Restaurants in Calgary
Calgary's affluence has meant a restaurant boom that encompasses nearly every worldwide cuisine, so eating out in Calgary can include a range of experiences. The city's specialty is Alberta beef, which is generally acknowledged to be some of the best in the world, but expect to see elk or bison on the menu as well. There are a range of great international options as well, from sushi and Asian to French and Italian cuisine.
The best Calgary restaurants are generally located within easy distance of the city centre, and are concentrated in three areas: the Eau Claire district on Prince's Island, with trendy hotspots like Joey Tomato's, Prego Cucina Italiana and River Cafe; the chic 4th Street and 17th Avenue Mission district, offering cosmopolitan choices like Towa Sushi, Fleur de Sel and Mercato; and the downtown area that includes Chinatown and the Stephen Avenue pedestrian mall with restaurants like Ruth's Chris Steakhouse, Saint Germain and The Core.
All restaurants in Calgary are smoke-free, even outdoor dining areas. Nearly all restaurants will accept credit cards and Canadian cash, although some will take American dollars at their own discretion. The exchange rate is never in your favour, though. A service gratuity of 10-15% is expected and not included in the bill.
Joey Tomato's offers its uniquely Calgary take on Italian/Asian fusion, with a selection of pizzas, pastas, steaks and burgers. It's located in the trendy Eau Claire district on Prince's Island Park in downtown Calgary, near the river and convenient for pedestrians and bikers. The atmosphere is always bustling, with both indoor seating and an outdoor patio. Joey's is open Sunday to Thursday from 11am to midnight,and Friday and Saturday from 11am to 1am.
Address: 200 Eau Claire Market, 208 Barclay Parade SW
Telephone: (403) 263 6336
1886 Buffalo Café
Calgary's 1886 Buffalo Cafe specialises in one thing: breakfast. Locals know it as the place to go for hearty meals to start the day, including the hashbrowns, vegetarian chilli omelette, and breakfast burrito. It's housed in the former site of the Eau Claire and Bow River Lumber Company's offices, built in 1911, overlooking the trendy Eau Claire downtown district. 1886 is open weekdays from 6am to 3pm, and weekends from 7am to 3pm.
Address: 187 Barclay Parade SW
Telephone: (403) 269 9255
The elegant and upmarket Vin Room is a restaurant where everything is designed to complement the wine, from the decor to the menu. The food is predominantly tapas, with fusion options ranging from meat and cheese platters to bison short ribs, fish tacos, and oysters. Lunch entrees include choices like salads, pasta and steak. They have a number of interesting wines available, with small tasting options before you commit to a glass or bottle. The tables are close together and it gets crowded, so it's always a good idea to call ahead. Vin Room is located in the chic Mission District. It is open Sunday and Monday from 4pm to 11pm, Tuesday and Wednesday from 11:30am to midnight, and Thursday to Saturday from 11:30am to 1am.
Address: 2310 4th Street SW
Telephone: (403) 457 5522
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