Can Vancouver score itself the honour of having the "Best New Restaurant" in Canada two years in a row? It's possible, as Air Canada's enRoute has revealed its 30 finalist restaurants coast to coast for 2022 for its prestigious annual rankings.
Bar Susu is a trendy new wine-forward spot in the old Whip space in Mount Pleasant that showcases natural wines and playful share plates (think duck liver pate with mini honey cruller donuts). In what could be an even more thrilling one-two punch, Bar Susu is a sibling to 2021's Canada's 100 Best Restaurants number one pick, Published on Main.
Similarly, Elephant is a sibling spot in a small roster of locally-owned restaurants (Dachi, Hanai), and it also focuses on natural wines and share plates. Opened at the very end of 2021, the tiny space in East Vancouver had previously been the irreverent bar with burgers, TransAm. Lastly in contention to represent Vancouver for 2022 is Delara, a Persian restaurant in Kitsilano.
Elsewhere in B.C., Tofino's Jeju and North Saanich's Fox & Monocle both appear on the list, giving British Columbia a sixth of the restaurants among the 30 finalists.
"This year, we picked up our tradition of flying one undercover writer coast to coast in search of the places and people reshaping Canada’s diverse culinary landscape," explains enRoute of its 2022 awards.
The award contenders are chosen by an initial group of hospitality industry veterans, including chefs and food writers before a single judge visits all the finalists anonymously. "Any food establishment that fully opened between late spring 2021 and May 31, 2022 was up for consideration," notes the publication.
The annual Top 10 ranking will be unveiled at a celebration in Toronto on Nov. 1.
30 finalists for Canada's Best New Restaurant 2022
- Bar Susu (Vancouver)
- Le Clan (Quebec City)
- Delara (Vancouver)
- Drift (Halifax)
- Elephant (Vancouver)
- Fonda Balam (Toronto)
- Fox & Monocle (North Saanich, B.C.)
- Fu’s Repair Shop (Edmonton)
- Gia Vin & Grill (Montreal)
- Hayloft Steak + Fish (Edmonton)
- Heart’s Tavern And Bar (Kimberley, Ontario)
- J’ai Feng (Montreal)
- Jeju (Tofino, B.C.)
- Major Tom (Calgary)
- Mastard (Montreal)
- Mimi Chinese (Toronto)
- Mokili (Montreal)
- Một Tô (Calgary)
- Namjim (St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador)
- Nola (Winnipeg, Manitoba)
- Osteria Giulia (Toronto)
- Parcelles (Austin, Quebec)
- Pei Pei Chei Ow (Edmonton)
- Perch (Ottawa)
- Pichai (Montreal)
- Pop Wine Bar (Saskatoon)
- Prime Seafood Palace (Toronto)
- Restaurant 20 Victoria (Toronto)
- Restaurant Alentours (Quebec City)
- Roy’s Korean Kitchen (Calgary)