When an award-winning chef names "imagination" as his most treasured possession, you know the food here is likely to be creative, if not exquisite. The seasonal menu uses only local ingredients, revealing Asian influences. Think poached B.C. salmon paired with barbecued eel and a Japanese rice-cabbage roll; buffalo short ribs braised with fennel and star anise and served with wild-mushroom bread pudding; or free-range chicken with a wasabi-pea crust. The wine cellar is
full of hard-to-find Vancouver Island wines and Okanagan labels. Sleek lines, warm colors, and water-view windows create a room that's both stylish and cozy. Plus, Aura has the city's best waterfront patio when the weather is cooperative.