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“Very Special”
Review of Secret Location - CLOSED

Secret Location
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $10 - $22
Cuisines: European, Canadian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings
Dining options: Breakfast, Dinner, Lunch, Free Wifi, Full Bar, Outdoor Seating, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Street Parking, Valet Parking, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Neighborhood: Gastown
Cross street: Carrall Street
Transit: Waterfront Station Chinatown Skytrain Station
Description: One part lifestyle boutique, one part restaurant, Secret Location is a concept store that offers deliciously fresh design and cuisine. Housed under one roof is a visually stimulating Tasting Room and carefully curated retail boutique. Our Tasting Room offers modern multicultural cuisine with an emphasis on authenticity. Enjoy multi-course meals, extensive selection of wines by the glass, Italian artisanal coffee and pastries made daily in-house. Our boutique offers new, thought provoking pieces that embrace creative ingenuity, quality craftsmanship and bold thinking. Shop fashion, literature, novelty, gadgets and home accessories.
Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
87 reviews
38 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
“Very Special”
Reviewed July 1, 2013

I took my husband here for his birthday dinner and we have a fabulous time. The restaurant was quiet when we arrived as most guests were on the patio but we were greeted as if we were friends and shown to our window table. The decor is quite amazing and it draws a lot of looks from the passers by on Water Street. But it is really about the food. Totally amazing. Every course was a new adventure. We were totally amazed by the chefs. Hint: have the lobster ravioli and watch outr for dessert! Awesome!

  • Visited June 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank BrianC5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marcel D, Manager at Secret Location, responded to this review, July 2, 2013
Hi

Thanks for your thoughtful review and glad to her you had a memorable birthday experience. You are right, it is all about the food and we are pleased to hear every course was an adventure. See you again soon!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

94 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    65
    16
    6
    3
    4
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
North Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
110 reviews
73 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
“Stumbled on it...lucky me”
Reviewed June 26, 2013

I was actually passing through the area and literally stumbled on this little gem. It stood out visually from all around it and draws you in. I decided to give it a try the next day at lunch and was surprised to see it virtually empty. As a result, my expectations weren't very high but it turned out to be spectacular. There is a relatively limited menu but broad enough to satisfy almost any craving. The service was exception and the prices quite reasonable. Food quality was prefect...fresh, flavourful with great presentation. I will be back.

  • Visited June 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank mhny2525
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marcel D, Manager at Secret Location, responded to this review, July 2, 2013
Hi there

Thanks for your thoughtful and thorough review - you managed to touch on our space, food and service in only a few sentences. Nice! Have a pleasant day and see you soon!

Regards
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
97 reviews
44 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
“Faultless”
Reviewed June 26, 2013

I hosted 7 clients on a business trip here ,each of us had eaten at many expensive restaurants around the world and undoubtedly this was one of our best experiences.
The flavours and variety of food were unmatched at any place I've ever eaten.There was a brilliant cocktail ,beer and wine list at prices much lower than a similar establishment in my country(Australia) could offer.
The service was friendly,knowledgable and efficient.
The fitout ,table ware and decor were superb and my only surprise was that this fine dining icon was only a third full.
If you are in Vancouver ,don't miss this place.

  • Visited June 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank gsebire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marcel D, Manager at Secret Location, responded to this review, July 2, 2013
Hi

Thanks for your thoughtful review and choosing Secret Location for your business function. It's even better to hear a review from a well-travelled restauranteur like you. We hope to see you again!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
62 reviews
37 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
“Slightly out of sync with the neighbourhood - in a good way!”
Reviewed June 4, 2013

My wife and I stumbled upon this place while strolling the touristy part of Gastown, a bit far from our comfortable Coal Harbour domain. Normally a bit skeptical about the area, we were taken by the store, the décor and the nifty bit of patio overlooking the hipster laden Chill Winston patio. It was a nice late spring Sunday so we lingered over an unplanned brunch. A pleasant surprise indeed. Well crafted food with charming wait staff (Alan I think was his name) and the perfect sort of sunny day on the patio conspired to have us really liking the place.

I was a bit tentative about returning for anything but brunch but my wife was sold on the place and booked us for dinner at 8 PM of a Saturday evening along with two other couples. (Behind her back I booked a table for 6 for 9 PM at Chambar just in case we felt the urge to flee Secret Location)

Long story short - I cancelled my Chambar booking soon after arrival at Secret Location. We drew Alan as our waiter again(I hope I have his name correct) and we were equally charmed by him as well as the chef (recently arrived from Spain) and the pastry chef (I hope I have the titles correct - there were many bottles of wine involved in the proceedings) who both took the time to present themselves to our table and to discuss the dishes that were being served to us.

The entire evening was a complete success from a dining and overall fun perspective save one failing. The restaurant has one of those wine "saving" machines - I want to say "enoteca" as the brand name but I'm not sure if I have that right. Anyway, the idea is that gas is pressurized against open bottles of wine to keep them fresh over longish periods of time, allowing the restaurant to offer a wider assortment of higher quality wines by the glass than would otherwise be available. We've experienced this at other restaurants with adequate results but something is amiss at Secret Location. We sampled a large number of wines and each of the "by-the-glass" wines we tasted had definitely gone past their prime, some seriously so. I don't know if the machine had failed them or what the explanation was - we did express our concerns to the waiter but did not hear comments in response from the sommelier.

Wines ordered by the bottle were, of course, fine. A word to the wise - stick with wines by the bottle when dining at Secret Location.

The dining experience and the eclectic room are fun and the location shakes it up a bit for us. It's sort of Hawksworth style presentation (smaller plates - seriously, ingeniously crafted food) in the midst of a hipster enclave. The other diners are probably not the sort of people we are used to sharing table with at Blue Water Grill or Black & Blue or Coast, but that also adds to the charm.

In summary, we really love this place and will be back. I harbour middling concerns that Secret Location doesn't quite fit with the Gastown vibe, the food might be a bit too fussy and a bit too good. But I really hope I'm wrong.

  • Visited June 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank BigBonker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marcel D, Manager at Secret Location, responded to this review, June 17, 2013
BigBonker, you write BigReviews! Thanks for your detailed review and yes, the server's name is indeed Alan. We love your comment about our location "in the midst of a hipster enclave" and appreciate your feedback on our enolmatic wine system.

On your next reservation please let us know you had a unsatisfactory enolmatic wine experience. We'll take care of you.

Happy strolls,
Secret Location
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“What A Find”
Reviewed May 30, 2013

Our son has recently moved to Vancouver from Sydney and it was our first night in the city when we happened upon Secret Location- what a find! Fantastically fresh local food in a stunningly designed space.The staff were very knowledgeable , professional and personable.On the evening we ate in this restaurant there were very few people- I hope Secret location is not before it's time in offering this style of fine dining in Vancouver. We will be back.

  • Visited May 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank robynw58
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marcel D, Manager at Secret Location, responded to this review, May 31, 2013
Thanks for your colourful and positive review of Secret Location! We sometimes feel before it's time but not going anywhere anytime soon :) Look forward to seeing you again.

With regards,
Marcel and the Secret Location team
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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