The tapas-only menu includes treats like Coconut-Steamed Mussels and Crab Cakes sprinkled over with burnt-orange chipotle. Excellent menu, warm ambience but very small and crowded.
This place is very similar to its sister restaurant, Bin 942, in every way, so I won't repeat what I have written there. The only difference is that, here, you can sit at the counter at the back (especially if you are eating alone), and enjoy watching the chefs prepare and cook all the dishes -- quite an entertaining experience, whereas, at Bin 942, if you sit at a table and eat alone, you kind of look and feel out of place.
I do prefer the Broadway location a lot more for the food & the crowd. The times I've visited 942, I've never had a negative experience w/ the food. This location seats possibly fewer but a little roomier than the very tightly packed 942. It's all a part of the experience, I suppose. Loud, busy, tiny but trendy & fun in a loud kind of way. The one time I ended up coming to this location a couple of wks ago for an after dinner wine, snack of mussels & chocolate souffle (or w/e it was called) it dissappointed. The mussels were fresh enough--tender, delicately sweet & juicy but the sauce was just mediocre & covered about a centimetre of the bottom of the bowl. Bin 942 was definitely better while neither is as good as Chambar's. The chocolate dessert was pretty tasty, served in the perfect temperature, however, the side of... hazelnut cream or what have you, it was nearly tasteless except for the obvious staleness of it. Both orders had the same problem. It will give someone the runs. Don't know why they bother if they can't use fresh nuts to whip up that side sauce. It's much better off without. Serving it with a nice scoop of vanilla bean ice cream would have done wonders.
The selection offered at the 2 Bins are different, that's why I wanted to give them a try. Having done that, I don't find myself too interested in returning anytime soon. Though the service was adequate, it was not as professional & as available as what I've experienced at their Broadway location.
I have been to Bin twice now the last time this past long Easter Weekend. First let me say that if you can't see that this is a small restaurant by simply looking through the window then get a clue. Yes , it is small, you'll be elbow to elbow with other diners so if you are claustrophobic or shy take a pass on this restaurant.
The food is very very good. Ordered the Habanero Mussells, very tasty , if you like hot food these really pack a punch, plenty of them too. Also had the flatbread with their humous, again very pleasant. They put some sort of spice on the flatbread that makes it different and good, I believe it might be paprika.
We also ordered the mini beef Wellington which was good , meat was nicely done and it came with some garlic mashed.
In addition to this had to have an order of the Frites. They put a balsamic vinegar reduction on this heaping plate of Frites to give it that extra zing. You have to order these Frites, addictive.
Had a bottle of white wine with the meal, total bill $94.00, very resonable.
As for the service the first time there we sat up by the bar and the girl behind it seemed somewhat standoffish and indifferent.
This last time had a very good waitress. She was super friendly , prompt and made the dinner a pleasure.
Both Bins have been noted for reliable food and service. Their wine list is decent with lots of wines by the glass selection. Menu offers a decent varierty or different assemblies. Service is always great and this is the place to bring a date for that romantic yet casual encounter !
Yesterday was my second visit to Bin 941. My boyfriend and I had gone two years ago and had a wonderful experience. This second one did not quite measure up.
I met my friends there fairly early, the place was pretty empty. That did change within the hour, but it was nice that we didn't have to wait.
Upon my arrival (I was late), my friends quietly informed me that they felt our server had a bit of an attitude. I'm not sure what took place b4 my arrival but both of my dining companions have been (and one still is ) in the industry, so we are quite understanding and easy going when it comes to dining out.
When I was approached for a drink order I immediately felt the insincerity from the server. Throughout the evening, it felt like she was perhaps somebody that has been serving for too long and is just going through the motions with a tight lipped smile. It was really disappointing because service makes up a huge portion of your dining experience. The service itself was good, even when the room filled up, we did not have to wait for food, drinks, or quality check. I m only giving it a three because I actually felt quite uncomfortable, it was just a very cold TYPE of service, and the dinner rush had not even begun yet.
The food on the other hand, was AWESOME! The risotto was creamy and yummy, the mussels were great! Everything we ordered was full of flavor with a pleasing presentation.
My only complain in that department would be the 'goats cheese and salsa with fry bread'. The fry bread was melt in your mouth, but the salsa was tomato paste, literally... with seasoning and goats cheese on top but... tomato paste.
The experience on a whole was good because what was lacking in service with a smile was made up for, by good food and good friends.
I am sad to say that I won't be returning. I'm sure they won't miss the business as there is always a line up :) I just really like to feel welcome in place where I am going to spend money and spend the evening.
As our food arrived, we were so impressed that each course was so well-crafted. Everything tasted great. The Ahi Tuna dish was very creative: the spicy tuna tartare acted as the salsa, slices of sashimi grade black and blue tuna atop a delicious ponzu sauce, and finished with a warm noodle and mushroom salad. Umm Um! It was definitely my favourite dish. Next was the bison dish. The meat was paper thin, super rare, and had a sweet but spicy taste to it; Bin calls this the Yucatan spice rub. The bison was accompanied with a mango sauce and a room temperature jicama and cilantro salad. Very refreshing, and a great combination of flavours. The spin on a traditional bruscetta was housemade foccacia, topped with pesto, gorgonzola and a balsamic reduction. It was ok, but the presence of the blue-vein cheese was completely lost amongst the other strong flavours.
After a couple of beers and a couple of plates, we were satisfied. This sure beats the Pizza Uno down the street at Granville, although for a buck-a-slice, I have been spotted standing in line too.
A few nights later, I returned for a cocktail session with a friend. We were presented with a red pepper and fennel soup amuse-bouche to warm us up. We ordered the signature Flank Steak Frites ($15) to share. Once again, here returns the mountain of frites, as seen from a mile away, obstructing the view of everything in its path; hilarious. After enjoying the steak and a bottle of wine, I put my “twice in 4 days” Bin experience into the archives.
Whether the Bin line of restaurants are a hidden gem or out in the open in Vancouver, everyone should know about them. A great concept, great food, and my only complaint is that frites should be removed as a course line, so that patrons like us can eat what we really came for.
Are we cattle being fatted up for the slaughter?? I understand its a small place and it must be hard to make money. But is it legal to cram this many people in such a small place?
I thought it was a place you would feel comfortable hanging out for hours and enjoying some good wine. I felt rushed from the moment we arrived.
The food is definitely above average. But the ridiculously noisy atmosphere, and the rushed service really ruins the whole feeling.
I love great food, but I can get great food in much more relaxed environments.
I know its a neigborhood favorite, I have lots of friends who like it, but I dont get it. I dont want to be packed in like a sardine and fatted like pig off to slaughter and then kicked out.
I want to enjoy my time in a restaurant.
Bin is one of my favourite restaurants in Vancouver. Ever since I discovered this little restaurant tucked away in downtown I haven't stopped coming - it's going to be three years now. Whenever I come to this city, I like to stop at least once, even if it means having to go by myself. The food is exquisite (love the braised short ribs and pomme frites) and contrary to popular belief, their tapas are quite large, almost entree or main course size.
This time around though, I didn't really enjoy myself as much. I went with a party of three on a Wednesday nearing 7 pm and so seating was not a problem. The prices of the food and drinks had increased as expected, but the noise was unbearable. The music was extremely loud and very clubby, which did not make me and my friends happy. We could barely hear each other and felt like we were at some club and not here for dinner.
Enjoyed dinner here last night for the first time in several years. At 5:30pm there were only a few other tables, and the service was attentive. Ambiance is about the same as it's always been, dark, tables tight together but we got the larger table by the window. We shared two 'appies' the Pomme Frites which we only ordered because its so darn cool seeing them stacked so high on the plate, we found them overly salty, which was not offset enough by the tiny amounts of balsamic reduction spotted over them, we would have preferred more balsamic and, really, they give you so many for the $7 you pay, they are stone cold before you're half way through, especially when they arrive lukewarm which they did, and the Navajo Fry Bread with the Salsa which was fantastic, as it always is everytime time I've ever ordered it over the years.
We split two 'entrees' which are really Tapas (in fairness they do refer to them as Tapalines or some other such term) of the Beef Short Rib that was fantastic, and the Crab Cakes that were average, but presented beautifully.
With three glasses of wine ($10 each, the cheapest reds available and nothing special) the bill came to $115 with tax and 15% tip, which is really getting up there for having left not feeling well fed. Will continue to visit every year or two, but I'm in no rush, the value for money just isn't there.
Im a big duck fan and didn't expect to find really good duck in a tapas/wine bar but this was some of the best I've had...also the hash that was served with it was really good. The wine selection is basic but well rounded. It's a cool spot if you can get a seat...especially one of the two front alcoves. The service wasn't the best, a bit crisp and unattentive. The music is crazy loud, but allows for only your wine partner to hear you. A good late night spot overall, just dont go expecting to be really well taken care of.
I thought these guys were the best restaurant in the city. I visited Bin because many people had told me to go. When I arrived there, it took so long for a staff member to greet me that I had to ask the bartender if we were supposed to seat ourselves or what. When someone finally did come to speak with us, she was extremley rude and made me feel like I shouldn't have entered this "cliquey", tiny, over-priced, joke of tapas lounge. If you want a restaurant that is everything that bin is TRYING to be, then go to Curious in gastown. I will never return to Bin-941 or 942 cause they are little more than a name as far as I'm concerned
Drives me crazy, everything on the menu sounds, looks and tastes great --- hard to decide what to order, I want it all!
If you want awesome food late at night, this is the place! I hear they are hard to get into early, but that's what happens in a small popular restaurant.
The music is loud, but the sound quality is excellent. It's a fun and funky place to chow down.
I was impressed by the open kitchen with a bar you can sit at and watch/converse/be served by the "chefs" wearing very tasteful black with gold trim jackets. Certainly one of the cleanest kitchens I have ever seen.
We sat at the bar, and the "chefs" delivered the food to us. I LOVE that.... they are so proud of their beautiful food. That's really a refreshing concept.
I knew immediately I would become a regular customer.
I thought the food was awesome, the selections and creativity make it easy to see why it is one of the best in the city, but the room is tiny, i had to leave it to change my mind, i'll go back but i have to figure when its not busy.
Besides the wait and the being put into the narrow back of the restaurant, it was great. I really love their food. I had some delicious blackcod. It was sooo good, it was crisp on the outside (almost tasted like bacon) and soo tender inside. I also had the goat cheese, which was also fabulous - especially the bread that came with it! They also have a decent wine list. So, if you are looking for a casual place to have dinner and drinks with friends, it's perfect! It is a bit noisy and cluttered, but, I think that adds to the fun, upbeat atmosphere. Definitely a must to try when coming to Vancouver
We stopped here for ldrinks and snacks when my freinds were visiting from back home-Love the small room- has a nice cozy feel inside. well worth the wait- deffinatley go for the atmosphere- Service can be a bit slow but the place was packed- We didnt mind at all- great food and good beer-
Will be headed to Bin 942 next
We love Bin !
Dinner at the bar with some friends tonight. Our server was indifferent to us for the first 3 dishes (maybe because we're students?), then another and much friendlier server took over. The food was great, lamb loin and desserts were the best, the mussels were just alright. I will return again, but expecting better service.
Great roasts and game meats at the Granville and Broadway location. Mussels are kind of sketchy though. I really like the prices and portions. Easy on the wallet and the waistline.
My husband and I have gone to Bin941 several times and each time, have been MORE than satisfied with our dining experience. The servers have always been attentive but not overbearing, and it's a great place to get quality, delicious food without a snooty atmosphere (ps - the beef wellington is to die for!!!). It is well worth bypassing supposedly upscale and trendy restaurants on Alberni Street for smaller restaurants like this one.
This place looks quite cozy from the outside so we decided to check it out. The ambiance is quite nice although it is somewhat crammed inside. There is a small bar and a few tables side by side close to each other. The best tables are by the window.
Once you order, the food takes quite long to arrive. When I saw the dishes, I thought they were well presented but very small. I got the impression that the place tries to sell you on the quality of the food. Although it was quite good, it was nothing out of the ordinary. Therefore, I thought it was too overpriced.
In short it's a nice little restaurant, the sort of place you might go on a date. It is overpriced however and I would not rush to return there again... There are better options out there.
Very pleased with the fresh, international DELICIOUS entrees and appetizers. I had fish and friend had multiple tapas, both dynamite. Service was exceptionally friendly, responsive, and knowledgeable. My friend was in town from the east coast, and probably went back recommending Bin for the food, service and nice looking waitresses (lol).