As the year winds to a close and the editorial team reflects on another year of answering the Vancouver's toughest questions (or wondering how we got away with writing a story about the comments section of a Youtube video), it's rewarding to look back and see not just what tickled our own personal fancies, but to find out what articles actually hit home for our readership.
While our 2020 list of most-read stories was packed with Covid-centric stories and intel about social movement, for 2021, it's clear that the average VanMag reader just wanted to lose themselves in a nice meal, because almost all of our top-read stories for 2021 were food-related. No judgement at all, of course: as editors, we're also keenly interested to know where the best Japanese food in Vancouver might be found, or where we should be hurrying to make a Friday reservation before the next wave shuts everything down again. If you're hungry, you've come to the right page, because VanMag's most-read stories of 2021 double as a bit of a menu. Bon appetit!
Okay, so our #10 most-read story posted this year actually doesn't have to do with literal food, but associate editor Nathan Caddell certainly made a meal out of the marketing of a new Kerrisdale condo development. Before you get up in arms about his 'tude, though, please note that he is a born-and-bred K-dale boy and has earned the right to eviscerate his home neighbourhood.
When you find the perfect noodle in a cozy-casual space that serves up a smart-but-unfussy wine list: that's amore. Inspired by our Restaurant Awards judges' picks, we shared some of the best Italian restaurants in the city for your next Italissimo love affair.
Our assistant editor Alyssa Hirose rejoiced when a new bulk food shop opened in her 'hood, and the number suggest our readers did too. At the Source, there's the run-of-the-mill flour and oatmeal, but also chilli dried mangoes, local honey and kombucha on tap; read the full story for Hirose's first impressions.
This past year, the editors of VanMag started a new tradition this year of meeting up on Zoom every few weeks to pick a fight with each other. (Bonding!) The result was a series of "Editor Drafts": stories in which we each assembled a dream team of Vancouver restaurants, dishes or shops within a specific theme, and then publicly competed to see who had put together the best roster. Read on to uncover the 20 Vancouver bakeries that had us carbo-loading and frothing at the mouth with competitive spirit.
The news of a huge restaurant announcement made us giddy, and looking at the amount of traffic this story got, obviously you're hungry for new places to eat in Whistler, too. "This spring's opening of Wild Blue Restaurant + Bar might just be the most significant opening the mountain town has seen in decades," wrote food editor Neal McLennan. Hyerpbole is always a dangerous game in the restaurant industry, he notes, but in this case, the hype seems more than justified given the people involved.
Another draft, another top-read story, as our readers hungered to find out either where to source the best tuna rolls in the city, or to find out if our food editor would be able to dominate the rest of the team in this winner-takes-all battle royale.
Our first editors' draft brought the (pizza oven) heat. The number one pick? It's Corduroy Pie (spoiler!), but the rest of these competitors remain upper-crust options for pizza night.
Despite the fact that this editorial package came with a big judged-in-the-middle-of-a-pandemic asterix, the winners of our 32nd annual Restaurant Awards are tried-and-true champs, each and every one.
The team battled it out to assemble the perfect squad of burgers, and delivered a mighty, meaty laundry list of options for our burger-loving readership. Even our former vegetarian editorial director got in on the game.
Shockingly, our number-one story this year actually isn't about food. Rather, it offers a feel-good bit of data: tons of people were seeking out sources for orange shirts that were actually made by Indigenous designers and artists. If you still need to add one to your wardrobe for next year to show your support for reconciliation, this resource has proven itself a great place to start.
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