A window-wrapped dining room offers a commanding view of the surrounding park-like setting; Burnaby and Vancouver below, as well as views of Burrard Inlet and Indian Arm. Nestled in beautiful Burnaby Mountain Park, Horizons overlooks the bright city lights below. Specializing in steaks and seafood grilled over an open flame, enjoy Chef John Garrett's West Coast inspired cuisine and dine in an elegant setting with a warm ambiance.
We had an Entertainment coupon that indicated one diner could get a free entrée (up to $22 in value) when the second diner bought an equally or higher priced entrée. Having never eaten at Horizons before (but having wanted to for a long time) we finally decided to go last Friday night.
First off, even though they knew when I made the reservations that we were coming with a coupon, they gave us excellent seats with a beautiful view of lights of Vancouver. That was wonderful.
We then opened our menus to find that there was only one entrée priced at or below $22 (the gnocchettini); all the other entrées started at $28 and worked their way up from there. The real shame was that they had a tasting menu for $30, but the coupon couldn't be applied to it.
I ordered the duck, and my partner ordered the short ribs.
The meat of the duck was tender, but the fat had not been scored, so there was a slightly unpleasant chewiness to it, instead of a crispy texture that I had been expecting. The duck was served with sweet potatoes (inexplicably called yams) which were described on the menu as caramelized, but I could find no evidence of caramelization in their presentation or their taste. They were well-cooked. There was also a mixture of vegetables, including carrots, green beans, red pepper and zucchini. The carrots, red pepper and green beans were well-cooked, but the zucchini was on the hard side, and was also tasteless. Lastly, there was half of an apple, peeled and stuffed with a spiced apple stuffing. This was the most under-cooked of the side-dishes and it was too heavily spiced, especially when contrasting it to the perfectly spiced richness of the sauce the duck was served with.
The short ribs were incredibly tender and served in a delicious sauce. My partner let me taste them and they were perfect. But he complained about the sides. He got the same vegetable medley as I did, and had the same comment about the zucchini. He also had a mound of Yukon Gold mashed potatoes, but he said they were bland, and needed something more to stand up to the richness of the sauce on the short ribs.
Throughout the meal, our service was excellent, even though it was clear that we were doing our best to stay on a budget. The waiter was attentive and kind, and I appreciated that. So much so that I calculated the tip based on the bill total prior to the coupon's discount.
The funny thing is that once you eat here, they give you another coupon for that exact same deal (to be used within sixty days), so we might be back, even though I promised my partner that I would treat him to a tasting menu in December when we had more money in the bank. Because yes, in spite of the minor food issues, I think we want to come back when we can more fully experience what this restaurant has to offer.
We visited Horizon’s atop Burnaby Mountain for our first wedding anniversary after a recommendation from a friend.
We had never been there, but were told it was a fine dining restaurant with nice views. Given the information we were provided, my husband put on a nice suit, pressed shirt, tie, and polished dress shoes; I wore a cocktail dress with moderate jewelry. Once arriving at the establishment, we realized we were both quite overdressed. There wasn’t another man in the place with a tie, and perhaps only half were even wearing a shirt with a collar. Most of the women were sporting skirts and blouses / jackets, or even hodge-podge pant suits. You would be dressed well (based on what we saw), if the men wore slacks, a collared dress shirt and jacket; ladies – a summer-esque dress you might wear to an outdoor wedding would do you just fine.
Once inside, while the restaurant was nice enough, it lacked an air of elegance for a place that claims to be a fine dining eatery. There were no table cloths, and no candles or center pieces on the tables. The hostess was wearing something I would think one would wear for a night out to a fancy club; the bussers ad servers were wearing white blouses or collared shirts and black slacks. Our busser was wearing black runners.
While the ambiance and presentation of the place left something to be desired, the service was really very good. Our server (Bea M.) was attentive, friendly, efficient, very knowledgeable about the restaurant’s menu, and made some great recommendations. Our order was taken promptly, and our drinks arrived in short order. We also received complimentary warm bread and butter. It was okay. Nothing exciting though … certainly wasn’t as good as the Old Spaghetti Factory’s complimentary bread! Moving along…
The wine selection was alright, but quite overpriced. Give the choices and the corresponding prices, we opted to order non-alcoholic beverages which did us just fine. The menu was of decent caliber, though you really do have to like fish and seafood if you are looking to have the option of variety for your dinner entrée. 80% of their main courses and a good majority of their appetizers were fish or seafood.
Once our food arrived, we were pleasantly surprised. It was really very good. Portion size was reasonable; quality was good; meat and fish were cooked to the right consistency; and the sides which came with the mains were good complimentary choices by the Chef. Prices range from $18-36 for a dinner entrée; I think it was a tad overpriced, but at least there was quality behind the cost. We happened to have an Entertainment Book coupon which we used, so we did a two-for-one main which made the cost less objectionable.
After our meal, we were offered dessert but were both too full. The dessert options LOOKED nice enough, though there wasn’t much available to those with nut allergies. On the plus side, we were given two complimentary glasses of sparkling wine as it was our anniversary. Certainly a nice service touch.
On the whole, I would say it was a decent dining experience … just not the fine dining atmosphere or menu choices we were expecting...
This is the second time I've been here and unless it's a private function (like a big party or wedding) and someone else is paying, I'm never darkening their doorway again. I've worked in hospitality and in customer service for years and there are some things that are inexcusable.
It was a baby shower brunch for my friend. She'd always wanted to go to Horizons, so that's why we took her there. I don't know if the server was just having a bad day or hated babies, but she was rude to our party, particularly the guest of honour. There were a few of us in that party who heard her mock our comments, gift selection, etc. I don't care about the server's personal feelings, but those comments could have waited until we were at least out of hearing range.
We waited a long time for our drinks and food, so we entertained ourselves.with the gifts, stories, and shower "games" that could be played around a table. Some other diners there joined in the fun at different points and that made it more fun for us, but not so much fun for our server.
The food was good, as always. The fruit was fresh and the waffles and pancakes were light and fluffy. A bit too sweet, but that was ok.
Next time, we're going to IHOP.
Took my 10 year old daughter, 38 year old boyfriend and 48 year old mother to Horizons. I have been to this place a few times and have never been dazzled, but there was a coupon for 24.00 off so we went. Waiter had a strange tone when my mother said just soup was fine (she is tiny). Mom said the coffe was good, b/f said the steak was fantastic, mom was happy with the soup, daughter very happy with the meal... my rainbow trout wasn't very tasty so I asked to have it replaced with arctic char. My request was not met gracefully. In the end I got the char, but there was a rolled up peice if plactic wrap in with the fish/sauce. Fish overall was good though. I was not able to eat with my family, I ate well after everyone finished.
They did not charge me for either entree. All in all, waiter Mark delt with the situation ok, not amazingly. Lee the 'bus boy' was attentive and quick. Service and food quality was just not up to par for the prices. Our meal still came up to 80.00. We did not get to use the 24.00 coupon.
If they lowered their prices by 10.00 per entree, it would be a good place for the $. Unfortunately, Boston Pizza on Gilmore and Lougheed offered better communication/service than Horizons.
Went there for a post-Valentine's Day brunch with the sweetie. We had the traditional breakfast and buttermilk blueberry pancakes. Dee-licious. The turkey sausage in the traditional breakfast was tasty and not greasy. The pancakes were melt-in-your-mouth delightful with honey whipped cream. The scrambled eggs with chives,a bit bland however. Now, the dishes were not anything new and exciting, but filling and delicious, and who can complain when you're surrounded by that view?
I was invited to Horizons for a friends birthday and was pleasantly surprised. We all ordered off their Dine Out menu, and everyone at the table was truly satisfied with their meals. I had the mussels in a saffron cream sauce to start. The mussels were huge and plump, and the sauce was smooth and velvety. My main course was the Filet Mignon, it came with some really nice mashed potatoes, fresh crunchy veg and a rich , buttery demi. I finished with the chocolate creme brule. Very nice. We also had the wine pairing suggestions that went really well with our meals.
Our waiter was friendly and not intrusive, and the bus staff were quick and efficient. We had been given a time limit with our table, but as it approached out departure time, we didn't feel rushed at all.
The value was good, $38 for the Dine Out menu. It was filling and felt like money well spent.
The room had a good ambiance, nice lighting and the view was incredible.
I`ve had some disappointing DOV experiences in the past, but my Horizons dinner exceeded my expectations. I will return.
Went to Horizons on Burnaby Mountain for our company Christmas party last night.
The food was excellent, had the Lobster Bisque and the Filet Mignon. Given that we were a large group and the room was full, I was pleasantly suprised at how quickly our food came and the fact that it was hot, tasty and presented well on the plate.
The dining room is large with windows on all sides to enjoy the fantastic view. What a great place to put a restaurant, in a park on a mountain, brilliant !
Now the problem, our server, a woman with long messy blonde hair was wearing so much perfume, by the end of our meal I was feeling almost sick. A few people at our table commented on the strong smell and kind of laughed it off. Unfortunately for me I have an intolerance for strong fragrances. I wanted to complain at the time but didn't want to embarrass anyone.
It really suprises me that whoever manages this really nice restaurant would allow their servers to pack on the perfume like that. It was so bad I could almost taste it !
It is quite common now in most businesses that deal directly with the public to have a "no perfume" policy, in consideration of their guests or clients.
It's really too bad because other than the extremely strong and nauseating scent coming from this woman, everything else was great. I'm not sure I will go back............I can still smell it !
This place is worth is just for the view. After dinner, you have to walk in the park, by the totem poles. It is a breathtaking view of the city. I used to run here when I was at SFU. The food is very good, and so is the service. I found some of their food overspiced, not spicy, but overpowering of a couple of ingredients, mainly rosemary.
Second only to Salmon House, this is our favorite place to take out of town visitors. The food and service are predictable, the prices are not cheap but are competitive, and the atmosphere is friendly and fun. The views on a clear evening are superb, especially at sunset.
We ate here a few times and love the scenery of the inlet, vancouver horizon and mountains all around. The flower garden in the spring/summer is beautiful also. Enjoyed the seafood pasta, very fresh and scrumptious. The mini crab cakes served at a friends wedding here were addictive and original. All in all lovely restaurant and yummy food.
This was our first time back since the fire closed the restaurant last year. To attract customers back to the restaurant, there was a coupon in the local community paper for a steak and lobster special at $20. Apparently, there was even one posted on their web site. And by the way, the picture on the special definitely does not resemble the actual entrée when it arrives at the table.
The restaurant was dimly lit and I'm guessing, to give it an intimate setting. The only problem was that I could barely read the menu because it was rather dark. However, I suppose the younger crowd could probably see no problem. There were four of us: two ordered the Special, one had maple salmon and one had pork tenderloin. We also ordered the tuna tataki as a starter.
Service was rather slow and the restaurant was not packed. The order was taken, the bread came and then it was a wait for dinner. The busboy even came around to ask if we wanted more bread! Dinner finally arrived, and no, the tuna tataki appy never came. The steak was made to medium and was still a little on the dry side. The pork was disappointing as it was also on the dry side. The maple salmon was the only dish that came out fine. Oh, the lobster tail was so tiny it was the size of a jumbo prawn. Then we had to wait for the dishes to be cleared. Once they were cleared, we had to wait for the waiter to come and ask if we were interested in dessert. For dessert, we tried the white chocolate blueberry crème brule which wasn't bad. Again, after the dessert dishes were cleared, we had to wait yet again for the waiter to reappear so that we could get our bill. When it arrived, we had to make sure we were not charged for the appy that never materialized. I'm not seeing any improvements in the restaurant since they've re-opened. As of right now, the Richmond Boathouse has much better service. Time will tell.
I have been there on a few occasions and the food has been average to very good. The view is spectacular especially for lunch on sunny days. I really enjoyed rainbow trout with Yukon potatoes. The desserts are very delicious.
My first impression as I was arriving to the restaurant was "wow" The view was spectacular since it's located on top of Burnaby mountain (though the drive up on the narrow curvy road was a bit scary since it was so dark at night) and the restaurant looked beautiful. There's plenty of parking since the lot is pretty big for the restaurant. Once I stepped inside, I was a bit disappointed. I guess I was expecting one of those fancy posh places, not saying that it's not nice inside, it is. It was just a bit noisy that night. Made it seem like a family restaurant instead or one of those chain restaurants that are so popular. The food wasn't too bad (I ordered salmon) and the service was spectacular. The waiters and busboys were always around to fill up our water glasses and made sure everything was going great for us. (But then again, we did have tables full of girls that night...) But the experience was great and I would love to go there again!
This review isn't for one visit in particular, as I have been three of four times. My fiance actually proposed to me at the restaurant and called ahead of time to inform them. We were given top notch service, complete with champaigne at the end to congratulate us. They wouldn't even let us pour our own wine! Even when its not a special occasion, the service has always been so attentive, the food amazing, never over/under done, and tastes great. And the view and grounds are great as well; a great place to watch the summer sunset after a nice dinner, and walk around the park. It may not be the most affordable restaurant but you are paying for the atmosphere too. If you sign up for their email newsletters, they often include coupons which can make a meal a little easier on the old wallet. Highly recommended!
My first time visting even though I've been in the area for years. What a hidden gem! The grounds and park are beautiful. The view is fabulous. Our group, a small wedding all enjoyed themselves immensley. The food was very good and the service was attentive.
We will return again on our own in the near future.
My husband and I went here for the 1 st time Saturday for dinner. I decor was ok nothing special. We were there early (second table seated) so we did not wait. The service was good. Our waiter was always near and our water glasses were always full. He had a chocolate martini and I had the candied apple martini - yummy! If i have to pay $9 a drink, it better be good and they were.
We shared the pan fried squid w/ jalepeno sauce as an appy - the flavor was wonderful except the squid was rubbery. Disappointing for $11. Hubby has the Sockey salmon special with 7 grain rice mix. He loved it. His salmon was mnice and moist. I had the honey maple salmon with mashed potatoes. The flavor was great except a bit dry at the edges. I would still order it again.
For dessert, we ordered the triple chocolate mouse cake and the coconut panna cotta. For store bought dessets they were very good. I do prefer my homemade desserts.
I enjoyed a day of not having to cook or thinking of what to make for dinner. Since we do not go out often (very cute toddler at home), the meal as enjoyable. The atmosphere was not all that romantic as more people arrived it seemed like any other restaurant except for the great view. Overall the food was what a expect from a restaurant - fresh and tasty. The price of $30 a plate was a a bit steep but we are coming back when my dad comes to town and will bring our toddler.
Good thing there was a mountian to climb up so we could burn off some of the calories.
I went for Saturday lunch with my boyfriend. The hostess and servers were attentive and very sweet from the beginning, no complaints there. I thought the decor inside the restaurant seemed a little dated but the view outside was fantastic and we took a nice post-lunch walk around the area afterwards. We ordered the crab cakes and lamb chops to start, and then the cioppino and egg noodle tagliatelle, and a chocolate creme brulee to share. The crab cakes were alright but the lamb chops and couscous that came with it seemed bland to me; I didn't eat much of it before I gave it to my boyfriend to finish. He liked his cioppino and for the most part I enjoyed my tagliatelle--it came with a very generous amount of clams, however I was annoyed to find a couple clams that were completely closed and at least two or three were half-open and had to be pulled open hard to get the clam meat out. I let my server know, who seemed concerned and said she would let the chef know. Creme brulee was solid but we thought we had eaten better creme brulee elsewhere. The food wasn't terrible but I think it's far from being worth $70 (before tip). I was really excited about having lunch here and came away a bit disappointed.
I've come to dine at Horizons a few times last year and though it's been awhile I was hoping to find my favorite Waiter still working there. Sad to say that he was no longer on staff and my second choice was also gone. I reluctantly stayed and was served by an inexperienced young guy who didn't know a thing about the wine he was offering. I ordered my tried and true favorites of Lamb and had a Jackson Triggs Shiraz to confuse the lad who remained dilligent with his Gerwertzaminer. Mission Accomplished!
As always the view is beautiful and the prices which at one time were justified by the service are now too high. If you're looking for Knowledgeable service I'd go further down into Vancouver or Port Moody where you can find servers that have been allowed to drink for a few years to develop a palette! How much can a Twenty Year old really know about wine? I'll go back just for the view!
Having heard about friends' positive experiences and read the restaurant's website write up, I expected a 'fine dining experience.' What I got was a major disappointment. The first impression of the dining room is that it looks very dated (think 80s). I expected a table set with crisp linens and tasteful place settings. Instead I got a bare wooden tabletop with a salt shaker and a pepper mill (no waiter offered fresh pepper here) and some worn, oddly small proportioned cutlery and an unimaginative square folded napkin plopped between the cutlery. I ordered a cocktail and it was almost undrinkable. Since I was being treated to dinner I didn't want to make a fuss & make my host and other guest uncomfortable, so somehow managed to choke down most of it, though it was awful. As none of the appies appealed, the waiter offered me a simple green salad. It arrived as an unimaginative pile of greens with only oil and no vinegar or seasoning. I was forced to commit a 'fine dining' faux pas and try to make it palatable by using salt and pepper. My companions and I all opted for a table d'hote offering of Wild Salmon & Prawns, described as wild salmon and skewer of prawns grilled over alderwood, with 7 grain rice pilaf, vegetables, cauliflower puree and a curry sauce. It arrived lukewarm, no grill marks on the slab of salmon, the 'prawns' were 2 med. sized overcooked, rubbery shrimp, on a skewer. The 'pilaf' was a steamed rice mix ie not pilaf. No cauliflower. Unimaginative veggies of which the baby green beans were hard and uncooked. No attemps at creative, artistic garnishing, very plain presentation There was an overpowering flavor of smoke and the curry sauce was overpoweringly hot. The rice, vegetables and fish were completely unseasoned, other than the heavy smoke taste and heat of the curry sauce. I then understood why they had the salt at the table. To let us do what the chef didn't ie season the food. My companions likewise were not impressed with the food. We ordered dessert, hoping for something better. The Creme Brule was good but the Chocolate Mousse cake disappointing. It was not the light, fluffy texture I prefer, but very dense, heavy and greasy tasting. The hazelnut crust had an unpleasant wet, gummy texture. The $31 price for the entree was exhorbitant, given what we were served. I would have considered $15 too much for the poorly prepared and lukewarm entree. Many reviewers rave about the view but a restaurant's primary mandate is to offer up good food which lives up to the prices charged. The ambiance, service and view should underscore excellent food. In this case the view of pitch black darkness dotted with distant city lights did not make up for the badly prepared food. I won't be visiting this place a second time.
We've been to Horizons a number of times over the years and really want to like it, but just never end up eating anything compelling. The park is beautiful and the view is great, but the generic "pacific northwest" menu never ends up leaving a memorable impression.