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Halifax

Hot Shopping for August

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TRADITIONAL ARRANGEMENTS
The Ikebana Shop on Quinpool Road creates beautiful floral arrangements in traditional Japanese design. Choose from an arrangement of fresh flowers or one with permanent botanicals of silk or dried blossoms. Take a lesson or join in on a demonstration or workshop. The retail shop offers flower containers, Japanese pottery, incense, tea, and apparel.

Hot Dining for August

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ASIAN ADVENTURE
BiOne Korean BBQon Quinpool Road is a compact dining room known for table-top barbecue and hot-pot. Large tables easily accommodate groups and its extensive menu is packed with authentic dishes such as kimchi, bibimbap, and ddukbokgi.
Long-standing Japanese stop Dharma Sushi on Argyle Street offers more than the name suggests. This simple environs serves up traditional hot dishes such as donburi, noodle soups, and gyudon, a beef and onion dish with a soy broth served on rice.

Hot Entertainment for August

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August 25 to 27
The talent behind classics like “The Canadian Railroad Trilogy,” “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald,” and “If You Could Read My Mind,” Gordon Lightfoot is a Canadian music legend. He visits the Dalhousie Arts Centre on University Avenue for a three-show stand.

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DINNER & A SHOW
Continuing
Someone Wake Paddy O’Brien at Grafton Street Dinner Theatre (page 21) is a rollicking high-energy show, featuring live Celtic favourites and pop hits aplenty. Alongside the performance, enjoy a three-course dinner, including offerings like seafood chowder, braised sirloin, and java cake.

Hot entertainment for July

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EDITOR”S PICK: TAKIN’ CARE OF BUSINESS
July 22
Co-founder of The Guess Who and Bachman Turner Overdrive, Randy Bachman has been a legend on the Canadian rock scene for decades. He plays an intimate solo show in the Schooner Showroom at Casino Nova Scotia on Upper Water Street.

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SOUNDS OF SUMMER
July 8 to 11
Back for its 67th year, the Maritime Fiddle Festival is a rite of summer, celebrating old-time fiddling in a variety of styles. This year’s lineup includes performances by Kimberley Holmes (July 8) and Ivan and Vivian Hicks
(July 9), plus dances, master classes, and competitions. The Dartmouth East Community Centre on Caledonia Road hosts.

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Summer Festivals
July 7 to 17: Spanning many seaside villages, the Peggy’s Cove Area Festival of the Arts celebrates local talent with several exhibitions and events. Visit Peggy’s Cove on
July 9 to 11, as dozens of artists descend on the village for Paint Peggy’s Cove.
July 7 to 10: During the Lebanese Festival, Halifax’s vibrant Lebanese community celebrates with art, music, food, games, and more. Visit Olympic Community Centre on Hunter Street.
July 9: At the Dragon Boat Festival on Lake Banook, dozens of paddlers race in colourful crafts to raise funds for amateur sport.
July 14 to 24: The Halifax Pride Festival is Atlantic Canada’s largest pride celebration; the colourful downtown parade on July 23 draws thousands of spectators.
July 27 to August 1: Dozens of magicians, comedians, acrobats, and street performers from around the world take over the downtown for the annual Halifax International Busker Festival.

Hot dining for July

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EDITOR”S PICK: GET OUTSIDE
Craft-beer mecca Stillwell opened its beer garden in June. This year the Stillwell Beer Garden moves from the Halifax waterfront to the bustling Spring Garden Road shopping district. In addition to pouring Canadian microbrews, the garden hosts Manual Food + Drink Co.’s pop-up dairy bar slinging soft serve and baked goods.

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SUPERB SEAFOOD
Halifax’s newest seafood spot, Shuck Seafood + Raw Bar on Salter Street, is known for lightly cooked and raw fare. The raw menu feature scallops and an array of local oysters, plus sashimi and ceviche.
After 70 years, the Shore Club in Hubbards boasts serving over one million of its world-famous lobster suppers. A fresh Atlantic lobster stars in the meal, supported by potato salad, and unlimited local mussels. Stick around for the Saturday night dance. July’s live acts include the Joel Plaskett Emergency (July 8) and the Mellotones (July 23).

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FIESTA FARE
Burrito Jax dishes up fast-casual Tex-Mex eats in three locations on Blowers Street, Kempt Road, and Sackville Drive, Lower Sackville. Customize your made-from-scratch burrito with chicken, beef, vegetables, or North Atlantic cod and toppings aplenty.

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WAKE AND BAKE
Quinpool Road brings the taste of Montreal to Halifax at the recently opened East Coast Bakery. This new spot doles out chewy, Montreal-style bagels laced with poppy or sesame seeds. Get there early for that hot out of the oven taste.
The city’s oldest independent bakery, Smith’s Bakery on Agricola Street, dishes up fresh bread, sweet treats, and fair trade coffee. Start your day in the cozy café with a breakfast sandwich topped with a local egg, tomato, and a house-made sausage patty, bacon, or ham.

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SOCIABLE
Dartmouth recently welcomed Downeast Beer Factory on Windmill Road. In addition to three house-made beers, this sizable pub serves local microbrews like Propeller and Nine Locks. The menu features pub grub classics like burgers and noodle bowls, plus a kid’s menu.
Agricola Street’s Timber Lounge is a lumberjack themed bar decked with raw wood and plaid. The bar features local taps and bottled beers, but axe throwing is the main draw. In a separate area from the bar, patrons throw full-size axes at a target. Fear not: staff are on-hand to train and supervise.

Shrimp dumpling, a very popular Dim Sum in Hong Kong
WOK ON THE WILDSIDE
Bedford Row is home to the city’s oldest Chinese eatery, Great Wall. The 30-some year old dining pick keeps locals coming back for Cantonese and Szechuan delicacies and old standbys such as ginger beef, eggrolls, and almond soo guy, plus a popular weekend Dim Sum menu.

Hot Shopping for July

web Bishops Landing 2WATERFRONT WARES
After a long walk on the downtown waterfront, visit the shops of Bishop’s Landing on Lower Water Street. For fine jewelry stop into Frida Custom Jewellry Design to purchase custom pieces. Or if you prefer jewels from the sea, Pearl City offers pearl pieces including necklaces, bracelets, and more. The locally owned and operated Alexa Pope has the latest fashions. And for some sweet treats, stop into Sugah for ice cream or candy or Rum Runners Cake Factory for a rum-filled dessert.

web 105_0572CANDY LANDS
Freak Lunchbox Barrington Street and in Sunnyside Mall in Bedford offer must-stop shopping for summer treats when out exploring the area. This colourful store is like a carnival filled with nostalgic sweets such as Pez, Cracker Jacks, and bottled soda from Pop Shoppe. Buy your treats in bulk from the selection or pick a pre-packaged favourite.
For gourmet treats or a basket of sweet goodies, stop into Sweet Jane’s on Queen Street. The staff here will put together arrangements for any tastes or celebrations. Try some gourmet truffles or a basket of retro candies.

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EDITORS PICK: FOR FOODIES
For your summer recipes, visit Liquid Gold in The Hydrostone in Halifax or in Sunnyside Mall in Bedford. All the oils here are extra premiums, fresh with unique distinctive flavours. Taste samples on site and have your favourites blended with your choice of balsamic vinegar.

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ICE CREAM, WE ALL SCREAM
The aroma of freshly made waffle cones will lure you to Cow’s Ice Cream in the Historic Properties on Lower Water Street. Get a scoop or two from a variety of flavours, including many with local ingredients and catchy names. But there’s more than ice cream here. Browsing the selection of bovine-inspired clothing, giftware, and novelties will mooove you with inspiration.
Located on Cornwallis Street in Halifax’s North End and at Peggy’s Cove, Dee Dee’s produces home-style, fresh ice cream, all with local and seasonal ingredients. Try flavours such as mango, shaker lemon, banana cardamom, and Mexican. Take a tub home for late night treats.

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SIZZLING STYLE
For summer fashions for men or women, shop at Colwell’s on Upper Water Street. Men can check out casual wear, including jeans, pants, t-shirts, or knitwear. Meanwhile, the ladies can browse for dresses, skirts, tops, or visit the selection in the Michael Kors Shop. Or pick up a hot summer look perfect for weddings or festivals.

Hot Shopping for June

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GIFTS THAT GIVE
The Pier 21 Gift Shop at the Canadian Museum of Immigration, on Marginal Road is the place to go for gifts from one of the city’s most unique museums. Get a ball cap for the kids, a book for the history buff, or a pewter gift for the collector. Its line of signature products, including mugs, passport covers, and key tags, are embossed with the museum’s logo.

At the Designer Craft Shop on Marginal Road, Nova Scotia Designer Crafts Council members display their works, including artistic etchings, silk clothing, and handmade jewelry. An expert jury approves every item in the shop.

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FRESH FROM THE SEA

Lobster is a treat year round, but pick up some fresh crustaceans at Clearwater on Bedford Highway or at the Halifax Stanfield International Airport for your summer gathering or barbecue. Other fresh offerings include clams, snow crab, scallops, shrimp, and masago. The airport location offers lobster securely and freshly packed for travel.

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LOVE LOCAL
Made in the Maritimes Artisan Boutique in Sunnyside Mall and the Hydrostone Market showcases boutiques of handmade goods, all produced by Maritime artisans. Its owners focus on a buy-local movement and source products such as funky art prints, whimsical handcrafted pillows, fashionable jewelry, and delicious food products.

To find local works of art, the AGNS Gallery Shop at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia on Hollis Street. Find unique and collectible pieces of sculpture, pottery, paintings and more. Maud Lewis is among the many local talents whose work is featured here.

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SUMMER STYLE

Sweet Pea Boutique on Queen Street has all the best summer dresses for any occasion. Find a basic style for everyday wear, flirtier frocks for weekends, or a cocktail dress for a wedding or other summer celebration. Choose from accessories such as shoes, jewelry, and hair pieces to complete your look.

Turbine on Upper Water Street or in Sunnyside Mall features the work of Canadian designer Lisa Drader-Murphy. There are dresses and tops for all tastes. Browse the belts, shawls, and skincare collection too. Try on the Zain dress, a innovative style that can be worn six different ways. Locally made jewelry and hats round out this boutique’s fare.

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BEST BAUBLES
Featuring designs by artists from Nova Scotia, Canada, and Israel, Bedazzled in Sunnyside Mall
offers eye-catching jewelry for your summer outfits. Look for brands such as Toni XO, Earth Goddess, and Wendy Jack. Occasional trunk shows give the designers a chance to show off their latest collections.

Hot Dining For June

Photo: Jessica Emin

Photo: Jessica Emin

DRINK UP
Beer lovers rejoice! Jamieson’s Irish-House & Grill on Cumberland Drive in Dartmouth boasts 16 taps. Irish favourites share space alongside local craft beers from Propeller, North Brewery, Tatamagouche, and Unfiltered, as do house offerings Jamieson’s IPA and Jamieson’s Special Dark Ale.

Craft cocktails abound at Lot Six (page 61) on Argyle Street. The menu travels through space and time. The 1794 Fish House Punch from London, England, contains Appleton Jamaican rum, cognac, peach brandy, lemon, and black tea. Don’t miss oyster happy hour from 4pm to 6pm daily.

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BREAKFAST OF CHAMPIONS
Waffle Love on Kaye Street knows that a light, airy waffle is the key to culinary bliss. The compact menu features a traditional waffle with maple syrup, a fruit covered waffle, or sweet toppings like Skor or Oreo crumble.

For heartier fare, try the weekend brunch buffet at Athens Family Restaurant on Quinpool Road. Known for Greek cuisine, this casual spot presents an all-you-can-eat option starring breakfast stalwarts like bacon and eggs, alongside fresh fruit, perogies, fish cakes, Greek sausages, and more.

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ON THE RUN
Backoos Korean ToGo Food on Birmingham Street is a nook featuring only a counter and three stools for people awaiting pick-up orders. Deep-fried chicken dominates the menu, which also includes traditional sides like kimchi (fermented cabbage salad) and japchae (sweet potato noodles).

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA


BURGER BONANZA

Relish Gourmet Burgers celebrates local history with location-specific burgers at each franchise. Quinpool Road serves the Halifax Explosion topped with fresh pineapple, pancetta bacon, curried onion, and aged cheddar. At Larry Uteck Boulevard, diners can toast the street’s eponymous college-football coach with the Couch-U: topped with balsamic jalapeño blueberry preserves, bacon, crispy pickled peppers, and cheese curds.

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LET THEM EAT STEAK
Nothing says big night out like steak. The Keg on Market Street is a long-time favourite, known for classics like the applewood-smoked bacon wrapped tenderloin or the New York strip.

Candle-lit Cut Steakhouse on Salter Street presents USDA prime beef that’s aged and butchered in-house. The à la carte menu invites diners to add a range of sides to their steaks, from frîtes to bread pudding to pan-seared beets.

Hot Shopping for May

LOCALS LOVE IT
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Tom and Marla Dorward have owned Halifax Folklore Centre on Brunswick Street since 1971. Since then, they have provided musicians and music lovers in the city with a shop where stringed instruments are bought, sold, traded, and consigned. The knowledgeable staff can help clients shop for just about any instrument.

GET GIFTED
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Jennifer’s of Nova Scotia on Spring Garden Road showcases the best work of more than 200 artisans from around the region in its store. Artisans include Cheticamp Hookers, Amos Pewter, Grohmann, Nancy Postman, and many others. Find products for the home such as dishes, cookware, and food, or products for yourself such as bath and body items and jewelry.
Kept Gifts and Housewares, an independently owned and operated boutique on Portland Street in Dartmouth, houses a vast and eclectic collection of handmade and local products. Much of the stock features a Maritime artisan flair. This is a source of well-crafted gifts perfect for any occasion.

SPRING BLING
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To add some heat to your spring wardrobe, visit Fireworks Gallery on Barrington Street. Here, a team of resident goldsmiths will create a distinctive piece of jewelry for your collection. Bring in your ideas, photos, or magazine clippings to help make a piece that includes the best gold, silver, platinum, or gemstones. Designs are created using a combination of Old World techniques such as engraving and filigree with innovative technology.

CENTRE STROLLS

MicMac Mall for Ivanhoe Cambridge 2013

MicMac Mall for Ivanhoe Cambridge 2013

Mic Mac Mall in Dartmouth is one of the region’s largest shopping destinations. Anchored by The Bay, it boasts 120+ shops, including Winners and Homesense, Gap, Old Navy, Peoples, and Lush. Have a break at the food court on the third floor.
On the Halifax side, Halifax Shopping Centre
on Mumford Road is undergoing a transformation, bringing its guests a quality selection of shops and services, all within a new and bright renovated space. Retailers such as Mac, Sephora, Banana Republic, Hollister, and Michael Kors have all set up shop here.

Outdoors In

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It’s the perfect time of year to explore the great outdoors. Take it Outside in Dartmouth Crossing or Upper Water Street is the place to get geared up for those spring adventures. Suit up with jackets, pants, footwear, backpacks, and more.
Women on the go will love Lolë on Upper Water Street for its spring collection of active wear. Check out their line of organic cotton clothing with fresh looks for spring, including tanks, capris, jumpsuits, leggings, and tunics.

C IS FOR COOKIE
Susie Shortbrea
If you love homemade baked treats, visit Susie’s Shortbreads on Upper Water Street and Chain Lake Drive. Take home a dozen cookies or cupcakes, a cake, candy, mini cheesecake, or a frozen treat. All of the sweets are baked from scratch using fresh ingredients. Cupcake batter and cookie dough are available, too, so you can make the treats at home

Hot Dining for May

Canada’s Best
Primal
Selected by the editors as one of Where Canada’s Best New Restaurants for 2015, laid-back Primal Kitchen on Brenton Street features a dream menu for meat-lovers. Everything is house-made using primal cuts (the pieces first separated during butchering) of meat. Don’t miss the many craft beer options or the well-curated wine list.

A NIGHT ON THE TOWN

Durty Nelly's

Durty Nelly’s

    Ready to up your date-night game? Stories restaurant at The Halliburton hotel on Morris Street presents a casual attitude amid an upscale environment. Start with rice paper wrapped scallops and finish with a decadent blackberry-brown butter tart.
    For an upbeat evening of eats and entertainment, try The Carleton Music Bar & Grill on Argyle Street. The menu features an eclectic mix of pasta, pub fare, and share plates. After you eat, stick around–this nightspot features live music and comedy shows.

    GRAB A GLASS
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    Irish pubs aren’t just for St. Patrick’s Day anymore. Drop into Durty Nelly’s for a local craft beer or a pint of Guinness and some hearty Irish nosh like stew or bangers and mash.
    Dartmouth visitors should try The Celtic Corner on Alderney Street for a friendly pint. A varied menu boasts savoury pies and pasta dishes. Stick around to watch the latest football match or some live Celtic music.

    AFTERNOON DELIGHT
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    Explore the Halifax Waterfront in the morning and stop at Bishop’s Landing for lunch. Its diverse eateries will suit any taste. Try Ristorante a Mano if you’re hungry for Italian cuisine, or Hamachi Steakhouse Bar & Grill for unforgettable Asian fusion fare. After lunch, grab a coffee at the Smiling Goat Organic Espresso Bar or cold-pressed juice at Juice Press Inc.

LET’S ROLL
Local chain Sushi Nami Royaleweb IMG_2985, located downtown on Dresden Row, is known for its fresh ingredients and varied menu of traditional Japanese fare. Try the okonomiyaki, an Osaka-style cabbage pancake served with mayo and miso soup.
Wasabi Sushi on Quinpool Road is a hit for its happy hour menu featuring two- and three-roll maki combos and deals on libations. The atmosphere at this cozy spot is a mix of simple modern style and Japanese accents.

LAZY SUNDAY
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Celebrate the weekend with a sumptuous brunch at Cora
(page 58) with locations around the city, including downtown on Dresden Row. Dishes at this spacious breakfast joint arrive piled high with artistically cut fruit. The popular eatery offers five locations in the municipality.

Stand-up city

web Bob Marleyweb JulieKimweb Dave HemstadThe Halifax Comedy Fest returns this month for its 21st year, showcasing top international comics alongside East Coast up-and-comers. From April 27 to 30, some 30 comedians will perform 14 shows at venues around the city.

Returning for his third appearance at the festival is Bob Marley. With a wry take on daily life, Marley is always a fan favourite. He hosts the All Star Show on April 28 at Casino Nova Scotia and performs at the Gala of Laughs on April 29 at the Spatz Theatre.

This year sees the return of another long-time favourite, as Rich Hall comes back to Halifax’s stages for the first time since 2007.

Rich Hall, along with his trademark sour expression and cantankerous gravelly voice, appears at the All Star Show on April 28 at Casino Nova Scotia and the Gala of Laughs Finale on April 30 at the Spatz Theatre.

Also on the calendar is two-time Canadian Comedy Award nominee Julie Kim. She’s a mainstay of the country’s stand-up circuit, appearing on national TV and radio, and plays shows from coast to coast. She performs at the Opening Gala, Laugh@Lunch, and Gala of Laughs.

Local fans are also excited to see emerging star Aisha Alfa at this year’s festival. Born in Nigeria and raised in Canada, she won Winnipeg’s Funniest Person with a Day Job, was a finalist for NBC’s Stand Up for Diversity, was one of the first Toronto Bob Curry Fellowship recipients from Second City, and was regional finalist for SiriusXM’s Canada’s Next Top Comic. Her TV appearances include The Second City Project, Superchanel’s Too Much Information, MTV’s Degrassi: The Next Generation, and the Emmy Award winning Odd Squad on PBS. She also co-hosted on Much Music’s Video on Trial.

This Hour Has 22 Minutes veterans Mark Critch and Cathy Jones—local favourites—along with Elvira Kurt, Tim Steeves, Trent McClellan, Chuck Byrn, John Sheehan, Erin Foley, Caitlin Langelier, Marito Lopez, Adrian Cronk, Chris James, John Cullen, Mayce Galoni, Graham Kay, Ivan Decker, Rob Bebenek, Jean Paul, Michelle Shaughnessy, and Nathan Macintosh.

Casino Nova Scotia on Upper Water Street hosts the Opening Gala on April 27 and All Star Show on April 28, while the Spatz Theatre at Citadel High School on Bell Road is home to the Gala of Laughs on Friday, April 29 and Gala of Laughs Finale on April 30. The Lower Deck Pub in the Historic Properties hosts a double feature of matinee shows on April 30.

The festival also includes two nightly Not Made for TV shows at Yuk Yuk’s Comedy Club at the Westin Nova Scotian Hotel on Hollis Street from April 28 to 30. You can also sample the comedy with a free Laugh@Lunch show at the Halifax Central Libraryon April 29.

 

For tickets and schedule information, surf to halifaxcomedyfest.ca.

Hot Dining for April

How sweet it is

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Towering cake slices and intricate cocktails top the menu at The Middle Spoon Desserterie and Bar Think of an old-timey speakeasy with dessert. Baked goods are made in-house and sure to delight. The cocktail list is extensive and loaded with fresh ingredients. The menu also features soups, salads, and sandwiches.
Styled like a sumptuous boudoir, The Sweet Hereafter Cheesecakery does only one thing, and does it well. The flavour list is sizable, with a smattering of vegan and gluten-free options. Pair your dessert with some locally sourced java or a glass of milk.

Bar bites

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Craft beer and comfort food play well together at Stillwellon Barrington Street. This contemporary craft-beer haven is known its wide array of local brews and hard to find options from across the country. The food menu changes with the season and the burger is always a popular choice.  The Local on Gottingen Street boasts a warm pub vibe for a laidback hangout. In addition to carrying a house beer made by neighbouring Propeller Brewery, the menu features pasta dishes, pub grub, and plenty of vegetarian choices.

Catch of the day
Make a trek to Peggy’s Cove before tourist season heats up. After visiting the famous rocks, grab some grub at the Sou’Wester Restaurant and Gift Shop. This homey eatery is renowned for its seafood chowder and house-made gingerbread.Housed in a century-old former fire station, McKelvie’s Restaurantoffers familiar and novel seafood fare. An array of lobster and fish platters lets dinners try all that Nova Scotian seafood has to offer. Premium Black Angus steaks round out the menu.

Local favourite
A mainstay of the downtown dining scene, the Great Wall on Bedford Row has dished up Cantonese and Szechuan delicacies for some 30 years. Locals love the Dim Sum, served on Sundays from 11:30am to 3:00pm. Arrive early to ensure you eat your fill.

Editor’s choice

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A recent addition to downtown Dartmouth’s craft-beer scene, Battery Parkon Ochterloney Street brings two Halifax fixtures across the harbour and under one roof: beers from North Brewing Co.and eats from the culinary team at Brooklyn Warehouse. The menu stars mezes-style share plates that dinners can customize with breads, cheeses, meats, and seafood.

That’s using your noodle
Star Anise Vietnamese Noodle Restaurant is a simple spot specializing in big, steaming bowls of pho. Try it with rare beef, which cooks in the broth at your table, beef balls, or tripe. On the side you’ll find lime, fresh basil and coriander, green onion, bean sprouts, and hot sauce to make your bowl your own.