Eaters Gotta Eat: Anh and Chi Co-Founder Amelie Thuy Nguyen’s Fave Eats Around Town

Where the vibrant restaurateur goes for mother-daughter dim sum, off-menu cocktails and giftable loaves of bread.

Creating connection—that’s what Amelie Thuy Nguyen’s all about. The community-building queen is also pretty busy these days launching Good Thief, an exciting new Vietnamese, cocktail-forward concept that will open beside Anh and Chi soon, as well as acting as creative director for both restos and championing give-back initiatives whenever she can (Anh and Chi’s ‘reservation by donation’ program has raised $300k in the past few years for local charities.) So, where does this energized creative recharge and feast? Read on. 

Amelie Thuy Nguyen sits in a booth at a restaurant laughing
Photo: Trudy Tran

The Juice Truck

Various Locations

“When I’m feeling like I need a quick health kick, I’ll go down and grab a Bestie Bowl at Juice Truck’s 5th Avenue location. It has coconut, peanut butter, strawberries, granola… It’s quick, healthy, and I love the family and the team, and what they do for the vegan community.”

Dynasty Seafood Restaurant

108-777 West Broadway

“If I have lunch, it is usually with my mom, and she always loves something Asian—Dynasty is one of our dim sum staples. So consistent, so classic. They have great har gow (prawn dumplings) and their squid tentacles are nice and crispy. They also have a clam congee that my kids and I like, and we always order the pea tip stir fry with garlic.”

Nammos Estiatorio 

3980 Fraser St.

For fam-friendly neighbourhood eats, it’s Nammos for Nguyen, all the way. “This is my order: lamb pops, chicken skewers, Greek salad and lemony fish roe dip (Taramosalata). All of it. The owner, Petro, is really nice, the crew is really hospitable and it’s just great.”


a plate of spaghetti and meat sauce, the noodles being twirled on a fork

Jo’s Italian Deli

2505 Alma St.

Most of my meals are with my kids, after all, and we all love Jo’s,” says Nguyen of this westside Italian joint. “It’s so fresh, they make their own pasta, their sauces are good—the rosé is delicious. Jo’s is actually included in my Munchies to Michelin YouTube series that me and my best friend got a Telus grant to make; it includes all these neighbourhood gems. Check it out!”

Nero Waffles

1703 Robson St. & 1002 Seymour St.

With both Brussels waffles (soft, chewy, thick) and Liège (light and crispy) on offer, Nguyen’s considers Nero the sleeper hit sweet of the city. “I get the Brésilienne—it’s roasted hazelnuts, whipped cream, ice cream and salted caramel on a crispy waffle. Not too sweet, all the textures. There are two locations but I love the hole-in-the-wall one on Robson—I think they’re a little crispier there.”

a variety of dishes from Zoomak


52 Alexander St.

Nguyen goes to Gastown for the “unreal” seafood soup at this modern Korean resto. “It’s probably the best Korean soup I’ve ever tasted, and I also get the Pork Belly Bossom lettuce wraps. They are like little lettuce parcels built with condiments and pork belly—low-carb and so delicious.” 

Federal Store

2601 Quebec St.

The cutest neighborhood coffee shop you ever did see also stocks a solid selection of products. “Their sauces, chili oils, chocolates and kombucha include so many locally made, BIPOC brands.” (Aside, they also stock Me’s Marketplace, Nguyen’s small-batch sauce and provisions label; we love the Sweet Soy Sauce.)


1399 Commercial Dr.

“The. Best. Bread.” Nguyen heads to this Commercial Drive bakery specifically for the Italian sourdough: “It’s like a lighter, fluffier version of sourdough. My kids are also obsessed, and I’ll get a few loaves at a time and hand-deliver them to my friends.” (Um, adorable.)

a selection of japanese lunch items on a tray

Sushi Hil

3330 Main St.

Chef Hilary Nguy‘s award-winning sashimi/sushi spot, just down the street from Anh and Chi, makes the cut for a celebratory meal.It’s where I take myself and my kids for a treat, although I wish I could eat here all the time. Their sashimi and omakase menu is so very special. Every time I come I order two of the steak tataki because one of my daughters will eat the whole one.”

Oshi Nori

1055 Mainland St.

“Speaking of sushi, I just happened upon this place recently in Yaletown. I absolutely loved the seared King Salmon Oshi, it’s like an open-faced sushi taco. The eel was delicious too. The owners are Brazilian, they have a really nice team, and I’ll definitely go back.”

an artful cocktail

Keefer Bar

135 Keefer St.

“For a Friday night cocktail, Keefer is my go-to. I love this drink called the Kanju, because it has Green Chartreuse, which is my favourite. They actually took the cocktail off the menu [but they still make it for me]. I’m always nicely surprised when I order an off-menu item and it’s perfectly balanced.”

Photo: Mark Yammine


265 E. Pender

Nguyen’s other favourite cocktail haunt (until Good Thief opens up, that is)? Tannis Ling’s sultry, cool Meo. “I go for the Basque cheesecake and the spicy margarita. I also just really appreciate the beautiful room.” 

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