Here's a quick rundown of some East Vancouver spots that have opened over the past few months (or are about to open).
While Americans have been on everyone's mind as of late, there's another American for Vancouverites to be aware of.
The cool kids at the Cobalt took over the 5,000 square-foot space vacated by the Electric Owl at 926 Main Street in Mount Pleasant and transformed it into a new good-times spot: The American.
In addition to pool tables, foosball, arcade video games, and pinball, there are a whole slew of events at the pub ranging from karaoke to Stranger Things nights.
That's in addition to special menu event, such as Dirty Burger pop-ups, featuring food by Upstairs at Campagnolo chef Robert Belcham.
A little Italy in Chinatown
Although contested as fact, legend has it that Marco Polo brought back pasta back from China to Italy. Soon, Vancouverites will be able to head to Chinatown for their Italian culinary needs.
A new Italian-inspired grocer-eatery-coffee shop, Dalina, will have its grand opening at 687 Main Street (at East Georgia) on December 3.
In addition to grocery items and coffee from third-generation Italian roasters, a rotating menu will include breakfast, lunch, and dinner items to eat in or take-out. Stay tuned for more details to come.
Over in Mount Pleasant, a former convenience store has undergone a reincarnation.
Colette Griffiths and Christopher Allen reopened the Federal Store at 2601 Quebec Street as a luncheonette and grocery store on November 21.
By phone Griffiths said that the cozy spot (675 square feet) seats up to 16 people.
Bows and Arrows coffee are served alongside housemade baked goods (ranging from $2 to $4), such as fresh bread (used for their sandwiches), cardamom knots, chocolate banana bread, and malted salted chocolate chip cookies (which have been popular).
Sandwiches include ham and cheese, chicken salad, and avocado on toast (all under $10).
There's also a limited selection of goods, such as sauces, dry grain products, condiments like Salt Spring Kitchen jam, Avalon organic milk, and frozen goods like Nirvana Pies and Pure Bone Broth.
It's proving to be quite the hit with the neighbourhood as the place has been abuzz with customers over this past week.
Noodling into East Van
While the ramen splash continues to thrive at Robson and Denman streets, the good news is that the impact is having an outward ripple effect across the city, with smaller ramen concentrations popping up throughout the city.
Luckily, new spots are also opening up in East Vancouver so that East Side residents don't necessarily have to trek out across the city to get a bowl of broth and noodles.
For instance, Natsumi Ramen opened at 1179 Commercial Drive earlier this year.
More recently, Kokoro Ramen had its soft opening on November 13 at 5695 Victoria Drive (at East 41st Avenue). It's run by Kokoro Foods, which focusses on casual dining.
Their broth is free of MSG, they do offer a vegetarian ramen option, and they're currently tweaking their recipes, including working on leaner cha-shu pork.