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3.5
  • Food4
  • Service4
  • Value3
  • Ambiance3.5
  • Reviews95

Vij's

1480 West 11th Avenue
Vancouver, BC V6H1L1
Tel: (604) 736-6664
Neighbourhood: West Side

Reviews

Displaying 41 - 60 of 95 Reviews FoundSort: Useful | Helpful | Reviews | Date
A favourite
By ngibzak of Burnaby (22 Reviews)
Submitted Tuesday, July 28, 2009 - 6:34pm [Dine in]

While standing in a lineup with the girlfriend Saturday night, waiting for Vij’s doors to open, the guy queued behind us asked what the big deal was with the restaurant. He said he passed by often, and was curious why there was always a crowd waiting to get in, what type of food was served, etc. I was a little surprised by his questions, as I’ve always considered Vikram Vij and his namesake restaurant to be relatively famous Vancouver entities. Nonetheless, I was happy to advise him that he could expect really good (albeit not entirely authentic, at least according to a South Asian friend who refuses to eat there – it’s her loss) Indian food. I’ve been to Vij’s a number of times over the years, and this most recent visit was probably the best yet.

After being shown to one of the last tables in the house (much to our relief – the people a few spots behind us were advised they’d have to wait 45 minutes to an hour), and a small debate over the menu, we decided to get things started with an order of samosas. Without exaggerating, they were some of the best samosas I’ve ever eaten. Crunchy/flaky pastry on the outside, savoury meat on the inside, and a sweet sauce with a dab of coconut as accompaniment … absolutely delicious. Both the girlfriend and I agreed that we would’ve been perfectly happy if dinner consisted of nothing but a dozen more. But we moved on. For her main, the girlfriend chose a dish of halibut and spot prawns in curry, while I went with grilled sablefish and zucchini in a mango reduction. The halibut and prawns were excellent – the fish held up well to the moderately spicy sauce. And as for the sablefish, simply put, it was out of this world. I’ve eaten a lot of sablefish dishes recently, and Vij’s, by far, has been my favourite preparation. The girlfriend tried a little and agreed that it was outstanding. To finish, we shared an bowl of … some sort of frozen pistachio dessert. The girlfriend called it ice cream, while I thought it resembled granita. Whatever it was, it was very good, and a refreshing way to end dinner.

Despite the fact that there’s a bit of a revolving door approach, service was top notch. There was never any confusion or delay with the orders, and every server who approached our table was polite and professional. Vikram Vij – the consummate showman and host that he is – greeted guests personally at the door upon opening, and was a perpetual man in motion during dinner. He even spooned curry sauce onto my girlfriend’s rice. Awesome! Ambiance-wise, the small, dark room is cozy and intimate, yet the atmosphere within is lively. The ‘no reservations’ policy actually adds to the restaurant’s charm – it's a guilty pleasure to sit inside and eat wonderful food, while the lineup of hungry patrons grows outside on the patio. Finally, in terms of value, considering the quality of food served, the charming ambiance and the spot-on service, Vij’s is definitely worth extra. It remains among my top picks.

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Oustanding Dinning Experience
By kirang7 of Surrey (3 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, July 13, 2009 - 4:19pm [Dine in]

I think Vij's is one of the best indian restaurants I have been too. The food is indian without the spice but more of the flavour. The lamb popsicles were fab with a great sauce. The goat curry was excellent (hearty and falvourful). Perfect serving of rice and naan. Although I think the naan's could have been better. I found thema bit plain but I think that's the intent!

Overall great food and experience!

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Delicious
By Platinumdimsum of Vancouver (6 Reviews)
Submitted Thursday, April 16, 2009 - 3:17pm [Dine in]

Over the past few years I have eaten at Viji's many times, and have enjoyed every meal experienced there. Vij is a gracious host, and (like Bishop's, where he has worked before) visits each table to greet customers with a warm welcome.

No reservations are taken, but you are guaranteed a table if you go early. If you do have to wait, the backroom is pretty fun. As you're waiting, they have a constant stream of small bites to tide you over until a table becomes available.

The food is fantastic, with sauces made from scratch, and fresh BC ingredients. This isn't authentic Indian food, but more like the fresh/seasonal bounty of BC with Indian inspirations.

To the previous poster that complained about the restaurant being inflexible: Kosher, no dairy, no meat, no grains -- perhaps it would have been much easier to stay at home a homecooked meal.

Items like curries are made from scratch, but not on the day of (welcome to flavour country after flavours have had time to mingle). It is unreasonable to ask for all those changes. Not only because it's not an easy thing to do, but items may taste a bit strange with the various requested substitutions (not the way the chef intended). You may have fared better at other restaurants (West comes to mind), they could have planned a custom tasting menu for you.

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overall
By jcmackinn of victoria (2 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, June 6, 2008 - 12:46pm [Dine in]

I think for a restaurant to stay as "solid" as Vij's is a huge task. I have been many many times and the quality remains "solid" The service is also important and that remains consistent as well. I rather like to sit in the back and be served lovely apps and chat with the people in the same situation. If I want to be through quickly I go early and never have to wait. I am a chef and can tell you that to keep a restaurant consistently "solid" and keep filling it up is an achievement. Vij runs a wonderful restaurant and of course you may have better food at another Indian restaurant but keep going back and see if you continue to get it. That is the secret to success. And the "owner" is ALWAYS there!

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Pay more for smaller portions
By indianlover of Vancouver (8 Reviews)
Submitted Saturday, March 22, 2008 - 9:15pm [Dine in]

I have to wonder if people who rave about Vij's have been to other indian resturants?! Don't get me wrong, I like Vij's very much but you over pay for small portions. It is as if you can say, "this is high end, you should pay more," when in reality it is not high end. Small portions does not make this high end. I also find it over spiced in some cases.

This site needs a rating for value. I would give it a 2 for value but 4/5 for others. If you don't care what you get for your money this is great.

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Good Dinner
By foodcouple of West Van (5 Reviews)
Submitted Saturday, March 15, 2008 - 3:43am [Dine in]

This was a good place to dine. Service was nice, Food was great. Flavours were strong and spicy. It was a little dark though and the wait for a table was a little rough. Next time we will try to eat early!

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Can't wait to go back
By kmontagu of Main Street, Vancouver (7 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, March 2, 2008 - 3:21pm [Dine in]

I've been to Vij's a couple of times and keep thinking about it. I like Indian food way more than my husband, so I'm having trouble getting him to go with me, but I know it would convert him. This place is amazing. I love the bar where you wait while they serve you complimentary appetizers. I love the lamb popsicles. I love it that Vij stops by to see how you're doing. I loved the duck medallions. I keep thinking about this food. Wow!

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An OK experience at best
By T_Deacon of Vancouver (2 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, November 25, 2007 - 12:38am [Dine in]

I came to Vij's after being recommended by a friend at work. The food was very bland and didn't really offer much in the taste department. Some of the dishes were very unique however. Service was decent as well, but nothing special. The restaurants decor was quite pleasant and had a nice feel to it. I certainly wont pay as much as I did for another meal here. My friend at work will definetly be hearing from me.

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not your typical indian cuisine!
By mishel21 of gastown (2 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, September 14, 2007 - 2:24pm [Dine in]

after reading reviews by a couple of people i felt the need to divulge some pertinent infromation to pepole confused about the "fusion" of this fabulous restaurant! vij is trained is classic french cuisine. add his indian culture and palette influences and you have vij's. do not dine here if you are expecting spicy indian dishes that all kind of resemble each other. this is fusion at it's best! i love it!

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everyone should try this place-but not a regular
By goodlife of fairview,vancouver (9 Reviews)
Submitted Wednesday, September 5, 2007 - 8:31pm [Dine in]

What an excellent experience. So yummy. Because I regularly read this site (just started adding to it) I knew to go early.
So we went on a Monday night at 5:30 and were sat right away -so I think that's the trick!
It was really good food and really good service. mmmm, just thinking about it makes me smile.
I didn't find it typical indian fare (and I love indian food) but that isn't why I went there- most high end places you don't get leftovers, so I was expecting something a little small but really good and that's what I got.

The server and owner were gracious -perfect.

I think this is a place that everyone should try -at least once.
I won't be a regular as it's a little pricey and by 6 o'clock there was an hour long wait -on a monday -(we ran into some friends that were going to wait once they took a look at our food).

Overall a great place!

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Very Good, But Not Great
By PromQueen of Kitsilano (21 Reviews)
Submitted Tuesday, June 5, 2007 - 3:34pm [Dine in]

Seeing all the amazing reviews for here, I expected more. The food is very good, though quite over priced. The quality is definitely better than most Indian restaurants.
The wait in line was ridiculous, I didnt want to wait but my date insisted, so we stood in line for near half an hour. When we could have walked right in to some other restaurants in the area.
Service was ok, but not super friendly or personable, as I was led to expect. They do make the comment of the food is meant for sharing, but you need to order several plates for 1 couple.
So, while the food is quite good, the line up to get in, and the price of it suggests that I will not be back any time soon.

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Solid experience
By finger22 of downtown (4 Reviews)
Submitted Tuesday, May 29, 2007 - 10:44am [Dine in]

I think calling Vij's average is a little bit irresponsible. You cannot have an ethnic experience like this anywhere else in Vancouver. He is truly one of our stars. You might find a more authentic version of Indian elsewhere but not more unique one.

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Another Vote on Average...
By Davros of Vancouver (21 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, May 28, 2007 - 4:56pm [Dine in]

I agree with the previous review. The food was not that much different than other indian places, except maybe smaller portions and higher prices.
2 of us went, and we were also given the, "our plates are designed for sharing". So we thought great, yet with 2 of us and 4 items for sharing, we were left very hungry at the end of our meal...we actually went to another restaurant and got even more food afterwards.
I can think of at least 3 other indian restaurants in Van I'd rather dine at, and my bill will be maybe 2/3 what it was here, and not have left overs for the next day.
I was disappointed with this experience, hopefully it was Vij's day off, and not indicative of the regular quality of food. May give it another try in future.

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Sadly average
By wyzegirl of Beautiful Port McNeill (1 Review)
Submitted Tuesday, May 15, 2007 - 4:06pm [Dine in]

So yah, we don't get out of the boonies that much. Decided that while in the city we would take in one of the newly acclaimed hot spots. I was so excited. Service is fabulous and friendly. I loved the comment of "We encouage sharing" so that is what the four of us did. It was OK. My first real Indian food, I expected much stronger flavours. Things seemed too generic and made for the masses. Lamb was lovely and mild but I would have liked stronger flavours in the sauces. Everything is cooked very well, and thought the portion sizes were fine. We tried quite a few items and nothing was bad, but nothing knocked my sandals off either. Nice chai and great chocolates with garam masala spices. Even with the waiting lines they do not make you feel pressured to leave. Best ambience? the floral display in the ladies bathroom...

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Always consistent
By asian-qt of Vancouver (8 Reviews)
Submitted Thursday, April 12, 2007 - 1:34pm [Dine in]

I have been to Vij's a number of times and it is wonderful that the food and service have been consistently outstanding, if not incredible, ever since this restaurant opened. I had out-of-town guests two weeks ago and brought them to Vij's and they all raved about the food; the lamb popsicle sticks, prawns in coconut and grilled sable fish were all so flavourful. Fingerfoods were also offered with our drinks while we waited for the dishes that we ordered at our ttable. The service staff were great; three came to our table throughout our meal to make sure we had everything we ordered. The place is simply decorated, but elegant. I will definitely keep coming back!

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Not quite what we were expecting!
By LizB of Cambie, Vancouver (8 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, March 23, 2007 - 8:31pm [Dine in]

First of all - we had no problem with waiting the 1 1/2 hours for a table, because we knew this was likely. We were, however a little surprised to find the area we were supposed to spend the time waiting was really very small! So we decamped to West ( Granville and 14th ) and consumed very nice cocktails while we waited.
Food - starters were very tasty, though not a huge portion given cost. Mains - beef shortribs delicious! Lamb popsicles way to rich - cream sauce not a good mix. Restaurant very noisy - something to be said for flock wallpaper!! Overall, not an experience we would repeat. Not being able to reserve a table is a pain in the a****. Not sure who the system is supposed to suit. The cynic in me would say the owners, because then they never have to worry about no shows! Service was patchy - I appreciate it was busy, but still.

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Disappointing
By Gippy of West End (2 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, March 18, 2007 - 11:09pm [Dine in]

After reading all the hype about this restaurant I expected to be in for a real treat. We arrived 30 minutes before opening to join the lineup and was seated quickly. The service was very attentive and a couple of free appetizers were brought around the tables before we ordered. That was the best part of the evening. My starter of paneer and peas consisted of 3 small slices and a dozen peas for $11, the naan bread served with it was very hot and tasty though. My dining companions kabab tasted bland. Not a good start. The main course did not fare any better. I had the spice encrusted lamb which was an average piece of lamb covered in semi cooked spices served with cauliflower and a thin, watery and weakly spiced coconut milk sauce. The other main course of chicken was swimming in ghee and had a poor aftertaste.
Do not go here if you like Indian food and do not go here if you like good food, there any many better choices in Vancouver. I can not recommend this to anybody.

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Food Worth Waiting For
By EuroFoodie of UBC Vancouver (1 Review)
Submitted Wednesday, March 14, 2007 - 6:53pm [Dine in]

As a European that has travelled much of the world, it is hard to understand what the fuss is about with the waiting. It is normally a joy to wait in a pleasant lounge with free appetizers for a meal that is delicious, innovative and beautifully presented. Meals should be an experience and, particularly if you are with great company, should take hours, and not the fast in-and-out experience North Americans seem to value.

Vij's food is fabulour and Vikram Vij is a charming man who loves what he does, making the experience that much more outstanding due to the love that clearly goes into the food.

IF one needs to eat in a rush, or for lunch, Rangoli is a superb substitute.

There are few restaurants that offer what Vij's does.

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Not all it is cracked up to be
By liketoeat of New Westminster (3 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, March 12, 2007 - 12:45am [Dine in]

I think this place is good.

But overrated.

The staff are attentive and charming.

But the food is not as good as I think it should be considering all that I have heard about it.

I will choose a traditional Indian restaurant over Vig's.

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Indian cuisine doesn't get better than this
By saul of Vancouver (2 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, April 28, 2006 - 5:24pm [Dine in]

Definitely NOT "ordinary Indian food" as another reviewer puts it. There wouldn't be perennial long line-ups if the food was anything less than outstanding. It's noisy, but it's part of the fun. I've tried many Indian restaurants in London and Paris. Vij's in Vancouver is still at the top of my list. Indian cuisine doesn't get better than what you get at Vij's.

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