Our 10 favourite dishes in Victoria so far this year

Food and drinks worth leaving the house for

Photo: Eva Schnitzelhaus / Facebook

Victoria has an amazing food scene and occasionally it can be difficult to decide just what to eat. Here at Tasting Victoria we have spent the first few months this year tasting dishes across the city to determine what foods and drinks are really worth hitting the town for. 

We have selected our standout favourites for you to try, ranging from cakes and pastries to burritos and beers. From excellently executed classics to innovative twists, these are the dishes worth checking out next time you are looking for a little something to eat. 

Carrot cake from The Hidden Gem

After many years of trying to find the perfect slice of carrot cake, this one from the cafe and treat shop hidden in Cook Street Village takes the cake. Packed with walnuts and dried fruit this cake is moist and mouthwatering. The cake is layered between generous slabs of delicious cream cheese icing and topped with candied orange peel. This cake is entirely dairy free. Enjoy it on the cafe’s sunny patio seating with a lavender matcha latte in hand.  

Address: 337 Cook St. B, Victoria 
Hours: Monday-Thursday, 8am-4pm; Friday-Sunday, 8am-5pm

Jägerschnitzel from Eva Schnitzelhaus

Eva Schnitzelhaus cooks up modern German-Austrian dishes in a cozy atmosphere on the edge of Chinatown. Its jägerschnitzel is truly delicious and is a great introduction to what the restaurant has to offer. Warm and comforting, Eva Schnitzelhaus’s take on the classic German pounded pork cutlet topped with mushroom sauce is cooked to perfection. The pork is thin and beautifully breaded, while the mushrooms are rich and creamy. Enjoy with a side of braised purple cabbage and rosti potato.     

Address: 509 Fisgard St., Victoria
Hours: Wednesday-Friday, 5-9pm; Saturday and Sunday, 10am-2pm, 5-9pm

Bengal Roses Irish Red beer from Small Gods Brewing Co. 

Small Gods Brewing Co. makes incredible beer after incredible beer and this amber-coloured Irish red is no exception. Made with kilned malts, this crisp beer has a rounded out flavour profile with a rich malty taste that remains light and refreshing. It has a slight bitterness that grounds the beer and makes it easily sippable. This beer was so good that we had to go back and get another.  

Address: 9835 Third St., Sidney 
Hours: Sunday-Wednesday, 11am-9pm; Thursday-Saturday, 11am-10pm

Humboldt squid burrito from Boomtown

Boomtown has arguably one of the best patios in the city to enjoy a brew and a burrito. This seafood take on the classic wrap features crispy fried squid made with a black garlic sauce. The crispiness of the squid complements perfectly with the burrito’s pickled onions and cabbage and its rice is made excellently. Chow down on this burrito with a refreshing glass of the restaurant’s Bruja Tajin and Lime Cerveza collaboration with Small Gods Brewing Co. for an even more exceptional outing.  

Address: 950 Yates St., Victoria
Hours: Monday-Sunday, 11:30am-10pm

Smoked salmon croissant from Piggy and Paisley

The tea room that opened its doors in James Bay last summer does up tasty baked treats, teas, and coffee. A particular highlight is the tea shop’s smoked salmon croissant. Filled with the smoked fish as well as leeks, this savoury pastry is flaky and creamy. Enjoy it alongside the tea room’s Snow White latte, a heavenly white chocolate mocha that has the right balance of sweetness.

Address: 143 Menzies St., Victoria 
Hours: Monday and Wednesday-Sunday, 10am-5pm 

Beef combo plate from Messob Ethiopian Cuisine

Located inside the Cook Street Village Food Court, Messob Ethiopian Cuisine is a must visit spot that cooks up amazing Ethiopian dishes. This delicious combo plate features beef wat—an Ethiopian stew—served alongside lentils and cabbage on injera, a spongy pancake-like flatbread. The flavourful beef is cooked perfectly and melts in your mouth.   

Address: 1109 McKenzie St., Victoria
Hours: Wednesday-Saturday, noon-6pm

Working Culture Bread consistently bakes up exquisite breads, pastries, and sweet treats that are irresistible. Its ginger cookie was one of the best we have ever tried. Soft in the centre with a crisp exterior this cookie has a warm and comforting balance of ginger that is the ideal companion to a hot cup of tea or coffee.   

Address: 2506 Douglas St., Victoria 
Hours: Thursday and Friday, 8am-4pm; Saturday, 9am-4pm; Sunday, 9am-3pm

Orange Dreamsicle Dinosour from Phillips Brewing & Malting Co.

This velociraptor dedicated sour has been a roaring success and we can understand why. The orange sour is citrusy and bright with just the right balance of vanilla that rounds out the beer to be the perfect embodiment of the classic fruity popsicles. The house-cultured lacto strain in this beer is dairy-free. Having a hard time finding it? Not to fear, Phillips Brewing & Malting Co. has announced that the sour will not be extinct and that it is brewing up another batch

Address: 2000 Government St., Victoria 
Hours: Sunday-Wednesday, noon-8pm; Thursday, noon-9pm; Friday and Saturday, 11am-9pm   

The Tater Bowl from Jam Cafe 

Jam Cafe is the quintessential Victoria brunch joint and its entire menu of breakfast and lunch goodies is delicious. A recent favourite is its tater bowl, essentially a breakfast hash made with tater tots rather than the traditional cubed hashbrowns. What makes this particular dish so scrumptious is the inclusion of a chimichurri sauce as well as corn salsa. We love the pulled pork topping for this dish but it is also available with pulled chipotle chicken instead. 

Address: 542 Herald St., Victoria 
Hours: Monday-Friday, 8am-2pm; Saturday and Sunday, 8am-3pm

Oreo cube croissant from Tombo Eats 

Since Tombo Eats opened its doors at the end of last year, the new cafe and lunch spot has been whipping up solidly delicious staples and fun twists on classics. Its Oreo cube croissant is no exception. Flaky layers of pastry are formed in the perfect geometric shape to maximize the croissant’s creamy cookie filling. Topped with a cookies and cream glaze and an Oreo, this pastry is just as pretty to look at as it is tasty. 

Photo: Sarah Madsen / Tasting Victoria

Address: 732 Yates St., Victoria
Hours: Monday-Sunday, 8am-4pm

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