By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)
Updated for 2022
Residents far and wide will soon be descending upon Fan Expo Vancouver (Nov 10-12, 2017) in British Columbia. Now into its sixth year, they are having a Steampunk exhibition where folks can learn about this subculture and their Artist’s Alley looks bigger than the retail/exhibitor’s space! In the television world, The CW is being very well represented. The big three — Arrow, The Flash and Legends of Tomorrow — is the spotlight. The list is long and on the week of, adjustments have been made: Maisie Richardson-Seller has been added, and due to work commitments, Stephen Amell, Caity Lotz and Michael Shanks are unable to appear.
This media side will have fans who are not residents of Vancouver get to meet these performers without having to go stalking around in an active film set and herded away by production assistants. People are allowed to watch, as long as they are not in the view of the camera.
I’m always anxious to return to this show to revisit a few places to dine in! After attending this event for five years now and visiting almost all of the inexpensive diners around the Coal Harbour area, I feel I can finally offer my picks. This list will also be updated should I discover a new establishment worth mentioning. By clicking on the operation’s name, you will get to see the original review of these operations:
501 Burrard St
This quick staple is certainly a step above the average hot dog. This food cart was located half a street away from me one year, and talk about convenience! The hours are not the best for late night snacking in the off-season (i.e. Summer), but during the day and roaming around, I’d return to sample their other recipe combinations.
534 W Pender St
If you need your daily dose of energy to keep up with the rapid pace of dealing with downtown Vancouver, this sweet shop is the place to hit! Along with the classic flavours, the variety changes day by day and is worth the stop assuming this operation is along the way to the show.
KONBINIYA JAPAN CENTRE
1238 Robson Street
Need your dose of Japanese take-out or ramen? This place has you covered! There’s sweets, treats, meals (bento boxes to go) and deals (if you know where to look) for those craving something instant or to refill the pantry. Plus, the number of anime-related edibles is what caught my attention. That is, if you love Pocky, this operation is the place to visit! It’s also one of the few grocery stores that sells Wagyu Beef (US grade).
MOOSE’s DOWN UNDER
830 W Pender St
This pub was, by luck, a fortunate find! When I’m craving a taste of the outback, namely a kangaroo burger, I will be jumping back here than I can say Koala. This place was where I went one year to de-stress after a long day at the convention. I’m thinking like a retailer here. One year, I wanted to take in as much as I can from Fan Expo Vancouver and by night, I needed to unwind and this place certainly helped! The staff here are uber cool and friendly. Also, there were alcohol offerings from the country it’s meant to represent. I did not have to stagger far to get back to my hotel, thankfully.
KOKORO TOKYO MASESOBA
551 Seymour Street
When Ramen just won’t do for that after convention meal, masesoba is the bomb for dry noodle lovers! There’s something about this treat which had me returning day after day post-2017, and even on other trips to the big city. The meals are served hot and fast, and unlike other operations where the craving for more hits, one bowl is enough and very satisfying until the next time anyone drops by.
For a full review, please visit Twohungryblokes.com
SCOOZI’S BAR AND GRILL
445 Howe St.
The service here is very exceptional, and the meals definitely gives me the energy to last for half the day. That’s assuming I have a large breakfast. I recommend this place over De Dutch (which is closer to the convention center), for the simple reason there’s a love behind every dish served up. My writing partner and I did hit up a larger franchise operation, De Dutch, which I have to mention one year. I was not impressed with that place as there was nothing in the meal to impress. At Scoozi’s, on the other hand, I’ve been back three times during my stays since the sweets (fruits) are always a delight here.
305 Bute St
If you want hamburgers with a lot more definition than the typical fast food fare, the saunter over to this grocery and deli shop is required! I can stock up on small packaged foods to take into the Convention Center too. But on a late night when I’m hungry and all the other operations are closed, I was lucky to find this place still open. This encounter was last year and since I’ll be staying nearby, I will be making a point of returning!
MEAT & BREAD
370 Cambie St
Sandwich shops are a dime a dozen in Vancouver, BC. Meat & Bread stands out because I love their Porchetta. I was sad that the Victoria branch closed shop. Hipster stop or not, the main reason I enjoy this place is that to get an order does not take long! The bread is warm and fresh, and the smiles I often receive defines a place more than wandering to Subway. This other franchise offers more wilted products than not in the times I wander in. I blame James Shaw for this since that’s where he goes for all his bites when this convention hits and I’ve come to loathe Subway’s so-called fresh toppings.