A Toast to Vancouver: 10 Must-Try Cocktail Spots in the City

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7 Min Read
Apr 16, 2023

If you're a fan of cocktails and find yourself in Vancouver, then you're in luck. The city is known for its thriving cocktail scene, with a wide variety of bars and mixologists serving up unique and delicious concoctions. Whether you're in the mood for a classic Old Fashioned or want to try something new and creative, Vancouver has something for everyone.

In this article, we'll be exploring the best cocktails in Vancouver, including where to find them and what makes them so special. We've scoured the city, sipping our way through countless bars and restaurants, to bring you the top 10 must-try cocktails. From elegant and sophisticated to fun and playful, these drinks are sure to impress even the most discerning cocktail connoisseur.

1. Ophelia

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This lively restaurant and cocktail bar has become a must-visit spot for cocktail enthusiasts seeking a taste of Latin flair. With its vibrant Mexican decor, Ophelia transports patrons to a warm, colorful oasis, making it the perfect location for a fun night out.

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They gained a reputation for their unique take on classic cocktails. Their talented mixologists use an array of fine tequilas and mezcals to put a Latin twist on your favorite drinks. This innovative approach has transformed traditional recipes into exotic concoctions that will leave you craving more.

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One can't mention Ophelia without talking about their famous Margarita Mondays. These weekly events have quickly become a beloved tradition, drawing in both locals and visitors alike. The enticing blend of quality tequila, fresh lime, and other secret ingredients make their margaritas truly exceptional.

Location: Ophelia - Google Maps

2. Grapes and soda

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Among the top bars in Vancouver, Grapes & Soda has carved out a unique niche as a cozy, relaxed cocktail bar perfect for intimate gatherings and casual nights out.

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You'll instantly feel at ease within its inviting atmosphere. The intimate setting and tasteful decor create the ideal backdrop for enjoying their exquisite handcrafted cocktails, each made with skill and passion.

In addition to their delightful cocktails, they also offer a carefully curated selection of natural wines, giving patrons the opportunity to explore unique and lesser-known varieties.

Location: Grapes & Soda - Google Maps

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3. Botanist

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Botanist - is a high-end cocktail bar and restaurant nestled within the Fairmont Hotel in Vancouver. As you pass through the lush indoor garden adorned with towering columns and verdant foliage, you'll find yourself immersed in a sophisticated, modern setting that elevates the cocktail experience to new heights.

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They always make different cocktails and experiment with their menu. One of the Experiential Cocktails made in their Cocktail Lab is Deep Cove. This showstopper features wavy cucumber ribbons, island gin, sea buckthorn liqueur, and blue algae syrup, all presented on a rustic wooden plank. The moment this impressive drink arrives at your table, you'll be reaching for your phone to capture its beauty.

Another standout option is the Lost in Translation, a delightful blend of japanese whisky, imperial oolong tea, eau de vie, coconut, and amargo chuncho that's sure to satisfy your palate.

Location: Botanist - Google Maps

4. Pourhouse

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Pourhouse has become a beloved destination for those in search of creative cocktails and exceptional cuisine. Housed within a century-old warehouse, the 38-foot bar and atmospheric setting provide a unique, historical backdrop for an unforgettable night out.

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Passion for mixology shines through each carefully crafted cocktail, with a focus on using fresh, seasonal ingredients to produce truly extraordinary drinks.

This summer, Pourhouse is set to take Vancouver by storm with the reintroduction of shrub drinks. These refreshing beverages, featuring weekly changing flavors and spirits, are a testament commitment to bringing unique and dynamic offerings to the city's cocktail scene.

Location: Pourhouse - Google Maps

5. The Diamond

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The Diamond, a bustling cocktail lounge tucked away in the historic Gastown district. Renowned for its speakeasy vibe and exceptional libations, it offers an exclusive experience that will leave a lasting impression.

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Upon entering, you'll be swept away by its intimate atmosphere and the craftsmanship of its talented mixologists. Dedicated to creating personalized experiences, the bartenders are happy to whip up custom concoctions or classic favorites, such as the ever-popular Pisco Sour.

Though the food menu remains largely unexplored, one can only imagine that the culinary offerings at The Diamond are on par with their exquisite cocktails. As the saying goes, if their food is anything like their drinks.

Location: The Diamond - Google Maps

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6. The Keefer Bar

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The Keefer Bar, an apothecary-themed cocktail bar nestled in Vancouver's bustling Chinatown district. Recognized as one of the best bars in Canada, they have become the go-to destinations for those seeking an exceptional cocktail experience.

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The Keefer Bar isn't just about extraordinary drinks; it also offers a tantalizing selection of small Asian sharing plates that perfectly complement their handcrafted cocktails. These flavorful dishes add a touch of culinary adventure to your evening, making them a complete sensory experience.

As the night progresses, the atmosphere there comes alive with live music, drawing in a diverse crowd.

Location: The Keefer Bar - Google Maps

7. Published

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Published, an upscale cocktail restaurant located in Vancouver. This sophisticated destination is renowned for its innovative, carefully sourced cuisine and retro-chic surroundings.

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At the heart of their philosophy is a commitment to truth and purity, which is reflected in their meticulously curated wine selection. Each bottle has been chosen for its authenticity and the dedication of the artisans who crafted it. These wines, made with a light touch and a happy heart, convey a sense of terroir and fruit, providing an unadulterated joy that can only come from true craftsmanship.

In addition to their remarkable wine offerings, they also boast an impressive array of handcrafted cocktails, further exemplifying their dedication to artisanal excellence.

Location: Published - Google Maps

8. Bao Bei

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Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of Bao Bei, a stylish cocktail restaurant located in Vancouver. With a focus on modern Chinese sharing plates and innovative drinks, they offer a fresh and exciting experience that sets it apart from the rest.

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One standout drink is the Nai Nai Punch, a masterful blend of bourbon, averna, cynar, coffee cola, and milk. This tantalizing concoction showcases the restaurant's commitment to offering exceptional and distinctive cocktails that you won't find anywhere else.

Complementing their extraordinary drinks, Bao Bei's modern Chinese sharing plates are a culinary delight. Prepared with skill and creativity, these dishes showcase the best of Chinese cuisine.

Location: Bao Bei - Google Maps

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9. Kissa Tanto

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Kissa Tanto, a unique and enchanting cocktail restaurant in Vancouver that blends the diverse flavors of Italian and Japanese cuisine.

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The culinary team at Kissa Tanto has masterfully crafted a menu that showcases the best of both Italian and Japanese culinary traditions. The result is a harmonious blend of flavors, creating dishes that surprise and delight the palate.

From delicate pasta dishes infused with Japanese ingredients to robust, umami-rich creations, that are paired with perfectly crafted cocktails, Kissa Tanto's innovative approach to fusion cuisine has earned it a devoted following among Vancouver's food enthusiasts.

Location: Kissa Tanto - Google Maps

10. Mount Pleasant Vintage & Provisions

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Prepare to be enchanted by Mount Pleasant Vintage & Provisions, a one-of-a-kind cocktail restaurant in Vancouver that combines the allure of a vintage store with a contemporary bar experience.

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As you enter the premises, you'll be greeted by a jukebox and vintage-inspired decor, transporting you to a bygone era. Venture further inside, and the space opens up into a stunning glass structure, soaring 30 feet tall and imbuing the venue with a modern touch.

They don’t just excel in atmosphere; they also boast an impressive drink and appetizer menu that keeps patrons coming back for more. With a different happy hour special every day.

Location: Mount Pleasant Vintage & Provisions - Google Maps

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