Tayybeh Lives Up To Its Name In Vancouver - West Coast Food

Kitsilano’s Tayybeh offers a unique culinary experience with authentic Syrian fare prepared by a team of all-women newcomer cooks.

Tayybeh means good, positive, and delicious in Arabic. True to its name, this restaurant in the heart of old Kits feels welcoming and fun, featuring pops of bright white and fuchsia, brimming with natural light and redolent of spiced dishes and rich coffee.

“We initially thought of opening as a café,” says Nihal Elwan, Tayybeh’s founder, “but soon our guests made it clear that they are expecting a full-service dining experience.”  Tayybeh is a social enterprise that creates stable employment to empower refugee and newcomer women from Syria and other parts of the Middle East. 

Though Tayybeh is just in its sophomore year as a brick-and-mortar location, Elwan and her team have been serving Vancouverites a taste of Syria “just the way they cook at home” for years. Since 2015, the team has been putting on community dinners, catering, running a food truck, and preparing a ready-to-eat packaged food line. Their fans encouraged Elwan to open a restaurant, and the opportunity presented itself rather organically in 2023 when, in her search for a new production kitchen, she found a space that also had a café.

Starting in late 2015, tens of thousands of Syrian people and families who had been uprooted from their homes began arriving in Canada to settle and begin new lives, with many coming to British Columbia. Elwan felt compelled to support and uplift the women in particular who she knew didn’t traditionally have much access to social and financial opportunities. With her fluency in Arabic and her background in gender empowerment and international development, she was uniquely positioned to execute her mission. She knew these women were well versed in cooking for large groups, and she expected those skills to transfer over to professional cooking. What started out as small pop-up dinners is now a project that is making Syrian food familiar through many different channels in this city.

Tayybeh has already become a Kitsilano favourite, especially because it’s one of the very few places serving up Middle Eastern cuisine in the neighbourhood. With the same team and ethos that made them a standout option for catering in the Lower Mainland, the restaurant is a welcome addition to the community.

The eat-in menu features appetizers such as the culinary gem of Syrian cuisine: kibbeh, a crispy croquette filled with juicy beef, bulgur, warm spices and ground nuts garnished with tangy pomegranate molasses.

For mains you can choose between wraps with vegetarian fillings such as labneh and za’atar or falafel and chicken shawarma. Their hot meal options, like kebabs in tomato sauce, are all served with rice, hummus and salad.

Whether you pick up some classic Middle Eastern dips with herby flatbread, or meat, cheese and olive–filled hand pies to take to a beach picnic, or sit down to enjoy freshly prepared hot meals in the cool and casual restaurant, you are guaranteed a unique culinary experience in Vancouver at Tayybeh.

On instagram @tayybeh.syrian

2836 W 4th Avenue, Vancouver

Article written by: Mithalee Rawat



There are multiple bus routes to get you here: 2, 14, 44, 4, 84, 7 14 or visit TransLink’s Trip Planner to find your way.

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