9 Hot Spots To Get Spot Prawns in Vancouver in 2023

It's harvest season for these spotted West Coast delicacies—here are the best places to get your shrimp on!

Whether you’re a prawnoisseur or just a simp for that shrimp, you likely already know that it’s BC Spot Prawn season—that special time in May and June when these reddish-brown shellicacies spring up on menus, docks and barbecues all over the West Coast and we shrimply can’t get enough (last shrimp-based pun, I promise!)

Why are they called spot prawns?

BC spot prawns are known for their characteristic white spots on their tails and white horizontal bars on their shells (and for tasting delish with a delicate, almost buttery texture and a slightly sweet, fresh and briny flavour.)

Now that these sweet, succulent crustaceans are back in town, it’s time to get cracking! Here are some places around our fair city where you can get your spot prawn fix, so let’s dive in and get shrimpin’!

Collage of various prawn images on plates and being held
Credit: chefstablesociety.com

1. Spot Prawn Festival 2023

Where: False Creek Fisherman’s Wharf

When: Sunday, May 28 (11 am – 3 pm)

Cost: From $12.22

Ain’t no party like a fisherman wharf party! This annual shellfish shindig is hosted by the Chef’s Table Society of British Columbia (it helps them raise money for scholarships and cover operating costs!) and is a boat-load of fun. Head to the docks for live music, free cooking demos from local celebrity chefs, and live BC spot prawns for sale. Got $10? Then you’ve got yourself a Spot Prawn Bisque and a bun to-go! Got $79 and love brunching? There’s a Spot Prawn Brunch that features a tasting menu of six mouth-watering spot prawn dishes—but it’s for 19 and older because of course this brunch has cocktails (otherwise, is it even a brunch?). Grab your tickets here.


Credit: stevestonspotprawns.com

2. 2nd Annual Steveston Spot Prawn & Seafood Celebration 

Where: Steveston Fisherman’s Wharf

When: May 16-June 18

Cost: Free

This wharf party is a little farther out (a perfect excuse to visit Richmond), but offers a lot of prawn-centric fun! I’m talking Spot Prawn Sales with lots of boats hawking these shrimpies (just don’t forget to bring a bag and some cash); the Spot Prawn & Seafood Dine About (June 1-18) where you can feast on spot prawn dishes at participating restos all over Richmond (with $2 off each dish using the Dine About Digital Passport); and train to be a seafood master at The Culinary Stage (June 10-11) with local chefs giving you all their best-kept seafood secrets. Oh, and let’s not forget the Spot the Prawn Activity (May 16-June 18) where you get the chance to be your own prawn detective, counting those sneaky spot prawns and filling out your Spot Prawn Bingo Form for a chance to win a delicious $100 prize. 


BCSpotPrawns with Nahm Jim

3. Longtail Kitchen’s Tenth Birthday ‘Spot Prawn BBQ Bash’

Where: Longtail Kitchen in New West

When: Saturday, May 20th (starting at 2 pm)

Cost: $48.88 per person

This fest is all the way in New West, but it’s also a birthday party celebrating a DECADE of serving up delicious Thai dishes! Longtail Kitchen is throwing a wild ‘Spot Prawn BBQ Bash’ on their rad patio. Picture this: riverside vibes, sunnies on, and the freshest B.C. spot prawns grilled to perfection! Devour a whole pound of live spot prawns, sizzled up by grill master Alex Lim. Dip ’em in nahm jim sauce and wash it down with a tallboy from Steel & Oak Brewing Co. Chef Angus An will be cracking cold ones while you soak up the awesome atmosphere and admire the mighty Fraser River. Get ready for door prizes, giveaways, and the chance to score a limited-edition Longtail 10th Anniversary T-shirt! Get your tickets here (And don’t worry, Longtail Kitchen will still be open for takeout orders if you can’t make it to the bash.)


table display of various dishes with prawns and a glass of white wine

4. Fanny Bay Oysters (Downtown)

This seafood shop in the heart of Vancouver’s downtown offers live BC spot prawns ($36 per lb) for pick up (plus their usual fresh oysters if you want to make it a full shellfish feast!) And starting today, Chef Tommy Shorthouse has some special offerings in honour of the season: Fresh Spot Prawn Sashimi ($10) served raw on ice with wasabi and soy sauce (and why not get the prawn head deep-fried with Old Bay aioli for an extra $2?); a rotating daily Spot Prawn Feature ($32); and a Cooked Spot Prawn Add On ($10) that’s sautéed with garlic butter, chili, herbs and white wine.

Prawns tail up on a wooden board with bread and rose.

5. Coast Restaurant 

Downtown seafood favourite Coast is offering special Spot Prawn features starting today (lucky us!). You can order off a special menu that also includes some shrimp-inspired bevvys. Get a pound of B.C. Spot Prawns (swimming in garlic butter, grilled with lemon) and a bottle of Quails Gate Rosé ($98) for a full dining experience. There’s a Spot Prawn Sashimi ($12) served with pickled ginger, freshly grated wasabi; and for caesar-lovers, why not try a Spot Prawn Bloody Mary ($26) with lime-cured spot prawn, oyster ceviche and spiced tomato water? There’s also a Spot Prawn Risotto ($38) with snap peas and lemon that looks pretty tasty.

Chef holds two large prawns on the outside patio

6. Smitty’s Oyster House on Main Street

Mount Pleasant’s fave oyster hang with the killer patio is getting in on the prawn-filled action. They’ve got a Spot Prawn and Scallop Aguachile (with carrot, habanero, cucumber, red onion and avocado mousse). Also available on Friday and Saturday evenings is a Spot Prawn Paella with homemade chorizo, mussels and clams—because who doesn’t love a paella!


7. Riley’s Fish and Steak

The seafood and steak resto on Waterfront has some features to honour the prawn. They’ve got a 1 lb of BC Spot Prawns (sauteed in garlic, shallots, fresh herbs and lemon) and a Bottle Of Mission Hill 2022 Rosé Reserve ($98) that also comes with a toasted baguette. Want to get really fancy with your prawn-a-thon? Swap in a bottle of Laurent Perrier Cuvee Brut Rosé ($150).

8. The Lobster Man (Granville Island)

The Granville Island shellfish market is now taking orders for fresh BC Spot Prawns for $28.99 per pound.

hand holding a spot prawn in a collinder of prawns

9. 7 Seas Fish Market (Kitsilano)

Until they run out, you can order a 1/2 lb bag of fresh BC Spot Prawns for $24.99/bag.


Happy Shrimpin’ everyone!