Readers’ Choice Awards 2024: The Best Dishes in the City

From the best brunch to the best sandwich to the best steak, here are the dishes our readers voted as Vancouver's top offerings.

Who are you to judge? That’s not a rhetorical question: after decades of Restaurant Awards results being solely up to our panel of pro judges, we reintroduced the Readers’ Choice division of the Restaurant Awards this year. Seven thousand nominations, 45,000 votes and many, many readers’ opinions later, the results are in. We’re honoured to serve up the 2024 Readers’ Choice winners—chosen for the people, by the people.

Vancouver Magazine’s 2024 Readers’ Choice Awards: Best Dishes

Photo: Juno Kim

Best Bar: The Keefer Bar

135 Keefer St.,

Voters praised this Chinatown bar’s inventive cocktails (the Tokyo Drift crafted with Japanese whisky, ambre vermouth and kumquat gomme is a winner) and irresistible happy hour (half-priced dim sum—yes please).

Best Brewery: 33 Acres

15 W 8th Ave.,

Is it really summer in Vancouver before you’ve had your first sip of 33 Acres of Sunshine (a fruity, citrusy French blanchè) between rounds of Spikeball at the beach? Scientists say no.

Cafe Medina

Best Brunch: Café Medina and Maxine’s

780 Richards St.,
1325 Burrard St.,

Yes, these two brunch queens received the exact same number of votes, proving there’s no wrong choice: between Medina’s Liège-style waffles and Maxine’s indulgent Dutch baby, you’re starting the day with a win.

Best Coffee Shop: Nemesis Coffee

Multiple locations,

Despite its antagonistic name, this coffee shop has found a friend in Vancouverites via rich espresso, flaky croissants and a surprisingly robust (and affordable) brunch menu.

Best Food Truck: Japadog

Multiple locations,

Thanks to next-level hot dogs topped with Japanese delights like nori, teriyaki sauce, mayo and yakisoba, Japadog has reached legendary status in Vancouver’s street food scene.

Lorenzo Ignacio

Best Vegan/Vegetarian: The Acorn

3995 Main St.,

Plant-forwardness is an asset, not a limit, at the Acorn—the menu sings with dishes like smoked mushroom pâté, rainbow carrots in red curry and beer-battered halloumi—and voters raved about the staff’s neighbourly hospitality, too.

Photo: Tanya Goehring

Best Burger: Between 2 Buns

105 E Pender St.,

Fans of the smash patty flock here for “consistently awesome” burgs—so ugly-delicious that they’re almost impossible to take a flattering photo of. But who cares when you’re biting into a flavour bomb of melty cheese, “shredduce” and B2B signature sauce?

Best Dim Sum: Dynasty

108–777 W Broadway,

Dynasty is the setting for so many special-
occasion dinners (we’re counting down the days to king crab season) but the iconic resto’s dim sum is proof that it starts the day off with a bang, too: the steamed crab and shrimp dumplings and deep-fried taro puffs with BBQ duck make for a perfect Sunday morning.

Photo: Rich Won

Best Fried Chicken: Downlow Chicken Shack

905 Commercial Dr.,

People line up and down the block for chef Doug Stephen’s fried chicken for a reason. The grain-fed, free-run meat is sourced from Two Rivers; the messy, crispy-tender handcrafted chicken sandos are made to order; and Wing Wednesdays are a weekly highlight.

Best Hot Pot: Happy Lamb Hot Pot

1788 W Broadway,

Is there anything that warms up a drizzly Vancouver day faster than hot pot? Happy Lamb is the go-to for its fresh ingredients and high-quality sliced beef, which simmer the night away pleasantly in rich and flavourful “house special” broth. All-you-can-eat options make for an indulgent night out.

Best Pasta: Ask for Luigi

305 Alexander St.,

Though it’s been nine years now since Ask for Luigi won our “Best New Restaurant” award, the cozy Railtown room continues to fire on all cylinders. As one voter said, “I find myself craving the pasta here. It’s handmade, it’s rustic, it’s thoughtful and it’s absolute perfection.”

Best Pizza: Via Tevere

1190 Victoria Dr.,

Neapolitan pizza is the name of the game here, and there isn’t a bad slice to be had in the place. The margherita is proof of the artistry in simplicity; the Vesuvio is topped with both salame piccante and capicollo. Voters reported loving the wood-fired pizzas at Via Tevere more than pies they tried in Italy.

Best Ramen: Ramen Danbo

Multiple locations,

You’ll find Danbo’s Fukuoka-style ramen in Kits, the West End and Kerrisdale—and lines of
super-fans, too. The noodles are always bouncy; the pork broth rich and fortifying. These are bowls to bowl you over.

Best Sandwich: Meat and Bread

Multiple locations,

Voters called the porchetta sandwich—packed with crackling pork belly and zippy salsa verde—“the best in the city” and “the best sandwich I’ve ever had,” so you know this humble, hardworking chain (there are four Vancouver locations) is doing something right.

Photo: Allison Kuhl

Best Seafood: Blue Water Cafe

1095 Hamilton St.,

Seafood is a competitive category in this town, but Blue Water has captured the people’s hearts with impeccable service and impeccable-er seafood towers—the three-tier Blue Water Cafe Tower features everything from salmon tartare to lobster to prawns to jellyfish salad, and is a trophy in and of itself.

Photo: Leila Kwok

Best Steak: Elisa

1109 Hamilton St.,

Elisa’s steaks are meticulously selected from local and global suppliers with proudly ethical farming practices—so you can feel good when your 40-day dry-aged ribeye or California-cut wagyu tenderloin drops onto the sizzling wood-fired grill.

Photo: Mark Yuen

Best Sushi: Miku

70–200 Granville St.,

The sushi at Miku is a work of art. Sure, each piece of flame-kissed aburi oshi sushi or specialty roll or handpressed nigiri offering is plucked-from-the-ocean fresh, but it’s also always a feast for the eyes, lovingly presented like the treasure it is.

Best Tacos: Tacofino

Multiple locations,

Tacofino brings a unique West Coast-inspired perspective to its multiple taco-and-burrito shops, offering fresh, flavourful fare like crispy chicken with buttermilk chili crema or sesame-glazed albacore tuna wrapped in soft, housemade shells. It may not be traditional, but it’s damn tasty.


Find more of the best Vancouver restaurants on our list of 2024 Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Award winners.