Tap and Barrel is a chain of large pub-style restaurants with locations in Olympic Village, Coal Harbour, the Shipyards District and Granville Island.
To learn how this restaurant compares with other similar places, see our article about Vancouver Casual Chain Dining Venues. To learn more about just this chain though, continue reading.
This article contains the following information about Tap and Barrel:
Olympic Village Location | Coal Harbour Location | Shipyards Location | Granville Island Location | What’s on the Menu? | Other Related Restaurants | Other Information
The Tap & Barrel
With four waterfront locations in Metro Vancouver, Tap and Barrel is a local success story. The chain’s most recent development was the rebranding of the old Bridges Restaurant on Granville Island to Tap & Barrel Bridges. The original restaurant was the one in Olympic Village.
The Tap and Barrel chain is owned by local entrepreneur Daniel Frankel. He was inducted into the BC Restaurant Hall of Fame in 2014.
All four Tap and Barrel locations focus on local and sustainable food and drink options. All four have amazing outdoor patios which are popular in warmer months. The restaurants also have sports bar-type TV screens for people wanting to watch whatever games are showing.
Where are the Restaurants?
The Tap and Barrel group currently operates four restaurants in Metro Vancouver. Information about each open location is listed further below. All four are on or near the waterfront.
There are also two more restaurants scheduled to open soon. A new location in South Surrey opens on September 27th in 2022. The restaurant will be located at 3211 152 Street inside The Professional Centre. Another Tap and Barrel opens in late 2023 inside the Amazing Brentwood shopping mall, located at 4567 Lougheed Highway in Burnaby.
Olympic Village Tap & Barrel
The original Tap and Barrel opened in Vancouver’s Olympic Village at 75 Athlete’s Way in 2012. It is still open to this day and features views of False Creek. It’s at the far eastern end of False Creek just around the corner from Science World.
The Olympic Village location is close to the waterfront. Just the False Creek Seawall is between it and the water. The restaurant has a couple of really nice outdoor patios with views of the City of Vancouver and BC Place Stadium on the other side of False Creek. One patio is just outside the main entrance on ground level. The second is upstairs on the second floor.
Close to this location is the Craft Beer Market which is a beer hall-style place at 85 West 1st Avenue. Another comparable place in the neighbourhood is the Brewhall at 97 East 2nd Avenue. Both are more similar to the Shipyards location of Tap and Barrel than the one at Olympic Village, but all are great places for beer and things like nachos, burgers and chicken wings. All of these places also have TV screens for watching sports.
If you walk a kilometre along the seawall heading west you come to the Stamps Landing location of Mahony & Sons which is an Irish-themed pub-style restaurant that’s right on the water. Live music takes place there most weekends (although not so much since COVID-19).
Coal Harbour Tap & Barrel
Tap and Barrel’s second restaurant is in the northwest corner of the Vancouver Convention Centre building at 76-1055 Canada Place. The Convention Centre location originally opened in the summer of 2013. Of the chain’s three venues, this one, arguably, has the most amazing views (although the others aren’t too far behind).
This restaurant in particular occupies some of the most prime waterfront property in downtown Vancouver. It’s in Coal Harbour at one end of Jack Poole Plaza, where the Olympic Cauldron from the 2010 games is located. On the other side of the plaza is the Cactus Club Cafe which is another popular place.
From its Coal Harbour location, customers at Tap & Barrel can enjoy the views of Burrard Inlet and the North Shore Mountains. The restaurant is just steps from the seawall which connects nearby Canada Place with Stanley Park. Gastown is also just a short walk away, as is Granville Street and Waterfront Station. Other popular tourist attractions nearby are the Vancouver Lookout and FlyOver Canada.
For all the above reasons, the restaurant’s location couldn’t be much better! Because of the location, however, street parking in the immediate area has a 2-hour maximum and costs about $8 for 60 minutes (which is at the high end in downtown Vancouver). The Vancouver Convention Centre though sometimes offers 3 hours of parking for $10. That’s not always the case, but it was the last time we checked which was on a Sunday morning in February of 2021.
The Coal Harbour Restaurant’s Setup
There are three parts to the restaurant at Jack Poole Plaza. One is the outdoor patio which is very popular in warmer months. It roughly doubles the restaurant’s capacity when it’s in use. Another is a small indoor area with windows facing the waters of Burrard Inlet and the North Shore Mountains. It’s not a large room. It’s often used for private events and isn’t usually open to the general public.
The third section is the main indoor part which doesn’t face the water. Instead, the windows there look out onto Jack Poole Plaza (and the restaurant’s patio area). It’s a nice pub-style spot with hardwood floors, TV screens showing sports, music playing and a bar area.
The restaurant at Coal Harbour isn’t that large when the patio isn’t in use. The larger indoor area that’s open year-round has about two dozen tables, about half of which have bar stools. There are also a few booths with leather seats. Since the arrival of COVID-19, most (but not all of the tables) have plexiglass separating one from the other.
Tap & Barrel at the Shipyards
The restaurant’s North Vancouver location can be found steps from the SeaBus and Lonsdale Quay at #8 Lonsdale Avenue. It’s next to the Pinnacle Hotel and Shipbuilders’ Square and across a small plaza from the Polygon Gallery.
The restaurant here is located in a large historical building that overlooks the Vancouver Harbour. It opened in the summer of 2015 and has since become a key part of the vibrant Shipyards District. The restaurant isn’t right on the water, but it’s very close. Unlike the other locations, this one has really high ceilings.
On the east side of the restaurant’s building is Shipbuilders’ Square where the Shipyards Night Market and weekly outdoor concerts take place in the summer. On the other side of the square is Shipyard Commons (which is a giant covered outdoor plaza) and nearby is Shipbuilders’ Pier. It’s an interesting area, especially in the summer.
Other popular restaurants nearby are Pier 7 (which is right on the water) and JOEY (which is by the entrance to Shipbuilder’s Pier). Both of these other places also have exceptional outdoor patios.
TIP: Did you know that in Shipbuilders’ Square, right outside North Vancouver’s Tap and Barrel, you’re allowed to drink alcohol in public (assuming you’re age 19+ and in the designed area)? You can take your own refreshments from home, or buy them from a nearby liquor store. You can also do it at Cates Deck and Waterfront Park, both of which are just a short walk away!
To learn more about these alcohol-friendly public spaces, see our article about North Vancouver Parks Where You Can Drink Alcohol.
Tap & Barrel Bridges
Tap & Barrel Bridges is the chain’s Granville Island location and is at 1696 Duranleau Street on Granville Island. This restaurant opened in May, 2022, and is in the building that used to be Bridges Restaurant. Bridges operated on Granville Island for around 40 years with the yellow waterfront building becoming one of the most recognized sites on the island.
Bridges was co-founded by the uncle of David Frankel, the owner of Tap & Barrel. That is one of the reasons why he purchased the restaurant in 2018, and in 2021 it temporarily closed to complete a full rebrand into a new Tap & Barrel location. The exterior of the building is the same (with the addition of Tap & Barrel signage) but the interior has completely changed to suit its new name.
Tap & Barrel Bridges has a good patio right on the waterfront. This location is also set to become the primary one for the chain’s culinary development program.
Tap & Barrel’s menu is an interesting combination of traditional pub fare and unique dishes. Typical food options include burgers, steak & fries, pasta and pizza. However, the place also offers some more interesting options such as gyoza, poke bowls and hummus & za’atar flatbread.
Similar to other Casual Chain Dining Venues, Tap & Barrel offers a daily Happy Hour menu. The restaurant offers deals on appetizers, alcohol and even a few entrées from 3 until 6 pm and again from 9 pm until closing time.
In addition to good pub-style food, the restaurants also offer a wide range of beers, ciders and wines on tap. If you want to try some of the Lower Mainland’s many local craft beers, this is a great place to find them.
BC on Tap Program
In line with their focus on local and sustainable offerings, Tap & Barrel also offers their “BC on Tap” program. The beverage program includes 36 local BC craft beers on tap as well as 16 local BC wines. Guests can also choose a BC beer flight with 5 tasters of beer.
Local craft beers on tap include ones from Red Truck Brewery, Strange Fellows, Four Winds, Yellow Dog, Driftwood and others. They don’t serve all of the Lower Mainland’s many brands of locally-crafted beers, but they do offer a lot of them.
In addition to the above three Tap & Barrel-branded locations, the same parent company operates the Harbour Green Room (which is also known as the TapShack). It’s a bar-style place with an outdoor patio in the middle of Coal Harbour‘s Harbour Green Park.
Other places related to Tap & Barrel are the Brewhall (at 97 East 2nd Avenue in Olympic Village) and Fixins Mac n’ Chicken (a delivery and takeout only option run out of the Brewhall and the Shipyards location).
For more details about the restaurants visit the official Tap and Barrel website.
Other articles that might be of interest include the following:
- How do Vancouver’s Casual Dining Restaurants Compare?
- Restaurants in the City of Vancouver
- Restaurants in North Vancouver
- North Shore Craft Breweries
- Dine Out Vancouver Festival
- North Vancouver’s Lower Lonsdale District
- Vancouver’s Best Bars and Night Clubs
- Vancouver Beer and Breweries
- Lower Mainland Wineries