I recently had the good fortune to visit Vancouver for work. My coworkers and I had some great food and cocktails. I had never heard much about Vancouver as a great food city before but we ate well. I thought most of the food rivaled what we get in San Francisco. A few highlights:
Meat & Bread
I liked this place a lot. It was hard to decide which I liked better, the meatball or the porchetta. I especially enjoyed the sambal and salsa verde that they used to dress the sandwiches. We have a food truck here called Roli Roti that's well-known for porchetta but I thought Meat & Bread's version was far better.
We wound up here by necessity when we found L'Abbatoir closed for a private event. We saw lots of raw Wagyu beef items that looked intriguing. The kaki starter was especially good. Oysters - which seemed to be oil poached - atop shaved onions dressed with ume vinegar. Another standout was an unusual take on fish and chips, tempura sockeye salmon with new potatoes and tartar sauce. A nice marriage of Asian and English influences. The place seemed kind of dead which is unfortunate given the food quality. One caveat is that the cocktails weren't so good.
We didn't eat here but had some great cocktails. The rum old fashioned was great, and the bartender made me a cognac old fashioned (not on the menu) that was delicious. The absinthe selection was impressive, with many I'd never heard of before. I tried a German one made with calendula flowers that was particularly good.
Homer St. Cafe
We had two meals here. The first one was much better than the second, but for the second meal we arrived about 15 minutes before closing when it was quite busy. Highlights for me were the baked chicken skin, maple butter pork belly, and the braised grass-fed beef chuck. I would likely go earlier in the future for a better experience.
I'm looking forward to my next visit and trying some more spots. I'm planning to return sometime in the early summer so if anyone has suggestions I'd love to hear them. We'll likely have a place with a kitchen so any suggestions for places to buy local produce and meat would also be welcome.