I must confess that although I know Gastown is filled with delicious bars and restaurants, I usually stick with ones that I know when I’m in the area.

So when Charles Bar invited me to their 5th anniversary party, I just had to check out what was advertised as “a staple and icon in Gastown’s historic Woodwards building”. At the end of the post there is a video version of my review, so if you want more visuals click on the link at the end!


Walking in, the place is quite beautiful. Fancy enough that it fits right in with the Gastown scene, but casual enough that I don’t feel out of place wearing just t-shirt and jeans.


I love cocktails, so I asked the server to recommend the most popular (and sweet) drinks on the menu. The Gastown Lemonade is mine on the right and my friend ordered their Gin Gin Mule on the left. If you’re a fan of cocktails that taste like there is no alcohol in it, the Gastown Lemonade is definitely the one to choose. It went down like juice but gave me a buzz, perfect! The Gin Gin Mule was also refreshing, but because gin has a strong taste it’s more apparent in the beverage.


As a meat lover, I rarely choose dishes that are vegetarian. This Fig & Boursin flatbread was pretty close to having me change my mind. It wasn’t too sweet, and it met the requirement of a good flatbread: crunchy on the edges, soft in the center.


Their crunchy chicken sandwich (this was a sample slider version) was my favourite dish of the night. In my video I described it as “a gourmet, deluxe, decked out version of a McChicken at McDonald’s”. Please let me know if you agree.


I had a hard time deciding if I thought the Beer Battered Lemon Pepper fries were just ok or good. It was nicely seasoned but I’m not sure if I had the whole bowl to myself if I would find it a bit much at the end. They have a wide selection of other fries they dub the “French fry bar” and I’m looking forward to trying something else next time.

I got to also try their BBQ Chicken Flatbread with a gluten-free crust. If I weren’t already sold on the chicken burger this would probably have taken the top spot for the night. The gluten-free crust still had a nice crunch, but if you’re looking for a fluffy crust it still isn’t quite the same.


Last but not least I had to try their White Chocolate Brownie. I internally pitted this against the white chocolate brownie at Moxie’s. My verdict? They are both good.

I’m so glad I ventured outside my little Richmond bubble because I had a lovely time at Charles Bar and I would recommend this to my friends if they were in the area. Congrats to them and I wish them more years of business to come!

There is also a video review I did on our YouTube channel: