We don’t always hold a ton of stock in Yelp reviews, but occasionally they do reveal some pretty interesting things about our city’s restaurants and our dining habits.
The user review platform recently revealed its list of Canada’s Top 100 Places to Eat in 2023 and a very intriguing Vancouver spot topped the charts.
The eighth annual list was determined through a multi-process methodology which first had the website reach out to its user community, requesting them to nominate restaurants across the country that they can’t wait to return to this year.
Then, those restaurant submissions were ranked according to ratings, the number of reviews, and the volume of nomination submissions it received.
Yelp’s appointed community managers then helped curate and refine those lists, which covered geographical areas across the country, resulting in the final ranking for the year.
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This year’s number one restaurant is Vancouver’s own The Northern Café and Grill, a family-run greasy spoon diner with both classic breakfast and comforting Chinese food items on the menu.
While this may be a surprise to some, what makes this place stand out is not only its warm, welcoming environment and hearty food, it’s also its very odd, slightly hidden, location.
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Located in deep South Vancouver at 1640 East Kent Avenue, Northern Café and Grill has been in operation since 1949. In 2008, it was taken over by the Mah family who continues to run it to this day.
Folks who try to seek it out for the first time will probably think something along the lines of “where the hell is this place?”
Situated above a hardware store, which itself is tucked in the depths of a lumber yard, Northern Café’s whereabouts are not immediately apparent, despite the signage pointing to its upstairs dining room.
Its menu includes items like Steak n’ Eggs, a bacon cheddar burger, chow mein, wonton soup, and housemade pork potstickers. According to the Yelp ranking, “Yelpers love the mix of traditional Asian staples, like wonton soup and spring rolls, and classic diner dishes, like french toast and steak and eggs.”
Other spots that made this year’s list include Vancouver’s Manoush’eh at number four, Pitt Meadows’ Artista Pizza at number six, and Whistler’s Rimrock Cafe at number eight.
You can view the entire list of Yelp’s Canada’s Top 100 Places to Eat in 2023 right here.
Address: 1640 East Kent Avenue, Vancouver