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Our judges have spoken: these are the best African and Caribbean restaurants in Vancouver.
GOLD: Arike, 1725 Davie Street
SILVER: Moltaqa, 1002 Mainland Street
BRONZE: Baby Dhal, 2707 Commercial Drive
HONOURABLE MENTIONS: Fassil
Arike takes the gold, captivating our esteemed judges with its rare-to-Vancouver combination of Nigerian flavours and Pacific Northwest ingredients. The West End spot shifts its menu with the seasons, but whatever time of year you go, expect a feast; think artfully plated aromatic West African curries, spicy jollof rice and banana-leaf steamed sweet corn and preserved chilies, courtesy of chef Sam Olayinka. Olayinka’s father hails from Lagos, and he takes his precision and presentation from past stints at casual-fine and actual-fine dining destinations (Cactus Club and Bacchus, respectively). The pack-a-punch spices and bold flavours transport with the taste of a faraway home.
Meanwhile, date-night-chic Moltaqa takes silver—judges applauded the homey tagines and homemade merguez, served in a trendy tile-lined eatery.
Commercial Drive’s casual-cool Baby Dhal scoops up the bronze thanks to serious spiced Trinidadian curries and tender, buttery roti. Honourable mention goes to longstanding neighbourhood hotspot Fassil, the warm and unfussy go-to for Ethiopian fare.
Want More Restaurant Award Winners? Read Them All Here