A reasonably priced Afghan restaurant near the entrance to Granville Island. This Vancouver landmark has been around since the 70s and is popular for its vegan platter, kebabs and casual Afghani dining atmosphere.
After a bit of a detour from the old location we found the new place at the foot of Granville Island.
Not sure what to say other than "you have to try this place". The food is as great as the ambiance and the service - a thiple threat so to speak.
Trust me - you'll love it. Prices are quite reasonable and there seem to be vegetarian options including a vegan combo. We were there for the meat (lamb) at it was delicious and tender.
Recently we were dining at Afgan's Horsemen, because this site rated this restaurant as one of the best in Vancouver. The interestingly decorated room was not bad, and food was decent, also not refined, but not bad. The potato in batter were the best part, but meats were also flavourfull. Even though they use cheepest cuts of meet, and veriety is very limited, we enjoyed kebabs and braised lamb sholder was tender.
As for the service, we found it to be too slow, and they were not busy that evening. The glasses were dirty, and who knows how clean is their kitchen. But we tried not to think about it.
We may go there again one day, but more fot decor that the food, and definately not service.
My husband and I went there tonight and we ordered the vegetarian meal for two. It was reasonably priced considering you get a full plate of salad with hummus and hot fresh pita and for the main meal a huge platter with all sorts of food. We're both really big eaters and we couldn't finish the platter. It came with a very flavorful rice, wonderful roasted eggplant, crunchy deep fried potato that were not at all greasy, little dumplings and baked chick pea dip. Everything was very flavorful in a very unique way. I've been to a few middle eastern restaurants and the ambience is pretty typical but the service was fantastic, very very quick and the food was fresh, hot and delish! I wouldn't hesitate for a second to recommend it.
Food: Our party of four ordered soup, salad and pita bread with dip to share, and two of us shared the combo kebabs. The combo kebab came with one skewer of lamb, beef, and chicken, as well as optional sides - we choose 'option b' which consisted of two kinds of veggies, rice, and potato. The food was pretty good and is similar to Greek but somewhat different.
Service: Service was ok and they got our orders in quickly when we were ready without any further delays.
Ambience: Interesting decor, especially the 'cushion' seats, but we sat at the tables so we just admired it coming in/going out of the restaurant.
Price: Combo kebab was $17 and it was a generous serving so we shared it.
According to the menu, this restaurant has been around for 30 years and is the first Afghan restaurant so if you're in for some good food and cultural experience I would recommend this restaurant!
This place has been in Vancouver for eons and I only managed to visit them a few months ago. Some of their food is very similar to what you will find in Greek restaurants..dolmah, shishkebab, mousaka etc. We all enjoyed the food and especially the pillow room. Very comfortable and something new.
When I first heard about Afghan Horsemen Restaurant, I assumed it would be heavy into meat dishes. Therefore we avoided trying it. (Me and my wife are "flexitarians." We still eat some meals with meat, but mostly stick to a vegetarian diet.) I stand corrected. In addition to the traditional lamb, chicken and beef dishes, they also have a very nice assortment of vegetarian dishes. We tried a combination plate which included a variety of vegetarian dishes. These inluded baked rice with Kabuli topping (sautéed carrots, raisons & almonds), served with baked eggplant, Dahl (lentil stew), Salata with Feta Cheese, Pakawra (batter fried potatoes) & Chaka.
All in all, the atmosphere as well as the meal were a delightful experience.
I went to Afghan Horsemen a couple of nights ago for the first time. We ordered the Horsemen's Platter for 3 (~$70) for the four of us to share and it was more than enough food. The pita bread, hummus and spinach dip were probably the best part of the meal. We had beef and chicken kebabs and lamb shoulder. The meat was alright, it was sort of dry and did not have a lot of flavour to it. It could've been though that by the time the kebabs came out we were all stuff and had slowed down by that point. I'm not sure if I'd come back, prices were a wee bit steep for my student budget.. but if I did, I'd definitely get the pita bread and salad
In a moment of spontaniety I went here with my boyfriend on a Thursday night. We got in without any wait and were seated in the cushioned room (they will ask you remove your shoes). I'm a bit of a clean freak so I was a little apprehensive of sitting on the cushions but I can assure you that I had no qualms about this place.
The prices are pretty good considering the amount of food. This was my first time eating Afghan & I love eggplant so I was happy to try the BADENJAN BORANI. It's quite a rich, creamy dish which wan't what I was expecting but it was good nonetheless. I've had more tender beef stew elsewhere, but the flavour wasn't bad. You also get a nice selection of sides with pretty much every meal.
As for service, our waiter wasn't the most attentive - it was difficult to wave him down even though we were pretty much the only people in the restaurant at the time.
I would definitely go back for another romatic night out & a heck of a lot of exotic food!
Well the boyfriend and I went here on a Monday night at 5pm and we were told we needed to be finished by 7pm because the place was already booked. We insisted in the pillows on the floor (don't wear skirts ladies). We had one of the platters for 2 and it was EXCELLENT .. the ambience and comfort within which you dine just can't be described. You really need to 'feel it'. The service was excellent and the experience needs to be repeated again and again. I'm not surprised they are so successful!
Interesting little place. Service was fine. Food was good, my husband and children liked it very much, I was just mildly pleased. It’s an interesting dinner venue, and I did enjoy sitting on the floor to eat it was kind of fun, but, I like my food very hot and it just wasn't. Food that is served luke warm gives me the idea that it has been sitting around for hours. Not sure I would be back; it just didn’t stand out for me
My friends and I were offered the cushion room due to a cancellation, so that was a fun and unexpected surprise. The room is cozy, colourful, and inviting. I could almost believe that I was out of the country.
The alcoholic drink I had was not very aloholic at all, but tasty. Maybe I'll just order a virgin drink next time and save myself a few bucks.
The ravioli was tasty, the kebabs adequate (some were a bit dry), but the potatoes and rice were yummy! Carbs rule!
Will come back if I need a cool atmosphere to be in or if others suggest it, but probably wouldn't initiate a visit anytime soon.
The Afghan Horsemen is a totally unique place to dine with outstanding food and cultural flair. It’s suitable for anyone who is looking for a different experience from other trusted restaurants. The food is delicious, service friendly, prices reasonable, and it’s very clean. I's a great place to bring friends, family, or just cuddle up with your honey on the floor pillows. I love it and can’t wait to go back.
We decided to go to the Afghan Horsemen for our anniversary. What a wonderful experience.
We were seated in the cushion room which is incredibly relaxing and enjoyable. I wasn't sure I'd be comfortable sitting so near the floor but I was pleasantly surprised at how comfortable and relaxed it was.
The food was great. We ordered the Horsemen Platter which was more than enough for two people. It was a nice mix of many of the dishes offered on the main menu. We loved the lamb shoulder, the shish kebobs as well as the egg plant dish. I had "Dough" which is a yogurt drink that was very good, it remnded me of taziki sauce. We had the rice pudding with almonds and cardamon for desert. It was as good a rice pudding as I've ever had.
The servers were very attentive and helpful.
I highly recommend this restaurant.
Group of 20 dined in their new location (Granville Island entrance).
Dined in their Afghani room (sat on cushions and dined on low tables). Decor was inviting, and comfortable. Our waiter was friendly and prompt.
I ordered the lamb shoulder meal and everything was delicious.
Lamb was succulent and delicious. Huge portions. The men in our party could not finish their meals because they were full.
Highly recommend this restaurant and will go again to dine on their patio.
This restaurant has been around for ages and I have heard a tonne of good reviews so one night a group of friends and I decided to try it. The food was good and the portions were filling but the service left a bad taste. First my knife was dirty...as in used...so I put it aside and waited for the waitress to come by...and waited and waited. Finally I gave up and ended up having to saw my meat with the side of my fork. The novelty soon wore off and I had to alternate with my friends for the use of their knife...by the way I am still waiting for the waitress to come by. The meal is over and she came by. We ordered dessert and coffees. This is the great part...true measure of class...the waitress came in with a pot of coffee and refilled the cup of a customer on the other side of the room, she came to me and offered a refill and I declined, in one fell swoop she grabbed a creamer off my plate, hoping i didnt notice and walked out of the room to turn around, come back in and offer it to the gentleman sitting at the other end of the dining room. I have to admit she was quick and I had to ask my friends for confirmation that yes indeed she did take a creamer off my plate and offer it to someone else as if it was new. Impressive.
After reading the great reviews on this site, we decided to try this restaurant with another couple. We didn’t know what to expect, as none of us had a clue what Afghan food consisted of. We made reservations for the “cushion room” and were given a comfy corner table with lots of pillows to prop ourselves up on. It took a few minutes to get comfortable on the floor (my bf never really figured it out) but that just made the experience more memorable. Each couple ordered wine (although we were intrigued by the plastic bucket that the next table was sipping from with two long straws) and a platter for two. I agree with a previous poster that it could easily have fed three. The food was delicious and we were entertained throughout our meal by a talented belly-dancer! (One member of our party was even invited to join her on the dance floor and gladly accepted!) It was a unique experience that we will all remember for quite some time! One tip – if you’re not an eat-on-the-floor type of person, there’s also a large, beautiful outdoor patio that would be fantastic on a warm summer night.
I went to this restaurant a few weeks back to celebrate the birthday of a dear friend and really enjoyed the whole experience, from sitting on the floor, to the food, to the entertainment. We (hubby and I) had never eaten Afghan food before and were pleasantly surprised. It seems to be a mix of Middle Eastern and Indian/Pakistani. Sitting on cushions on the floor was a first, and not uncomfortable at all. We had potato pakoras to start and shared a mixed grill platter. We didn't have space for dessert but the starters and mains were excellent. The entertainment took the form of a belly dancer which spiced up the evening.
We got there just after opening on a Sunday evening, so it wasn't busy, yet. We shared the outdoor patio with one other table of people and a few curious hornets (they weren't hungry...just curious. One of them fell into the yogurt dip and spent several minutes giving herself a bath after I fished her out with a used skewer...)
On a recommendation from our very attentive server, we opted for the Horsemen's platter -- pretty awesome! The hummus is made from lentils rather than chickpeas, and sabzi mast is a spinach-based dip/spread, accompanied by warm pita breads and a salad. I loved the flavors of both spreads, and have every intention of learning how to make them for myself!
EVERYTHING on the platter was wonderful! I liked the textures as well as the flavors, and even the eggplant (which I don't usually go for) was wonderfully tasty. The lamb shoulder was so tender, I didn't need a knife to cut it, and the grilled chicken was still juicy, rather than dry. The grilled lamb was pink, as it should be, and the dolmah...well, let's just say that my own cabbage rolls are gonna get a makeover...
I had a traditional Afghan drink called dough -- it's a thin yogurt, flavored with mint and a little salt, served over ice. I loved it -- very refreshing on a hot day. But it will not be to everyone's taste, so be warned: it's not sweet, nor is it carbonated. It's a little sour, a little astringent, and a little salty. If you like buttermilk, you will probably like dough.
We deliberately left a good portion of our dinner on the platter for take-home (!) so we could try a couple of their traditional desserts: rice pudding and milk pudding, made with cardamom and sprinkled with pistachios. Neither of them is too sweet, which is good as far as I'm concerned. I don't like a lot of sugar, and I liked these desserts very much. The milk pudding is a little sweeter than the rice pudding, but it's balanced by being lighter in texture and in density, and was my personal preference.
Anyone who is familiar with, and likes, Mediterranean food will probably like Afghan food, although there are some differences. Less lemon, more cilantro. Cabbage rather than grape leaves. Not really heavy with garlic, although there is some.
I wish I had thought to get the name of our server. She was wonderful! Not only attentive without actually hovering, but friendly and knowledgeable, as well. I had questions, and she had the answers!
Our first time. Definitely not our last!
I've been here a few times. Always had a good experience. Food is excellent and the atmosphere is great - there are often belly dancers or other types of live entertainment. Only complaint I have is the lack of drink choices, although it is an Afghan restaurant.....
Definitely would recomend this place, esspecially for a date....
We have eaten here several times and the food is really good. Service has always been solid and the staff / family are very friendly....but you will pay extra to eat here and sit on the floor amidst the comfy pillows! Not sure if the gimmicky ambiance is enough to excuse the high prices but its a pretty solid dining experience if you want something different in Vancouver.
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