Restaurant Awards 2023: The Best Middle Eastern Restaurants in Vancouver

Including a Syrian/Lebanese eatery, an Afghan spot with great brunch and more.

Best Middle Eastern Restaurants in Vancouver 2023

Gold: Yasma

After less than three years in operation (first as a Kits ghost kitchen, now as a brick-and-mortar restaurant in Coal Harbour), Syrian/Lebanese eatery Yasma wins gold in our new Middle Eastern category. “A great combination of thoughtful dishes and small extra touches show the depth of love from the kitchen staff,” said one of our judges. That love shows up in the fried kibbeh (made with halal lamb that’s ground in-house, stuffed into a dough shell and served with a creamy yogurt sauce), which takes over a day to hand-prepare.

550 Denman St., Vancouver

Yasma. Photo: Leila Kwok.

Silver: Anatolia’s Gate

Turkish counter-service spot Anatolia’s Gate earns silver for unfussy but ultra-tasty eats like fresh-baked lavash and tender, flame-licked lamb.

7084 Kingsway, Burnaby 

Photo: Anatolia’s Gate

Bronze: Zarak 

The bronze goes to Zarak, a modern Afghan restaurant our judges celebrated for flavourful, share-able dishes and extraordinarily creative cocktails—the Mahtab is crafted from saffron- infused Patrón Añejo tequila, Bénédictine, cardamom honey water and safflower.

2102 Main St., Vancouver

Afghanistan is geographically situated in Central Asia, not the Middle East, but is sometimes included in the geopolitical definition of the Greater Middle East; for the purposes of this award, our judges considered Afghan restaurants to be included in the category.

Photo: Zarak Vancouver.

Honourable Mention: Delara

And the ultra-vibey Delara is our honourable mention—find contemporary West Coast takes on traditional Persian dishes here.

2272 W 4th Ave., Vancouver

Looking for more of the best restaurants in Vancouver? See all 70+ restaurants on the list.