There are 17 restaurants on the two mountains, the number divided relatively evenly between the two. The resort advises that between them they provide 6,540 places to sit down and eat your lunch.
Despite the fact that several of these restaurants are giant cafeterias (the biggest, the Roundhouse, has 1,740 seats on its own) they can’t always cope with demand, such is Whistler’s popularity, and the official advice is to aim to eat before 11.30am or after 1pm if you don’t want to have to queue to eat and fight for a seat. Obviously this is less of a problem in the pre-Christmas week low season.
As mentioned, most of the restaurants are large cafeterias. Most people will eat in one of the myriad of places that make up the Roundhouse or on Blackcomb in the Rendezvous (with half the number of seats, but still very big). The latter also has one of the few table-service options on the mountains, Christine’s.
Smaller places are dotted around the slopes. The Chic Pea at the top of the Garbanzo chairlift on Whistler is one such and aptly, does a good chick-pea stew.
With nearly 20,000 of the resort’s guest beds within 500m of the slopes you can of course always pop back home for lunch or visit one of the hundreds of restaurants in the base village, most of which are open for lunch and don’t mind ski boots.
Restaurants In Town
Dining out is big in Whistler which has 90 restaurants to choose from ranging from simple pizza joints to fine dining establishments you need to book months ahead (in other words long before you leave the UK unless you’re staying all winter) in peak season. There’s also a wide range of international cuisine represented, including a strong Pacific/Asian influence so expect great sushi.
The resort’s restaurants have a collective effort to source as much of their food and drink supplies locally or in wider British Columbia. Food sourced locally includes BC salmon, shellfish, locally raised venison and organic vegetables and potatoes – many from the nearby farming area of Pemberton.
Popular venues include Bocca for Italian, Teppan for Japanese food and the Keg for steak.
At the top end of the culinary experiences available, Whistler is home to some of Canada’s best chefs, including Melissa Craig of the Bearfoot Bistro (bearfootbistro.com) who was recent winner of one of the most prestigious culinary event in Canada, the Gold Medal Plates' Canadian Culinary Championships. Another is James Walt of the Araxi Restaurant (araxi.com) who was named, “one of the top seven chefs in the country” by Canada's Globe and Mail newspaper. The Rimrock Café (rimrockwhistler.com) run by European-trained Rolf Gunther is another top-rated establishment popular both with locals and in-the-know visitors alike.
If you can’t actually face going out to eat you can have menu items from a selection of Whistler restaurants delivered direct to your accommodation by Resort Room Service (+1 604 905 4722; resortroomservice.com).
Whistler has more excellent supermarkets than any other ski resort, most offering online ordering and delivery services.
Whistler Grocery Store (4211 Village Square; +1 (604) 932 3628; whistlergrocery.com/map.html) in the heart of the village has a huge selection of all kinds of food in its deli, both frozen and fresh. It offers online ordering.
Nesters Market also has a fully stocked supermarket in Whistler (+1 (604) 932 3545; nestersmarket.com/whistler.cfm) and also offers online ordering and delivery to hotels and condos throughout Whistler.
A third choice is Creekside Market (305-2071 Lake Placid Road; +1 (604) 938 9301; creeksidemarket.co), open from 8am to 10pm. 365 days a year it again has a great selection of food.
For the delivery of readymade meals try Delish Catering (+1 (604) 935 3005; delishcatering.ca) or Nesters Market.