Guu Garden

4.4
156 reviews
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CAN$30 and under
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Japanese
Top tags:
  • Casual
  • Outdoor Eating
  • Good for a Date
Guu Garden’s beer patio is waiting for you. In the summer, enjoy the classic izakaya dishes & beer under the starlit Vancouver sky.

It’s also the only izakaya with a fully customizable party menu, perfect for large groups.


We keep seats for walk-in customers as well. No available seats on opentable does not mean we are fully booked. Please be aware that the time limited per table is two hours during peak hours.
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
Japanese, Tapas / Small Plates, Fusion / Eclectic
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Hours of Operation
Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:30am - 2:30pm, Saturday & Sunday: 12:00pm - 3:00pm
Dinner: Monday - Thursday: 5:30pm - 12:30am, Friday - Saturday: 5:30pm - 1:00am, Sunday: 5:30pm - 12:00am
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Phone number
(604) 899-0855
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Payment Options
AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, JCB, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress Code
Casual Dress
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Executive Chef
Yasuaki Tanaka
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Neighbourhood
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Cross Street
Howe St
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Parking Details
Underground pay parking is available under 800 Nelson Street building.
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Public Transit
Canada Line: get off at Vancouver City Center and 10 min walk
Sky Train: get off at Burrard station and 10 min walk
#004, #006, #007, #010, #014, #016, #050 buses, the closest stop is How + Nelson
Additional
Bar Dining, Beer, Beer Garden, BYO Wine, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Late Night, Outdoor dining, Wine
What 156 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.4based on recent ratings
4.4
Food
4.2
Service
4.3
Ambience
4.2
Value
Noise · Moderate
98% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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MS
Vancouver
6 reviews
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 3Food 3Service 3Ambience 3

Fun place to go to occasionally. Plates are sparse and mostly well prepared although a lot are fried. There seems to be a 2 hour limit so not a great place for get togethers or conversation as it can be noisy. A bit pricey overall, but fun to try once a year.....

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KB
Vancouver
1 review
Dined on October 14, 2018
Overall 3Food 3Service 4Ambience 4

atmosphere was great, service good as well. they have an open air section with little fireplaces on the tables that suited our romantic mood nicely. Menus were a bit difficult to read, and none of the dishes seemed to be familiar at all. Maybe they are supposed to be more "authentic" japanese. I was looking to order some beef teriyaki and a california roll,( but maybe that is not real authentic japanese food). When I made the reservation, I should have looked at the menu, but I was rushing just to get a reservation within walking distance of where we were going to go after dinner.
-The tempura green beans (or green bean fries as they called them) were excellent.
-Pork belly tasted good but was served with a "poached" egg which i put that in"" because it was closer to raw than poached, Maybe that is how it is supposed to be...raw fish, raw egg???
-chicken cagayan was ok, but my wife could not eat it, too fatty and again almost raw, again not sure if it was supposed to be.
-deep fried shrimp was excellent as well
The 4 things we ordered were kind of the only things on the menu that we could recognize what it was. Again, I am sure this is "authentic" japanese and I am not familiar with it and what to expect.
It was an interesting experience, but I think I will stick to the little local sushi restaurant near where we live.

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OT
Vancouver
2 reviews
Dined on October 8, 2018
Overall 3Food 4Service 1Ambience 3

Guu Garden used to be one of my favourite Izakaya in downtown until my last visit. The restaurant was not even crazy busy when we were there, but we got the worst service in all visits. We couldn't see our server for at least 10 minutes after we sat, even had to grab a random staff for water refill, and after all they just did not care about us while other tables seemed to get some sort of service. The food was good, but if you are expecting a proper service I wouldn't recommend this place. Don't expect a lot for what you are paying!

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JL
Vancouver
3 reviews
Dined on September 23, 2018
Overall 4Food 4Service 3Ambience 3

Four of us went came for dinner. We ordered a few dishes to share. All dishes tasted great. Usual Guu standard. Service was a bit slow though. No one addressed us for drink or anything after we sat down. There is a long stair to climb before getting to the restaurant. It may be challenging for elderly or kids. Overall it was a great dining experience.

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CV
1 review
Dined on September 16, 2018
Overall 4Food 5Service 5Ambience 4

We really enjoyed the food. It's fast pace restaurant and can get a bit loud in there but totally worth it.

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AD
Vancouver
3 reviews
Dined on September 12, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 4

Food was good and reasonable, service staff was friendly. I'll be back, for sure!

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OT
Milwaukee
1 review
Dined on September 11, 2018
Overall 4Food 5Service 3Ambience 5

Carefully prepared, tasty food. Authentic (most customers are Asian), good atmosphere. The server didn’t speak English well and we had trouble communicating, or getting suggestions. Overall a good experience, though.

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KK
1 review
Dined on September 11, 2018
Overall 2Food 3Service 1Ambience 2

Used to love this place. The service was incredibly inattentive and the food has gone way downhill. Not sure I’ll be back.

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V
1 review
Dined on September 10, 2018
Overall 4Food 4Service 4Ambience 4

Guu garden is my favourite go-to place for high quality Japanese/asian food.
Do not expect the classic sushi menu full of rolls, these guys mean business: they have a rich menu of excellent dishes from classic Japanese cousine.
As always where food quality is this high, expect a 5-10m longer than usual wait in between ordering and actually getting your food. So if you're planning a quick lunch between meeting, typically in less than 50m you wouldn't make it. But you can preorder over the phone if you're in a hurry.

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LO
Vancouver
1 review
Dined on September 6, 2018
Overall 4Food 4Service 4Ambience 4

I usually recommend this place to meet up with friends who I haven't seen in a while. It's nice that there's small plates and drinks that gives you time to catch up and chat with your friends. I like when you sit on the patio you don't hear the downtown traffic due to it being located upstairs.

As well, My husband has a few allergies that they were able to accommodate with their small plates, and let you know on how they plan on adjusting the dish, or what it contains.

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OT
1 review
Dined on August 31, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

The was the first time we went to this location (our usual is the Orignal on Thurlow). We were pleasantly surprised when we arrived and appreciated how accommodating the staff were considering we needed extra table space for our motorcycle helmets. Our servers were friendly and the food was amazing! We ordered one of the specials (tofu and asparagus in a miso-sesame dressing), the miso calamari, Ebi Mayo, agedashi mozzarella, and the cauliflower karaage. All dishes were amazing! The calamari and ebi mayo were perfectly done...crispy and not greasy at all! Being unable to eat land meat, the cauliflower karaage was a tasty variation. We were stuffed with what we ordered...all small plates except for the ebi mayo...there are still many items we would love to try on our next visit...so yes, we will be back!

Thank you for the great food and fantastic service to everyone at Guu Garden! See you all again in the very near future!

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EL
Vancouver
1 review
Dined on August 25, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Guu Garden appeals to my asian sensibilities. I am a fan.

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RH
1 review
Dined on August 20, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Booked a Surprise Bday for a friend, table for 11 through Open Table. We ended up having some additional people RSVP and Guu was happy to accommodate the day of.

It was a fantastic experience and would definitely do it again!

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HC
Vancouver
5 reviews
Dined on August 19, 2018
Overall 4Food 5Service 3Ambience 4

Had a great dinner here with friends! Had to flag down the servers a bit which I'm not use to (not that there is anything wrong with this in an izakaya restaurant etc), and the noice level was quite loud, but otherwise had an excellent time and delicious food.

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BW
1 review
Dined on August 18, 2018
Overall 5Food 4Service 5Ambience 4

Guu Garden is one of my favorite Guu's as I feel it offers a fine blend of food and drinks.

Came here on a busy Friday night to celebrate my girlfriend's birthday, and while we still had to wait a bit even with a reservation, we were still seated relatively fast.

Food and drinks were both decent. I did find their pressed sushi to be a bit bland in taste compared to other restaurants like Minami or Green Leaf. The other tapas, like the tontoro and garlic mussels, were up to the standard Guu quality.

Overall everything was great except for the 3 large wasps hovering above our table. Our waitress was incredibly brave and dealt with all 3. It's too bad I can't seem to remember her name though.

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LP
Vancouver
3 reviews
Dined on August 15, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

I love this place so much. Especially this location. Food, service and embiance are amazing. It’s lovey to sit outside on a warm summer evening.

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CC
Toronto
1 review
Dined on August 13, 2018
Overall 4Food 5Service 4Ambience 4

It was a late night last minute drop in. The main waiter was very helpful with offering menu suggestions (he did great job with it), place has a nice casual warm feel, food was excellent, so was Guud! Ale, which was a nice discovery and worked very well with our dishes. Would come back.

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AJ
Vancouver
3 reviews
Dined on August 12, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Great place to eat with a lot of good options. Quick service

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j
Montreal
1 review
Dined on August 6, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

- Sake Bellinis were refreshing and tasted of real fruit unlike bellinis’ at cactus club.
- food was fresh, well seasoned and delicious
- presentation wasn’t always on point but it was lunch time tapas being shared by a group so that wasn’t really an issue
- service was alright - had to flag down a waiter/waitress everynow and then
- would recommend. Thumbs up!

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LP
Vancouver
3 reviews
Dined on July 24, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

This place is always great but the patio is extra wonderful on a summer evening. Great food and service.

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D
Vancouver
7 reviews
Dined on July 24, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

I hesitate to recommend it because I want to keep this gem a secret! Great patio, speedy service, food is fantastic, and the value for it all is outstanding.
I always have a great time when I come here and leave very happy.

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DV
Vancouver
1 review
Dined on July 17, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 3Ambience 5

Was a little slow on food service but overall great!

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SH
Houston
6 reviews
Dined on July 14, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Great lunch special and good quality food

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JW
1 review
Dined on July 12, 2018
Overall 3Food 4Service 2Ambience 4

The food is good as usual. But the waiter was a bit rude this time.

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MS
Vancouver
2 reviews
Dined on July 8, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Awesome food and service 👌🏼

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MM
1 review
Dined on July 5, 2018
Overall 4Food 4Service 4Ambience 4

It's a great Japanese food restaurant! But I have no much to say ..... I don't like this service forces me to write my review... If its good not much to say in general...
If you keep forcing to write this long, chances are, I will write only if I have something to complain...

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OT
Vancouver
11 reviews
Dined on June 29, 2018
Overall 4Food 3Service 3Ambience 4

Good place to chill out after work

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TC
1 review
Dined on June 22, 2018
Overall 5Food 4Service 5Ambience 4

a higher end Guu. food is more refined but yet priced reasonably.

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OT
Vancouver
2 reviews
Dined on June 21, 2018
Overall 1Food 2Service 1Ambience 1

I was left standing outside “waiting to be seated” for 5 or so minutes. There were only two wait staff and neither seemed particularly fussed about their jobs. It took 45 minutes to get a glass of water. At about the same time my friend’s meal came. Mine came at the 1 hour mark. I asked for it to go and that took forever too. The comped half of my meal cost, but there was no apology or any other acknowledgement that they could have done better. We wont be dining here again!

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BC
1 review
Dined on June 21, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 3Ambience 5

Amazing food! Everyone should order 2 dishes and share. Would highly recommend the raw wasabi octopus.

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E
1 review
Dined on June 17, 2018
Overall 3Food 2Service 2Ambience 4

came for Sunday lunch with friends from Vegas and we ended up waiting 15 mins for the tea, and 45 mins for the food. my sukiyaki beef bowl came with burned veggies, so was the cod (85% of the surface was black @_@...) not sure what happened this time, my previous visits were generally good. Feel very bad for bringing my friends here as it was their only weekend in Vancouver. After all a embarrassing experience.

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OT
Vancouver
2 reviews
Dined on June 15, 2018
Overall 2Food 1Service 2Ambience 4

There were large bones in our salmon oshi sushi (2 out of 3 pieces eaten, with 3 still on the plate) and the server’s explanation was “yes, salmon has bones in it.” Eeesh. Another server came by and said sorry and asked if we wanted another one, and we opted for the saba oshi. They didn’t charge us for the replacement, but still charged us for the salmon. It was quite odd to see that they clearly don’t have any sort of policy over customer complaints and how to handle them, considering how half-assed that was. It was a bewildering experience.

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BQ
Vancouver
3 reviews
Dined on May 25, 2018
Overall 2Food 3Service 1Ambience 2

Service was absolutely terrible
We reserved a table for 6 and decided to sit on the patio (picnic table) to possibly accommodate an extra person. Our male server rudely told us that we may have to move. The restaurant was not at capacity. We were also advised of the 2 hour policy. Our server rudely informed us at the ONE AND A HALF HOUR MARK that it was last call. Such a lack of basic customer service and to top it off, the restaurant was never full. Terrible experience!

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OT
1 review
Dined on May 16, 2018
Overall 4Food 5Service 4Ambience 3

Tasty food! Everything was delicious and completely decimated. Our server could have been a little more attentive, but I liked having the opportunity to shout “sumimasen!” when we were ready to order or wanted another pitcher of water. The music was a bit loud at times but that’s the nature of jazz. Overall it was a very pleasant experience and I will definitely be back in the future.

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MJ
Vancouver
4 reviews
Dined on May 14, 2018
Overall 4Food 5Service 3Ambience 4

I am always impressed with the foods in Guu Garden. Unfortunately, I am not quite happy with the "too-rush" service provided by the staff. We had a lot of orders for 4 people. Rushing us when we are having such a nice conversation was totally ruining our mood.

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C
1 review
Dined on May 8, 2018
Overall 4Food 5Service 5Ambience 4

Great little hidden gem located up some stairs off Hornby Street. A small rooftop patio and garden surround this glass walled izakaya. Seating is casual and informal, with booths and a few tables inside, and a couple large picnic type tables outside. The food comes on small sharing plates which are quite rich, so be careful not to over-order. I went with a friend to celebrate her birthday, at six, so we could eat before going to the symphony. We had cold asparagus with tofu in a lemon ponzu dressing, yellowtail sashimi which was perfectly presented with a shiso leaf and some radish slices and shredded daikon, miso glazed pork belly, seared foie gras with apple compote atop a dollop of mashed potato, lovely crisp karaage with mayonnaise and lemon and yakiudon with beef and mushroom. The menu is different at each Guu incarnation, so don't expect to eat the same food you had at another location. Menu has regular items and changing seasonal, as available specials. Service was impeccable and lightning fast. We were concerned we wouldn't have time to make it before getting our will call tickets which gave us an hour and a half, but once the food started arriving it was perfectly timed for our appetite, starting with cold dishes and followed by more substantial ones. This lovely little garden of tranquility above the bustle of the street below provided the perfect setting for a memorable birthday dinner.

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C
Richmond
1 review
Dined on May 4, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

It is good to eat more like Japanese home cooking than the Americanized versions present in most us Japanese restaurants

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JY
Vancouver
16 reviews
Dined on April 29, 2018
Overall 4Food 4Service 5Ambience 4

Came here with a group of 15 on Saturday night. Our group was running a tad late and we had called to let them know that we were going to be 30 min late; they were super accommodating, which goes to show their great service! My friends and I readily go to Guu and we are never disappointed. Dish sizes are all great for sharing. We order several things off the menu - some of my personal favourites include: ebi mayo, salmon-oshi sushi, and kimchi bibimbap. Would definitely recommend!

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SY
Edmonton
12 reviews
Dined on April 19, 2018
Overall 5Food 5Service 5Ambience 5

Delicious!

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F
Vancouver
7 reviews
Dined on April 7, 2018
Overall 3Food 3Service 1Ambience 1

Charging $.50 for some Japanese mayo is completely outrageous.

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