Where to Fill Up with Victoria’s Best Food & Drink This Fall

Planning a trip to Victoria this fall? We've compiled a short list of essential eating and drinking around the city to sate your appetite during the cooler months ahead...

Where to Fill Up with Victoria’s Best Food & Drink This Fall

Planning a trip to Victoria this month? We’ve compiled a short list of essential eating and drinking around the city to sate your appetite during the cooler months ahead…

Dumpling Drop

Yes, Victoria’s much-loved Dumpling Drop is known for dumplings – no surprise there – and you should absolutely swing by their Pandora Street storefront for a serving of these tasty deep-fried dudes. Pork Belly? Shrimp & Chive? Lemongrass Chicken? Vegan Triple Mushroom? They’ve got ’em all! But do it at lunchtime (the earlier, the better), that way you can return – with a new appetite – for Chaiyo Nights, Dumpling Drop’s evening alter-ego serving up authentic Thai dinner. Grab a friend, get comfortable, and order a whack-load of share plates, including garlic chicken wings, Som Tom green papaya salad, Masaman Gai (a comforting chicken, potato, coconut and tamarind curry on rice), and Thai glass noodle salad with spicy mint, cilantro and lime dressing (all pictured above on pink background). Don’t forget to throw a glass of natural wine or a cold beer into the mix. Chaiyo Nights runs Thursday to Sunday, 6-9pm.

Dumpling Drop 556A Pandora Ave, Victoria, BC V8W 1N7 MAP

Eva Schnitzelhaus

Photo credit: @evaschnitzelhaus

Still adjusting to the abrupt shift from extended summer to full-on fall? We suggest easing the transition by leaning on comfort food: Jagerschnitzel, schweineschnitzel, bratwurst, currywurst, braised red cabbage, cold beer and SPAETZLE! Eva Schnitzelhaus has you covered. This sophisticated yet relaxed space at the edge of Victoria’s Chinatown offers dinner five nights per week (Wednesday-Sunday), as well as a weekend brunch from 10am-2pm. Orchestrate your own personal Oktoberfest, in November.

Eva Schnitzelhaus 509 Fisgard St. MAP

End Dive


End Dive is a new restaurant located at Government and Herald. We haven’t had the chance to check them out for ourselves yet, but we’ve been keeping close watch, and we like what we’ve seen and heard (for a bit of background, check out Ryan Hook’s informative article in Capital City here). To summarize: this is a capable crew focused on seafood, good times, no pandering, punk music, unique design, made-from-scratch cooking and locally sourced ingredients. End Dive is open during the daytime from 11:30am-2:30pm, Friday-Monday; and Thursday-Sunday evenings from 5pm-Late. If you go, report back – we want to know how it was!

End Dive 1802 Government St. MAP

Stage

Photo credit: Johann Vincent

Located outside of the downtown core in Fernwood (a walkable neighbourhood anchored by a community theatre, small shops, and independent restaurants), not only is Stage a room replete with beautiful features – big windows, brick walls, wood floors and candlelight – it’s also full of delicious-ness. The French-inspired menu is small and seasonally driven with West Coast flair – as good for sharing as it is for a solo meal. Classic cocktails and wine from their thoughtful wine list are approachable in pricing (and encouraged). In short, you can’t go wrong by factoring Stage into your Victoria itinerary. Our advice: aim for seats at the bar.

Stage 1307 Gladstone Ave. MAP

Agrius & Fol Epi

Photo credit: @agriusrestaurant

Whether you are sliding into grab a baguette, some granola or a box of baked goods to go, or are settling in for a late afternoon charcuterie plate and a nice glass of wine, that mysteriously leads into pizza for dinner…this Yates Street institution always delivers. Known for their commitment to using organic ingredients sourced from the best local farms, as well as natural and low intervention wines, both Agrius and Fol Epi showcase the best of Vancouver Island through culinary story telling.

Agrius 732 Yates Street MAP
Fol Epi 732 Yates St. MAP

Sherwood

Photo via Sherwood

Sausage, eggs and sourdough French toast with whipped ricotta by day; natural wine list and share plates by night; plus a killer happy hour featuring cocktails in the $8-12 range – this bright and lively ‘contemporary take on a European café’ is waiting for you, whenever you are ready. Check Sherwood’s website for a read of the full menu.

Sherwood 710 Pandora Ave, Victoria, BC V8W 0E4 MAP

Nourish

Photo via Nourish, Victoria

Real and nourishing food served in a homey 1888 heritage house on the edge of Victoria’s inner harbour, with a focus on “…holistic philosophies, traditional culinary techniques, and the boundless inspiration of nature”. Not only does the inspiration behind Nourish translate to healthy, comforting and tasty food on the plate, a visit to this restaurant cafe and community hub is a great place to retreat from the chaos of the downtown core.

Nourish 225 Quebec St. MAP

Uchida Eatery

This order-ahead lunch-only restaurant is only accessible via take-out. Despite the very specific parameters, Uchida is worth the effort if you are in the mood for a nourishing meal of organic Japanese comfort food. Great to take back to your hotel, but in a pinch, this restaurant is located inside Nootka Court (a fully covered mall-like space in downtown Victoria). Also of note: Uchida is located right next to Jaga Silk Tea Shop. Jaga Silk is open every Friday from Noon to 4pm for tea and house-made desserts.

Uchida Eatery 633 Courtney St. MAP
Jaga Tea Shop 633 Courtney St. MAP

Hanks

Photo credit: @hanksvic

This tiny Douglas Street restaurant may only have 16 seats, but it has a big attitude, unapologetically bold flavours and good energy. At Hanks you will be served by the chefs who cook your food. The menu changes with seasonal ingredients, which come directly from Vancouver Island farmers, fisherman and foragers. This team cares about where food comes from and how it is cooked, and it shows.

Hanks *A Restaurant 1001 Douglas St. MAP

Working Culture Bread

Looking for a pick-me-up? Fresh bread, killer cinnamon buns and nice people always do it for us. Working Culture Bread has them all, and then some. Hit up this Douglas Street bakery for bread, cookies, pastries, coffee, and (sometimes) even pizza. Don’t leave it too late in the day, though! Victoria loves Working Culture and the shop regularly sells out. Travellers tip: Dark Chocolate Sourdough (Saturday) and the Cheese & Herb OR Potato Herb (Sunday) are only available on the weekends. Check Working Culture to see what loaves will be on the shelves during your visit here. Pro tip: take-out sandwiches are a nice thing to do for yourself on the way to the ferry.

Working Culture Bread 2506 Douglas St. MAP

Maiiz

Photo credit: Maiiz Nixtamal

Even if the food at Maiiz wasn’t some of the most authentic and delicious Mexican we’ve come across in Canada, Chef Israel Alvarez Molina’s enthusiasm and knowledge of traditional ingredients and processing would be reason enough to stop at this Mexican counter service shop, located in Victoria’s Chinatown. Tamales and tacos are a must but consider taking along a carry bag to load up on takeaway packages of their stone ground tortillas, as well as Pozole, Barbacoa and Enchilada Kits…AND the hot chocolate is the real deal – so you should probably leave with a cup of that, too.

MAiiZ Nixtamal Tortillería 540 Fisgard St. MAP

Brasserie l’Ecole


Although Brasserie l’Ecole does not accept reservations, if you are brave enough to brace yourself for November weather while waiting in line for a spot, you will be rewarded! There is a reason seats at this classic French country style brasserie have been sought after for almost 20 years. Comfortable room, gentle lighting, genuine service, French wines (and beer), and a classic menu (imagine tucking into Soupe à l’Oignon Gratinée followed by Endive Salad and the famous Brasserie burger with truffle oil and parmesan frites!) Brasserie l’Ecole is open Tuesday to Saturday, 5:30 to 9 pm. We suggest you arrive early to stake your claim on a table. If you don’t get in for the first seating, don’t fret – they have a waitlist system that allows you to leave your name and contact number so that you are notified when space is available.

Brasserie L'Ecole 1715 Government St. MAP

Ruth & Dean


We never leave Victoria without a visit to Ruth & Dean. Located on a bustling one-block shopping district in a residential neighbourhood, this luncheonette and bakery does comfort food right. Not only do they serve from-scratch soups, sandwiches and salads, but they also produce some of the best baked goods in the city. We make sure to fill our luggage with all manner of take-back-to-Vancouver treats, including frozen soups, house-made granola, the best chocolate freezer-cake ever and a few Nanaimo Bars for good measure. Holy heck, this place is good.

Ruth & Dean 2509 Estevan Ave. MAP

Beer

Photo credit: @ilesauvagebrewing

In Victoria and in search of good beer? Heat things up by hitting Superflux {Cabana} for sexy, Vegas-inspired vibes along with a food menu of comfy classics, along with sleeves of Superflux beer pouring from their taps. Ile Sauvage Brewing just turned four years old this October, which is reason enough to swing by and get wild with a glass of something fruity and/or sour on tap. And, if you’re brewery hopping downtown, then Whistle Buoy Brewing is a no-brainer. Time your visit for a Friday or Saturday afternoon (the earlier, the better) to scarf down some Vancouver Island oysters from the Wandering Mollusk pop up with your brews. A short (5-minute) walk will take you to your next stop: Herald Street Brew Works – a joint effort between the owners of Victoria’s The Drake and New West brewery Steel & Oak’s owners, so you can pretty much count on it being an inviting space and delicious brews.

Superflux {Cabana} Upstairs, 804 Broughton St. MAP
Île Sauvage Brewing 2960 Bridge St. MAP
Whistle Buoy Unit 63 -560 Johnson St. MAP
Herald Street Brew Works 506 Herald St. MAP

Did we miss someone? | Do you have a favourite Victoria restaurant that should have been included in this list, but wasn’t? Comment below or send your suggestion to michelle [at] scoutmagazine.ca

There are 6 comments

  1. Stage! So great, all great choices here. The Drake a great beer and snack stop too 😎

  2. You forgot Boomtown burritos! So glad Stage was listed, though. Such a great place!

  3. Here! Here! I’ll second that mention of the eats at Boomtown! Such a cool space too! Awesome chow at Foo as well! Yates St. is blessed.