Our 17 Restaurant Awards judges really outdid themselves this year, investigating the good, the bad, and the tasty to report back on the best of the best

Our thanks to these intrepid tasters. Note that they visit restaurants repeatedly and anonymously, paying their own bills. Occassionally, they are invited as part of larger media events to taste multiple dishes throughout the year.   Joie Alvaro Kent is a freelance writer whose work has appeared in Best Places Vancouver, this magazine’s Eating & Drinking Guide, and Montecristo and NUVO magazines. Murray Bancroft is the Fresh Sheet columnist for Vancouver magazine and consults with a roster of international clients as a research chef and food stylist. Christina Burridge is the drinks editor for Vancouver magazine’s Eating & Drinking Guide and CityGuide, and is executive director of the B.C. Seafood Alliance. Sid Cross is honorary president of the International Wine & Food Society and a cofounder of Chefs’ Table Society of British Columbia. He judges the Gold Medal Plates, Canadian Culinary Championships, and Lt.-Gov. Awards for Excellence. Alexandra Gill is the Vancouver restaurant critic for the Globe and Mail, Vancouver editor of V.v magazine, and a freelance writer. She also judges Canada’s 100 Best Restaurants. DJ Kearney, drinks editor for Vancouver magazine, is also a sommelier instructor, wine writer, and critic with chef training. She is the head judge of this magazine’s International Wine Awards. Lee Man’s work has appeared in Vancouver, EAT, Time Out Vancouver, and Best Places Vancouver. He’s a founding judge of the Chinese Restaurant Awards. Brendon Mathews is a freelance food writer with expertise in Chinese cuisine and a judge of the Chinese Restaurant Awards. Robert McCullough is the Vancouver-based publisher of Random House of Canada’s food and lifestyle imprint Appetite. Neal McLennan is the food and travel editor of Western Living and a contributor to Cooking Light, enRoute, and Seattle magazines. Tim Pawsey blogs about food and wine at Hiredbelly.com and contributes to Where Vancouver, the North Shore News, Montecristo, Taste, and the Courier, among many. Treve Ring is a writer and editor specializing in wine. Her work appears in Montecristo, Sip Northwest, EAT, and Eating & Drinking Guide, and online at Gismondi On Wine, WineAlign, and Scout. David Scholefield is a wine expert and consultant. He is also vice-president of strategy for Trialto Wine Group. Shelora Sheldan is a writer and editor whose work appears in Western Living, EAT, Yam, Salt, and Eating & Drinking Guide. She also blogs at Cookingwithabroad.com. Mia Stainsby is the restaurant critic, food writer, and Word of Mouth food blogger for the Vancouver Sun. Stephen Wong is a food and wine writer and consultant, cookbook author, and founding chair and judge of the Chinese Restaurant Awards. Xia-er Yao is a founding judge of the Chinese Restaurant Awards. She writes for Gourmetvancouver.com and Taiyang-bao.ca.   Thanks to our Best New Design panelists: Anicka Quin, editor-in-chief of Western Living; Chad Falkenberg and Kelly Reynolds, principals of Falken Reynolds Interiors; and Naomi MacDougall, associate art director of Vancouver.