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Where to Eat Dessert in Vancouver Right Now

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[Photo Via YEW Seafood & Bar]

There are two types of restaurants: those where you eat dinner and don't look back, and those where you will yourself to save room for dessert. Here, we celebrate the latter. Recovering pastry chef and author of The Chocolate Tasting Kit, coming March 2014 from Chronicle Books Eagranie Yuh has the dessert course covered, from neighbourhood favourites to luxe fine dining and everything in between.
We present—in no particular order—the Vancouver dessert map.

Got a suggestion for a spot you think deserves to be added? Mail us on the tipline or leave a comment.


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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Merchant's Oyster Bar

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1590 Commercial Dr, Vancouver
BC V5L 3Y2, Canada
For a smallish neighbourhood restaurant, Merchant’s has a delightfully ambitious pastry program. Chalk it up to the talents of Claire Livia Lassam, who makes familiar-sounding desserts pop, and throws in a touch of whimsy for good measure. Gelatos come from the perpetually busy Gelateria Dolce Amore, next door.

2. Pizzeria Barbarella

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654 E Broadway, Vancouver
BC, Canada
(604) 210-6111
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Barbarella’s rightly famous for its Brussels sprouts pizza. But it’s the banoffee pie you’ll want to save room for: hobnobs crushed into fine sand, held together with sticky-sweet caramel, topped with fresh bananas and whipped cream, and just enough salt to cut through the sweet.

3. Burdock & Co.

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2702 Main St, Vancouver
BC V5T 3E8, Canada
(604) 879-0077
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When Andrea Carlson says local, seasonal and sustainable, she means it. The dessert menu changes frequently, as it should. And notably, Burdock gets its chocolate from Gastown darlings, chocolate makers, and social enterprise East Van Roasters.

4. West Restaurant + Bar

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2881 Granville St, Vancouver
BC V6H 3J4, Canada
(604) 738-8938
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Diners at this South Granville fixture can treat themselves to Rhonda Viani’s thoughtful desserts. She considers every detail, down to the meticulously decorated cookie sliver beneath a perfect ice cream quenelle. Form meets function—and it’s delicious.

5. Kingyo Izakaya 金魚居酒屋

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871 Denman St, Vancouver
BC V6G 2L9, Canada
(604) 608-1677
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Green tea ice cream’s a perennial dessert to cap Japanese meals (in Vancouver, at least), but Kingyo actually makes their own. For a citrusy-bitter kick, opt for the yuzu flavour.

6. CinCin

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1154 Robson St, Vancouver
BC V6E 1B2, Canada
(604) 688-7338
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Pastry chef Lewis Birch strikes a confident balance at CinCin, serving up desserts that are elegant and complex, but that you can enjoy without a Ph.D. His macarons are some of the best in the city. And thankfully, he knows a good thing when he sees it: previous pastry chef Christophe Bonzon’s masterful tiramisu is still on the menu.

7. Hawksworth Restaurant

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801 West Georgia Street, Vancouver
BC V6P 1C7, Canada
(604) 673-7000
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At Hawksworth, dessert is elevated to an art form. On a recent visit, there were no fewer than 10 components on the plate, arranged so meticulously it seemed a shame to destroy it. But then again, there’s a difference between reverent and ridiculous. Raise a glass to pastry chef Wayne Kozinko, then dig in.

8. YEW seafood + bar

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791 West Georgia St., Vancouver
BC V6C 2T4, Canada
(604) 692-4939
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Pastry chef Bruno Feldeisen trained with French chocolate guru Alain Ducasse, and was twice nominated for a James Beard “Outstanding Pastry Award.” With those heavy-duty credentials, you’d expect super serious. Instead, he’s delivering playful, whimsical and (gasp!) fun desserts for YEW at the Four Seasons. How refreshing.

9. Wildebeest

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120 W Hastings St, Vancouver
BC V6B 1G8, Canada
(604) 687-6880
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Wildebeest’s “cheesecake” is a rare case when quotation marks belong on a restaurant menu. It’s a glorious mess of goat-milk-based foamy custard, seasonal sorbet (currently quince), and graham cracker crumbs. Decidedly not a cake, but no one seems to mind.

10. Pidgin

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350 Carrall St, Vancouver
BC V6B 2J3, Canada
(604) 620-9400
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Originally from Vancouver, Amanda Cheng has worked in some of the world’s top kitchens, from New York to Los Angeles to Hong Kong. Good thing she’s back to spoil us with classic French techniques, married with Asian flavours and a Vancouver sensibility. A pidgin of dessert, if you will.

11. Nicli Antica Pizzeria

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62 E Cordova St, Vancouver
BC V6A 1K2, Canada
(604) 669-6985
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Apparently there are other things on the dessert menu, but who cares when Nicli’s tiramisu is so stupidly good? If you’re feeling gracious, get two forks and share. But honestly, you’d be forgiven if you scarfed the whole thing yourself.

12. Sardine Can

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26 Powell, Vancouver
BC, Canada
Just like the tapas, dessert at the Sardine Can is straightforward and matter-of-fact. The chocolate terrine is little more than a slab of chocolate ganache on a plate, drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with sea salt and a touch of chili. Spread it on the accompanying crostini and wonder why you didn’t think of it yourself.

1. Merchant's Oyster Bar

1590 Commercial Dr, Vancouver, BC V5L 3Y2, Canada
For a smallish neighbourhood restaurant, Merchant’s has a delightfully ambitious pastry program. Chalk it up to the talents of Claire Livia Lassam, who makes familiar-sounding desserts pop, and throws in a touch of whimsy for good measure. Gelatos come from the perpetually busy Gelateria Dolce Amore, next door.
1590 Commercial Dr, Vancouver
BC V5L 3Y2, Canada

2. Pizzeria Barbarella

654 E Broadway, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Barbarella’s rightly famous for its Brussels sprouts pizza. But it’s the banoffee pie you’ll want to save room for: hobnobs crushed into fine sand, held together with sticky-sweet caramel, topped with fresh bananas and whipped cream, and just enough salt to cut through the sweet.
654 E Broadway, Vancouver
BC, Canada

3. Burdock & Co.

2702 Main St, Vancouver, BC V5T 3E8, Canada
When Andrea Carlson says local, seasonal and sustainable, she means it. The dessert menu changes frequently, as it should. And notably, Burdock gets its chocolate from Gastown darlings, chocolate makers, and social enterprise East Van Roasters.
2702 Main St, Vancouver
BC V5T 3E8, Canada

4. West Restaurant + Bar

2881 Granville St, Vancouver, BC V6H 3J4, Canada
Diners at this South Granville fixture can treat themselves to Rhonda Viani’s thoughtful desserts. She considers every detail, down to the meticulously decorated cookie sliver beneath a perfect ice cream quenelle. Form meets function—and it’s delicious.
2881 Granville St, Vancouver
BC V6H 3J4, Canada

5. Kingyo Izakaya 金魚居酒屋

871 Denman St, Vancouver, BC V6G 2L9, Canada
Green tea ice cream’s a perennial dessert to cap Japanese meals (in Vancouver, at least), but Kingyo actually makes their own. For a citrusy-bitter kick, opt for the yuzu flavour.
871 Denman St, Vancouver
BC V6G 2L9, Canada

6. CinCin

1154 Robson St, Vancouver, BC V6E 1B2, Canada
Pastry chef Lewis Birch strikes a confident balance at CinCin, serving up desserts that are elegant and complex, but that you can enjoy without a Ph.D. His macarons are some of the best in the city. And thankfully, he knows a good thing when he sees it: previous pastry chef Christophe Bonzon’s masterful tiramisu is still on the menu.
1154 Robson St, Vancouver
BC V6E 1B2, Canada

7. Hawksworth Restaurant

801 West Georgia Street, Vancouver, BC V6P 1C7, Canada
At Hawksworth, dessert is elevated to an art form. On a recent visit, there were no fewer than 10 components on the plate, arranged so meticulously it seemed a shame to destroy it. But then again, there’s a difference between reverent and ridiculous. Raise a glass to pastry chef Wayne Kozinko, then dig in.
801 West Georgia Street, Vancouver
BC V6P 1C7, Canada

8. YEW seafood + bar

791 West Georgia St., Vancouver, BC V6C 2T4, Canada
Pastry chef Bruno Feldeisen trained with French chocolate guru Alain Ducasse, and was twice nominated for a James Beard “Outstanding Pastry Award.” With those heavy-duty credentials, you’d expect super serious. Instead, he’s delivering playful, whimsical and (gasp!) fun desserts for YEW at the Four Seasons. How refreshing.
791 West Georgia St., Vancouver
BC V6C 2T4, Canada

9. Wildebeest

120 W Hastings St, Vancouver, BC V6B 1G8, Canada
Wildebeest’s “cheesecake” is a rare case when quotation marks belong on a restaurant menu. It’s a glorious mess of goat-milk-based foamy custard, seasonal sorbet (currently quince), and graham cracker crumbs. Decidedly not a cake, but no one seems to mind.
120 W Hastings St, Vancouver
BC V6B 1G8, Canada

10. Pidgin

350 Carrall St, Vancouver, BC V6B 2J3, Canada
Originally from Vancouver, Amanda Cheng has worked in some of the world’s top kitchens, from New York to Los Angeles to Hong Kong. Good thing she’s back to spoil us with classic French techniques, married with Asian flavours and a Vancouver sensibility. A pidgin of dessert, if you will.
350 Carrall St, Vancouver
BC V6B 2J3, Canada

11. Nicli Antica Pizzeria

62 E Cordova St, Vancouver, BC V6A 1K2, Canada
Apparently there are other things on the dessert menu, but who cares when Nicli’s tiramisu is so stupidly good? If you’re feeling gracious, get two forks and share. But honestly, you’d be forgiven if you scarfed the whole thing yourself.
62 E Cordova St, Vancouver
BC V6A 1K2, Canada

12. Sardine Can

26 Powell, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Just like the tapas, dessert at the Sardine Can is straightforward and matter-of-fact. The chocolate terrine is little more than a slab of chocolate ganache on a plate, drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with sea salt and a touch of chili. Spread it on the accompanying crostini and wonder why you didn’t think of it yourself.
26 Powell, Vancouver
BC, Canada