9 restaurants in Vancouver that are worth waiting in line for

Jun 19 2023, 11:30 pm

They say that patience is a virtue, and this is certainly the case when it comes to waiting in line for a great dining experience.

Vancouver has some seriously world-class restaurants, but sometimes even a reservation doesn’t mean you won’t be waiting for a while first.

From casual to fine dining, Vietnamese to Italian, these Vancouver restaurants are so good you won’t even mind waiting in line in order to dine there ā€“ even if it means standing in the rain.

Phnom Penh

This long-time Vietnamese Cambodian restaurant is famous for its butter beef, its chicken wings, and its all-around standout menu. Even though the restaurant has a big space with plenty of tables, there’s nearly always a wait to get in. Be sure to put your name down when you get there but expect to wait outside a bit first.

Address: 244 E Georgia Street, Vancouver


Kissa Tanto


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Fusing Japanese and Italian cuisine, Kissa Tanto is usually booked up for reservations months in advance, but they do usually have some space for walk-ins. Expect to wait a bit for a spot though ā€“ this highly acclaimed restaurant is delicious but tough to get into.

Address: 263 East Pender Street, Vancouver


Osteria Savio Volpe


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This new-school Italian joint located in Vancouver’s Mount Pleasant/Fraserhood neighbourhood offers some of the best Italian in the city ā€“ and apparently, everyone knows it, because there’s usually a wait to get in. Once you do, though, opt for some of its hand-made pasta and seasonal specials.

Address: 615 Kingsway, Vancouver


Ask for Luigi


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On a small corner in Railtown, you’ll find Ask for Luigi, a cozy spot that feels straight out of small-town Italy. They take reservations and walk-ins, but you’ll likely be waiting for a walk-in spot most nights. It’s totally worth it though because this restaurant serves incredible food, as well as brunch, lunch, and a top-notch drink list.

Address: 305 Alexander Street, Vancouver


Le Crocodile

Open since 1983, this fine-dining spot has long been one of the city’s top French restaurants. Headed by chef-owner Michel Jacob, the restaurant “blends traditional French cooking with innovative Westcoast style” and has remained at the top of diners’ lists for the last forty years. Be sure to get a reservation, though, as they’re usually booked at least two weeks in advance.

Address: 909 Burrard Street #100, Vancouver


Lunch Lady


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Inspired by the Vietnamese cook known as the Lunch Lady ā€“ a nickname given to Mrs. Nguyen Thi Thanh by the late Anthony Bourdain ā€“ this East Van spot is known for its “world-famous” Vietnamese street eats. It currently is only accepting walk-ins for its lunch service and bar seating, with reservations available for dinner service.

Address: 1046 Commercial Drive, Vancouver


The Acorn


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This vegetarian restaurant has completely re-imagined what it means to be veggie-forward. With beautiful, delicious, ingredient-focused dishes, the Acorn is a busy spot for vegetarians and carnivores alike. Reservations are recommended, but some walk-in space is usually available if you’re okay with waiting.

Address: 3995 Main Street, Vancouver


Anh and Chi


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This award-winning Vietnamese restaurant is one of the top choices for Vancouverites when it comes to Southeast Asian cuisine. The food is fresh and delicious, the drink menu is inventive, and the space is gorgeous, making for a highly sought-after dining destination.

Address: 3388 Main Street, Vancouver


Como Taperia


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Vancouver’s favourite spot for Spanish-style tapas and drinks, Como is a go-to spot for a great atmosphere and even better dining experience. Its popular happy hour runs from 4 to 5 every day and gets you a free appy with a drink order. It’s first come, first serve, though, and only available at the bar, so be prepared to line up for it.

Address: 201 East 7th Avenue, Vancouver


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