As Alberta’s capital city, Edmonton always has a lot on its plate; especially when it comes to its culinary scene (see what I did there?). Read on for five must-visit new spots in Edmonton:
Uccellino (pronounced oo-che-LEE-no. Say it with me now, oo-che-LEE-no!) is the newest venture from Edmonton’s Chef Daniel Costa, and oh, it’s a tasty one. The chic-yet-casual spot is right in the heart of downtown, making it the ideal place for a bite after a day out on the town.
The food is inspired by southern and central Italian cuisine: simple and rustic, elevated with high-quality ingredients and traditional recipes. The décor is fresh and clean, bright and airy. It’s the kind of place that you should go to with a few friends, so you can order a nice assortment of dishes (the portions are generous!) and share over an entire evening. You can also go there solo and get a good spread just for yourself. Don’t worry, the folks at Uccellino won’t judge. After all, it’d be a shame to miss out on a single bite.
Tucked away in the Oliver neighbourhood on Jasper Avenue, Bar Clementine is a hidden gem that is worth the search. The restaurant only seats 36 people, and the beautifully designed and decorated space has the feel of a classic Parisian bistro; especially around the bar.
Speaking of which, the bar itself is a highlight. Watching the mixologists work their magic on the cocktails is mesmerizing and almost as satisfying as consuming the drinks. Almost.
Of course, there are more than just cocktails at Clementine. The restaurant, named one of the best in Canada, is also known for its thoughtful menu, which changes regularly based on the season and availability of ingredients. While you’re there, try the Rye Sourdough Tartine, Stuffed Aveyron Pancakes, and Manzanilla PEI Mussels.
In the Mercer Building in Edmonton’s arena district, you’ll find Baijiu (pronounced bye-Joe) – an epically cool spot serving up Asian-inspired plates and clever cocktails. Baijiu translates to “booze” in Cantonese, so you know there are some good drinks to be had.
From the old-world Shanghai chic décor to the nothing-but-hip-hop soundtrack, neon signs, and burning incense, Baijiu oozes style. It’s the perfect place to grab a bite and just chill.
Feast on the Devilled Tea Eggs, Sichuan Confit Chicken, Grass-Fed Beef Carpaccio, and Pork and Shrimp Lion’s Head Dumplings. Wash it all down with a Last Days in Vietnam (a Southeast Asian-inspired cocktail with a spicy togarashi rim).
If brunch is your jam, Café Linnea, located in Holland Plaza, is where it’s at. The restaurant is brought to you by the same folks who are behind Duchess Bakeshop, so it’s no surprise that everything on the menu is incredible.
Both the space and the cuisine are Scandinavian-inspired with a bit of a French twist. The room itself is adorned in pale wood, brick, and furnished with mid-century modern-inspired pieces, and the skylight and long windows flood the space with natural light, highlighting the gorgeous greenery that is sprinkled throughout the restaurant.
The menu is just as refreshing as the décor. The chefs really focus on locally-sourced, fresh ingredients, and make everything they can in-house. On your way out, grab some goodies to go: crusty loaves of sourdough, scratch-made sausage, house-smoked bacon, tomato jam and pickled mustard seeds can be added to your order so you can have a little taste of Linnea even after you leave.
The food you’ll eat while you’re there, however, is the real deal. Some of the best-selling dishes include the House Gravlax (served on top of a beet and potato pancake), Chicken Pot Pie (topped with a perfectly poached egg), and Complѐte Galette (a buckwheat crepe topped with ham and gruyѐre, an egg, and greens), but you really can’t go wrong with anything on the menu.
The Holy Roller, located on Edmonton’s picturesque Crawford Block in Old Strathcona, is essentially a three-in-one establishment. First, you walk into the café, greeted by antique furniture, comic books and a big counter that is a perfect place to watch the staff prepare gorgeous coffees.
Next, mosey over to the bar area (complete with gumball machines and a pineapple mosaic at the entrance) for a show on its own. The bartenders’ signature cocktails are clearly influenced by the tropics, with fun names and exotic ingredients to boot. If you know what’s good for you, you’ll try the Sacred Heart (gin, acho, reyes, Thai chili, cucumber, and lime) or the Bird Flew (Chilean pisco, Strega, carrot, ginger, black pepper, cardamom, lemon, and egg white). Or both.
Last (and certainly not least!), the main dining area at the back of the Holy Roller is bright and fresh, adorned in tropical wallpaper, plants, neon signs and a giant panther. Yes, a giant panther.
The large garage doors open to the back lane, allowing patrons to enjoy a little bit of people-watching while indulging in Chef Rafael D’Alcazar’s international-inspired dishes. The menu changes seasonally, of course, but items like the Risotto with Zucchini Blossom, Watermelon Ricotta Salad, and Detroit-style pizza are sure to satisfy anyone’s hunger pangs.