Our province's capital is brimming with delicious restaurants and cafes. But which are the real standouts?

To find out, we asked local food blogger Jen Reiher of The Victorian Food Blog. We also got top picks from CBC Radio columnist and "Food Artisans of Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands" author Don Genova. From seafood to dessert, these two have it covered.

Check out their top picks:

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  • Veneto

    Excellent cocktail program with a creative tapas menu that will fit whether you want just a few bites or are absolutely ravenous. — Don Genova

  • Veneto

  • Veneto

  • Veneto

  • Veneto

    Excellent cocktail program with a creative tapas menu that will fit whether you want just a few bites or are absolutely ravenous. — Don Genova

  • Veneto

  • Veneto

  • Veneto

  • Veneto

  • Veneto

  • Veneto

  • Veneto

  • Veneto

  • Red Fish Blue Fish

    <a href="http://www.victorianfood.ca/2011/02/red-fish-blue-fish.html" target="_blank">I adore Red Fish Blue Fish</a>. For a city on the water, there are a disgustingly few places that have reasonably priced seafood. They have a little something for everyone. — Jen Reiher

  • Red Fish Blue Fish

    Their fish and chips are by far the best in town, their tacones are a nice fresh-tasting twist on seafood, and for the adventurous there is always the "cod dog" and other creative fish dishes. — Jen Reiher

  • Red Fish Blue Fish

  • Roast

    I will gladly line up for one of their porchetta sandwiches at lunchtime, and again after work for a fantastic take-home rotisserie chicken. — Don Genova

  • Roast

  • Roast

  • Roast

  • Roast

  • Roast

  • Roast

  • Brasserie L'Ecole

    <a href="http://www.victorianfood.ca/2011/09/brasserie-lecole.html" target="_blank">The Brasserie</a> is one of "those places" that everyone raves about, and rightly so. They know what they are doing here. — Jen Reiher

  • Brasserie L'Ecole

    The food is very carefully chosen, it's presented without pretention, the service is excellent (although we have only ever sat at the bar) and the ambiance is relaxed, but flexible enough for most specialish occasions. — Jen Reiher

  • Brasserie L'Ecole

  • Brasserie L'Ecole

  • Brasserie L'Ecole

  • Brasserie L'Ecole

  • Cold Comfort

    Autumn is amazing at whipping up delectable ice creams and sorbets. <a href="http://www.victorianfood.ca/2011/05/cold-comfort.html" target="_blank">Incredible local ice cream</a> available by delivery or at select market/store locations. — Jen Reiher

  • Cold Comfort

  • Cold Comfort

  • Cold Comfort

  • Jam Cafe

    <a href="http://www.victorianfood.ca/2012/04/jam-cafe.html" target="_blank">The menu is quite large and varied</a> and reasonably priced. Everything on the menu has a little bit of a twist to it. There aren't just pancakes — there are red velvet pancakes. It isn't just a breakfast sandwich, it's a breakfast sandwich on a biscuit with tomato jam. — Jen Reiher

  • Jam Cafe

    Other highlights at the table when we visited included deep-fried pigs in a blanket served with fruit, and a bowl filled with crumbled biscuit, meat and sausage gravy on top. — Jen Reiher

  • Jam Cafe

  • Jam Cafe

    There are interesting sides, such as bruleed grapefruit, which I totally would have done if I hadn't anticipated I would be full by the end of my meal! — Jen Reiher

  • Jam Cafe

  • Jam Cafe

    Unlike most brunch places, their hash browns are shredded potato, perfectly crispy and browned on the outside. — Jen Reiher

  • Jam Cafe

  • Jam Cafe

  • Little Jumbo

    The space is actually <a href="http://www.victorianfood.ca/2013/10/little-jumbo.html" target="_blank">licensed food primary</a>, and the food is highlighted front and centre over the cocktails that the founding staff are typically known for. — Jen Reiher

  • Little Jumbo

    The space itself is drop dead gorgeous. You walk down the hall and hear only a faint buzzing of voices. The door opens into a small room with small tables running along the left edge and the bar straight ahead is grounded by two original wood pillars. The brick wall is painted with the logo, but slightly distressed like the original signs from Victoria businesses of long ago that still decorate the brick buildings around town. — Jen Reiher

  • Little Jumbo

  • Little Jumbo

  • Little Jumbo

  • Little Jumbo

    The food menu is "a la carte" so mains and sides are presented as standalone dishes that can be paired together at your own preference. — Jen Reiher

  • Little Jumbo

    The space itself is drop dead gorgeous. You walk down the hall and hear only a faint buzzing of voices. The door opens into a small room with small tables running along the left edge and the bar straight ahead is grounded by two original wood pillars. The brick wall is painted with the logo, but slightly distressed like the original signs from Victoria businesses of long ago that still decorate the brick buildings around town. — Jen Reiher

  • Little Jumbo

  • Little Jumbo

  • Little Jumbo


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