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Just an hour’s drive from Vancouver lies one of the region’s most delicious culinary destinations: from wineries and cheese makers, to one of the country’s most exciting Indian restaurants, the area surrounding Langley and Surrey has it all. Celebrity chef and famed restaurateur, Vikram Vij is one of the region’s most ardent fans, “It’s like being in the countryside without having to go far from the city,” he enthuses. “You can rent a car and drive through the mountains and past the ocean, you don’t have to take a plane or a ferry, it’s right here and the best of the best foods come from this area. We’re so lucky to have everything to make a great culinary destination right in our backyard.” It’s an area that many visitors might miss out on, but Vikram says they’ll be missing a treat if they do– and he has a few recommendations…

By Nikki Bayley If you want a sweet taste of BC in a glass, leave the downtown core and jump on a 135 bus which will take you straight along Hastings Street and deliver you to Glenburn Soda Fountain and Confectionary in the heart of Burnaby Heights. As a residential area dotted with historic heritage houses, it’s not necessarily somewhere that most visitors would see, but fans of ice cream and soda fountains need to add Glenburn to their itineraries; you’ll be delighted that you did. Once you’re in the parlour and take a seat at the shining counter, prepare to enter a world of delicious indecision: what should you order? So many choices! From milkshakes, malteds and egg creams to piled-high sundaes with a myriad of flavours, everything looks so tempting; but it’s when you discover that it’s you’re getting a truly local flavour that things get interesting… Owners…

Watch the sun come up over the mountains, and then start your day exploring Abbotsford with a hearty country breakfast. Local food lover, Robyn Roste, has three favorite diners she recommends in Downtown Abbotsford: O’Neill’s Home Cooking “Found just off the beaten path this breakfast and lunch take-out joint is best-known for the O’Neill Classic: a homemade (every morning) sweet potato bun topped with egg, cheese, ham, mayo, and honey mustard. Owner Vernon O’Neill promises if you eat there once, you’ll bring a friend next time. What more could you want?” 33771 Gosling Way 604-746-4048 Mitch Miller’s “Located in the heart of downtown, Mitch Miller’s offers a huge breakfast menu including a wide selection of omelets, pancakes, and sizzlers. With gluten-free and vegetarian options as well as classic breakfast choices, there’s something for everyone at Mitch Miller’s.” 33758 Essendene Avenue 604-853-2425 Ann Marie’s Cafe “Abbotsford’s only 50s-style diner serves classic…

By Visit Richmond BC Known locally as “Wai Sek Kai” or “Food Street,” Alexandra Road has been a dining destination created by locals for locals for as long as anyone can remember. Easily accessible by SkyTrain, Food Street is right in the heart of the Golden Village and runs from busy No. 3 Road to Garden City Road (between Lansdowne and Aberdeen malls.) It has evolved organically over the years, especially in the last decade, with new restaurateurs attracted by the success of their colleagues and new immigrants searching for a likely place to share the foods of their homeland. Now nearly 200 eateries strong, cuisine ranges from humble noodle shops to grand Cantonese banquet rooms. The street itself is a jumble of strip malls, each one a warren of eateries adorned with bright, colourful signs advertising hot pot or pho, dim sum or sushi. Interspersed among them are a…