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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 1 - 20 of 95 Reviews FoundSort: Useful | Helpful | Reviews | Date
An American recommended me to this place
By hungryjo of Vancouver (175 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, September 16, 2007 - 2:08pm [Dine in]

Ok, I'm born here and I've never heard of Vij's before. Am I nuts? Last month when I was in LA airport, a tourist (whose Amercian) was telling me how great Vij's is in Vancouver. He said we'll thank him once we tried it. So...last week we went to try it out. Hm...I think he hyped it a little bit too much for us. I must admit, the service was incredible. Once we sat down, we got our water and menu and then a lady approached us w/ some complimentary fries. Few minutes after that, we were offered fried potatoes. A moment later, we were offered some chai tea which I've never tried before. It was actually pretty good! Other reviewers were right; we were constantly getting our water refilled. I thought that was pretty cool. As for our orders, we ordered 2 spoons of dungess crab to start. I couldn't explain the taste but it was good and had some Indian spice(s) in it. As for entres, we ordered beef tenderloin & chicken breast. The chicken was flavorful, you could tell it was marinated for a long period of time. As for the beef, I only had a bite and I wasn't impressed. My bf thought it was good but we wouldn't go back to Vij's again. The bill + tips came up to $65. I'll stick w/ butter & tandoori chicken next time. Ok ok, I know Vij's is totally different from traditional Indian Restaurants BUT the flavor did not meet my taste, that's all.

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Long wait that was worth it
By azn_msfyt of Delta (194 Reviews)
Submitted Saturday, June 2, 2007 - 11:04am [Dine in]

Food: Had the mussels to start and our party of 4 then shared the beef tenderloin, lamb popsicle and the grilled chicken. Every dish was very good but the lamb popsicles were by far my favorite. All dishes come with rice and naan which was nice when the dishes themselves are quite saucy. Watch out for the peppers they serve in the beginning! Didn't have room for dessert but will definitely return to try their khir.

Service: Water refills were plentiful and our plates were changed after the appy. I found them quite attentive but not overbearing. The only irk I had with the service was the fact that they don't take reservations and we were told it was a 45 minute wait but it was more than an hour. There was also a single server in particular that was quite surly but we only encountered her a few times so it wasn't too bad.

Ambiance: I just love the dark interiors but was quite surprised it was so small. It's also quite odd how the waiting area is at the back of the restaurant. The little fish pond outside is really unique and quite beautiful looking at night.

Will definitely return but will try to avoid peak dining hours.

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Can't believe I haven't visited sooner!
By foodfanatic of South Vancouver (286 Reviews)
Submitted Tuesday, May 8, 2007 - 8:26pm [Dine in]

Never got around to trying Vij until this past Sat.. We were in line @4:50 thinking it opened its doors at 5/5:30. Well, it was the latter, but we weren't the first ones there... By the time it came closer to opening, the line grew to the point where a few parties had an approx. 1.5hr wait.

Vikram Vij, the host, was amazingly w/o airs. I had expected by now, his popularity would have spoiled the man like those who run lesser/newer spots, but that wasn't the case at all! That alone just about made it a new favourite, but of course, it's w/ the help of the lamb popsicles that helped grab the spot! I almost never have lamb b/c I absolutely HATE the gameyness of it, but wow, there was just a bare hint while remaining juicy--literally, finger-licking good! Wanted to suck up all the yellow curry sauce it was served in. The grilled duck dish was less impressive. The meat itself was tender & made well, however, the flavours were lacking. The curry for the duck seemed quite watered down to the point of being non-descript. The house naan is good for sopping up all the sauces of your apps/mains. The rice that came for us to share was preferable over the rice that was soaked under my duck since I never care for oversauced rice/bread. The 2 of us couldn't finish that bowl of fragranted rice as we had to make room for dessert!

I quite enjoyed the jackfruit appetizer. That went really well w/ the bread. I didn't much care for the mutton skewers--too gamey but wanted to taste it just 'cause it's there.

Loved the subtle clean flavour of the rice pudding w/ the fresh almonds adding a nice contrast in texture to it. The mango "ice cream" was more of a sorbet--lots of mango-goodness.

The room is definitely less crowded than it used to be when I walked in one late night to purchase a gift certificate about 2 yrs ago. The tables seem better spaced & prepped for parties of 4/5 rather than mostly just for 2's.

It's the daunting lineup that kept me from trying for so long!

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Tasty food but crowded and loud
By 8there of Vancouver (66 Reviews)
Submitted Tuesday, April 5, 2011 - 10:18am [Dine in]

Hearing all the hype about this place, we had to give it a try. Went on a weeknight as a party of six, were lucky to get in and get a table. There was a lineup before it opened and I felt bad for those who didn't make it in because they were in for a long wait. First impressions - cramped seating, dark lighting, and very, very loud. The free appies and chai are a nice touch, since it takes a while for the food to arrive. I could hardly see the person I was talking to the lighting was so dim, and we had to yell to be heard.

We ordered dishes to share since two of our party have not had Indian food before and we wanted them to taste different things. We had the mutton kabobs and portobello mushrooms to start. Both were tasty. For mains we had lamb popsicles, beef shortribs, trout & lobster, saag paneer. It was all very tasty, although the paneer was a little disappointingly bland. The problem was between the six of us, we each literally only got one bite of each dish. I realize that these entrees may not necessarily be made for family style dining, but it would be nice if they had been just a little more substantial. The service was decent, our water was filled regularly and we did not feel rushed by the staff despite the line up of patrons waiting to get in.

The word 'pretentious' did pop up in describing this place. The food is tasty, but the long waits and uncomfortable atmosphere really did nothing to make me want to return.

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it's a beautiful place, but the food isn't for me
By kawaii of Vancouver (51 Reviews)
Submitted Wednesday, September 16, 2009 - 2:19am [Dine in]

So a couple of friends convinced me to try Vij’s again…I’d been once before and was kind of ambivalent about the place. I preferred next door at Rangoli in terms of décor, it is just a gorgeous space. But Vij’s is beautiful too of course, and you get those great little snacks while you’re waiting. But…I just can’t get that excited about the food. Both times I’ve been there, everyone at the table was raving about their meals and just loved it (especially the lamb popsicles – unfortunately, I don’t like lamb). I thought the food was good…it’s obviously excellent quality, fresh ingredients, there’s nothing to complain about. I guess it comes down to palate, if I’m going to spend $30 for an entrée, I want to be raving about the meal too.
I don’t prefer the food at Rangoli, but I like the space more over there, and it’s less expensive. I also like the experience, and for some reason, I like the servers there better too. I want to love Vij's because it is so beautiful, but I guess at the end of the day, it comes down to personal taste in food and I don't want to pay upwards of $50/person just because it's a pretty space.

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excellent!
By genki39 of burnaby (82 Reviews)
Submitted Thursday, August 13, 2009 - 8:59pm [Dine in]

I came here with my friends a couple of weeks ago. I've been here before a while back and everything was excellent. The only reason I haven't been back sooner is because they don't take resos and I don't really like waiting. This time my friends waited in line and being a nice summer day they didn't mind too much. Vij was there as always greeting people and offering appys (more like an amuse bouche) to the people waiting for their tables. We shared some samosas to start which were really good. We also had the halibut and spot prawns and the goat curry, everything was amazing. Service was very professional as well. One of my favorite restaurants for sure!

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Mmmm....
By Lanie23 of Vancouver (53 Reviews)
Submitted Saturday, May 2, 2009 - 11:32pm [Dine in]

We got there just before 5:30pm, and just as expected, there was already quite a line-up outside. Once the restaurant opened, we were lucky to get one of the last tables available. Service was very quick. Right away we had menu and water, plus complimentary chai (yummy!) and some other small tidbits. The lamb popsicles were just as good as I had heard- sopped up every last bit of the curry and the lamb was so tender. The duck was okay...it didn't have that duck flavour I hoped for- sort of tasted more like chicken. Both dishes had exactly the right amount of spice- hot, but not overpowering. Vikram was there greeting everyone - he wasn't quite as warm as I imagined, but pleasant. Service was great- very quick to bring more rice & naan, fill glasses, etc. Would definitely come again.

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You are paying for ambiance not the food
By lovingfood of Kerrisdale (90 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, February 15, 2008 - 11:36pm [Dine in]

The food is absolutely terrible and overpriced. It's cheap ingredients with pretty presentation. Kind of lame, isn't it? They keep calling this fusion indian food because these morons don't know how to cook indian food. When you say it's fusion, it basically means anything goes and no effort.

The restaurant spent a lot of time and money on PR. So you probably heard it and have seen the press somewhere. But PR is just another form of advertising, you really don't want to believe the hype. If you want to bring your out of town friends here to impress them, they probably laugh at you more than appreciate your effort. In the States, you would get very decent and more authentic indian food with at least 1/3 price lower, plus some Indian restaurants are well decorated as well over there. It's not a big deal this restaurant has great ambiance, it's not like you have never seen anything pretty or like this before. It's cute alright but doesn't wow you.

The restaurant is taking advantage of the fact that this town has no night life so people would just go to fake fine dining restaurant to feel that they did something that night. It's really not that exciting, it's still a restaurant not a fun party. Food is terrible with cheap ingredients so you can't really call it fine dining experience. it's fake fine dining.

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Quite an experience
By sinner of North Vancouver (71 Reviews)
Submitted Thursday, December 6, 2007 - 11:53pm [Dine in]

Went to dine here with a friend tonight. I think the surest sign of quality is the quantity of people wanting to share in the experience of a restaurant. I got here at 5:00 and there were already people queing to get into the restaurant at 5:30. My only beef with Vij's is they don't take reservations. Then again, if my restaurant was so popular, that it was always full, maybe I wouldn't take reservations either.

Vij's has a great vibe. It's flowing over with humanity. Tonight CITY TV was filming inside the restaurant... not that this is important but it shows there's life here... something worth documenting. It all adds to the great ambiance.

The service is exceptional. Wait staff offering free chai, papodums, spicy fries... all this added a little extra to the experience. My friend and I asked for two beers and within a minute they magically appeared in front of us... no interminable waits.

The food... quite exceptional. Instead of the usual farmed vietnamese prawns, BC spotted prawns were served as an appetizer in a coconut curry sauce... nice touch to provide something locally. We also had the lamb popsicles in a creamy cardamom sauce. They were quite nice. The duck dish in a fruit reduction was also quite good. All the dishes were a careful combination of spiciness, flavour and texture - all in balance without one overpowering the other... a true gift in any type of fusion cuisine.

I now understand why this restaurant enjoys such a sterling reputation. It's something everyone (who can afford it) should experience once, at least.

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Wow Wow Yum....
By tastytasty02 of Burnaby (44 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, December 8, 2008 - 2:25pm [Dine in]

I recently had the pleasure of dining at Vij's for a friends bday. First of all I had no expectations entering this restaurant and was blow away by the end of my dining experience here. First of all, the food was just the most amazing part of the night. Ordered many dishes and they were all packed with rich, delectable flavours without being overpowering. Ordered some red wine to go with the meal and it was divine! Second, service was incredible! Water glasses were never empty and wine glasses were often refilled. Service here is top notch...The ambiance was nice, dim and cozy I especially liked the laterns throughout the room. Overall a delightful experience! Loved it!

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Lovely Indian
By got2hot of Vancouver (46 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, October 22, 2006 - 12:33pm [Dine in]

We got to Vij's about twice a year, and it's always fabulous. We love the room the atmosphere, and all the food. I loved the prawn appetizer, amazingly sweet and spicy-I love prawns, but most Indian restaurants dont do a very good job of it, but Vij's knows how to cook prawns. We also had the lamb with porcini curry, so nice, cooked perfectly and delicious. The lamb was nice, sweet and, for lack of a better word, just the right amount of gaminess.
We always have a wonderful time ay Vij's, I'm not the biggest fan of the no reservations deal, but I guess being such a small room, it's what he needs to do to make it profitable for him.
I dont like waiting, and thats my only complaint. I love Indian food, and if it wasnt such a wait, I'd probably go more often. But again, he's always got a wait, so I guess he's not that concerned that he's lost visits from me.

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Always great
By Basilseal of North Vancouver District (32 Reviews)
Submitted Tuesday, August 16, 2011 - 5:49pm [Dine in]

I haved dined at Vij's for many years and it is always great. You go to Vij's for only one thing; the Food. The food is incredible. The service is the best I have experienced. The staff seem to anticipate everything. If you do not like waiting or must have a reservation then this is not for you. My only complaint is that one of my favorite dishes (Sablefish in a mango reduction) is no longer on the menu. Hopefully it will return.

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Almost perfect
By zach_food of Vancouver (33 Reviews)
Submitted Thursday, January 24, 2008 - 9:35pm [Dine in]

Vij's is an institution. This is one of the best places to find indian-fusion in North America, hands down. My advice -- get over the no reservations, make the trek (if there is a trek involved), and do yourself one of the best favours of your life. You can show up early, before 5:30 and for the most part you will get a table guarenteed. I've been there early, been there late, either way you get tasty treats from the kitchen (even when seated) and their ginger-lemon drink has bankrupted me on more than one occasion. And now onto the food. Forget everything you know about Indian food and you will be floored. This is not traditional, though aspects or dishes can be, so if that is what you want, this isn't the place to be. Memorable dishes include most any of the lamb, sturgeon (etheral, though rare to see), and surpringly enough some of the best are the vegetarian dishes -- all the paneer stuff is great too. This is the type of place you can show up at 5:30 and grab yourself a plate and get home by 6:15. This is also the type of place where you sit down and live an extremely lucky existence for two plus hours, and when you leave, start counting the days till you'll be back again. I'm thinking mid-February -- what about you?

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Perfect Every Time
By FitFoodie of kitsilano vacouver (24 Reviews)
Submitted Wednesday, September 8, 2010 - 7:30pm [Dine in]

Vij's is without a doubt one of my absolute all-time favourite restaurants in Vancouver. I have been coming here on average once every two to three weeks for about the last two years and every time is perfect. Of course, they don't take reservations here but that is what adds to the experience and gives the extra added potential for fun. Arrive at whatever time you choose (there will be a line-up regardless), put your name on the list, and hang out by the bar, get to know your neighbours, and enjoy a bevvie or two as well as some exquisitely tasty appetizers, compliments of the house. The wait time varies and it's not always the case that week nights move more quickly than weekends. We have dined on Monday nights and Tuesdays as well as on Fridays and Saturdays and really haven't noticed much of a difference to be honest. The whole point of the wait for us is just to relax and enjoy ourselves while we peruse the menu and make our dinner selections. Once seated we then can order right away. The service at Vij's is excellent and unlike that of any other restaurant I have patronized. The motto among the wait staff is "we are all your servers", which to me, makes so much sense! Not only does it expedite the service to customers but it also equalizes the relations among servers by eliminating any potential competitiveness over particular tables and arguments over tips. The food is second to none, with each of the curry dishes having their own incredible and unique characteristics and flavours. I love the organic chicken curry as well as the mixed vegetables, and the halibut dish. I love that Vikram is there many nights of the week to talk with and serve customers and to make diners feel at home. Words cannot describe how much I love this place. It's no wonder that people come from all over to dine here. Vij's outstanding reputation is one that is well earned!

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Good restaurant but why all the hype?
By desktraveler of Downtown, Vancouver (17 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, July 18, 2011 - 4:44pm [Dine in]

Vij's food is definitely good, but I wouldn't rave about it like some people do. The little appetizers that get passed around are amazingly flavourful and the full appetizers and main dishes are very tasty. We got a table right away so we were fine, but I don't think I would have thought it worth a 1.5 hour wait.

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Lived up to the hype
By Brizz of Langley (18 Reviews)
Submitted Monday, November 2, 2009 - 9:23am [Dine in]

Most often when dining at restaurants that have such a hype I find they dont always live up. Vij's did.

My wife and I showed up at 6:30 and we had a few drinks in the lounge until we were seated around 7:10. Still not quite sure why they dont take reservations, but we knew that going in so it was fine. Also, the lounge that you wait for your table in is tiny and cramped... We were suprised at how small a space they had here.

All was forgotten when the food came. We had the samosa's to start which were incredible with tomota chutney and coconut chutney which was incredible.

I had the lamb popsicle and my wife had the halibut and shrimp. While both were good, the lamb was AMAZING. Quite possibly one of the best lamb dishes I've ever eaten actually.

The service here is top shelf and we had no complaints here.

It is expensive ($30 entree, $15 appy, $6 beer, $10 cocktail) but worth it in my opinion.

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Excellent Meal
By pdq of Yaletown, Vancouver (12 Reviews)
Submitted Wednesday, June 10, 2009 - 9:43pm [Dine in]

We decided spur of the moment to go out for dinner. We've been wanting to go to Vij's and thought the early time would translate into no lineups and a quick seating (got there at 5:50pm and they open at 5:30).

We were told it would be an hour wait and we decided to sit and have a drink and wait. The server told us that people started lining up at 5:00pm.

We did have to wait the full hour but the time flew by as we were treated to numerous offerings of appetizers, all very tasty.

My date had the pork and I had the duck breast. The pork was fantastic, one of the best dishes we've ever had. The duck was very good as well. The Naan bread was hot, tasty and plentiful and the rice was excellent.

The servers are very efficient, well informed and helpful. Their suggestions for wine and meal were outstanding (My girlfriend couldn't decide between the beef ribs and the pork, and the pork was a great choice)

We shared the rice pudding for desert. The best I've ever had.

Meeru and Vikram have a wonderful restaurant and we look forward to dining there again...hopefully soon. ;-)

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Loved it!!!!
By polska of Vancouver (16 Reviews)
Submitted Friday, December 12, 2008 - 8:00pm [Dine in]

Been here once before and was shopping on south granville with the bf when we decided to treat ourselves to a nice dinner. It was around 510 pm and we walked over to vij's thinking they opened at 5pm. We were wrong. They open at 530pm but we were glad that we came early as there was already a line snaking up the sidewalk to get in.

Doors opened at exactly 530 by Vikram Vij himself and everyone was sat promptly. By 6pm there were no tables left. We were sat at a small round table by the windows. Water was poured and we were brought complimentary chai tea. We took a while to decide and in the meantime we were offered complimentary bite size apps by a couple different servers carrying baskets of them around the restaurant. Nice touch.

We finally decided on 3 entrees to share. (I know. We're pigs. We couldn't help it. It all sounded so good.) We got the saag paneer and lentils with chapati to start and the classic lamb popsicles and a beef shortrib dish for our mains. All of the food was soo delicious. I'm not an expert on indian cuisine so I have no idea what its supposed to taste like but I loved all of our choices. I don't even know how to describe them because I'm not sure of what spices were used to prepare them. All I know is that it was hot, fresh tasting, and served with complimentary rice and naans on the side. I would go back in a heartbeat.
A note on the service. Our server was such a pro. We chose not to order any bevvies because we wanted more room for food and sometimes servers give you a nasty look or their attitude changes when you don't order a drink (because they think you're cheap and are going to stiff them) but our lady was wonderful. No attitude whatsoever.

Ambiance is pleasant. Its a small intimate room. I would guess about 60 seats. The one thing I could fault them on is the size of the tables. Our round table was not very big at all. It gets a little crowded once the entrees come out. Crowded as in not one more thing would fit on the table. But thats a small complaint.

Value is great. For our 3 entrees with a 17% tip it was $92. There was basically enough food left over for another person to eat a full meal and we were both stuffed to the point of bursting. A note for those who drink. Vij's has a selection of bottles of wine for 35$ or the same ones are 9$ a glass. Quite reasonable for a high caliber restaurant.

We'll be back again.

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Consistently great food
By rhhm of Vancouver (11 Reviews)
Submitted Saturday, October 25, 2008 - 2:20pm [Dine in]

I keep returning to Vij's year after year for what always turns out to be a memorable meal. I personally don't care about the wait to get in... the bar is a great spot to have a few drinks (Storm Brewing's IPA is on tap!). Most recently, a small group of us had a great bottle of Joie Muscat for $36... very reasonable. And Vij always makes an appearance bearing a platter of complimentary appies that take the edge off while waiting for a table.

The food is fantastic and is unlike anything one might encounter in other Indian restaurants anywhere. The spoons of Dungeness crab with candied beets (we had to order a small side plate of the beets after having the appetizer), the lamb samosas, and the jackfruit appetizers are all wonderful. The lamb popsickles in fenugreek cream seems to have become the restaurant's signature dish and is always great and of consistent quality. The marinated duck breast was beautifully done with just the right amount of heat in the accompanying sauce. Vij's use of spices is always subtle while complex and never overpowers one with too much heat.

Appetizers are in the $12 range and mains in the $25 range... great value when one considers the quality and quantity of the servings.

All in all, don't let the one to two hour waits deter you. Vij's will be a dining experience worth it. I've been a fan since his early days on Broadway, and I haven't had a bad meal yet.

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Over Priced and Under Spiced
By MurdoMan of North Vancouver (11 Reviews)
Submitted Sunday, August 31, 2008 - 5:34pm [Dine in]

I went to Vij's yesterday with a friend. We arrived at 5:00pm a full half hour before it opened and already found people milling and waiting to get in. This increased our anticipation in a good way - after all, it had to be good for people to line up prior to opening, didn't it?
At 5:30 we were seated and saw a sea of waiters and waitress's run around and get people drinks efficiently. A couple of them were even bringing around huge bowls of finger food which people were reaching in to with their bare hands. Although it struck me as a bit suspicious I dove in as well and sampled the treats. They were very pedestrian but I munched them gratefully as I was starved.
We ordered some crab bites and samosas to start followed by beef ribs lamb popsicles and yam curry.
I cannot begin to tell you how disappointed we were in everything.
The portions were adequate in size at best for the prices charged but lacking flavor. The lamb pops were nice but very uninspired as far as taste.
I had read other reviews on this place raving about it and I can not figure out why. Vij's is the biggest rip off in greater Vancouver.
Our bill came to $200.00 for two people. We each had a before dinner drink and split a bottle of wine. That price does not include the tip I left, either!
Avoid this scam and stick to some of the other excellent Indian eatery's scattered around.
I will never go back to this place and I will tell as many people as I can about my horrid experience.

Save your money !!

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