“Downtown” really limits the options available, so I’m going to make like the rest and… flagrantly ignore that part of your question!
Chinese: Greasy Sunday brunch dim sum upstairs at the Park Lock (Keefer at Main) is a quintessential Vancouver experience so long as the carts are being trundled about (essentials include the sticky rice in a leaf — while you’re in the area, swing by the New Town bakery, Pender at Main, for some pork steam buns and coconut buns); the Shao Lin Noodle house at Broadway and Cambie (remember that intersection if you ever want to eat in Vancouver) offers a great subset (focus: noodles) of Chinese food, plus which you get the entertainment of watching them make your noodles through the glass kitchen window; the Bo Kong on Main offers some of the best vegetarian Chinese food (an elusive variety) probably in the world, without resorting to the meat-simulation of the late, lamented Buddhist Vegetarian Restaurant. Hon’s ain’t real good, but there’s a real lot of it, real fast, for real cheap. For a more pan-asian thang, my roommate (er, the sour-chef) would probably endorse the Red Door on Granville.
Indian I don’t have so many recommendations — the area around 49th and Main offers several similar buffets that offer you much more than you pay for, but aren’t likely to satisfy adventurous palates. (Surrey might, but that’s venturing a bit far afield from downtown 8) House of Dhosas (Kingsway at Knight) we can’t seem to praise enough, so I’ll instead shed some light on Major Chutney, a fusion joint (conducted inoffensively) on Cambie.
Can’t decide? At the Green Lettuce (Kingsway at Victoria) you can get Chinese-Indian, Indian-Chinese food — made by a Chinese family from India, making Chinese dishes using Indian ingredients and techniques!
Rowan Lipkovits has gotten 2 cheers on this answer.
Is the sour-chef a bitter person? Great answer. You’ve altered my next visit to Vancouver in the best way possible!
> Is the sour-chef a bitter person?
As it turns out, yes, though it was actually a typo for “sous-chef”. Before I read closely, I thought… is this guy psychic?
> You’ve altered my next visit to
> Vancouver in the best way possible!
We are pretty spoiled for good eats in Vancouver. Try to tank up on one of everything you can’t get at home.
+1 on Green Lettuce, forgot about that one, one of our favs!
Green Lettuce – Chinese Food in the Indian Style…
Besides the Kingsway (Vancouver)spot, the family has a second location on the border of Surrey and North Delta that is also great….
This is a very interesting fusion… one that I haven’t seen in any of my international travels but so totally worthwhile taking in… that I can’t really describe it adequately… its sort of like trying to describe marangue as “well you take sugar and egg-whites and beat them together”…. technically true, but no one could tell just how fantastic (and indeed inconceivable) the outcome is … this is how I feel about making Chinese food with Indian flavours…
note that his is not a “fine” restaurant by any means… just great food and great value…and a place that should be tried.
The Hot and Sour soup is just about the best I’ve had anywhere!