A small spot for sausage and beers, a Hong Kong-style diner with over 30 years in the business, and an irreverent hot dog joint have joined the running list of Vancouver restaurants to close their doors, among others.
We've rounded up nine recent closures of note in Vancouver and ranging from modern upscale to a casual and colourful Main St mainstay for Caribbean-style eats. And, as it so often goes, while one restaurant vacates the address, there's already another one that's waiting to slide right in - if it hasn't already.
After a seven-year run, Chinatown's Bestie has closed up shop, and their last day was Sunday, Oct. 4. Bestie opened in June 2013, and was the venture of buds Clinton Mcdougall and Dane Brown, who brought their "friendly little sausage parlour" to Chinatown and drew raves for their hand-cut fries, brats, pretzel boards, and currywurst - a staple German street food.
Elegant modern Mediterranean restaurant Verre in Vancouver's West End shuttered recently, with no warning or announcement. A simple paper sign in the window, as photographed on Monday, Sept. 21 says "550 Coming Soon." Opened in December 2018, Verre aimed to offer diners sophisticated French-Mediterranean fare.
What's Up? Hot Dog!
Known for their hot dog-centric menu, punk rock music, beer, and vegan "wing" nights, What's Up? Hot Dog! in Hastings-Sunrise has officially closed. Already up and running in its place at 2481 E Hastings - with much of the same WUHD staff - is an all-vegan concept called Bad Apple. They've made some interior and menu tweaks, but you'll still find a similar vibe as well as all those vegan "wings" (made with cauliflower), waffle fries, and even hot dogs.
Gold Stone Bakery & Restaurant
After 33 years on Keefer Street in Chinatown, Gold Stone Bakery & Restaurant is no more. The beloved bakeshop and cafe business was first listed for sale in mid-June for $500,000, but after not managing to snag a buyer, the price was dropped a whopping $350,000 to $150,000 on Oct. 1. Gold Stone was a treasured spot for locals who took great comfort in its menu of Hong Kong diner-style fare. The closure of Gold Stone began back in the spring, as the COVID-19 pandemic forced restaurants and businesses to close their doors. Since then, however, Gold Stone's temporary shut down has morphed into a permanent one.
Balila, a Middle Eastern hummus-focused restaurant, opened up at 47 West Hastings in early 2018. The business closed its doors at the end of September, not only because of the ongoing pandemic but also because "the conditions of the area are getting wors[e] by the day." Balila's operators said they "fear for our customers' health and safety as well as [that] of our team members and partners," at the Hastings location, and added the problems are "evident to the naked eye."
Back in March of 2018, things got a little strange at 1812 Commercial Drive, the longtime home of Falconetti's, a popular bar-restaurant in the neighbourhood. Passers-by, V.I.A. readers, and even Google said the place had suddenly shut down for good. Then things got a little murky, and while some close to the project claimed the closure was temporary, even when the did open their doors again (well over a year and a half later), it still wasn't super clear what had happened or what was going on. In early 2020, Falconetti's seemed to be rallying, however, until the pandemic forced them to close up. By June, there were drinks being slung once again at the storied bar (with patrons maybe a bit too close to each other for everyone's COVID-era comfort, by several reports), and then...it was done. Folks, Falconetti's is officially closed for good now. In its place is a new concept called Social, with new owners.
After 21 years, The Reef wrapped up their run serving Caribbean eats recently. Located at 4172 Main Street, owner Simon Cotton said: “We have been proud to serve Vancouver a modern taste of the islands over these many years.”
The Metropole Pub
The Metropole, located on Abbott St in Gastown, posted their closing notice on Instagram just a couple of days after B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced the immediate closure of nightclubs and banquet halls, as well as capping hours for liquor sales at bars, pubs, and restaurants.
Tuc Craft Kitchen
At the end of August, Gastown eatery Tuc Craft Kitchen shut down after seven years in business. Owners Colin Ross, James MacFarlane and Roy Flemming opened up the 60 W Cordova Street eatery in 2013, which quickly became well-loved for its warm, inviting atmosphere and rustic, locally sourced farm-to-table fare, featuring menu items like pork belly crackling, burgers, elk carpaccio, chicken & waffles, Shepard's Pie and mac n' cheese.
With a file from Megan Lalonde
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