After two years of business, Japanese-fusion restaurant Noah’s Cafe has just two months to relocate from their current Yaletown location into a new West End address, at 1096 Denman Street.
Noah’s Cafe opened doors at 572 Davie Street on September 24th, 2020. Owner Cliff Chi knew from the get-go that his days at this space would be numbered, since his lease included a demo clause, but he wasn’t expecting to have to move this soon (the notice to vacate was delivered earlier this month). The small miracle of an extension (originally, Chi was given only thirty days to vacate) has granted him a bit of extra time to get the new space sorted. With plans to build all of the tables, shelves, decorations and other details himself, though – as he did with the original restaurant – he’ll need those extra days. Chi picked up keys for the Denman St. location (formerly home to J+P Kitchen, and Banana Leaf before that) on September 23rd, 2022, and changes are already afoot.
Chi cut his teeth in the industry at the age of 17 with series of smaller gigs before landing a job at Guu, which took him from a server into the kitchen. After nearly a decade, he decided it was time to leave the restaurant and expand his culinary knowledge, which he did by putting in time at an izakaya/ramen shop in Whistler, as well as at Joey, Grapes & Soda, Farmers Apprentice, and Motomachi Shokudo. Always in the back of his mind was the idea of opening his own restaurant, though, which he finally did with Noah’s Cafe (named after his son) when he was laid off during the pandemic and his friends encouraged him to make the jump to a brick-and-mortar of his own at the tiny Davie St. location.
The second incarnation of Noah’s Cafe will have the same low-key vibe as the first, but with an expanded menu of “unique”, mostly shared-style dishes and handcrafted cocktails, slightly later hours (the new licence allows them to serve liquor until 1am), more room to move (220sqft more than the original 780sqft space, to be exact) and nearly double the number of seats to fill (35 versus 20). Chi is hoping that the restaurant’s closer proximity to the beach and the West End area’s more neighbourhood-y feel, which he loves, will help with the latter. All 11 of Noah’s Cafe’s staff will also be making the move to the new Denman St. address.
Stay tuned to Instagram for developments and the official opening date announcement.