There are plenty of incredible restaurants in Kelowna, which we will cover below, but you can’t visit the city without enjoying some delicious food and drinks while gazing at the beautiful Okanagan Lake.
If you’re unsure of where to start when it comes to patio dining in Kelowna, here are the best spots we frequent during the warmer months.
“The El”, as it is lovingly referred to by locals, has one of the Best Ever patios in Kelowna. The luxurious and charming restaurant is known for its farm-to-table approach and incredible wine selection (remember, you’re right in the middle of the Okanagan Valley Wine Region here!).
The folks at Eldorado Resort are opening a new restaurant in the Spring of 2022 to replace Smack Dab at Manteo Resort. If you’ve not heard of Smack Dab, then all you need to know is that it was once home to an amazing patio, too. Think shading umbrellas, plush furniture, and unspoiled views of the Okanagan Lake.
If you’re looking for the best patios in Kelowna that offer views of Okanagan Lake, then you’ll want to book in at Earls pronto. This restaurant’s mission statement revolves around authentic connections and excellent food. So, expect service with a smile and top-quality dishes while you’re here!
Although you can dine inside at Earls, we’d say you were missing out if you didn’t take a seat on the sprawling patio. Offering unrivaled views of the Okanagan Lake, and the marina, it’s unsurprising that this restaurant has one of the longest waiting lists in town in the summer.
If you do manage to snag a booking, we love the Jumbo Lump Crab Cake or Garlic Prawn Spaghettini. Seafood not your jam? Go for the Sirloin with Peppercorn Sauce or the ridiculously fresh Mother Earth Bowl!
If you want a cocktail but don’t fancy the calories or sugar that comes with it, opt for something from the “Better for You Booze” Menu. With each drink boasting low sugar, low calories, and low alcohol, you can enjoy these lighter summer cocktails.
Located in the downtown area, Cactus Club is an excellent place to stop for an afternoon of people-watching at the marina. If you’re here during the summer, you’ll be pleased to know that the Cactus Club has water misters to keep you cool, calm, and collected when things heat up!
The menu is quite extensive, and you can expect several seasonal dishes to come and go throughout the year. If you’re a grill fanatic, then you need to try the Jack Daniel’s Ribs. Slow-cooked and smothered with Jack Daniel’s BBQ sauce, it’s one of those indulgent dishes that feels utterly sinful. For lunch, Rob’s Crispy Chicken Sandwich with spicy panko breadcrumbs is always a winner!
The savory eats at the Cactus Club are incredible, but you don’t want to sleep on the desserts either. With everything from a classic Apple Tart to an indulgent White Chocolate Cheesecake available, we wouldn’t be surprised if you had to roll your way home from this restaurant! Oh, and just a heads up – if you’re here between 2 pm and 5 pm each day, you’ll be able to catch the very reasonable Happy Hour drinks deal.
Perfectly melding beautiful Okanagan views with upscale artisan dishes, Oak + Cru is the place to be for a high-end meal in Kelowna. If you want to stop by for breakfast, order Oak + Cru’s signature Challah French Toast with candied orange cream. For savory fans, stick with the classic Eggs Benedict or bursting Breakfast Sandwich (look out for the cheeky addition of asparagus here!).
Those staying for dinner will appreciate the burgers and pizzas, and we recommend extending your stay on the luscious patio with a cocktail or two! Happy Hour runs each day from 2 pm to 5 pm, so you can easily stay by the lakeside for 3 hours without being moved along. Whether you’re here to bask in the afternoon sun or want to watch the beautiful Okanagan sunset with a locally brewed beer, you’ll be perfectly placed to do both!
With its laidback atmosphere and gorgeous wooden décor, Craft Kelowna is one of our favorite patio restaurants in Kelowna. When compared to other patio restaurants in Kelowna, you may have better luck grabbing a reservation for Craft. This is because the patio has over 200 seats! However, we wouldn’t suggest trying to dine here as a walk-in, as Craft’s prime location makes a reservation akin to gold dust in the summer.
If you’re not here for food, enjoy one of the many draft beers available from the bar. With over 60 choices brewed right in BC, you may just find a new local favorite! For those fueling up for a day of sightseeing, you can choose from wonderful sharing plates, salads, pizzas, tacos, and juicy burgers. Whatever you order, you’ll want to try and extend your reservation for as long as possible to enjoy the breathtaking views.
Not only is Antico Pizza Napoletana British Columbia’s number-one-ranked pizzeria, but it also placed in Canada’s ‘Top 3 Pizzerias You Must Try Before You Die’ list. Persuasive stuff.
And honestly, we can see why. Any pizzeria employing a Naples-trained pizzaiolo and flying their tomatoes in from Mt. Vesuvius is clearly pouring passion into their pies. You can taste it in the results too, with each wood-fired slice delicately balancing airy lightness and Neapolitan char.
Their Tartufino Pizza with decadent black summer truffle, cremini mushroom, and arugula blew us away. Or you might opt for a classic Margherita finished with imported Italian mozzarella di bufala, or perhaps you’ll fall for the irresistible taste of prosciutto with the Primavera. They offer authentic pasta dishes too.
Whatever you choose, make sure you wrap it up with a gorgeous house-made tiramisu.
All of this is accompanied by an extensive list of local wines and beers, to bring the Okanagan back into this little slice of Italy.
The fact that local pizza heroes DunnEnzies have three locations across the city is a testament to how highly residents rate their slice. With a notoriously extensive menu, DunnEnzies pride themselves on catering to even the most out-there tastes.
Are you adventurous enough to try their curried Butter Chicken specialty pizza? If not, you could play it safe with the still-unique Tony Beets, featuring roasted garlic, beets, spinach, onion, mozzarella, and goats’ cheese in a balsamic reduction. Diego’s Inferno caters to spice-lovers with a gorgeous chipotle aioli. They also do a full range of traditional pizzas, white pizzas, and customizable gluten-free bases.
Whichever you select, these fan favourites will ensure it comes to you fresh and fantastic. By the time you finish, you’ll be wondering what to try next time round.
While they only offer food to-go, we had to include Bellissimo. They have imbued the techniques of Italy with tastes and farm-to-table ethics true to Kelowna.
Relying on local ingredients throughout the year, these delicious pizzas are healthy, farmer-friendly, and environmentally conscious. The world should take note of this principled approach to take-out.
Top your pie with gouda from Triple Island Farm, garlic grown in Vernon, or a variety of veggies fresh from soils just a stone’s throw away. Even the walnuts on their distinctive G for Goat pizza come from Kelowna – if you’re into that sort of thing. Choose from truly original recipes, clever gourmet combos, heaped indulgences, or design your own.
In the summer months, we recommend making up for the lack of dining-in by taking your slices to a local park for a guilty pleasure picnic.
This cheerful café is known locally as just ‘The Boh,’ which should tell you a thing or two about its trendy status. They specialize in the millennial favourites of brunch, heavy avocado use, and extensive veggie/vegan options.
Recover from a wine-tour hangover with perfectly balanced Bohemian Bennies, taste the pride in their house-baked bagels and organic breads, or have it your way with a choice of four items from the Boh Combo. We recommend sampling their ABOHcado, an innovative half avocado stuffed and brimming with salsa. Their Huevos Rancheros are another stand-out pick, with a vegan version available so nobody misses out.
The Boh is all about breakfast, so make sure to get down early as they never open later than 2.30 pm. Plus, their deserved reputation often translates to a line outside.
As well as bottomless locally-roasted coffees, fresh fruit juices, and loose leaf teas, they serve champagne and mimosas, if it’s that sort of morning.
Early bird explorers take note, breakfast begins at The Curious at 9 a.m., with an exclusive menu that rewards early risers.
True to the name Curious, their brunchables menu features boundary-pushing options done just right. Delight your palate with the bold flavours of roasted pineapple and dill pickle salsa accompanying their Chicken & Waffle Stack. Go against the grain with a Breaky Pizza lavished with baked eggs, bacon, caramelized onion, smoked cheddar, parmesan and whiskey BBQ sauce, and a side of Hollandaise dip.
Don’t worry, they have less extreme options too. Their Eggs Benny, Famous Curious Classic fried breakfast, and lip-smacking Doughnuts are reliable taste sensations. To land somewhere in the middle, we recommend their locally-grown Shrooms on Toast or the Breakfast Bruschetta, which combines poached egg salsa with pickles, garden herbs, crumbs of prosciutto, aioli, and curry ketchup, all loaded onto homemade sourdough.
Begin your day with an alchemical breakfast experience for the perfect exploratory mindset!
Looking for brunch with a real difference? Then head down to Kraft Kitchen on weekends for a one-of-a-kind hip hop brunch experience.
When they’re not serving up side-splitting puns like the Notorious BLT, Truffle On My Mind, and Got Chick Or Fry Tryin’, this chef-owned bistro is perfecting thoughtful flavour combos you won’t find anywhere else.
Find out where kimchi fits into brunch, pick between five quirky takes on eggs benedict (including the WILL.I.AM is Vegan option), or tuck into marinated crab, smoked salmon, crispy pork belly, and other local proteins. Whatever your tastes, hip hop brunch has an idiosyncratic take on what you crave.
Hip hop brunch blends a bumping atmosphere with food that oozes personality and delights your tastebuds. For this reason, you will need to book ahead.
Experience the taste of the changing seasons at world-renowned winery Mission Hill. Never have has simplicity tasted so good, with seasonal veg prepared to demonstrate the flavour profiles at work in the local soils and rare local delicacies freshly foraged from the surrounding landscape.
Everything on offer comes either from neighbouring farms or Mission Hill’s own extensive plots of orchards, gardens, farmsteads, and beehives. Even the ageing takes place on-site, with charcuterie boards planned years in advance.
Leave the choosing up to Executive Chef Patrick Gayler, who will have designed three courses balancing the full spectrum of the Okanagan’s seasonal tastes at the time of your visit. As you’re at an award-winning winery, expert your accompanying vintage to be paired to compliment every subtle note of each course you receive.
The view of the rolling vineyards and Mission Hill’s stunning timeless architecture from their dining terrace wraps your evening in a romantic bow of perfection, for an evening meal that pleasures all the senses.
Balance sophisticated class and casual dining in the heart of O’Rourke’s gorgeous property. Floor-to-ceiling windows soak you in panoramic vineyard bliss, while the upbeat atmosphere offers cultivated elegance without ever sliding towards stuffiness.
Again, the triumph of Kelowna’s changing seasons is the focus of this culinary experience. Relish unique flavour combinations with dishes like their Canadian Filet Mignon, balancing wasabi-infused mashed potatoes with a decadent dark chocolate and wild mushroom butter. With international dishes ranging from Mumbai Street Food Style Cauliflower to jubilant Vegetarian Sushi Rolls, you’ll find something to tantalize every set of tastebuds. Spicer lovers should sample the Bloody Mary Shrimp Cocktail, which turns everybody’s favourite hangover cocktail into an appetizer with house-made pickles and bacon jam croutons.
As well as offering a dining venue swarming with sommeliers, even their menu goes the extra mile in pairing your courses with the ideal vintage. You can find the perfect wine to make each morsel pop printed right beside the price.
Ethical farm-to-table dining doesn’t get much better than a seat amongst the vineyards at the prestigious Old Vines Restaurant at Quails’ Gate Estate Winery.
You will dine in full view of the grapes pressed to create your specially-paired vintage, the patches where your seasonal veg grew, and the peaceful grazing slopes of the restaurant’s free-range livestock supplier. Their 100% Earth-kind commitment even extends to the seafood section, honouring their promise never to serve anything not sustainably raised or caught.
We suggest you get the show rolling with an Artisan Charcuterie or Cheese Plate, to whet your appetite with a spread of local Okanagan flavours that you just know have agonized over. Afterwards, a short-but-sweet menu spotlights the taste highlights of the season. Our Arctic Char with clams, shallots, roasted potatoes, leek, and garlic parsley left us speechless. As did the honey-glazed Yarrow Meadows Duck Breast served with gnocchi, celeriac, and roasted sprouts.
It goes without saying that this award-winning winery supplies a list of vintages beyond compare. Expert advice is on-hand, both printed in the menu and on the brains of every exquisitely helpful staff member.
New kids on a firmly established block of world-renowned wineries, Modest Butcher must have been doing something right to earn a spot on many top winery restaurant lists so soon after opening doors in 2020.
In our opinion, their buzz is more than deserved. This is the pick of choice for devoted carnivores with a taste for finer things, with hearty, filling dishes prepared with oodles of soul and dazzling taste results.
Enjoy a butcher’s take on classic Canadian cuisine with their Braised Beef Poutine, or forever spoil future burgers for yourself with their Butcher’s Burger – trust us, it’s worth that risk. Their seafood is excellent too, cut and cooked to the same impeccable butcher’s standards. If you’ve got a sweet tooth, get adventurous for dessert with a Brulee of the Day.
As well as all the wine-based excellence you’d expect from one of the area’s top wineries, their extensive spread of craft cocktails took us by surprise. Luckily, their hearty portions are big enough to soak up a lot of booze, so you can sample both!
Follow stunningly scenic lakeshore roads to this architectural wonderland of a winery that contains a chic restaurant complete with your choice of indoor dining and picturesque patio tables.
Relying only on their own produce and tight links with local farmers, all dishes embody the farm-to-table philosophy so excellently employed across Kelowna. Rustic, memorable, and often wood-fired, the portions here take the concept of comfort food to the next level.
The locals told us to try the cult classic Crispy Squad with chilli jam and crème fraiche and we certainly weren’t disappointed, but the Gem Heart Salad with smoked pear, gorgonzola, and crispy bacon looked amazing too. We would advise you to sample a pasta dish while you’re here, as this is where chef Neil Taylor’s culinary prowess truly shines. No matter what you order, expect it to be paired in perfect harmony with an accentuating vintage.
Home Block Restaurant offers small bites, two-course lunches, and various three-course affairs, so whatever time of day your stomach rumbles, they are always an option. Make sure to check for special holiday offers as well (we’re looking at you, Valentine’s Day).
If you fancy a scenic drive down through the vineyards towards Upper Mission in Kelowna, we know a delightful bistro tucked away on the grounds of one of the best wineries in the area.
Summerhill opens the homely coziness of its dining room and patio area – complete with sweeping lake and vineyard views – to the public every day. They even treat you to a happy hour (or two) between 3 pm and 5 pm.
You’ll receive nothing but the highest quality food and drink at Summerhill, with 100% fresh, local, and organic produce guaranteed. Warm your soul with Kelowna coffee, sample the vineyard’s finest wines, or stop for full-blown lunch. For the most memorable visit, reserve a Sparkling High Tea on their sun-dappled patio. Your comprehensive house-made cream tea will include croissants, scones, mini pastries, seasonal preserves, clotted cream, and an artisanal tea all the way from Singapore.
Find the giant neon tiger downtown and be transported to the eclectic wonderland of forward-thinking cuisine that is Skinny Duke’s.
You won’t quite be able to put your finger on the vibe here, thanks to this chic restaurant’s heady mix of nostalgia and blue-sky thinking. Curated playlists and craft cocktails will keep your head nodding, your foot tapping, and the good times rolling.
Let’s start with the drinks, shall we? Their world-class cocktail spread offers locally-sourced alchemy in the Caramel Apple Julep, made from bourbon, Kelowna apple nectar liqueur, rosemary caramel syrup, and mint. It turns old favourites on their head with the Young Grasshopper, consisting of cinnamon cachaça, cocoa and mint liqueur, coconut cream, nutmeg, and fernet branca. If you’re feeling dark and mysterious, you could always opt for the ominously-named Grave Digger.
Make it to mealtime sober enough and you’re in for a treat, with a menu that looks backwards in time as well as forwards. Experience aged cheddar and jalapeno biscuit alongside warm truffle honey, country slaw, vine-ripened tomato, and house-special hot sauce with the Southern-ish Fried Chicken & Biscuits. Get worldwide with the Galbi Jjim, featuring Korean braised beef rib, chorizo, kimchi, seasonal veg, and pickled beets. Or tuck into gourmet pizzas with suspiciously human names.
Have you been on the hunt for Kelowna’s best burger? If so, you need to check out Central Kelowna. Not only has this place been on the Best of Kelowna Award’s list for the Best Burger in Kelowna since 2017, but this restaurant’s friendly, neighbourhood atmosphere keeps diners coming back year after year. Using only the highest quality ingredients and serving up classic dishes with modern twists, this Kelowna hotspot believes in the power of creativity.
The menu here isn’t too expansive, so pinning down what to order shouldn’t be too tricky. However, if you’re looking for suggestions, the fresh Heirloom Tomato + Watermelon Salad promises to prime your palate for what’s to come.
When it comes to main courses, you can’t go wrong with any of the famous Central Burgers. The PB&J Burger may sound unappealing at first read (it contains spicy peanut butter, house cherry jam, crispy bacon, and Korean hot sauce), but its bizarre flavour combination is surprisingly popular! Although lots of folks love it, it’s not for everyone.
If you’re looking for something more classic, stick with the “Vintage” Burger. Made with Central’s juicy burger patty, aged white cheddar, maple black pepper bacon, and lashings of BBQ sauce, it’s a hearty treat that’s bound to fill you up!
Before leaving, don’t forget to sample Central’s ever-popular Flourless Chocolate Torte. Topped with Chantilly cream, freeze-dried raspberries, and gold flake, it’s possibly the most bougie dessert we’ve ever laid eyes on.
Salt & Brick (Courtesy of tourismkelowna.com – David McIlvride, Spatula Media + Communications)
Ask any local where the most exciting place to eat in downtown Kelowna is, and they’ll likely point you to the Salt & Brick.
Here’s the trick: they change their menu daily. Every. Single. Day. Even if they didn’t, we would still be tempted to come here multiple times a week. The vibes are somewhere between trendy and melt into your seat cozy, and their comprehensive wine list features more than 100 local vintages. There’s even an open kitchen view available from the bar, so you can watch their killer chefs in action.
While you can never guarantee what you’re going to see on the menu, here are some things to watch out for: the Pickled Carrot starter, Chicken Waffle Sandwich, Slow Cooked Brisket, Lobster Mac & Cheese (sprinkled with Cheetos!), and Lamb with Brussel Sprouts. If you see any of these on the menu, snag them, you’ve won the Salt & Brick lottery.
What used to be a hidden gem downtown serving Mom’s recipe is now the leading Vietnamese joint in Kelowna – and they’re still serving Mom’s recipe!
The most authentic Vietnamese cuisine in town stimulates all five senses, with freshness and bold flavours in a homely atmosphere. Kick things off with Golden Wontons or some of the best Chicken Wings we’ve tasted, available in Plain, Dry Sriracha, or Sticky Pho varieties.
After that, you’ll want to hit up their specialty plates. We can personally vouch for the succulent Grilled Short Ribs and the Saigon Noodle Stirfry, whose sauce is the result of decades of careful perfection. For the true Vietnamese chow experience, Bamboo Chopsticks’ precise and delicate Pho is transportive.
There’s plenty of choice over on the drink’s menu, with atypical cocktails, beers, local vintages, and even wine cocktails – a nice big Mix Berry Sangria goes down a treat after a long day. They also have plenty of traditional non-alcoholic beverages if you’re staying away from the harder stuff.
Diners desiring an upscale experience downtown should book ahead and secure themselves a table here. Emblematic of the city’s place on the foodie stage, this restaurant shows exactly how much Kelowna produce can shine.
Everything on the menu comes from the surrounding soils. On their way to your table, top-quality ingredients are transformed into works of art flavoured to perfection.
Begin your visit with a fresh fruit martini, created in your glass from house-made purées. Follow it up with handcrafted Parmesan Gnocchi, blanketed in broccoli pesto, charcuterie crumb, and smoked cheddar sauce. Or, for something truly unique, try their frothy Crab Cappuccino soup. Those seeking a comprehensive sampling of the tastes of the Okanagan should consider the Charcuterie board, which is a best-in-show off bite-sized local delicacies.
The commitment to spotlighting local taste sensations doesn’t stop at the food, with a bar that stocks award-winning vintages and local brews. They also have one of the largest selections of all-Canadian spirits in Kelowna.
Disfruta la fiesta with this popping downtown spot that brings the best tastes of Latin street foods to Kelowna – alongside a completionist approach to tequila and mezcal stocking that will keep everyone from connoisseurs to party girls satisfied.
Come get the best taco in town, with everything whipped up from scratch in-house. But first, don’t neglect to order starter platos; the fresh zest of lime and cilantro in their Pico de Gallo & Chips will prime your tastebuds for what’s yet to come.
We advise coming here when you fancy a few bevies, as their drinks menu requires a few rounds to get a true appreciation of its scope. Sample some of the 70 varieties of authentic Latin tequilas and mezcals, available in three-varietal tasting flights. Get smokey with a Mezcal Mule or light up your palate with the bold Ginger Cardamon Margarita.
Mouth-watering authentic tastes, affordable prices, and staff with a reputation for being as friendly as they are hardworking make Yum Yum Tree a favourite Chinese spot for Kelowna residents.
Pick from a set menu full of oriental specialties, pack variety onto your plate with a combo meal, or order your favourite classic dishes cooked to perfection. We loved the well-spiced sizzle of their Szechuan dishes, especially the Szechuan Ginger Squid. For a little dash of Kelowna style, go for wine-marinated chicken breast and mushrooms with the Mei Goo Gai Pan.
Unlike many Chinese restaurants, Yum Yum Tree are committed to never relying on the sure-fire taste and addictive qualities of unhealthy MSG, just great ingredients cooked right.
Winners of the Best Of Kelowna 2020 Gold Medal for Chinese Food, and many awards in the years before it, Mekong are committed to serving up real-deal Chinese and Asian foods that accommodate a range of tastes and dietary requirements.
The freshest ingredients, a charming dining environment, and a sprawling menu make this one of the top choices in Kelowna for Chinese food. Mekong Spring Rolls blend pork, carrot, Chinese mushrooms, and special spices with Michelin-style presentation on a bed of vermicelli. Chop Suey pairs your choice of meat, prawns, or tofu with seasonal veggies and a lip-smacking house sauce. The range of noodle dishes, sizzling platters, and traditional entrées here will make your head spin.
Deluxe group dinners and lunches allow your party to sample a smattering of shareable delights. Everything is cooked to order, so whether you are gluten intolerant, vegetarian, or just like it debilitatingly spicy, you’re in safe hands.
Fans of Chinese cuisine with big appetites will love Wok Inn.
Their single portion sizes are notorious for being big enough two, so whether you want to save money by sharing a dish, keep some leftovers for tomorrow, or really chow down, you’re sorted.
Normally with large portions you sacrifice on taste, but not at Wok Inn. Everything is served piping hot, fresh as can be, and packed with authentic flavour. Their succulent Honey Garlic Spare Ribs redefine finger-lickin’ good, while a variety of specialty Hot Pots are the ultimate in hearty winter warming with an oriental twist. Vegetarians too have plenty of choice, though we can’t recommend choosing Chinese Broccoli with Oyster Sauce enough.
Make sure you splash out on a few sides too, as their Egg Rolls and Grilled Pork Dumpling Pot Stickers would be criminal to miss.
Visitors to downtown Kelowna with a taste for quality Japanese cuisine should add a trip to Momo’s to their holiday itinerary.
Momo’s has been a sushi staple of the town for just under two decades, with a reputation for spoiling customers with choice and delivering delicious rolls you won’t be able to stop thinking about, every time.
Choose between immersive traditional décor when you eat inside or a seat on their gorgeous patio area for maximum people-watching potential. Unfortunately, the hard decisions don’t end there. With a comprehensive list of rolls, hot options, soups, and more, you could be struck down with choice paralysis.
If so, we recommend the barbequed Unagi Donburi accompanied by some of Momo’s Special Rolls. Our favourites were the smoked salmon, crab, and yam goodness of the Eskimo Roll and the beautiful serpentine Ogopogo Dragon Roll containing defrayed eel, tuna, avocado, and caviar. These are just two examples of the unconventional, regionally-inspired rolls on offer, so there’s still lots to discover on your own.
Visit this Kelowna Restaurant:
Address: 377 Bernard Avenue and 3013 Pandosy Street, Kelowna
Elegant, sophisticated, and extremely tasteful. These three words describe both the setting at Bluetail and the food itself.
This classy sit-down sushi affair serves up top-notch rolls in cozy ambiance, with fantastic staff who can nail the perfect dish recommendation and have it to you in no time at all. We have a few of our own recommendations, too.
First off, anything featuring their spicy tuna will not disappoint. Their themed platters will excite your tastebuds as well as your imagination, letting you choose from mysterious titles such as the Budda’s Favorite, Fear Factor, and the Ring of Fire (a must for spice fans). If you’re here with a group, the Viking’s Boat puts together a pillage-worthy lineup of gyoza, rolls, nigiri, sashimi, and teriyaki treats. Otherwise, just defer to your personal tastes, as everything on the menu is a top-notch showcase of Japanese excellence.
The bar stocks an eclectic mix of brews, with Guinness, Asahi, Okanagan Cider, and Alexander Keith’s IPA, to name just a few, so you can take a tipple around the world.
Visit this Kelowna Restaurant:
Address: 102-1675 Commerce Avenue and 102-1873 Spall Road, Kelowna
Tucked inside an unsuspecting mall on Westgate Road awaits a true hidden gem of Kelowna’s sushi scene. Combining 15 years of authentic Japanese cheffing practice with welcoming warmth and tantalizing signature dishes, West Sakura is not one to miss.
It all starts with Gyoza – and lots of them. Although these delicious dumplings are ubiquitous across Japanese restaurants, you won’t find them done better than at West Sakura. Follow them up with delicate Caterpillar Rolls, crisp Tempura veg, and a generous serving of the restaurant’s namesake Teriyaki. This was just our approach, though, and there’s much more to explore on the menu.
No matter what you do, don’t sleep on their flagship Volcano Rolls, topped with tobiko flying fish caviar and swimming in a luscious volcanic teriyaki sauce. For another must, finish things up with deep-fried banana and a dollop of locally-sourced Kelowna ice cream. Yum!
Kelowna’s champions of British-style fish and chips have been in business for more than seven decades. During this time, they’ve learnt how to batter the competition and deep fry their way into your heart.
Serving up unpretentious classics like cod, halibut, and prawns, you won’t find anything fancy here – but that’s a good thing! It leaves more room to appreciate the unrivalled taste of their fresh fish and tried-and-tested batter. If the Brits don’t overcomplicate it, why should this Kelowna favourite?
We especially recommend their Halibut Burger for anyone who wants to deviate from the typical Cod and Chips. You won’t be disappointed.
This one goes deep. Their name represents untethering themselves from tradition, leaving fear behind and innovating as they make their way through uncharted waters.
As well as being masters of metaphor, Broken Anchor are mean cooks, 100% committed to sourcing the very freshest sustainable fish and transforming them into mouth-watering meals with a twist. You won’t find an environmentally unfriendly morsel on the menu.
Traditional Fish and Chips are a staple, naturally. However, the menu goes much further than that, with tacos, chowders, and a smorgasbord of local Kelowna catches. In case that wasn’t enough, you can start your meal off with such treats as Tempura Avocados (a must-try), Dirty Fries, and 2nd Generation K.F.C., consisting of deep-fried cauliflower seasoned with cilantro, gochujang, sesame seeds, and lime. Now you’re starting to understand their metaphor.
If you ask any local, they will tell you the Broken Anchor’s signature Tempura Fish and Chips is where it’s at – and we’re inclined to agree!
Part fresh fish market and part fish and chippery, Buy The Sea have a tradesman’s understanding of the ingredients they serve. This translates into some of the tastiest fish and chips up for grabs in Kelowna.
Point to anything on the menu and their staff can tell you where it was caught, as well as reeling off its taste and texture qualities. With Wild Atlantic Haddock, Cod, and Fanny Bay Oysters, Buy The Sea cast a wide net. Enjoy your meal with a side of fresh slaw or Seafood Chowder, in either Boston or Manhattan varieties.
We recommend either swapping out your chips for authentic Québécois Poutine or ordering a fat bun brimming with succulent Canadian Shrimp – or both!
If you find yourself wandering through Kelowna’s cultural district with a parched throat, wet your whistle at this stand-out brewpub committed to producing ever-changing experimental beers and serving them unfiltered on site.
Their beer list is a tour de force of variety and taste potential, with brews from pale to dark, bitter to light, and everywhere in-between. Complex flavours perfectly balanced are the order of business, with each brew delivered unspoilt straight from tank to tap.
The institute’s passion for beer even extends to its food menu. Nothing goes to waste, as spent grains from the brewing process become the dough that goes into every handcrafted pizza, pretzel, or sandwich bun.
Their stock of specialty brews is constantly rotating and evolving, and a myriad of boozy events are hosted here year-round!
Housed in an immaculately maintained 1926 train station is one of Kelowna’s most loved pubs and community hubs.
As well as letting you experience a piece of Kelowna’s history almost a century old (we’re expecting special things for their centenary in four years’ time), The Train Station is well-stocked for an authentic Okanagan pub experience. With multitudes of locally-brewed craft beers, classy vintages from nearby wineries, and hearty pub grub, this venue should earn a sure-fire place on your itinerary.
The Train Station pub offers a menu that splits itself across classic comfort food, elevated cuisine, and health-conscious options. We adored their loaded Tavern Tater Skins, Cali Fish Tacos, and diverse burger options. They also make a mean Poutine and offer a great selection of large plates to fill you up ready for an afternoon’s hike.
Who said a pub should just be a place to eat and drink? At McCurdy Bowling & Freddy’s Brewpub, you can get a whole evening’s fun as a tasty side with your house-brewed beer.
Freddy’s is a pub with not only their own on-site brewery but also a bowling alley! A revolutionary idea, we thought. They also host plenty of regular rip-roaring comedy nights, as well as DJ-led dancefloor shenanigans on Saturday nights.
Every day sees a different special dish served up, with Tuesday’s wallet-friendly tacos, Friday’s rotating Surf and Turf, and Sunday’s killer brunch menu being our personal highlights. Their regular nightly menu is home to the classiest dishes we’ve ever seen at a bowling alley too, with highlights including house-smoked The Brisket and Italian Fried Zucchini so well-seasoned it’ll make your tastebuds sing!
Head Brewmaster Keith is keen on keeping things fresh, combining more than 10 ever-changing brews made on the premises with guest highlights from local craft cideries and breweries. Our sweet spot for bowling talent was two drinks in, but your mileage may vary.
The perfect coffee shop, for us, lies in that goldilocks state where an appreciation for the fine art of coffee-making is balanced with a local-friendly environment that hasn’t yet reached mass tourist appeal.
That’s exactly what you get at Bright Jenny Coffee Roasters. While still situated in the buzz of downtown Kelowna, this café is tucked far enough out of sight that most of its crowd are residents – or care enough to have done proper research, like your fine self.
Their patio catches the afternoon sun beautifully and is best enjoyed with an ice-cold Nitro Brew in the height of summer. Other must-tries include the mysterious Deconstructed Latte and their delectable croissants.
As a testament to their passion for great coffee, their adjoining Bright Lab offers classes and workshops for a deeper insight into the brewing process.
If you like to drink your coffee in a quirky environment filled with interesting characters and people-watching opportunities as much as we do, this is the place for you.
Popular with the local student crowd (maybe the free Wi-Fi has something to do with it?), this café is part rare bookstore, part antique emporium, and part record shop. Drawing in artsy types and offering a snug setting, this is the perfect place for bookworms to settle down with a hot drink and a good read.
As well as every type of hot drink you could desire, with soy and almond milk always available, Pulp Fiction Coffee House has a variety of hot and cold snacks to enjoy with your brew. Heavy use of Annegret’s signature dark Belgium chocolate makes anything chocolate-based a great choice, and their paninis are no slouch either!
If you come to Kelowna at the right time of the year, you can spend magical hours plucking apples from trees in orchards surrounded by majestic Okanagan scenery. But what if we told you there was a place you could pick fruits made of painted sugar and filled with chocolate?
We’re not crazy, honesty. That place is Karat Chocolate and Pastry Boutique! These delightful desert-crafters make adorable edible pieces of art that are delicious to boot.
As well as lifelike chocolate replicas, this café and bakery make all sorts of dreamy desserts. Creamy cakes, bespoke chocolate bars, dainty macaroons – they have it all. Even if you don’t have a sweet tooth, we would recommend swinging by, as these treats must be seen to be believed.
Our favourite thing about Kelowna is the way the community comes together. That’s why we were thrilled to find out that the city’s only on-site handcrafted ice cream vendor has partnered with local producers to bring all the best nearby flavours together under one roof.
Parlour Ice Cream translate the best tastes of Okanagan’s soils into scoops that sit pride of place on house-made waffle cones. Choose from simple local-grown staples like lavender, pumpkin, and pistachio, or go wild with an extravagant birthday cake cone.
They stock vegan options made with coconut milk too, so even the most Earth-conscious among you can enjoy a scoop. Plus, with a store right next to City Park, you can enjoy yours while kicking back beachside.
Let’s face it, nobody bakes quite like the French. Luckily, Kelowna has its very own patisserie, bringing residents and tourists alike joys that only a long lineage in traditional French techniques can provide.
Sandrine’s best-in-show handcrafted delights encompass all your sweet and savoury classics. Locals flock to her shop whether they need delicate cupcakes or audacious personalized wedding centerpieces. You’ll find distinctive local tastes bottled to take away in the form of jams, preserves, gelatos, and sorbets.
Nab a couple of luxurious Croque Monsieurs and homemade quiche slices to level up your picnic basket. Or dine in with a delectable croissant sandwich and piping hot drink from the café. Sandrine’s partnership with Okanagan Lavender and Herb Farm keeps the place stocked with the finest in wellness teas, alongside organic roasted and blended coffee.
Fans of authentic Thai food won’t find anywhere better than this popular spot downtown. Dine inside deep in aromatic bliss or select a seat on their patio if the season’s right.
Bai Tong has long been the city’s leader in genuine Thai tastes, so we would advise you to opt for a classic Pad Thai with your choice of beef, pork, chicken, squid, prawns, or tofu. Vegetarians will be happy here, as most dishes allow you to swap meat out for tofu or straight-up vegetables.
We loved their Green Papaya Salad, lavished with essential roasted peanuts, and soaked in a house special spicy citrus dressing; it’s the perfect way to get your motor running. For the ultimate experience, finish as strong as you started with Mango and Sticky Rice for dessert!
Find fine dining Italian-style at this downtown restaurant that has been providing top-notch service since 1974. Oozing class and elegance, the gleaming whites, polished silver, and attentive service staff at La Bussola are just waiting to sweep you off your feet.
Striking a balance between classic dishes and modern innovations, their menu is a veritable timeline of Italian gastronomical history that only stops a good few years into the future.
Unfortunately, that’s about as specific as we can get. That’s because La Bussola changes their menu weekly to keep things as fresh as the ingredients they’re dedicated to using! However, if you happen to see Agnolotti ai Funghi, Veal Marsala, or Rack of Lamb on the list, these are the dishes we wrote home about.
The greatest thing about having a high concentration of critically acclaimed international eateries in your city is… the fact that it attracts even more. That’s what happened in Kelowna, and it’s why you can add authentic French fine dining to your list of Friday night could-bes.
Serving up sophisticated French staples in a refined yet casual atmosphere and just a few minutes’ walk from Kelowna’s best art galleries, you would be forgiven for forgetting that you aren’t actually in Paris. You can even try delicious garlic escargots for the first time here – just like on a real trip to Europe’s capital of romance.
Among our many recommendations would be Le Steak Tartare to sample tenderloin as you’ve never tried it, the Crevettes et Noix de Saint Jacques (or seared scallops and flambéed shrimp in bisque sauce, to the layman), or the beautiful Le Cassoulet featuring duck leg confit, smoked pork belly, and distinctive Toulouse sausage with navy bean ragout.
But really, you can’t go wrong with any of the dishes on a menu that tours regional highlights from across France – especially when you have a continental understanding of wine-pairing so close to hand. Bon appétit!
What we’ve always loved about vegetarian cooking is that it forces you to think outside the box and be inventive – and nowhere is that on better display than the innovative menu found at this chic industrially-vibed restaurant in Kelowna’s landmark district.
Drawing from a vast breadbasket of locally-grown fruit and veg, Frankie’s faithfully recreates the city’s classic tastes without any of the guilt. Jealous of everyone chowing down on juicy burgers and delicate sushi rolls? You don’t need to be anymore! We particularly loved their takes on Italian Sausage Farfalle Giganti and their Chorizo Ranchero Bowl.
The bar here is excellently stocked too, with a wide range of Okanagan local ciders, craft beers, wines, and a huge range of mixologist-level cocktails. Try going Through the Green Door to find out just how great rum-based alcoholic hot chocolate can be.
Oh, and did we mention they do amazing brunches at weekends and affordable lunch specials in the week? ‘Cos they do.
Usually, when you see a restaurant adorned with a cow mural you think beef, butchers, hamburgers etc. – but nope, not at Naked Cafe, where a mooing mural is all about love and respect.
As the first-ever all-vegan eatery to open its doors in downtown Kelowna in 2015, Naked Cafe was taking a lot of risks. Luckily, in true Kelowna style, great food and uplifting community intermingled to create yet another success story.
The eclectic menu here features a lot of fresh takes on city favourites, like their Market Poutine that creates an unforgettably fresh sensation with generous salad elements and a lemon tahini dressing that’s equal parts zesty and creamy. Another fan favourite is their Walburger, beating beef with a walnut and beetroot patty stacked with pickles, fresh salad, and chao mozzarella.
It’s every vegan’s nightmare: you spend hours combing the internet for a restaurant that accommodates you, finally find one and then – boom – your friends are refusing to eat there because there’s not a morsel of meat on the menu.
That’s why Social 242 has devised not one but two entire menus, one for vegans and one for their carnivore tagalongs. Never again will you have to pick at some French fries while everyone else tucks into steak.
Cauliflower Wings tossed in salt and pepper served up with sweet chilli dip, Truffle Fries doused in faux-parmesan and vegan gravy with dill aioli on the side, Chicken Parm, Puttanesca, house-made vegan Twix dessert. These are just some of the delights that await on a menu made just for you.
The vibe in Social 242 is great too, with a clubbish atmosphere bubbling with excitement and enough wine and cocktail variety to wash down as many courses as you can handle.
Best Ever Lifestyle Guide Inc. is an independent lifestyle guide for British Columbia based in Kelowna, BC.
We recognize and acknowledge that we live, learn, play and work on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the Syilx Okanagan people.