The Best Restaurants in Downtown Victoria
Victoria, previously known to have among the highest per-capita restaurant concentration in all of Canada, has phenomenal restaurants to choose from. From upscale steakhouses, pubs, lounges, dining rooms and more, you’ll have no trouble finding an impressive place to eat. With mouth-watering food, stellar service and vibrant urban energy in mind, we’ve compiled a list of Victoria’s best downtown restaurants.
Highly anticipated and newly opened, the VI Marina’s Boom & Batten restaurant has opened to rave reviews. With an ultra-modern exterior, it’s steel and glass looking facades features panoramic windows offering spectacular views of Victoria’s inner and outer harbour. With a highly specialized pizza oven and wagyu steaks for the choosing, the atmosphere morphs from casual, if that’s what you’re feeling like, to upscale fine dining. Reminiscent of Vancouver’s Cardero’s in Coal Harbour – Boom & Batten hits the mark with its entry into Vic West adding a welcomed sense of vibrancy to the otherwise quiet neighbourhood.
A well-kept secret, Brasserie L’Ecole, easily overlooked, is subtly located on Government Street. With no reservations taken, it’s common to see line-ups at its exterior. Using locally, and seasonal ingredients only, the French-country menu is ever changing. One can expect traditional dishes like Moules and Frites, and, as noted by endless google reviews is home to the best burger ever – The Brasserie Burger. With limited seated, it’s always bustling.
A landmark in Victoria’s downtown dining scene, Il Terrazzo is a must-try when it comes to local Italian cuisine. With it’s formal address on Johnson Street, Il Terrazzo is actually located off Waddington Alley. Clad in red brick, dimly lit, with outdoor seating surrounded by firepits, the atmosphere is unassumingly romantic. No matter the seat, the ambience indoor and out is warm and welcoming. Housing over 1,000 selections on their wine list, in-house Sommeliers are always on stand-by helping choose the perfect bottle to complement a savoury and decadent food choice.
With a recent multi-million dollar renovation, The Q at the Empress sits within the walls of the iconic Fairmont Empress Hotel. The interior exudes sophistication with Victorian detailing paired with a renewed modern contemporary flair. Featuring an ever-changing menu of Pacific Northwest cuisine, the culinary team utilizes regional ingredients in addition to sourcing products through local farmers and artisans. Whether in the mood for fine dining, or relaxing in the lounge, The Q at the Empress is sure to impress.
Quaint, simple, and intimate, Olo Restaurant, is situated on the corner of Fisgard and Store Streets. Using locally sourced, seasonal ingredients, Olo takes pride in learning not only where their products come from but also in learning more about the people who create them. Though their menu changes seasonally, you’re likely to see menu items like lingcod, duck, lamb, and maybe the odd cheese burger too. Meant to offer a laid back vibe, Olo’s farm-to-table food and ultra-professional service places it among the top of Victoria’s many restaurants.