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This, right here, is where the 100 Mile Diet was invented, at a dinner with the authors of the popular book and locavore manifesto. That was in 2005, but Raincity was all about local food even longer than that, dating right back to when it opened in 1992. Amazingly, it’s still as popular as ever, thanks largely to a stellar location at the corner of Denman and Davie St., just a stone’s throw from English Bay Beach. It’s built on two levels, with a cluster of small tables on the top and curved black leather banquettes on the lower level, with a slippery tile ramp in between, and a gorgeous series of paintings that fill the back wall with an image of a sunset over rolling hills. Some of Vancouver’s most illustrious chefs have been through this kitchen; these days, it’s executive chef Nicholas Hipperson running the show. He celebrates local ingredients including beets from Pemberton, honey mussels from Salt Spring Island, pink salmon from Hecate Strait, and cheese from the Fraser Valley in dishes that combine simplicity with flair, and allow the natural goodness of the main ingredients to shine through. He still offers a 100 Mile tasting menu, where everything is grown, caught, or produced within 100 miles (161km) of the restaurant, and there is an impressive list of West Coast wines.