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24 'Try Before You Die' Vancouver Sandwiches

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There are good sandwiches and then there are truly great sandwiches, epic sandwiches that make you want to fall to your knees and thank the Great Gods of Bread—and All the Great Things You Can Put Between Two Pieces of Bread— for being smart enough to come together in such a beautiful way. In our search to map Vancouver's truly amazing sandwiches, we asked an expert to put together his definitive list. Meet Kevin Wood; Kevin loves sandwiches (and great craft beer) and writes the This Sandwich That Beer blog. He also hosts the "This Sandwich, That Beer Throwdown" which raise money for various local charities.
So with no further ado; and in no particular order, here are Vancouver's Most Amazing Try Before You Die Sandwiches - and yes - a couple from just out of town too.
Got beef with the list? Have we missed an especially epic sandwich? State your case in the comments or on the tipline


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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Beast & Brine

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12823 Crescent Road, Surrey
BC V4P 1J6, Canada
(604) 385-1145
Visit Website
Sandwich Pick: Beast It!
This place is worth the drive out of the city and just so happens to be only a few minutes from the beautifully scenic Crescent Beach, which is a great place you could go with your delicious sandwich from Beast and Brine. Design your own sandwich with basically any item they stock, check out the daily featured sandwich, or just trust them and get them to “Beast it”  for you.

2. Re-Up BBQ

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810 Quayside Drive, New Westminster
BC, Canada
(604) 553-3997
Visit Website
Sandwich Pick: Pulled Pork
These guys started with their downtown food trucks, which you can still find at various spots around the city. But their awesome pulled pork and beef brisket sandwiches led to a wicked brick & mortar in the New West Quay. Nice spot to sit and enjoy some serious BBQ.

3. Duffin's Donuts

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1391 E 41st Ave., Vancouver
BC V5W 1R7, Canada
(604) 325-5544
Sandwich Pick : Carne Asada Torta
Is it 3am and you need a torta for under $4? Best place for late night snacks!Photo credit: Sherman's Food Adventures

4. The Red Wagon

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2296 E Hastings St, Vancouver
BC V5L 1V4, Canada
(604) 568-4565
Visit Website
Sandwich Pick: Crisp Pork Belly
They are known for their much talked about brunch and rightly so. But if you’d like to go and avoid the large morning line-up, head in later in the day and grab a Crisp Pork Belly sandwich for a late lunch instead.

5. La Grotta Del Formaggio

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1791 Commercial Dr, Vancouver
BC V5N 4A4, Canada
(604) 255-3911
Visit Website
Sandwich pick: Panini
Real deal Italian Deli in Vancouver’s most diverse neighbourhood. The paninis are huge and come any way you like. I always go for the half foccacia with prosciutto, salami, provolone and ALL the vegetables.

6. Sal y Limón

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701 Kingsway, Vancouver
BC V5T 3K6, Canada
(604) 677-4247
Visit Website
Sandwich Pick: Cochinita Pibil Torta
I’m fairly certain this is one of only three places (other two also on this map) in Vancouver where you can get a Mexican torta sandwich. These guys may be the most traditional of them all. Best torta I’ve had outside of Mexico or an LA food truck.

7. El Camino's

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3250 Main St., Vancouver
BC, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Carne Guisada Bocadillo
Ever heard of a bocadillo? Neither had I until I had this Latin-American-style sub sandwich, done to perfection at El Camino’s in trendy Mount Pleasant. The Carne Guisada is my favourite coming with slow-braised beef short rib, caramalized onion, chimmichuri, manchego cheese and arugula. It's juicy!

8. The Fish Counter

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3825 Main St, Vancouver
BC, Canada
(604) 876-3474
Visit Website
Sandwich Pick: Oyster Po`boy
The Fish Counter is just as the name suggests, offering the freshest sustainable seafood and various prepared items. They also have a full service take out counter serving up a killer Oyster Po’Boy sandwich, as well as made-to-order fish and chips, crispy cod tacos and soups.

9. Las Tortas

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3353 Cambie St, Vancouver
BC V5Z 2W6, Canada
(604) 569-1402
Visit Website
Sandwich Pick: Lamb Cilantro Torta
This classic Mexican sandwich always satisfies and these guys nail it every time. Traditional buns, flavours and ingredients proves that Mexican doesn’t always have to be tacos, when there are tortas this delicious!

10. Pronto Cafe

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3473 Cambie Street, Vancouver
BC V5Z 2W7, Canada
Sandwich Pick : Porchetta
Cute little cafe doing awesome baguette sandwiches and a damn fine porchetta that will satisfy that need for crispy pork fat that we all have. We all have that, right?

11. Pete's Meat

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2817 Arbutus Street, Vancouver
BC, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Cubano
Pete’s Meat is a gem of a find for some serious sandwich mastery. A full service butcher shop with a nice selection of made to order standards done with their own unique twists that utilize the vast selection of meat cuts. Give their "elevated version" of the Cubano a try and be extremely happy that you did!

12. Fable

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1944 W 4th Ave, Vancouver
BC, Canada
(604) 732-1322
Visit Website
Sandwich Pick: Grilled cheese
Fable is one of the highest regarded restaurants in the city with their “Farm to Table” concept by chef Trevor Bird. Head in for lunch and give their amazing grilled cheese a try. The addition of their house-made onion jam is what makes this one special.

13. The American CheeseSteak Co.

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781 Davie St., Vancouver
BC V6Z 2S7, Canada
(604) 682-8626
Sandwich Pick: The Cowboy
If you’re looking to find a real Philly Cheesesteak in Vancouver, look no further than this spot. Try the classic with shaved prime rib and cheese or The Cowboy covered in BBQ sauce and crispy fried onions.

14. Hubbub Sandwiches

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859 Hornby St, Vancouver
BC V6Z 1T9, Canada
(604) 568-3398
Visit Website
Sandwich Pick: Pulled Pork
Hubbub is a must when it comes to sandwiches in this city! They offer only one sandwich,which starts with a base of pickled jalapenos, creamy garlic sauce, romaine lettuce, cilantro, and crunchy caramelized onions atop a toasty baguette. But you order that sandwich with your choice of protein, choose between Pulled Pork, Turkey Sausage, Chicken Breast, Veggie or Shrimp. This odd combination of flavours comes together to become one of the best sandwiches in the city.

15. IK2Go

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1049 Alberni Street, Vancouver
BC V6E, Canada
(604) 687-2858
Sandwich Pick: Salumi Panini
The Italian Kitchen would fall into the “upscale” category of Vancouver restaurants, but I recently learned that tucked in the lobby of the building next door is an adjoining full service lunch counter. The quality does not go down, but the price and time to get lunch sure does!

16. Sciué Italian Bakery Caffé

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800 West Pender St., Vancouver
BC V6C 1J8, Canada
(604) 602-7263
Visit Website
Sandwich Pick: Mattina Breakfast Panino
Breakfast sandwiches need to be both delicious and $5 or less. At Scuie all of them are just that; including the Mattina which comes with Scrambled Eggs, Prosciutto Cotto and Fontina. Roman-inspired, freshly-made and authentic flavours are what you can expect at Scuie.

17. Meat & Bread

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370 Cambie St, Vancouver
BC V6B 2N3, Canada
(604) 566-9003
Visit Website
Sandwich Pick: Porchetta
Porchetta. That’s all you need to know.

18. Peckinpah BBQ

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2 Water St, Vancouver
BC V6B 1A4, Canada
(604) 681-5411
Visit Website
Sandwich Pick: Chopped Beef Po`boy
Carolina –style southern BBQ in Vancouver’s most historic neighbourhood. Head down to Gastown for their pulled pork, beef brisket, ribs and a mouth-watering chopped beef po’boy. Also give the hush puppies a try while you’re there, because HUSH PUPPIES.

19. Big Lou's Butcher Shop

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269 Powell Street, Vancouver
BC, Canada
(604) 566-9299
Visit Website
Sandwich Pick: Big Lou’s Roast Beef
A small and friendly butcher shop on the edge of Vancouver’s Gastown neighbourhood with a sandwich counter featuring a top notch Roast Beef sandwich, their take on the “Banh Mi” and a finely crafted Porchetta alongside others.

20. The Union

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219 Union St, Vancouver
BC V6A 2B2, Canada
(604) 568-3230
Visit Website
Sandwich Pick: Tofu Banh Mi with fried egg
Now there are a lot of places in the city where you can get pretty standard and super tasty Banh Mi sandwich. But if you feel like hanging out in a really nice room with some killer cocktails and great craft beer, then head here for their top notch version of the classic Vietnamese sub.

21. Finch’s Market

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501 E Georgia St, Vancouver
BC, Canada
(604) 558-1644
Sandwich Pick: Prosciutto, Pear and Blue brie
Here you’ll find the best baguette style sandwiches in the city in a quaint little room with a small town feel. Hit the downtown location for a little oasis in the city. Photo credit: Sherman's Food Adventures

22. The Meatery

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3108 Edgemont Blvd, North Vancouver
BC V7R 2N6, Canada
(604) 980-1125
Visit Website
Sandwich Pick: Braised Short Rib
The Meatery is tucked inside Windsor Meats, a popular butcher shop of West and North Vancouver residents since 1948. They utilize the freshest cuts on a finely curated menu of butcher-to-bun carvery-style sandwiches. Grab a house-made sausage roll while you’re there too!

23. Burgoo

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3 Lonsdale Ave, North Vancouver
BC V7M 2E4, Canada
(604) 904-0933
Visit Website
Sandwich pick: Gooey Cheese Grillers
  Best grilled cheese in the city. Hands down. The true secret that makes this sandwich so good? It’s done open-faced in the pan and then finished in the oven to ensure that the very generous amount of cheese is as the name suggests “gooey”. Photo credit: Sherman's Food Adventures

24. S'wich Cafe

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644 Queensbury Ave, North Vancouver
BC V7L 1E3, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Cubano
Cubano sandwiches are just the best and this one is true to the original. Make the trip over the bridge to North Vancouver and stop in to S’wich Cafe before heading up to the mountains.

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1. Beast & Brine

12823 Crescent Road, Surrey, BC V4P 1J6, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Beast It!
This place is worth the drive out of the city and just so happens to be only a few minutes from the beautifully scenic Crescent Beach, which is a great place you could go with your delicious sandwich from Beast and Brine. Design your own sandwich with basically any item they stock, check out the daily featured sandwich, or just trust them and get them to “Beast it”  for you.
12823 Crescent Road, Surrey
BC V4P 1J6, Canada

2. Re-Up BBQ

810 Quayside Drive, New Westminster, BC, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Pulled Pork
These guys started with their downtown food trucks, which you can still find at various spots around the city. But their awesome pulled pork and beef brisket sandwiches led to a wicked brick & mortar in the New West Quay. Nice spot to sit and enjoy some serious BBQ.
810 Quayside Drive, New Westminster
BC, Canada

3. Duffin's Donuts

1391 E 41st Ave., Vancouver, BC V5W 1R7, Canada
Sandwich Pick : Carne Asada Torta
Is it 3am and you need a torta for under $4? Best place for late night snacks!Photo credit: Sherman's Food Adventures
1391 E 41st Ave., Vancouver
BC V5W 1R7, Canada

4. The Red Wagon

2296 E Hastings St, Vancouver, BC V5L 1V4, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Crisp Pork Belly
They are known for their much talked about brunch and rightly so. But if you’d like to go and avoid the large morning line-up, head in later in the day and grab a Crisp Pork Belly sandwich for a late lunch instead.
2296 E Hastings St, Vancouver
BC V5L 1V4, Canada

5. La Grotta Del Formaggio

1791 Commercial Dr, Vancouver, BC V5N 4A4, Canada
Sandwich pick: Panini
Real deal Italian Deli in Vancouver’s most diverse neighbourhood. The paninis are huge and come any way you like. I always go for the half foccacia with prosciutto, salami, provolone and ALL the vegetables.
1791 Commercial Dr, Vancouver
BC V5N 4A4, Canada

6. Sal y Limón

701 Kingsway, Vancouver, BC V5T 3K6, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Cochinita Pibil Torta
I’m fairly certain this is one of only three places (other two also on this map) in Vancouver where you can get a Mexican torta sandwich. These guys may be the most traditional of them all. Best torta I’ve had outside of Mexico or an LA food truck.
701 Kingsway, Vancouver
BC V5T 3K6, Canada

7. El Camino's

3250 Main St., Vancouver, BC, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Carne Guisada Bocadillo
Ever heard of a bocadillo? Neither had I until I had this Latin-American-style sub sandwich, done to perfection at El Camino’s in trendy Mount Pleasant. The Carne Guisada is my favourite coming with slow-braised beef short rib, caramalized onion, chimmichuri, manchego cheese and arugula. It's juicy!
3250 Main St., Vancouver
BC, Canada

8. The Fish Counter

3825 Main St, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Oyster Po`boy
The Fish Counter is just as the name suggests, offering the freshest sustainable seafood and various prepared items. They also have a full service take out counter serving up a killer Oyster Po’Boy sandwich, as well as made-to-order fish and chips, crispy cod tacos and soups.
3825 Main St, Vancouver
BC, Canada

9. Las Tortas

3353 Cambie St, Vancouver, BC V5Z 2W6, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Lamb Cilantro Torta
This classic Mexican sandwich always satisfies and these guys nail it every time. Traditional buns, flavours and ingredients proves that Mexican doesn’t always have to be tacos, when there are tortas this delicious!
3353 Cambie St, Vancouver
BC V5Z 2W6, Canada

10. Pronto Cafe

3473 Cambie Street, Vancouver, BC V5Z 2W7, Canada
Sandwich Pick : Porchetta
Cute little cafe doing awesome baguette sandwiches and a damn fine porchetta that will satisfy that need for crispy pork fat that we all have. We all have that, right?
3473 Cambie Street, Vancouver
BC V5Z 2W7, Canada

11. Pete's Meat

2817 Arbutus Street, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Cubano
Pete’s Meat is a gem of a find for some serious sandwich mastery. A full service butcher shop with a nice selection of made to order standards done with their own unique twists that utilize the vast selection of meat cuts. Give their "elevated version" of the Cubano a try and be extremely happy that you did!
2817 Arbutus Street, Vancouver
BC, Canada

12. Fable

1944 W 4th Ave, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Grilled cheese
Fable is one of the highest regarded restaurants in the city with their “Farm to Table” concept by chef Trevor Bird. Head in for lunch and give their amazing grilled cheese a try. The addition of their house-made onion jam is what makes this one special.
1944 W 4th Ave, Vancouver
BC, Canada

13. The American CheeseSteak Co.

781 Davie St., Vancouver, BC V6Z 2S7, Canada
Sandwich Pick: The Cowboy
If you’re looking to find a real Philly Cheesesteak in Vancouver, look no further than this spot. Try the classic with shaved prime rib and cheese or The Cowboy covered in BBQ sauce and crispy fried onions.
781 Davie St., Vancouver
BC V6Z 2S7, Canada

14. Hubbub Sandwiches

859 Hornby St, Vancouver, BC V6Z 1T9, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Pulled Pork
Hubbub is a must when it comes to sandwiches in this city! They offer only one sandwich,which starts with a base of pickled jalapenos, creamy garlic sauce, romaine lettuce, cilantro, and crunchy caramelized onions atop a toasty baguette. But you order that sandwich with your choice of protein, choose between Pulled Pork, Turkey Sausage, Chicken Breast, Veggie or Shrimp. This odd combination of flavours comes together to become one of the best sandwiches in the city.
859 Hornby St, Vancouver
BC V6Z 1T9, Canada

15. IK2Go

1049 Alberni Street, Vancouver, BC V6E, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Salumi Panini
The Italian Kitchen would fall into the “upscale” category of Vancouver restaurants, but I recently learned that tucked in the lobby of the building next door is an adjoining full service lunch counter. The quality does not go down, but the price and time to get lunch sure does!
1049 Alberni Street, Vancouver
BC V6E, Canada

16. Sciué Italian Bakery Caffé

800 West Pender St., Vancouver, BC V6C 1J8, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Mattina Breakfast Panino
Breakfast sandwiches need to be both delicious and $5 or less. At Scuie all of them are just that; including the Mattina which comes with Scrambled Eggs, Prosciutto Cotto and Fontina. Roman-inspired, freshly-made and authentic flavours are what you can expect at Scuie.
800 West Pender St., Vancouver
BC V6C 1J8, Canada

17. Meat & Bread

370 Cambie St, Vancouver, BC V6B 2N3, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Porchetta
Porchetta. That’s all you need to know.
370 Cambie St, Vancouver
BC V6B 2N3, Canada

18. Peckinpah BBQ

2 Water St, Vancouver, BC V6B 1A4, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Chopped Beef Po`boy
Carolina –style southern BBQ in Vancouver’s most historic neighbourhood. Head down to Gastown for their pulled pork, beef brisket, ribs and a mouth-watering chopped beef po’boy. Also give the hush puppies a try while you’re there, because HUSH PUPPIES.
2 Water St, Vancouver
BC V6B 1A4, Canada

19. Big Lou's Butcher Shop

269 Powell Street, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Big Lou’s Roast Beef
A small and friendly butcher shop on the edge of Vancouver’s Gastown neighbourhood with a sandwich counter featuring a top notch Roast Beef sandwich, their take on the “Banh Mi” and a finely crafted Porchetta alongside others.
269 Powell Street, Vancouver
BC, Canada

20. The Union

219 Union St, Vancouver, BC V6A 2B2, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Tofu Banh Mi with fried egg
Now there are a lot of places in the city where you can get pretty standard and super tasty Banh Mi sandwich. But if you feel like hanging out in a really nice room with some killer cocktails and great craft beer, then head here for their top notch version of the classic Vietnamese sub.
219 Union St, Vancouver
BC V6A 2B2, Canada

21. Finch’s Market

501 E Georgia St, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Prosciutto, Pear and Blue brie
Here you’ll find the best baguette style sandwiches in the city in a quaint little room with a small town feel. Hit the downtown location for a little oasis in the city. Photo credit: Sherman's Food Adventures
501 E Georgia St, Vancouver
BC, Canada

22. The Meatery

3108 Edgemont Blvd, North Vancouver, BC V7R 2N6, Canada
Sandwich Pick: Braised Short Rib
The Meatery is tucked inside Windsor Meats, a popular butcher shop of West and North Vancouver residents since 1948. They utilize the freshest cuts on a finely curated menu of butcher-to-bun carvery-style sandwiches. Grab a house-made sausage roll while you’re there too!
3108 Edgemont Blvd, North Vancouver
BC V7R 2N6, Canada

23. Burgoo

3 Lonsdale Ave, North Vancouver, BC V7M 2E4, Canada
Sandwich pick: Gooey Cheese Grillers
  Best grilled cheese in the city. Hands down. The true secret that makes this sandwich so good? It’s done open-faced in the pan and then finished in the oven to ensure that the very generous amount of cheese is as the name suggests “gooey”. Photo credit: Sherman's Food Adventures
3 Lonsdale Ave, North Vancouver
BC V7M 2E4, Canada

24. S'wich Cafe

644 Queensbury Ave, North Vancouver, BC V7L 1E3, Canada