The Masterminds Behind The Acorn and Vij’s Announce New Restaurant Opening on Main

Shira Blustein announced the news while accepting The Acorn's Best Vegan/Vegetarian award at the Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Awards.

Shira Blustein took a page out of Taylor Swift’s book yesterday at the 2024 Vancouver Magazine Restaurant Awards (read about all of the winners here). The founder of The Acorn (and The Arbor, RIP) came on stage to accept the award for Best Vegan/Vegetarian in our Reader’s Choice division and, after thanking her team, dropped a bomb: she and Meeru Dhalwala (who we all know and love from Vij’s) are opening a restaurant called Lila together. In the Vancouver restaurant scene, that’s about equivalent to announcing a new album in your Grammy acceptance speech (yes, we’re calling ourselves the Grammys).

Lila’s Instagram feed features the dynamic duo Dhalwala and Blustein.

Lila will open in the former Arbor location “in the coming weeks,” according to a release. We don’t have too many details on the menu yet (“a range of main dishes that cater to a variety of tastes” is what the release says… that’s even more cryptic than Taylor) but with Blustein and Dhalwala at the helm, we’re anticipating variety of inventive, veggie-forward dishes that embrace bold flavour and local fare.

It was an uplifting announcement at the awards, especially following some sad news—when accepting the award for Best Upscale Italian, chef Pino Posteraro announced that Cioppino’s will be closing at the end of this year after an incredible 25-year run.

We’ll bring you more news on Lila as it comes—for now, follow the team’s Instagram and live by another poignant statement Blustein made in her awards acceptance speech: “Eat your veggies.”