out on two-levels, the place was old school; darkly stained wood beams and brick walls, red and white chequered table cloths and a kitschy bullfighting motif repeated throughout. The godfather of Spanish-themed “Bodega” on Main Street.

La Ghianda
2083 Alma St.

Located just around the corner from its critically acclaimed parent eatery, La Quercia, this daytime-only Italian deli plated freshly made pastas (oh, that Orrechiette Bolognese!) and fantastic sandwiches but was fated to close in 2013. Address now occupied by Yuji’s.

Latab
983 Helmcken St. (Closed)

Open from September, 2015 to February, 2017,  the 800 sqft Latab restaurant was a short-lived gift to local foodies from chef Kris Barnholden and wine pro Eryn Dorman. Located at 983 Helmcken Street (tucked behind the Wall Centre), it never got the attention it deserved despite plenty of praise from critics and industry types for its adherence to locavore principles and purposeful focus on natural, biodynamic and limited production wines. The bright, few-frills 25 seater was a real focal point of West Coast creativity and a source of inspiration to up-and-coming Vancouver cooks who appreciated the ingredient-driven, farm-to-table approach of the tiny kitchen. Latab (Chinook jargon for “The Table”) was also crazy affordable with tasting menus – aka “the whole shebang” – going for just $49. That it didn’t live to see its second birthday is a real shame.

Le Gavroche
1616 Alberni St.

A long-running (35 years) French restaurant in the West End that was famous for the depth and breadth of its Old World wine list (at 35,000 bottles, it was possibly Vancouver’s most extensive for a time). Owner Manny Ferreira opened Miradoro in the Okanagan in 2011.

Little Nest
1717 Charles St. (Closed)

Kids were encouraged to run guiltlessly, joyously amok at Little Nest, a memorable (if often outrageously loud) counter-service cafe off The Drive. Opened in 2007, the sprawling gift to parents run ragged was owned and operated by Mary MacIntyre, a former Lumiere pastry chef who actually gave a damn about the food Vancouver restaurants were feeding little ones. Unfortunately, Mary’s landlord was of the especially greedy sort, reportedly increasing her rent by 100% over the course of the restaurant’s six year run and ultimately forcing its closure in 2013 by demanding a further 50% increase. Though other kid-friendly establishments have opened in Vancouver since, none have captured Little Nest’s one-of-a-kind neighbourhood den mother vibe.

Lolita's South of the Border Cantina
1326 Davie St. (Closed)

Opened in 2005, this immediately popular Mexican-inspired eatery featured a great cocktail list, plenty of tequila and lots of delicious share plates. Before it closed in the Spring of 2017, Lolita’s nurtured several influential talents, including chef Shelome Bouvette of Mt. Pleasant’s Chicha.

Lucky Diner
1269 Hamilton St.

Cheffed by ex-Aurora Bistro sous Dan Tigchelaar with a front of house crew that included (if memory serves) Mark Brand and Jay Jones, this Sean Heather-owned bit of weirdness in Yaletown dished up bacon-wrapped meatloaf and mixed bourbon milkshakes but somehow never made it to see its first birthday. Tragic.

Lucy Mae Brown
862 Richards St.

This restaurant (complete with downstairs “Opium Den”) exploded on the scene in 2001 not only as a den of total debauchery but also as a springboard of sorts for the careers of several of the city’s young serial restaurateurs. Its heyday gnaws indulgently on our memories. The building that once housed it was demolished in 2016.

Lumiere
2551 W Broadway

The wildly creative and successful Rob Feenie era at Lumiere (1995-2011) had a unique magic to it that just couldn’t be fully reconciled with the Iron Chef out of the picture (he left after a very public spat with his partners in 2007). Home to some of the best dining experiences we’ve ever had and the breeding ground for great staff who would go on to become some of Vancouver’s most respected chefs and restaurateurs.

Master Chef Cafe
2481 East Hastings St. (Closed)

A classic Chinese-Canadian diner run by an adorable couple in their 80s. Tony Fung (server) and his wife May (cook) took over the small Hastings-Sunrise restaurant in 1993 and ran it until 2014. Well known in the neighbourhood for its crotchety regulars and its dirt cheap food. The address is currently occupied by What’s Up Hot Dog.

Metro
200 Burrard St.

Brian Fowke and Tim Keller’s sprawling, 150-seat Metro restaurant boasted a great design by EVOKE ID (see also Fable Diner, The Union, El Camino’s), a solid concept (Modern Canadian) and a tourist-magnet location in Coal Harbour, but it barely lasted a year after its 2007 launch. The address would later be home to a slick Hapa Izakaya off-shoot called Hapa Umi, then a Hapa Izakaya proper, then a reincarnated version of Don Francesco’s.

Monsoon East-West Brasserie
2526 Main St. (Closed)

A good looking, wine-savvy pan-Asian fusion restaurant in the heart of Mt. Pleasant that opened in 1998 to critical acclaim. Maker of dreamy hoisin duck pancakes with scallions that still haunts our dreams. Closed in 2007 to make way for Caffe Barney.

Nick's Spaghetti House
631 Commercial Drive

An institution on The Drive for over 62 years, the unpretentious Italian-Canadian restaurant was long famous for its meatballs and classic red sauce joint decor. It closed just before Christmas in 2017. Taking its place in the summer of 2018 was the similarly themed Pepino’s Spaghetti House.

Nu
1661 Granville St. (Closed)

A bold concept from Harry Kambolis (see also “C” and Raincity Grill) that was a little ahead of its time in that it focused on small share plates. The design was one of a kind with a spinning wine rack and butt-hugging bucket chairs. Great staff line-up that included Andy Crimp, Jay Jones and Rob Clark. Opened in 2005 to rave reviews but faded fast in the recession. Rebranded in 2010 to Nu Aegean Cuisine to little fanfare. Shuttered in 2012.

Only Seafood, The
20 East Hastings St.

A once-upon-a-time diner of legend. Opened in 1917, the eatery – with its beautiful neon seahorse signage and horseshoe lunch counter making it especially iconic – had its heyday in the middle part of the 20th century. The facade remained a draw even after the Downtown Eastside institution was closed for good in 2009 (following a police raid that turned up a lot of cocaine and heroin on the premises), but since the sign was removed in 2015 the exterior no longer hints at the location’s storied past.

The Parker
237 Union St.

The Parker was a small, 500 sqft., 20 seat vegetarian restaurant opened by Steve Da Cruz and Martin Warren in late September, 2012 on the well-travelled Chinatown/Strathcona block of Union Street. A third partner, Tiffany Easton, came on later. Despite its tight quarters, The Parkside felt a little bigger than it actually was. This was no doubt the result of the wall of mirrors that rose above the wooden banquette seating, but it also had plenty to do with the restaurant’s lofty ambitions. It tried to play as many angles as it could, hosting wine- and sake-pairing dinners, serving up lengthy dégustation menus and happy hour prix fixes, even weekend brunch. Over the course of its three-year run, The Parkside featured the inventive, always interesting cooking of three different executive chefs: Jason Leizert, Curtis Luk and Felix Zhou (in order of appearance). The menus changed often and were complimented by a short wine list and an extensive cocktail card.

Despite its best efforts, the little spot never really took off. The Parker closed in the summer of 2015, the owners rebranding the place into a new concept called Big Trouble (a particularly apt name considering it took just four months for it to shutter as well). Though the kitchen space was extremely limited, chef Felix Zhou’s menu for the place read beautifully (eg. “Peking quail over golden beet purée with puffed wild rice”), which is to say it’s a shame it didn’t get time to settle and shine. The address is now home to The Tuck Shoppe, a casual sandwich spot.

Parkside
1906 Haro St.

Launched by frontman Chris Stewart and chef Andrey Durbach in 2003, this West End oasis of rich food, bold flavours, great wine, excellent service and arguably the finest patio in Vancouver fell victim to the recession, closing its doors in 2009 to become the more casual L’Altro Buca, followed by Adesso Bistro.

Pho Bich Nga
1996 Kingsway (Closed)

An unassuming, entirely average little Vietnamese pho restaurant on Kingsway at Victoria that gained notoriety on account of a phonetic (English) misrepresentation of its name. The gawking ceased when the eatery closed in 2005, but the memory endures.

Raincity Grill
1193 Denman St. (Closed)

Another Harry Kambolis restaurant (1992-2014), and thus an impactful facet of Vancouver’s restaurant evolution. It following the mantra of local, seasonal, organic and sustainable, fostering lots of talent in both the front and back of house. Outstanding patio on English Bay. Now the Beach Bay Cafe.

Restaurant Connor Butler
2141 Granville St.

An odd, strikingly idiosyncratic fine dining restaurant (with Versace plates) that was likely just a little ahead of its time and in a not-so-great location at the south end of the Granville St. Bridge. It opened in 2006 and lasted a little over two years.

Sea Monstr Sushi
55 Powell St.

We were stoked for Sea Monstr Sushi’s arrival in 2010. The Gastown sushi counter from Alex Usow and Mark Brand was like the cherry on top after a whirlwind of new restaurant openings brought a dozen or so exciting options to the neighbourhood. Sadly it didn’t last, closing in 2014.

Shebeen, The (Original)
1 Gaoler's Mews

A glorious (and hidden) whiskey lover’s dream that was once located in the No. 1 Gaoler’s Mews space behind what would later become L’Abattoir in Gastown. It’s important to note that The Shebeen is still going strong in the back of the Irish Heather today, which moved across the street to its current address at 210 Carrall St. in 2010. There was just something especially charming about the original, and we can’t help but miss it a little!

Vie’s Chicken and Steak House
207 Union St. (Closed)

A legendary restaurant in Hogan’s Alley (the black community that was essentially erased by the City to make way for the viaducts in 1970). Vie’s was in operation for 26 years starting in 1950, with hours that rolled from 5pm to 5am. Very popular with visiting entertainers. The staff were all women, and it’s well known that Jimi Hendrix’s grandmother used to work there as a cook.

There are 185 comments

  1. You need to add one of the top dim sum restaurants Imperial Chinese Seafood Restaurant in the Marine Building Vancouver

  2. The Little Budapest.

    This restaurant was in the space occupied by La Quercia at present. It served classic Hungarian dishes, goulash, Schnitzels, meats on wood plates, with red cabbage, and other sliced fried potatoes, and Chicken Paprika. They also served wicked breakfast. In its early days they had a piano, and other live music. A server ended up buying it and worked it alone at night. I believe his name was Joseph.He would work the whole room by himself. I went there as a little boy, and it was still open when I was a teenager. I am not sure when it closed, but I remember it fondly as a great restaurant with really good European food. My recollection of this restaurant is incomplete. Does anyone else have some info?

  3. Some others worth including could be Binos, Alberts Chicken Chalet, and Captain Georges beef in a bun. Mangiamo. Century Grill. Bennys Bagels, which introduced us to Sean Heather. Medieval Inn. Brother Johns. Numerous Umbertos restaurants. Zejacs Steakhouse. The Marco Polo. The Smoking Dog.

  4. The Tokay, Szasz, The Little Csarda, and The Kulacs. All were Hungarian restaurants, all sadly long gone. Only The Duna Deli on Victoria remains.

  5. L’emotion in Dundarave its later incarnation as Mistral on Broadway. Cobra. Miramar Chinese Restaurant (now Golden Ocean), Art’s Diner, and Red Onion in Kerrisdale.

  6. I miss Tapastree on Robson. It was the best place to celebrate a walk around the Seawall.

  7. Gladys’s
    Originally 2700 W Broadway, heyday at 2100 West 4th, last couple of years at 2200 West 4th

  8. La Brochette on Alexander Street approx. where The Birds and Beets is now. A wood fired grill at the front manned by a disciplined German who ran the place. It closed in the ’90’s – some of the best meals I’ve had in Vancouver.

  9. Please include The Flying Tiger featuring Tina Fineza’s flavour forward modern Asian street food and Jame’s fun, delicious wine list to accompany the bold flavours on her menu. The highlight in my mind still being her Duck confit pancakes ?
    Thank you!

  10. Zocalo on Main, the excellent Mexican restaurant that got toasted by that sushi restaurant back in 2009, along with Slickety Jim 1.0

  11. I still dream of lunches from the Zakkushi group’s short-lived Kushi Box takeout place on Robson St.

  12. Don Don’s and Wonton Noodle House both victims to the Canada Line Cut-N-Cover debacle. Don Don’s Chicken Donburi w/spicy sauce was beyond magical. Miss that bigly.

  13. The Montgomery Cafe on Pender, Doll and Penny’s, Deliah’s, Monk McQueens, Benjamin’s.

  14. The Ho Inn in Chinatown. This was a haunt of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra’s brass players for many years, between afternoon rehearsals and evening concerts. Also late night, after shows. Burned down many years ago.

  15. I second Ping’s. I miss it so much.

    And was it Soma? (now 81/2 – 8th / Main) – best server in the city, consistent, lovely little room, and those iconic Emeco stools at the bar. Sigh.

  16. Why do almost all restaurants fail in only a few years? In my experience, it wasn’t the food, it was the service.

  17. A few others: Cobre, Rubina Tandoori, Tamarind, O Thai, Soup Spoons, Kettle of Fish, The Cannery, Pastis (before it became Bistro Pastis), Le Mistral, L’Emotion, Nicli Next Door, Provence Mediterranean Grill

  18. TAK SANGKA. A family-run authentic Indonesian restaurant on Main. St. between E. 23rd & E. 24th. where The French table bistro now resides.

  19. Ooops! My husband has corrected me and said that TAK SANGKA was actually on Fraser St. where Penang Bistro Fine Malaysian restaurant is now.

  20. God this is making me melancholy. Don’t forget Raintree, one of the city’s first locavore restos. Montgomery Cafe. Delilah’s. Szasz. Settebello.

  21. Crime Lab!
    Delilah’s – oh the stories in those little private booths!
    Tangerine in Kits – best breakfasts!!!

  22. I didn’t miss it. It’s just not included yet. 😉 This is a project that we will be adding to through editorial as time goes on.

  23. Trafalgars’s – charming French bistro on Trafalgar around 16th. All the Pouilly Fusse one could drink at lunch! Sigh.

  24. I second The Ho Inn, which was across the street from the Ho Ho and a great favourite with starving university students in the late 60s/early 70s. We could – and did – feed 10 hearty appetites for $35 and have leftovers to take away. The Ho Ho fare was greasier and more of a “chop suey joint” while the Ho Inn seemed more authentic.

    Speaking of The Cave reminded me of Isy’s Supper Club, which also had a very limited menu and probably the second liquor license; it was originally a “bottle club” where beverages were smuggled in and kept in brown bags under the diner’s chair; the club made a nice markup on the mixer. Live entertainment was more cabaret-style than the Cave, which leaned more towards Vegas-bound entertainers warming up their acts for The Strip. Mitzi Gaynor was a regular and long-running fave as I recall.

    Scott’s Cafe on Granville was a nice restaurant with banquettes and what passed for fine dining back in the 60s in Vancouver. It was located about where London Drugs is now. I recall having tea there with a friend, and having my tea leaves read by a lovely lady. The “you will meet a dark-haired bearded man who will be important in your life” stuff went down well with an impressionable teenager. Especially when the dark-haired boy with a goatee who would become my husband wandered into my life a few weeks later.

    Cote d’Azur on Alberni Street behind the present White Spot was one of the first French fine dining restaurants in the West End, I think; I remember it being rather chic, operating out of an old character house in 1972 era.

    Before the Ironworkers Memorial bridge was built, the Number 4 and Number 5 car ferries shuttled from the foot of Lonsdale to the foot of Columbia. The trip took about 20 minutes, plus load and unload time. Both had coffee bars. When the bridge opened, the ferry service was discontinued and the Number 5 took up residence at the foot of Lonsdale as The Seven Seas floating restaurant with a seafood buffet. It opened in 1960 (or thereabouts) and went on for decades, even though the food was by all account execrable.

    When The Cannery opened over on the waterfront in East Van – I think not too far from New Brighton Park – it was a new era for seafood restaurants. Again, this was in the early to mid 1970s and my peer group were just discovering food that wasn’t deep fried and overcooked, with vegetables that had colour and wow! garnishes!

    Someone mentioned a German restaurant and that brought back memories of the Schnitzel Haus on Robson, back when it was Robsonstrasse with all the German/Austrian/Swiss import shops, delis, and specialty stores. An Austrian-born friend from Squamish whose husband was one of the first to develop the ski runs at Whistler-Blackcomb regularly met me there for lunch and introduced me to rouladen, spaetzel, and red cabbage slaw. Hearty fare for cold winter days!

    Back on the North Shore, there was Frank Baker’s Attic at the corner of Marine Drive and Taylor Way. I recall it as a buffet restaurant although there may have been a menu as well for evening dining. There was an attempt at having live music in the evenings as well, from time to time, when Baker would sit in with his trumpet (the weathervane on the roof was a silhouette of him playing his trumpet). The ladies will remember the washroom decor, which featured a kitschy plaster statue of Michaelangelo’s David, with a hinged fig leaf over the “naughty bits.” If the leaf was lifted, a siren would go off in the restaurant and a light over the door would flash, alerting everyone that the next person out that door had peeked. Baker acquired one of the Bondmobiles and had it on display in a glass building between the entrance door and Marine Drive.

  25. DV8 was a favourite. Also: Tokyo Lounge, Mesa Luna, Tribeca and Ambrosia. The Foundation, the original La Bodega and Rumpus Room.

    I have lots of childhood memories at Fresgo Inn and Pepitas on Davie and a Denman too.

  26. The Three Greenhorns
    The William Tell, set the bar high for decades
    Cristal at The Mandarin Hotel, service in tuxedoes
    Chez Joel
    Francesco Alongi
    The Beach House
    The Tea House
    The White Tower, for after hours “tea”
    Velvet, in the original Vij’s location
    The White Lunch
    The Aristocrat
    Mulvaney’s
    Brother Johns
    The Butcher (my first resto job in Vancouver)
    La Petite Geneve, Kerrisdale.
    Avenue Grill (right next door)
    Siena
    Primo’s on W12th
    Alma Street Cafe
    Cellar Jazz
    Fresgo Inn
    The Yam
    Did’s Pizza
    The Brickhouse
    Waazubee
    Doll & Penny’s on Davie
    What was that floating paddlewheeler in North Van called? The Paddelwheeler?

  27. Won Kee @ East Broadway and Quebec (now the site of a holistic pet hospital)
    The Vineyard in kits
    The Normandy in South Granville
    Juicy Fried Chicken @ Main and 11th
    George’s Grill near Main and East Broadway (now the site of Caffe Barney)
    Bill Kee ( West Broadway close to where MEC is)

  28. Brick Oven Pizza on Dunbar.
    Was a staple of excellent pizza for decades. Closed when building demolished to make room for condos.

  29. Great piece, thank you. Did anyone mention Orestes on W. Broadway? Now THAT made a big cultural impact on the early 70s Kits community. Less for the food than the louche bohemian scene that revolved around it. In about 1974, three friends and I had about ten dollars among us—walked into Orestes, asked if could afford to dine there. They invited us in, seated us at a lovely table, and brought us each a plate of souvlaki and a glass of wine. (About two years later, my then husband and I started La Boca Bar, Kitsilano’s first espresso bar. Oh, nostalgia.)

  30. Deliliah’s in the West End…
    Quattro’s on 4th (then shortly lived on Broadway).
    Benny’s Bagels (for yet more condo redevelopment).
    Aki’s Japanese on Pender (previously on Alberni & Thurlow). Was in operation since 1963.

  31. On Commercial Drive: Santos Tapas Bar (now BierCraft), Bukowski’s (now The Charlatan), Bino’s (now St. Augustine’s, after about 7 restaurants in between), Me & Julio’s (now Tangent, after a few iterations)

  32. Mings in Chinatown. The dim sum may have been so-so, but the decor was amazing. Red velvet and gaudy gold everywhere, with a catwalk down the middle which I never saw used. It looked like a 30’s gangster would bust in and start shooting at any moment.

  33. Lilli La Puce before the Gavroche
    Massimo’s on Seymour
    The Panorama Roof in the Hotel Vancouver
    Is the 3 GreenHorns still there? Doubt it.
    The Goulash House in S Granville
    OMG – the Keg – 3 hour waits when it first opened on Granville Island
    Mulvaney’s on Granville Island too
    Toulouse La Trec on Pacific
    The Savoury in Deep Cove

  34. La Bodega has been reincarnated by his children as Bodega, now on Main St in Chinatown…one of my faves.
    The William Tell and Le Parisian on Denman

  35. What about Skybar on granville and Smithe. And last summer it was the pop up roof garten

  36. I’m repeating, but got me all nostalgic for my favs:

    OMG – The Three Greenhorns! The Marine Club across from post office

    The Little Budapest on 4th – was my fav. Best chicken soup w dumplings in Van, also excellent breakfasts. Still miss it.

    The Russian Ukrainian on Main & 16th

    Orestes, Mark James in the 80’s.
    Delilah’s – many boozy nights
    Did’s after Luvafair
    The Town Pump for bands
    Graceland
    La Bodega
    The Brick Oven
    The On On
    Hon’s (on Main)
    Mulvaneys
    Creole Cafe (Gran Is)
    Tomato on Cambie
    Perogie Perogie (?) on Cornwall, then West End

    Not a bar/restaurant – the Jesus trucks, the hippies on Granville St that would stop you w insights…

  37. West end lived on local legends like The Dish on Davie and The Grove on Denman. Institutions for years!

  38. Savoury coast Moustache cafe cafe norte hells kitchen mortons of chicago voya bambuddah star anise sammies (sam lalji) fatzos > slims> migz > currently yaggers kits) sienna Max’s Burgers

  39. Puccini on Main for the best Italian and the downstairs Hogan’s Alley bar where you had a drink and listened to some great jazz while waiting for your table.
    Trader Vic’s at the Bayshore Hotel

  40. Star Anise – short lived but held a spot for a while just off Granville in the early 2000’s

    I really miss Ho Tak Kee wonton noodle house that was on Broadway between Main and Kingsway. They made the wonton noodles in the back room with the noodle master jumping up and down to stretch them out longer…and tasty hand made dumplings and take out chili sauce in jars. My family used to go there once a week and called it our ‘Second kitchen’.

    So many good memories from reading the comments above. Vancouver would do well to keep more of its historical locations marked….The Only for example.

    And I never made it to the Cannery before the port access was shut down, but the amazing chef and waitstaff moved to the Pink Peppercorn on Kingsway which serves up the best seafood meal in town with an 80’s interior decor!

  41. I shed a tear every time i walk by the “variety store” Home and Art Plus that now occupies what once was the Little Nest on Charles just off Commerical drive

    I spent many a dadurday morning with my young family, friends, and neighbors in that beautiful room. Thank you for opening my eyes and palette – what you did with scrambled eggs and polenta was black magic.

  42. The Mansion on Davie and the English Bay Cafe. And in West Van (if I’m allowed to add a north shore icon) Peppi’s in Dundarave.

  43. On On Tea Garden On Keefer between Main and Gore, and the Nanking nearby. The Orange Door and the Green Door. Kaplan’s at 41st and Oak and Rubin’s on Granville downtown. The William Tell On Richards Street. Peppi’s at the foot of 25th in West Van.

  44. Amorous Oyster, Oak/16th
    Bianco Nero, 475 W. Georgia, crazy owner/chef but amazing Northern Italian food, huge bowl of Smarties at the front counter
    Bandi’s, Hungarian @ 1427 Howe, superb roast duck with cherries

  45. Thanks for the trip to Vancouver’s restaurant past. Here’s a list of my favourites from the early days:
    There was the 1970s French Connection that came to Vancouver. Some of the best were:
    • Le Napoleon
    • Le Cote d’Azur
    • William Tell
    • La Creperie (and Jean Claude’s later restaurants : la Brochette, l Orangerie, Le Beaujolais, and the Smoking Dog)
    • Chez Joel
    • Ondines
    Other memorable places that come to mind:
    • Le Gavroche
    • La Bodega
    • Nicks Spaghetti (on Commercial…. And can’t forget Tommy O’s on Commercial too)
    • The Only
    • Umberto’s places, notably Il Giardino and the Yellow House
    • The Air Affair (later to become Viva)…. It’s a club but a notable entry, I would say.
    I know there’s more places that I can’t recall right now.

  46. Yes to Peppi’s, Delilah’s, Kettle of Fish, and I’d forgotten all about Amorous Oyster! xoxo
    Also, Someplace Else on Beatty, L’Orangerie on W Broadway, Carlos and Bud’s on Pacific, La Creperie on Alexander and The Keg Coal Harbour.

  47. Definitely Crime Lab! Also, I see folks have mentioned Benny’s but I didn’t spit Moderne Burger on the list and that place was a true gem.

  48. DeNiro’s/Section (3)in Yaletown. I worked there and at Ballantyne’s in the ‘90s. Great times!

  49. The Hermitage on Robson was a great place till redevelopment made Herve Martin relocate to the French Table on Main Street.

  50. Going back a while, there was a restaurant in the early eighties on Robson street ( where Milestones is) that I believe was called Milieu. The interior of the space was raw concrete, blackened steel with sculptural metal chairs. It had such a radically 80’s vibe that no other restaurant since, has come close to being so impressively radically modern. It certainly left an impression that I remember to this day.
    Also, as mentioned before, Star Anise was at one time the best in the city.

  51. Wow amazing job everyone! I had a huge list going but you got to most of them!

    SoHo Billiards
    Capones
    Parkside
    Abigail’s Party
    Save on Meats (orginal)
    Blacktail Florist
    Cedar Cottage (up for redevelopment)
    Renos
    Fogg and Sudds
    Monsoon
    Varsity Grill
    there’s also a bunch on this thread that were before my time like Big Scoop, Art’s, Lions Burgers, Blue Moon, Santa Fe Cafe, Jung’s, The Normandy, Nemeto, Kings, Texan Drive-In, The Vineyard etc: https://www.chowhound.com/post/long-closed-restaurant-vancouver-990166?page=3

  52. Aqua Riva –overlooking the cruise ship terminal (worked there for 5 years: 1995-on)
    Raintree on Alberni -my first WOW! dining experience in YVR.
    Capers restaurant in the original (grocery) location in West Van –great breakfast and stunning views! They later opened on W4th (on the 2nd floor), but was un-remarkable.
    Presto Panini –best sandwiches in town, and a perfect spot for an early dinner before hitting the Capitol theatre.
    Mimosa bakery on W Broadway –I know, not a restaurant! But it was really good!
    eco il pane at Broadway & Larch?

  53. Section 3 was originally known as De Niro’s until Robert De Niro’s lawyer issued a cease and desist order (aka Section 3)
    Dukes, tried to be just like Earls, but it never caught on.
    The Brass Monkey on Denman at Comox: late-night, industry hangout spot.
    Hamilton Street Grill –so good!!

  54. Umbertino’s was a fast food chainlet launched in the early ’90s by Umberto Menghi. There was a location on Broadway next to the Hollywood Theatre.

  55. Frog and Peach on West 10th (early ’90s)
    Pair Tree at West 10th at Alma (mid ’00s)
    Alma Street Cafe -one of the best neighbourhood spots, with live Jazz (’90s)

  56. Moustache Cafe in North Vancouver
    Chez Theirry on Robson
    Il Barino in Yaletown (now Minami)
    Saltimbocca in Kits
    The original Le Crocodile location on Thurlow
    Piccolo Mondo at Thurlow and Smithe (later became Cornerstone)

  57. La Virgo (on Denman close to Robson)tan by a French trained Japanese chef perhaps little known and ahead of its time, yoshoku ya also on denman, Dan Japanese in Kits and Kinome which opened after Dan closed at the same address by different owners, En cuisine which originally opened at Granville street the “grandfather” of Modern Japanese combined beautifully with French and Italian cuisine ran by Yano Yamagishi.

  58. La Belle Auberge by the legendary Bruno Marti. Correction: En’s owner was Yami Yamagishi (auto correct )

  59. Jupiter Cafe
    Chill Winston
    Cork and Fin
    Two Chefs and a Table
    Prime Time Chicken
    Rainier Room
    Deserts

  60. Was as interesting reading throught the comments as the article its self.
    I remenber more of the ones in the comments that the ones mentioned in the article but then Ive been away from the lower mainland for a LOT of years.
    Some of my favorites were mentioned but the one Im surprised nobody has said anything about is “the Victoria Station” a group of old railcars just east of the Burrard Bridge. Was well known for its steaks.
    Also on my list of favs
    The Only (on Hastings of course)
    Mulvaney (on Granville island)
    Fresgo’s (on Davies as well as out in Surrey for lunches)
    The Three Greenhorns (had some GREAT steaks there!)
    Tomato

    Thanks for dragging out some old memories!!

  61. Two dead restaurants in the same location, at 1026 Granville Street downtown:

    Sanafir was a Glowbal Group owned tapas place with small tapas dishes, great decor, and a half-price Tuesday menu. I’m not sure why it closed.

    Later, Glowbal opened The Fish Shack in the same location and changed the decor and layout a bit. It specialized in seafood, but ut closed down too.

    Seems like Glowbal has trouble with that location. It’s now The Compound, which specializes in cocktails with some pub standards.

  62. Reviewing the list, some of the missing gems in my experience:

    Tuesday’s on Broadway (near Blenheim) – a second locale was temporarily open on Georgia @ Richards

    El Mariachi (on Denman)

    Jon’s Pizza (on Broadway in Kitsilano)

    Briar Avenue (on Davie)

    Chez Thierry (on Robson)

    Mother Tucker’s (on Alberni)

    Tom and Jerry’s (on East Hastings)

    Danish Tea Room (on Robson)

    Cloud Nine (The original years) (on Robson)

    Pepita’s (@ Davie and Denman)

    Trader Vic’s (@ The Bayshore Inn)

    Tommy África’s (on Beach Avenue and later in Whistler BC)

    Montreal Chicken (on Denman @ Haro)

    Romeo’s Taverna (on West 4th Ave)

    Jonathan’s (on Granville Island)

    Stephen Yan’s restaurant (on Alberni)

    Avenue Grill (in Kerrisdale)

    Trojan Horse (on Granville)

    Soda’s (on Dunbar and in Gastown)

    PJ Burgers and Sons (on West 4th Ave near Blenheim)

    The Saskatchewan Pavilion Restaurant (in Park Royal)

    Varsity Grill (on West 10th Avenue)

    The Horse and Carriage Inn (on Alberni)

    The original Elephant and Castle (Downtown)

    Emilio’s (on West 2nd Avenue en route to Granville Island)

    Marco Polo’s (in Chinatown)

    Eduardo’s (on Victoria at 33rd Ave) – Ecuadorian and Peruvian cuisine

    Flamingo’s (on Cambie at 59th Ave)

    Monk McQueen’s (The original on False Creek)

    Don Guacamole’s (on Robson)

    Hamburger Mary’s (on Denman, then on Davie)

    Café Luxy (on Davie)

  63. Roosters Quarters on Denman
    Homer St Cafe
    Tops 24 on Kingsway
    Wally’s Burgers
    The restaurant on top of the Sylvia Hotel with the Dine in the Sky sign.
    And two of the most unfortunately named restaurants: A Touch of Greece on West 4th, and Fook Yu on Renfrew. Both were short lived.

  64. Cher Ton Ton
    Robson Street
    Orestes
    West Broadway
    Noodle Makers
    Powell Street
    La Brochette
    Gastown

  65. DV8 — good god, I loved that place. Their fishbowl cocktails were epic, decent food, fantastic atmosphere…

    Only true Vancouverites will remember (cuz the rest of you literally moved here less than 5 years ago)!

  66. Nod to all the DV8 references. Surprised to see only one other Wazubis (sp?) reference.
    RIP The Tomato, Benny’s Bagels and also the Bread Garden original 24 hrs on 1st.

  67. Back when Enron was run by the smartest guys in the room, and before the geologist fell out of the helicopter.

    Carnegie’s on Broadway and Fir was lined up from Wednesday to Saturday with all sorts of commodity brokers.

    Been in the industry in Vancouver for over 20 years, still haven’t met anyone who worked at Kettle of Fish.

  68. Exile on Bute — delicious and creative.

    Cho Pain on Davie — the finest pistachio croissants.

  69. Lili la Puce ….. it was in a little house on Alberni St I believe. French Cuisine.
    Then there was Bino’s……

  70. Ritual — newcomer to the restaurant scene a few years ago on Denman & Alberni…creative, innovative chef who started strong, but for whatever reason, couldn’t build clientele. Best fried chicken & waffles, and Farm to face salad, ever!

  71. Haha gio, good ole Carnegie’s

    Most of the finer dining establishments have been listed above but a few more (sorry if repeated)

    Star Anise
    Sami’s
    Cote d’azur
    Coco Pazzo
    Teds the little bar a block west of MacDonald on west bday
    Culpeppers
    Funky armadillo
    Koon look on Fraser st
    Arts the little diner and ice cream shop in Kerrisdale

    Urban Well
    Senior frogs
    Ouest/and Italian place it was before ouest
    Monk McQueens
    Penny lane pub
    Andale’s mexican
    Starfish oyster bar and restaurant
    Riley cafe
    Anderson’s
    Tomato
    Sasamat pizza

  72. Charlie’s Little Italian on Main
    The Three Lions Pub on Broadway
    Deserts on Commercial
    The New Diamond in Chinatown
    Cloud 9 in the West End

  73. Kettle of Fish, it was across from Giordano’s forever
    La Terraza
    La Ghianda

    NOTTURNO guys (we miss you, H)

  74. Macaroni Grill
    Fogg n Suds
    Ocean 6 Seventeen
    Notturno/Kozakura/Tempranillo
    Secret Location
    Tapastree
    The Red Door
    Two Chefs and a Table

  75. Rattle snake bar and grill
    (Broadway)
    Century grill (yaletown)
    Flying tiger(kits)
    Mangiamo (yaletown)
    Senior frogs (kits)

  76. Wazubee on Commercial
    Cafe Bibbers, upstairs at Davie and Denman
    Le Papillon on Broadway
    Jukebox Johnny’s on Broadway and Heather (?) upstairs
    Frank Baker’s Attic in North Van (rainbow drinks! Singalongs! Smorgasbord!)
    The Organ Grinder
    Brother John’s in Gastown
    Swensen’s Ice Cream (several)
    The Copper Kettle Buffet on Kingsway
    The Dragon Inn at Kingsway and 33rd – giant dragon neon sign!
    The seafood restaurant in North Van that was a boat floating on the water…The Seven Seas?
    Bert’s on Main and 13th
    The Amsterdam Diner on Granville
    Bukowski’s on Commercial, where I had my first mojito.
    The Vegetable Patch, Robson Street and Broadway near Granville: actual bean sprouts on your sandwich…!

  77. Cafe Splash at the foot of Howe on False Creek. Had a female owner/chef. Great ambiance and fresh sea food.

  78. Puccinis Puccinis Puccinis it was where our family celebrated all our memorable moments from the time I was 5 or 6 until it closed in the 80’s

  79. This post has me literally on the verge of tears. I’m getting endless loops of flashbacks all the way back to high school (DV8!!!!!!!!!!! Fresgo!!!!!!!!!).

    I’m going to throw in Good Wolfe in YT. Totally short-lived but holy crap was that cooking too good for the stiletto set. I miss his food truck too.

  80. Ah, nostalgia!

    I didn’t see it mentioned in previous comments, but for great nachos & margaritas on a sunny evening, Carlos n’ Buds. I’m still sad it’s gone.

    For the kiddies, The Organ Grinder – this was a birthday pizza destination right downtown (Hornby?) when I was a young’un. There was a colossal pipe organ, and the restaurant was covered in all kinds of crazy retro ephemera. I know there are some photos of the interior floating around somewhere.

    And for tiki fans, the late lamented Trader Vics. That one should never have closed.

  81. Magnums on South Granville – great late night place to go after clubbing in the 80s – now occupied by Paul’s Omelettery
    Cafe Cucamongas – small dessert place on Broadway and Oak where I met budding restaurateurs Scott Morrison and Richard Jaffray (of Cactus Club and Browns Social House) who served their “slippery nipple” ice cream. They employed a nice young man, Andrew Wong, who went on to open Wild Rice.
    El Patio on Cambie & Smithe
    Habibi’s on Broadway – my first introduction to Lebanese food at ridiculously low prices
    Harlow’s burgers on Cambie St – closed down after less than a year – my husband still remembers those excellent burgers served on brioche buns
    Ciprianos on Main St – currently occupied by The Acorn
    Tokiwa/Goma on Oak St – best sushi in the city, always fresh, outstanding quality, modestly priced

  82. Heather Jeal, wow I wish I had known you in the day!
    May I put forward
    cafe new york/ Robson st
    Varcity grill/w 10th
    Dragon Inn/various

  83. My first gig back in ’05 was bussing tables at Savory Coast on Robson(previously Settebello, currently Fantacity Karaoke)
    Someone else mentioned Tapastree.
    Habit
    Crave on Main

  84. Pondok Indonesian Restaurant at Oak and Broadway. The food was god awful, but it turned into a dank Karaoke disco at night on the weekends. RIP.

  85. Someday could you do a piece on the blues/jazz club in the late 70’s that was in the same space as the Diamond today? Same vintage as some of these restaurants, and so many incredible memories!!

  86. Not sure if this list is meant to capture Richmond restaurants but I would add Charthouse and Happy Date Bakery & Restaurant to the list. Thought I am hoping Happy Date will be resurrected soon.

    Charthouse must have been in Steveston for 40+ years before it finally closed down in 2014. So sad just thinking about it.

  87. En – Japanese fine dining which was in South Granville 25 or 2600 block, East side of the street.

  88. Cafe D’Medici
    the Greek place that always had the guy dressed in a costume giving away flyers on Robson

    Slighty off topic but also spot on…

    Dids pizza on Davie after going to Luv Affair, Gracelands or Dicks on Dicks

  89. Shijo Japanese Restaurant 4th + Cypress in Kits opened in 1986 with interior decoration by Tony Robbins. Chef/owner Yoshi Tabo went on to helm Yoshi’s (Denman + Georgia) then the Blue Water Cafe, followed by Ki Modern, and, most recently, Ancora. A true shogun of the Vancouver seafood scene having started at Kogi on E Hastings in the early 1980s.

  90. Macaroni Grill
    The Cannery
    Cloud 9
    Joey Tomatoes
    Chill Winston’s
    Trafalgars
    Society Dining Lounge
    EBO
    Section 3
    acme cafe
    C
    Nu
    Cru
    Ensemble
    Francesco’s
    Notturno
    Bao Down
    The Fish Shack
    Feenies
    Lumieres
    DB bistro

  91. Love to see the Raintree here. The Cannery. Moustache Cafe. Latin Quarter. Mangiamo. Delilah’s. Ouzeri. Orestes… Really enjoying this thread. Great stuff.

  92. Diane Tucker, it took awhile to see Le Papillon thanks.
    Tommy O’s
    Rossinis
    The Prow
    1066
    The Rail Car
    McLeans on Broadway
    Tiffany’s in the Hyatt
    Timber Club in The Hotel Van
    Seven Sea’s North Van
    Can’t remember the Swiss French place in New West, it was fantastic

  93. Fado
    ChiChi’s ? in the LuLuLemon Building
    The Noodle Makers
    Medieval Inn
    Johann Strauss
    The Black Angus, both Stuart Anderson and Pops Clerides

  94. Anjelica’s on West 4th Avenue (‘70s)
    Yang’s Noodle House
    Topanga Cafe – 40 years on W.4th, burnt down this week
    Bo Kong – vegetarian at 15th & Main
    Theodora’s at 4th & Burrard
    Jinya on Broadway – tiny original restaurant of Tojo
    Vij’s on Broadway – before he had W. 11th and Cambie there was this tiny spot
    Rohan’s Rockpile on 4th & Stephens (not a restaurant, in the nightclub/cabaret genre)
    Salmon House on the Hill (West Van)
    Aki Japanese (Powell Street I think?)
    Maneki Sushi (first sushi place I recall in Van, changed our lives, east Hastings Street)
    Gran Sasso (dine & dance) on Commercial where Mezcal and Liberty are now, with Wazubee inbetween

  95. Lets not forget about The Alegro and The Crime Lab, both were co owned by Matt and Michael of Lucy Mae Brown 🙂
    Those were great times in the resturant biz!
    Rip Matt

  96. Carlos & Buds
    Peppis in Dunderave West Van
    The original Keg and Cleaver In North Vancouver
    Shakys Pizza North Van

  97. What about the souvlaki place on Denman close the where the Raincity Grill was? Great memories of sitting on the beach to people watch, with red wine in a paper bag, eating souvlaki.

    Very fun to read through people’s entries. Thank you…

    Shijo! Loved that place. Still haven’t found as good a sushi place. Trader Vics! The Little Budapest! Glad others have as happy memories of all the great food and experiences.

  98. Le Railcar
    Chef and carpenter
    Puffins
    Monterey lounge and grill
    Zin
    O’douls
    Voya

  99. Love this concept and am still mourning the loss of many of the restaurants listed above. My additions:

    Pig and Mortar – by the really lovely couple who ran the Pig on the Street foodtruck (where Farmer’s Apprentice is now)
    Fat Badger (old Le Gavroche location)
    Flying Swan/Blue Moon Cafe (Kits)
    Rhizome Cafe (Broadway at about Main)
    Risty’s Cafe (Marpole)
    Sunset Grill (Kits)
    Timbre (Commercial Drive)
    Thyme to Indulge (Main Street)

  100. Sorry, fashionably late to the reminiscing and good feels thread…..
    Delilah’s 1.0/2.0 – my first martini
    Tangerine/Abigail’s party – (which was first?) AMAZING breakfast, first time having sweet potato mixed in with breakfast side, really nice, happy servers
    Villa del Lupo – downtown, heritage house, delicious Italian, impeccable service
    Iacci’s? – on Seymour St, old school Italian
    Cafe norte – original Edgemont village location, NV, eye rollin’ Mexican food
    Rubina – never got over this one closing 🙁 impeccable service from owner
    Bread Garden – original 1st Ave, never forget the smell (or line ups) after the bar 12am, lattes in soup bowls and sold out of chocolate croissants
    Tops on Kingsway – great for late night garlic bread and lasagna
    Little nest – many good memories with my daughter and her playmates! Great soldiers and eggs dish

    Thanks for this chance to feel even more nostalgic for the Vancouver of Olde

  101. Dunbar Fish ‘n’n Chips and Chinese food (Dunbar Street)
    Isy’s supper club (competitor to the Cave – I played there for many years
    Cheshire Cheese Inn Kerrisdale ( closed about 2015 for a condo redevelopment – the original one on Dunbar is still going
    Peter’s Ice Cream on Broadway in Kitsilano – best ice cream in the world!
    White Spot Drive In in Marpole – the original location.

  102. Trafalgar’s – fantastic local dishes and wonderful cocktails. Staff were absolutely amazing

    The Living Room – the name said it all. So welcoming and comfortable and amazing food

  103. … the utterly unique Chez Victor’s in the West End ? Davie st.? 4 tables, haute cuisine, and mad Victor the chef, and the sweetest Notte’s Bon Ton on Granville, Mother’s Restaurant on Georgia near the park, during the 70’s ? it had a great big tea pot on its roof, The Green/Orange Doors off Pender, student affordable Cantonese fare ?, The White Lunch on Granville with those astounding post war, work project Haida murals, oh and that floating ship restaurant moored somewhere off Georgia in the fog, The Alhambra, a soup restaurant of the finest quality in eastern Gastown. There was a place near the docks, westward below Hastings, where you could get cod, halibut and salmon right off the boats for a shilling, there were so many, and we were so hungry. Almost forgot, the ” Vancouver College Cooking School Dinning Room”, attached physically to the Vancouver Art School, where you could get Lobster Newburg and baked Alaska for 2 dollars. Really, it was so good, linen and and young aspiring chefs, long before it was cool. Not a tattoo or piercing in sight.

  104. Really liked the Soft Rock Café on 4th Ave… closed in the late 80’s I think.

    Loved many of the restaurants already listed here ~ thanks for the splendid and mouth-watering trip down memory lane.

    Missing the Kettle of Fish, the Mansion (it’s been sitting empty for far too long, such a gorgeous interior. ..), Delilah’s, DV8, Doll & Pennies, Tommy Africas, Montgomery Cafe, Heidelberg Haus (on Robson), La Bodega on Howe St (spent many birthdays here), the original Elbow Room (in an old house) and Fresgos downtown.

    Definitely Benny’s Bagels in Kits is a big loss, as well as Gladys’ (worked there!), Fiasco, Funky Armadillo, Tomato, Vinyard, Rossinis and the unforgettable Orestes (saw the first male belly dancer there!!).
    Ciprianos on Main St and more recently The Foundation being gone too is very sad.

This 100+ Seat Establishment in Gastown Was Inspired by Vancouver’s Beer Heritage

Today we remember Sean Heather's Bitter Tasting Room, interring it for all eternity in Vancouver's Restaurant Graveyard.

This Seafood-Focused Wine Bar Lasted Six Years in Gastown

Today we remember Cork & Fin (and its freshly shucked oysters), interring it for all eternity in Vancouver's Restaurant Graveyard.

Though an Inspiration to Young Cooks, This Tiny Vancouver Eatery Didn’t Last

Open from 2015 to early 2017, Latab was a short-lived gift to local foodies from chef Kris Barnholden and wine pro Eryn Dorman.

Remember This Short-Lived Little Vegetarian Wine Bar on the Edge of Chinatown?

Today we inter the tiny, 20 seat vegetarian restaurant known as The Parker into Vancouver's Restaurant Graveyard.