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restaurants

Now Open: Brazen Hall

Courtesy of Brazen Hall.

Courtesy of Brazen Hall.

Winnipeg’s craft brewing scene has exploded recently, with new breweries popping up all over the city. Brewpub Brazen Hall is the latest joy for homegrown hopheads. This well-designed Fort Garry spot styled with rustic wood, plush leather, and gleaming geometric fixtures opened to instant approval from pub lovers who now fill the space with lively chatter. A crisp blonde ale and peppery bière de garde are now on tap with more varieties brewing in the tanks on site. Superb suds are complemented by a fun menu of twists on pub favourites, like gussied-up burgers and wings, as well as filling pastas and brawny meat dishes.

  • 800 Pembina Hwy, 204‑453‑7980

5 Restaurants for Wine Lovers

Courtesy of Fusion Grill

Courtesy of Fusion Grill

Calling all oenophiles: these restaurants are must-visits for wine lovers of all stripes.

At DeLuca’s Cooking School, sip specially paired wines provided by attached DeLuca Fine Wines while chef Anna Paganelli demonstrates how to prepare elaborate Italian dishes. Call for class schedule and to register. 950 Portage Ave, 204‑774‑7617, delucas.ca

529 Wellington, Winnipeg’s most lofty steakhouse, maintains its elevated reputation with an award winning wine list so thick it could have been written by Proust. More than 800 selections pair with anything from porterhouse to prawns. 529 Wellington Cres, 204‑487‑8325, 529wellington.ca

Mona Lisa Restaurant is a top pick for comforting red sauce Italian fare in a sleek yet casual atmosphere. The adjacent cantina is perfect for variety-loving imbibers, with 20 featured wines offered by the glass. 1697 Corydon Ave, 204‑488‑3684, monalisarestaurant.ca

Fusion Grill stokes Canadian pride with its sophisticated use of regional ingredients, and local love doesn’t stop there. Owner Scot McTaggart (pictured) built an extensive wine list that is exclusively Canadian, and sure to win over even old-world enthusiasts to the Canuck terroir. 550 Academy Rd, 204‑489‑6963, fusiongrill.mb.ca

Forget hot cocoa—cap off a day of outdoor activities with a glass of vino at The Common at The Forks. Pours by the glass or in tasting flights are perfect to sip while relaxing in the food hall or even browsing the market’s upper level shops. The Forks Market, 204‑942‑6216, theforks.com

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Now Open: Two New Restaurants for Casual Cuisine

Photo by Mike Linton, Centric Productions

Photo by Mike Linton, Centric Productions

Popular board game cafe Across the Board outgrew its small space on Albert St and has moved into a bright location on the corner of Main St and Bannatyne Ave. The spacious new room, boasting high ceilings and picture windows, sees its game selection upped to more than 1000 offerings, and an expanded menu of snacks, appies, and entrées for hungry players to eat between turns. 211 Bannatyne Ave, 204‑691‑3422, acrosstheboardcafe.com

Tastes of the Mediterranean are the specialty at Agora Fine Foods. The spot, named after the ancient Greek market and gathering place, has plenty of reason to gather, from the shelves stocked with local and imported specialty foods to the sleek Indulge Bistro and Wine Bar that serves up Spanish, Greek, and Italian dishes in a smartly designed space. 1765 Kenaston Blvd, 204‑285‑4068, agorafinefoods.ca

Top 5 Souper Bowls

Cioppino at Cafe La Scala. Photo by David Lipnowski.

Cioppino at Cafe La Scala. Photo by David Lipnowski.

Soup’s on! In a city famous for winter, its no wonder Winnipeggers love to huddle up around steaming bowls of broth. These are the city’s most slurp-able.

Sana Souphouse is a haven for nearby office workers, with a comfortable interior and selection of soups both classic and novel. Try a bowl of the creamy cinnamon-scented red pepper bisque, or sample a flight of three varieties. 387 Graham Ave, sanasouphouse.com

Recent renovations have given Corydon Avenue mainstay Cafe La Scala fresh new digs, and the kitchen is equally skilled at updating the classics. Stellar cioppino piles tender seafood beneath a shimmery red stock, with a hit of Sambuca imparting modern edge. 725 Corydon Ave, facebook

Sherbrook Street Delicatessen has indecisive diners covered. A heaping bowl of mis mash soup has a little of everything–corned beef, matzah balls, veggies–thrown in. 102 Sherbrook St, sherbrookstreetdeli.com

A family-owned gem tucked into a St Boniface strip mall, Boun’s Restaurant serves a mix of Laotian, Chinese, and Thai cuisine. With hits of lime, roasted garlic, and cilantro, Laotian chicken noodle soup packs more punch than Granny’s and is equally sure to cure what ails you. 208 Marion St, facebook

Winnipeg’s French Quarter is the ideal place to find a bowl of French onion soup. Promenade Cafe and Wine offers a classic version with loads of gooey cheese. 130 Provencher Blvd, cafeandwine.com

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Now Open: Two New Restaurants with Old World Charm

Hunter chicken courtesy of Saddlery on Market.

Hunter chicken courtesy of Saddlery on Market.

Newcomer to the East Exchange District, Saddlery on Market, is paying tribute to the historic ‘hood with a gorgeous renovated room and a welcoming menu of comfort food. Modern-meets-heritage touches like barn board, brick, and pendant lighting decorate the space, with placards explaining the locations history as the site of the Great West Saddlery Company. Chef Michael Day does wonders with protein preparations, like delectable hunter chicken. 114 Market Ave, saddleryonmarket.com

Nose-to-tail eating finds a home at new St Boniface spot Bouchee Boucher. The cozy window-wrapped dining room is a backdrop to chef Alex Svenne’s concise small plates menu, which makes excellent use of prime cuts from the attached butcher shop. Items like braised lamb casserole with pomegranate and tahini show global inspiration. 101-300 Tache Ave, boucheeboucher.ca

Hot Dining: Crowd Pleasing

Photo by Ian McCausland

Photo by Ian McCausland

The RBC Convention Centre relies on organized efficiency. With a recent expansion having almost doubled the building in size, the food service team behind the scenes is busier than ever. For Executive Chef Quentin Harty, this means menu prep, purchasing, building relationships with suppliers, quality control, meeting with clients, and managing 85-90 staff. With hundreds, even thousands, of plates leaving the kitchen under his supervision, Harty must be sure his crack team is operating at full capacity. The seasoned chef enjoys the impact of cooking for a crowd: “whatever you can serve one person, you can deliver to hundreds.” 375 York Ave, 204‑956‑1720, wcc.mb.ca

Hot Dining: Now Open

Photo courtesy of Khao House

Photo courtesy of Khao House

New charming West Broadway spot Khao House is making waves with crave-able Laotian comfort foods, like steamed buns, fried chicken and naem khao (pictured). 126 Sherbrook St, 204‑783‑3642, khaohouse.com.

Gourmet burger joint Nuburger, a local favourite for creative toppings and healthy ingredients, is joining the ranks of stellar dining options at The Forks Market, with a shortened menu of signatures. The Forks Market, 1 Forks Market Rd, theforks.ca

Newly renovated and revamped, Carne Italian Chophouse delivers impressive eats in a slick downtown atmosphere. Chef Michael Dacquisto’s menu incorporates classic Italian dishes from grilled octopus to veal marsala, along with a collection of creative sides. 295 York Ave, 204‑896‑7275, 295york.ca

Hot Dining: Flipping Burgers

Photo by Ian McCausland

Photo by Ian McCausland

The team behind slick spot Nuburger has given fast food a gourmet makeover, with dressed-up beef, chicken, bison, and veggie patties boasting wild toppings like house made boursin cheese and blueberry barbeque sauce. Committing to local sourcing, choosing to make everything in house, and ensuring all napkins and take out containers are compostable has set this burger joint apart. By working towards a greener, healthier, tastier world, Nuburger proves that the humble hamburger just might be the ultimate superfood. 472 Stradbrook Ave, 204-888-1001; 1-1650 Kenaston Blvd, 204‑615-2009, ilovenuburger.com

Hot Dining: Now Open

Photo courtesy The Forks

Photo courtesy The Forks

The eagerly awaited renovations to the Forks Market Food Hall have transformed the space into a sleek and modern dining hall complete with communal tables, attention-grabbing light fixtures, and black accents. Anchoring the room is The Common, a craft beer and wine station offering local pours in flights presented on a board shaped like our province. Other new venues include Fusian Sushi and Argentinean spot Simon’s Cuisine, as well as a new rotating food stall, NEXT, which acts as a permanent pop-up, showcasing a different local chef or restaurant every month. A few remaining expectant stalls guarantee that more good eats are in the works. 1 Forks Market Rd, theforks.com

Hot Dining: Expertly Crafted

Chef Sean McKay by David Lipnowski

Chef Sean McKay by David Lipnowski

In his heritage enclave in the city’s theatre district, The Mitchell Block chef/owner Sean McKay is creating incredible culinary concoctions. Beneath a gentle, warm demeanor, rock solid ambition drives this young chef. His considerable kitchen prowess asserts itself in scratch made components: charcuterie boards loaded with meats, mousses, pâtés, terrines and gastronomic touches like shaved preserved egg yolks that add depth to traditional dishes. 173 McDermot Ave, 204‑949‑9032

Top 5 Riverside Dining Locations

Photo courtesy The Forks

Photo courtesy The Forks

Winnipeg was built around the convergence of the Red and Assiniboine Rivers, and these waterways have provided everything from trade and industry to a place to canoe and kayak to the city’s residents over the years. Take in the city’s signature streams from these idyllic spots where beautiful food is matched with stunning river views.

Just outside the city, The Gates on Roblin shows off the prairies’ pastoral side. Lush riverbanks are visible from the atrium of this converted country estate, which serves local ingredients like bison, beets and pickerel. 6945 Roblin Blvd, 204‑224‑2837, thegatesonroblin.com

The Forks is the place to be on warm summer evenings when the breeze off the rivers hits The Beachcomber’s patio just right. Diners share seafood dishes like mussels swimming in smoky ancho chile sauce. 1 Forks Market Rd, 204‑948‑0020, thebeachcomber.ca

Ice cream parlour Sargent Sundae‘s proximity to the quiet footbridge that crosses the Assiniboine River into Assiniboine Park makes it a popular pick. 2053 Portage Ave, 204-832-5021

A scenic drive along the Red River leads to Half Moon Drive In in Lockport, where the menu of hot dogs, burgers and ice cream is the stuff of family traditions. 6860 Henderson Hwy, 1-204‑757‑2517, halfmoondrivein.com

Set right on the Red River, Cibo Waterfront Café provides one of the best views of the city’s skyline as backdrop for sumptuous arancini and bruschetta. 339 Waterfront Dr, 204‑594-0339, cibowaterfrontcafe.com

Hot Dining: Now Open

Photo by Alexandra Johnson

Photo by Alexandra Johnson

The hotly anticipated Oh Doughnuts shop has opened its doors with 12-16 wild flavours that change daily. With flavours like torched lemon meringue, chai glaze, and vegan maple whiskey “bacon”, best to arrive early for a fully stocked case. 326 Broadway, 204‑615‑0802, ohdoughnuts.com

The team behind nationally recognized tapas spot Segovia has branched out into the brunch game. Breakfast and lunch locale Clementine Cafe is set to inject culinary adventure into morning routines, through items like fried chicken on toast with pimento cheese spread and bittersweet ribbons of squash (pictured). 123 Princess St, 204‑942‑9497, clementinewinnipeg.com

New downtown destination La Roca serves light, fresh Mexican fare in a sleek space. Stop by for a trio of tacos or an excellent margarita on the unique rooftop patio. 155 Smith St, 204‑615‑9605, laroca.ca