If you love finding hidden gems around the city and spots off the beaten path, this list is for you. Believe it or not, Vancouver is home to a handful of intriguing alleyway bars and restaurants – all of them with their own distinct styles and menu offerings. From a speakeasy to a slew of unique bars and eateries in Gastown’s Blood Alley, here are 6 alleyway spots that take ‘hole-in-the-wall’ to a whole new level.

Chupito

 

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Thanks to the outpour of community support and the efforts of their team, Vancouver’s favourite back-alley bar has officially reopened its doors to the public. Time to feast on tostadas and birria tacos, and wash it all down with a handcrafted cocktail.

Where: 322 West Hastings Street, enter through the back-alley

Is That French

 

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This intimate spot is tucked away in Gastown’s Blood Alley, serving a rotating menu of freshly shucked oysters and BC wine. A hidden gem if there ever was one – Is That French offers guests a cozy, warm ambiance and stunning seafood plates that are almost too beautiful to eat. And from 6 to 8 pm every Thursday, you can enjoy some live jazz with your oysters.

Where: 45 Blood Alley Square

Gringo Gastown

Another Blood Alley spot, Gringo is Vancouver’s staple back alley taco shop, and its Instagram feed is just as funky & eclectic as the space itself. Come for the fun, tropical vibes, and stay because you can’t physically get up after eating too many “chippy dippies.” With tacos ranging from $3 to $4.25 each, their deals are pretty hard to beat.

Where: 27 Blood Alley Square

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Bagheera

 

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Definitely the most secretive spot on this list is Bagheera, sister speakeasy to Laowai. Captioned simply “we hide, you seek,” the hidden spot is open from 5 pm to late from Tuesday to Sunday. Note that the venue only accepts groups of 6 and under, and is accessible through the fictional Happy Valley Turf Club, which is situated behind 518 Main Street.

Guests who wish to dine here must ‘place a bet’ on “King Louie,” and surrender their phones and cameras upon entering the lounge.

Where: 518 Main Street, behind Happy Valley Turf Club

Guilt & Co.

This one’s more of an underground spot than an alleyway, but we’re including it because it’s still tucked away from the main road. Guilt & Co is a quintessential venue for live music, hosting over 700 shows last year alone. From sax-focused shows to performances inspired by the blues, funk, and Caribbean/reggae scenes – there are always a ton of exciting local artists on stage here.

Where: 1 Alexander Street

And there you have it, Vancouver! If you’re looking to try something new and are up for an adventure, consider stopping into one of these alleyway spots.