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There’s a reason this landmark room on Hamilton Street always seems to be hopping. Proprietor Jack Evrensel has carefully put together what one judge called “a dining experience that appeals to almost everyone, from serious foodies to suburbanites out for a special night.” Executive chef Frank Pabst dazzles, as he has for years, with his “stellar menu highlighting locally sourced, sustainable seafood.” Pabst’s oversight of the kitchen is complemented by Yoshi Tabo’s “beautifully fastidious, expertly crafted sushi.” Whether diners station themselves at the sushi bar to watch the action or at one of the tables or banquettes, they can’t help but admire the comfort and efficiency of this 170-seat, brick-and-beam culinary den. Add to the mix “a burgeoning cocktail program and a knockout wine list, courtesy of award-winning wine director Andrea Vescovi. Marry all that with seamless front-of-house service and it adds up to a superlative dining experience”—and to Blue Water’s first Restaurant of the Year award, edging out Yaletown neighbour Ciopppino’s Mediterranean Grill.