Da Gino is an authentic Italian restaurant that is affordable and family run. Open for lunch and dinner.
Da Gino is housed in the former Bianco Nero space on West Georgia.
As did the former tenant, it caters to the before theatre crowd at The Queen E. On the night we visited, we made reservations for 7:30PM. Upon arrival, the restaurtant was full & within 15 minutes, we were the only diners. This made for a somewhat different experience.
The service was fine, although neither the owner or manager, who both appeared to be in attendence, ever stopped by. There was lots of wait staff, but their primary goal appeared to be to clean & reset the tables for the next dinner service (which wasn't that night). As such, while I reiterate the service was fine, it came off visually as "we are closing for the night" at 7:30PM. However, we were not rushed at all and left at approx 9PM.
The menu offerred differed from the Entertainment Book, which illustrated amongst other entrees Rack of Lamb. We were presented a less extensive "Event" menu. From speaking with our server, it appears on event nights (@ The QE) they provide a less extensive menu geared for the theatre crowd. So no Lamb or some other mains illustrated in the book.
Having said that, if you like pasta, there were ample choices, as well as several veal, chicken, and one fish dish. I asked the server if the kitchen could do me up a plate of linguine & clams with white wine. They oblidged & it was an ample portion & very good. The others had various pastas (priced in the $14 - 19 range) and one had the salmon, which he pronounced quite good. Wine by the glass was $6.50 - $10 and there was good assortment.
The lights could have been a bit lower and the restaurant busier to add some atmosphere. I would return but would call ahead to ensure they were offerring their full menu on an off event night.
I dined here for lunch today with 9 colleagues while on seminar. I had reached my Vancouver Asian/pub food saturation point and need some Italian to reset my DNA roots. The gang followed along. We walked in, nice decor..clean, comfy, spacious, no nonsense, I notice they have a small inviting patio space for the good weather (note to self!). They were setting up for a party of 24 and didn't bat an eye when we showed up. The owners are Italian and very affable. The menu for lunch was a decent range of antipasti/starters , pastas and some mains. The pasta list was very nice and everyone found one to their liking. The price range for the pasta was between 12 and 15 bucks.I had the linguine in rose sauce with imported porcini. They served pane e olio with ciabatta bread to start with our water, a nice touch. When the pasta arrived it just reaffirmed that these guys are real Italians. First off the pasta was delicious, top quality pasta, not over cooked and with an abundance of sauce which was scratch made for sure. The second thing I noted and pointed out to my friends is that this was an authentic portion of 100 grams of pasta per person unlike most "italian-ish" d/t places that give you 50 grams for twice the price! I also ordered a 6 oz glass of house Italian red to go with my pasta ($6.50 very reasonable) and I was truly pleased. The service was excellent despite the two big parties and the place was full! They got us in and out in under an hour. I think I will be coming back much more often for lunch, you should too!
Made reservations for a Friday night at 8pm. Not necessary. We were the only people in the restaurant... THE ENTIRE TIME!! Which is surprising, because this place is excellent. We were informed that they have more of a lunch and early dinner following.
Quiet restaurant was our gain, though. Service was attentive, helpful, and accurate. Excellent appetizer recommendation of the tomato garlic shrimp. The sauce is to die for, mopped up by the complimentary warm pizza-crust-style bread. 10 to 12 shrimp in the dish and only $8.95. The highlight for sure.
Main course pastas were solid. Clearly, homemade pasta. Reasonable portions to fill you up though you might not be taking any home. Again, reasonably priced under $15.
We used our entertainment book and the while the server gave us the discount... she was also kind enough to not scratch the number off of our card so that we may return and use it again... which we most certainly will.
Highly recommend checking out this hidden gem!!
I have dined here for lunch and dinner, about a half-dozen times over the past 2 years. The service is always friendly and prompt, and the food always delicious. Everything tastes like it's made from scratch, and probably it is. YUM! Their portions are generous and if they say it's a prawn linguini, there's ton of prawns (not like many places where you'll only get a couple). The ambiance is classy (but not top-end) and the tables far enough apart that you can have a fairly private conversation. A great place for business lunch meetings, a romantic dinner for two, or dinner with your in-laws.