The Discovery Room
Gourmet food, elegant presentation. A great place for a special occasion. The seafood taco trio appy was incredible!
Always a pleasure. Food was wonderful and service was good as well. Thank you once again.
Excellent service, food, presentation, all for a very reasonable price for fine dining.
High quality, delicious food that is beautifully presented. Top notch service and all with a beautiful view over Nanaimo.
We enjoyed seeing all the young people trying their very best to serve us although a bit crowded with that many students.
Daniel does an excellent job of managing the restaurant and ensuring guests needs are met. We appreciate that the wait staff are students and are learning their jobs. One suggestion is to encourage them to slow down and not be in such a rush with their communications, getting the bill paid, etc.
Overall, a good experience and we'll certainly go back.
Joan, thank you for sharing your feedback and I am so glad that I could help to ensure that your needs were met and that you had a good time. Thanks for reflecting back your experience around timing as it’s really good for the students to understand how their approach is received from the guest’s perspective. We’ll be focusing more on that in the course and look forward to seeing you on your next visit. Daniel
The service was great and we enjoyed the dining. Would have preferred a window table, but that would have been the only change. I think there was negotiating going on at next table, so that is why it was a bit noisey.
Great experience. I love watching students learn. The soup was fabulous, it was a cold night. We brought our own wine and the server struggled with our screw top bottle. That was amusing. The bread was fabulous too. I had paella and hubby a lamb shank. It is terrific quality for Nanaimo but we always hate the entrance as it feels like going into the dishwashing kitchen entrance and the washrooms were out of order too.
Fabulous meal! Loved the atmosphere and the view too!
The food and service are always excellent. I have never had a bad meal at the Discovery Room. It’s my favourite restaurant in Nanaimo. High quality meals that are very reasonably priced.
This is a very special place. The students are courteous and anxious to please. The food was well presented and very tasty. This is better than any restaurant I have ever dined at. We are from Thunder Bay Ontario and do not have a dining room that compares to the experience we shared here. We definitely will come back and will tell everyone how wonderful this was.
Great food and dining experience. Student servers doing a fine job.
Stellar service, attention to detail, cuisine, and vista over to The Mainland all made for the most perfect of dining experiences.
Everything was wonderful. Always a great experience.
The food, dining experience, ambience, view and the courtesy we received was fantastic. This is a great facility that we are very proud to have in our area.
Christmas music would have made our dinning experience more festive! Everything was fantastic. Special thanks to the incredible instructors and students who prepared our delicious meals.
Fine dining at a fraction of the cost! We are bona fide fans of the Discovery Room. Two visits here in the past couple of months, and we have another four nights booked.
Menus change weekly, with four of five appetizers offered, the same number of entrees, plus a selection of desserts. On a recent visit, I had a venison tartare amuse-bouche, smoked duck breast with fresh mango and peas three ways complete with pickled cherries, a tenderloin steak perfectly cooked with a morel mushroom sauce and vegetables, and vanilla panna cotta. Evertything is beautifully presented and perfectly cooked.
A limited but well thought out selection of wines is available, all with about a $10 surcharge over liquor store prices - $30 to $35 will get you a very decent bottle of wine. Bring your own special bottle, and they'll charge $10 corkage. Cocktails are also available for a very reasonable price.
Service is always friendly and attentive, but the servers are young students learning the trade, so it's not fair to be overly critical of their efforts. An instructor is always on hand keeping a watchful eye on everything, so all is good.
A true find! Highly recommended.
Very pleasantly surprised as I hadn't been to the Discovery Room in a few years - which brings me to my only on-going gripe. The lunch schedule make it very difficult for many/most faculty to take advantage of the opportunity to dine at the Discovery Room. The 11:30- 1:30 block inevitably conflicts with scheduled courses, faculty meetings, office hours. When I did have a possibility of dining, it came at a moments notice and upon calling, found reservations full. Perhaps I was not persistent enough. I am now "retired" and teaching only one course, thus I am able to dine with you, though even then it took until nearly the end of the semester to coordinate schedule's with my colleague and hustle up the hill (a bit late) to my class. On a positive note, I do like the ability to reserve on line - vastly superior to the previous phone message system. One suggestion - begin a half hour earlier, at least for a couple of consecutive days of the week which will help faculty fit the Discovery Room into their life.
We always enjoy our food and the service at the Discovery Room. In fact, I'd rather keep this gem a secret!
We enjoyed our visit and will book again. They provided a unique experience. Servers were lovely.
Great value for a well-crafted meal (under $100 for 2 apps, mains, dessert and 1 drink). I had the salmon, which was cooked to perfection, and my husband had the duck. Nice atmosphere and very attentive hospitality students asking how our dishes were and refilling our water glasses. Would definitely recommend! Make reservations at least 3-4 weeks before your preferred date/time.
My friend and I came for lunch. It was an amazing experience all the way around so we will definitely be back. Maybe dinner next time
Dealing with the staff made our meal very enjoyable. Good was fantastic. Perhaps a vegetarian option would be good.
We support the learning experiences of these students. Daniel does an excellent job of managing them.
The meal was excellent. The service was excellent. All four in our group had a great time. Thank you very much!
As usual, my group thoroughly enjoyed the Discovery Room lunch. The service was friendly and attentive and the food was absolutely delicious - all 12 of us cleaned our plates! We are huge supporters of this program and each dining experience is first class. We are blessed to have the venue in our fair city and will continue to visit any chance we get.
We had a delightful meal. The room was full but service was attentive and the food was beautifully presented--definitely instagram worthy if i was into that.
Excellent meal !
Parking is tough for old guys.
My need to find a young person to drive and have lunch with.
Looking forward to our next visit !
Ken and Michelle Lacroix
We always enjoy our visit to The Discovery Room. This time it appeared the servers were not quite as advanced in their training as in the past. It did not impact in our enjoyment of the meal.
Hidden gem in Nanaimo. One of the best restaurants with high quality food and friendly students
Excellent presentation and quality of food
Very happy overall
Lovely experience staff, food, ambience - all of it! Can't wait to go again!
We try to have lunch at the VIU Discovery Room at least twice each year, for special occasions. It is always a wonderful experience. The food is fantastic, the students attentive and polite. Everyone in the Nanaimo area should try this at least once.
Brought my daughter for the first time and we had a good time and a wonderful meal.
I love the students, as they work so hard to make it an enjoyable experience. Well done!
A group of 8 friends had a birthday dinner for one person in our group. This wasn’t our first visit to the Discovery Room. I like to support the program and students at VIU and we always have a delightful time.
The students are learning to serve and that’s why I only gave 4 stars for service. However they are trying their hardest to do everything correctly.
The food was exceptional in every way and very good value. We will be back again; thanks for an excellent evening!
We are so glad that you enjoyed your meal and found the food to be exceptional! Thanks for the feedback and we look forward to seeing you again. Daniel
Pretty good experience, however, this particular night some of the students needed more guidance regarding etiquette on plate removal and functional guidance on how to uncork wine. The students are doing their very best with the amount of instruction that appears to have been given to them at this early point in their education. We are understanding because these students are learning, so come with compassion and have a great night enjoying Fine dining with delicate but delicious portion size.
Thank you so much for your feedback Regis. We provide the students with extensive training before they serve in the Discovery Room (including wine opening) and your experience is a testament to their being no substitute for hands-on, real-time learning. Thank you so much for supporting our students and I hope to see you again as the students gain more confidence throughout the year. Daniel
Considering that the staff are all in training, they did a good job. However, don't expect the "fine dining" experience of an established restaurant. Cute little room with fantastic views. Elegant atmosphere, however, too many "bodies" (trainees) milling around to make it a truly fine dining experience. Food average for "fine dining", however one of the best in this neck of the woods.
Thanks for your feedback Renatam. I hope that we did not lead you to believe that the Discovery Room is a fine dining experience as we do our best to promote it as a learning laboratory intended to connect students with our community patrons. If there is any specific feedback on the food that we can share with the Culinary students please let us know as it is very valuable for their learning. We are glad that you enjoyed yourself and look forward to seeing you again. Daniel
A hidden gem; The Discovery Room delivers outstanding fine dining food at reasonable prices. Supporting the culinary and hospitality students while experiencing the eclectic menu and enjoying the best view in Nanaimo should be on every local's dining out schedule!
Thanks for your feedback Martin. We look forward to seeing you again! Daniel
As always excellent food and reasonable prices. We enjoy the ambience and will come back again.
Thank you for the service
Thanks for dining with us and supporting our students Raymond. We are really glad that you enjoyed everything so much. Daniel
Great food and there was a good selection of main courses. The included desert was very good. A nice touch was that alcohol wasn’t overpriced.