Congratulations to Jayme MacFayden and Kelly Black of BMeX Group (Ox & Angela, Una, Native Tongues, and Frenchie) on winning the Pinnacle Award for Canada’s Independent Restaurateurs of the Year, the onlynational recognition program of our $57 billion hospitality industry.
Two Calgary food-related businesses are listed as 2016 PROFIT 500 companies, Canada’s largest celebration of entrepreneurial achievement. Congratulations to Fiasco Gelato who come in at #62, and to Knifewear at #123. Impressive!
Chocolate success! Owners of Chocolaterie Bernard Callebaut, Cococo Chocolatier, were awarded six medals at this year’s Canadian National chocolate competition! Five new chocolates won awards: Dill Fusion Tablette, Alaea Mint, Maple Buttertart, Matcha Citrus, and Bee Pollen Gianduja, and one traditional – Coconut, all found at Cococo Victoria Park, Calgary. Cococo will now represent Canada at the International Competition.
Congrats to 500 Cucina for taking 1st place for their thin crust, and 2nd place for their gluten-free crust pizza at the 2016 YYC Pizza Week. Congrats also to Full Circle Pizza & Oyster Bar, who took 2nd place for their thin crust pizza, and to thick crust winners, Windsor Pizza (1st) and Matador Pizza (2nd).
New Calgary Spots
Mabou Cheese + Bar
For us cheese lovers out there, the Farm location on 17th Avenue SW has had a complete makeover, and is now reinvented as Mabou – and as you might expect (and hope for!) from Janice Beaton, it’s a bar with a cheese-centric menu.
Open every day from 4 p.m., it’s a good-looking spot with plump, silvery banquettes, and a wine wall featuring carefully curated wines from the everchanging list (at great prices!). Fear not, fans of Beaton’s mac ‘n’ cheese and grilled cheese – you’ll still find them on the menu, along with small plates of salad, meatballs, and charcuterie from Empire Provisions.
Mill Street Brewpub
Further east on 17th Avenue SW, Mill Street Brewery and Creative Restaurant Group have opened a microbrewery with a retail store and pub. This huge space has shiny fermenters and tanks as you enter (brewery tours start at 4 p.m.) and different areas to eat and drink, from community tables in the pub to the softly lit, private dining room.
Head brewer Bennie Dingemanse is producing exclusive brews for Calgary (ask about the story behind Pilsner Pursuit!) as well as showcasing Mill Street favourites – he’s aiming to brew a 100- mile beer!
Chef Glen Manzer’s menu means we’re in for elevated eats too; the menu is western Canadian, using spent grains and beer wherever possible, even in desserts. Our faves include the wild boar meatballs, cured trout with beets and tater tots, fish & chips with hop salt, and wild rice pudding with IPA caramel. Weekend brunch is also on offer!
Beneath The Guild on 8th Avenue SW is the very cocktail-focused Sub Rosa, a high-energy lounge/speakeasy only on Thurs/Friday evenings. Harking back to the days of private bars, this exotically plush room opens up in stages as it fills up. A DJ spins the tunes, but Sub Rosa is no nightclub – you’re coming here for Bar Chef Austin Purvis’ well thought out cocktails. Try “Funky Beets” with vodka and roasted beets, “El Chapo,” tequila and avocado with jalapeno and lime – or go big with the $50 “Dire Wolf,” a snifter of XO cognac, Chartreuse, Galliano, Bacardi 151 rum – and fire!
Peckish? Snack on bar bites of smoked devilled eggs, signature tacos, Big Country Nachos, or a house-made charcuterie board. Saturday-Thursday Sub Rosa hosts special occasion and private events.
Haysboro neighbourhood meat shop, Cured Delicatessen, has a far broader appeal, and is worth a visit wherever you live. Dale and Shaine Greene produce over 2,000 lbs of house-made meat and sausage per month – one of the largest selections of in Calgary – with over 50 varieties of fresh, cured and smoked sausages and salami.
You’ll also find homemade potato salads, breaded schnitzel, Hog Log (stuffed pork loin), quiche, and shepherd’s pie, and a selection of canned goods (including Salt Spring Kitchen Co’s candied jalapenos!), breads and cheeses. It’s bright and modern, yet homely, with room for 18 people to dine in for breakfast and lunch. Try Schnitzes Get Stitches (chicken cutlet jumbo Kaiser bun) and Belly of the Beast (with grilled Cajun-spiced pork belly), and for weekend brunch, go for chicken and waffles, with chocolate chorizo (!) and karaage chicken, or Banana Foster French toast.
New Edmonton eats
The Rec Room
There’s a choice of three different restaurants in The Rec Room, the new entertainment space in South Edmonton Common. After your next game of ping pong, pool, bowling or racing in the CXC car simulator, head to Three10 for the Canadian-inspired menu of woodfired dishes: B.C. mussels with pinot grigio butter sauce, organic B.C. salmon, wood grilled pork chops, and share some wood fired olives or smoked bacon caramel corn.
The Loft serves up salads and wood-fired pizzas, and if you’re still hungry, head over to The Shed for one of seven poutines or a donut that’s stuffed, glazed and served to order. Cool!
Oliver neighbourhood has an elegant new 36-seat cocktail bar at the base of The Pearl Tower. Andrew Borley, Evan Watson, and Jordan Clemens, along with Chef Roger Létourneau, are shaking, stirring, searing and sautéing their commendable, creative cocktails and dishes at the Art Nouveau-themed Bar Clementine.
This beverage-focused eatery features artisan wines and a choice of seven absinthes, but don’t overlook impressive menu dishes such as hot and horseradish deep-fried marrowfat peas, carrots dipped in amaranth and seabuckthorn seeds, melted Port Salut with candied beets and carrots, and jambonneau with cassoulet, apples, and sauerkraut. Be warned, Bar Clementine doesn’t take any prisoners – or reservations!