Downtown Eastside Bars & Nightlife
350 Carrall St., Downtown Eastside
PiDGiN is a self-described Asian-French restaurant, but it’s the cocktails you should really show up for. As with many restaurants and bars in the city, PiDGiN’s fusion cuisine and eclectic drink menu is an ode the immigrant fabric of the city. There’s a thoughtful wine list, but given that there's an in-house sake sommelier, ordering a few shots—accompanied by some excellent snacks—is the way to go. The interior is an example of Asian restraint, super minimalist with wood acting as the main medium.
Vancouver Urban Winery
55 Dunlevy Ave., Downtown Eastside
Urban Winery is exactly as described—a small-batch winery, producing hand-crafted wine from British Columbian grapes in the heart of Vancouver. The tasting room could not be more atmospheric or warm, with floor-to-ceiling booze barrels, a mix of high leather banquettes and smaller tables for cozy conversation, and soaring high ceilings. There are over thirty-five wines on tap, alongside a list featuring other Canadian producers of equal stature. Choose a glass to taste and order a few of their winter-centric plates—roasted veggies, meatballs, and fondue—all made of ingredients sourced from the finest, and most sustainable local suppliers.
157 Alexander St., Downtown Eastside
Self-described as a "modern tavern", bar owners Raya Audet and Nigel Springthorpe believe beer is just as versatile as wine and deserves the same, reverential treatment. The Alibi Room’s taps rotate on a regular basis, and include their own exclusively made brews, all served out of their heritage building space. The bar itself is huge with communal tables and minimal fuss, perfect for striking up a conversation with the beer-enthusiastic crowd that packs out the place night after night. Cocktails, wine, and small bar snacks are also available for the pint averse.