Last week I showcased some one-of-a-kind food items from the West Coast ranging from soupless ramen to roasted eggplants. This week, my tour through Vancouver continues as I feature the must-eats from Vancouver. Given its geographic location near the Pacific Ocean, Vancouver offers some of the freshest and most varied seafood selections from across Canada. Regardless of your taste preferences, Vancouver has a place that will satisfy those cravings. From wandering through downtown Vancouver to neighborhoods surrounding the city like Burnaby and Richmond, I created a list of top must-try food in Vancouver. Adventurous AU students who are looking for a taste of the West Coast can enjoy the best of what Vancouver has to offer.
Given the dynamic Japanese community in British Columbia, ramen is an iconic contemporary fare featuring char siu along with a variety of toppings. In a previous article, I covered the history of ramen and its popularity across North America. Ramen in Vancouver was different for a few reasons. For one, along a hipster street such as Robson Street to the North of the city you can find ramen on nearly every block. Because of such abundance, the price of ramen is also more affordable compared to that of Alberta (a $5 difference!). This means students can chow down on more bowls of ramen and try flavors they’re less accustomed to.
Sushi in this coastal city range from lower tier all-you-can-eats to premium a-la-carte selections. For myself, I tried two different sushi restaurants each with its unique touch. Toshi Sushi is a petite sushi joint tucked away on a small street. However, on a windy day I stumbled across the location packed with sushi connoisseurs. The line was outside the door and I was informed of a 45 minute wait. Inside, the dining area was pleasant and cozy. I had tried some of the freshest sushi for a very affordable price. Unlike sushi or sashimi in Alberta, the variety was incredible.
Given the large Eastern Asian population in Richmond, bubble tea locations are as widespread as coffee shops. Rather than your standard bubble tea choices, you might find some novelty options such as this Yakult bubble tea. Yakult is a yogurt flavored drink with a unmistakable, tangy, Italian-soda like flavor. Moreover, many bubble tea locations also offer boardgames, cozy decor that invites guests to stay longer than the time it takes to make the beverage.
Since dim sum originated in the Southern Chinese province of GuangDong, many of the tapa-like dishes feature fresh seafood such as shrimp, cuttlefish and fish eggs. Having tried dim sum all across Canada, I can safely say that my favorite dim sum locations are in B.C. Additionally, some items such as durian pastries are an unique find only in exclusive dim sum locations. Some of the most authentic dim sum locations are found in Richmond where a high density of Southern Chinese population.