These great restaurants in Calgary offer wonderful opportunities to sample the flavours of this cosmopolitan destination. The nearby Rockies give it a Wild West feel, and the city's nickname, Cowtown, says as much about the culture as it does about the food you'll be having. BBQ and roast meat are popular, but so are modern and international dishes.

    Upscale and chic is mostly the name of the game, and you'll want to try some of Calgary’s most popular steakhouses and lake-view spots for that. Incredible decor complements succulent steaks at these eateries. A few of its top breweries offer innovative and satisfying pub fare alongside delicious craft beers, too. Read on for ideas on where to eat in Calgary and what to try.


    Notable - The Restaurant

    Expertly seasoned, slow-roasted meats

    Notable, stylishly spelt ‘NOtaBLE’ and named after famed chef Michael Noble, is known for its slow-roasted meats and elevated Canadian dishes. Prepare to be lured in by lovely aromas coming from the wood-burning rotisserie in the open kitchen. Many go for their well-seasoned and succulent chicken and ahi tuna steak.

    The burger of the month – the Alberta bison burger – comes fully loaded and uniquely presented. If you’re here on holiday, try Canadian classics like flat-iron steaks and the Alberta lamb. Wash it down with the bartender’s featured signature cocktail creation using in-season ingredients.

    Location: 4611 Bowness Rd NW #133, Calgary, AB T3B 0B2, Canada

    Open: Thursday–Saturday from 11.30 am to 10 pm, Sunday from 11.30 am to 9 pm, Tuesday–Wednesday from 3 pm to 9 pm (closed on Mondays)

    Phone: +1 403-288-4372


    Charcut Roast House

    Poutine served fancy and meat roasted the Cowtown way

    Charcut Roast House is a notable rustic steakhouse in Calgary that’s all about the meats on offer. From roasts to steaks to elegant charcuteries, this is the place to sample Calgary’s cowboy spirit. The upscale roastery mixes town and country for an eclectic experience.

    Charcut goes full urban-rustic by offering artisan-farmed local food touched up with Italian and French flair. The cured meat and cheese on their charcuterie is mouthwatering, not to mention their famous butcher steaks. Get in the Canadian spirit by adding poutine with duck-fat fries to your orders.

    Location: 899 Centre St S, Calgary, AB T2G 1B8, Canada

    Open: Monday–Thursday from 11 am to 10 pm, Friday from 11 am to 11 pm, Saturday from 4 pm to 11 pm, Sunday from 4 pm to 10 pm

    Phone: +1 403-984-2180


    photo by Calgary Reviews (CC BY 2.0) modified


    Ten Foot Henry

    A rustic, vegetable-based dining experience

    Ten Foot Henry in Calgary offers a top-quality dining experience with a mostly vegetable-based menu. They've set out to give vegetables a new name by creating rich comfort food far from those plain boiled brussels sprouts. They’ve bridged the gap between what you want to eat and what you should be eating.

    Take the tomatoes and whipped goat cheese – a wonderful combination of sweet, tart, and bitter. You'll find many more creatively-presented dishes like it, and they all come in generous portions. The best part: you can leave with a full belly and be 100% guilt-free.

    Location: 1209 1 St SW, Calgary, AB T2R 0V3, Canada

    Open: Daily from 11 am to 11 pm

    Phone: +1 403-475-5537


    photo by Mack Male (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified


    The Nash

    Swanky cocktails and Canadian fare

    The Nash is Calgary’s home for roasted meats and seafood and is set in a century-old hotel. It sits in central Inglewood, giving it a charming mix of trendy and historic. The 'historic' part comes from its location in the National Hotel, a building more than 100 years old. The 'trendy' comes from the creative and delicious entrées it serves.

    Start with the winter squash gnocchi or baby red beet greens. The real draw is the eclectic meat dishes like the tamari-glazed duck breast and lamb T-bone. You can also add The Nash as a stop for a meal or a cocktail on the Music Mile, with live performances held every Thursday.

    Location: 925 11 St SE, Calgary, AB T2G 0R4, Canada

    Open: Friday–Saturday from noon to 10 pm, Sunday from noon to 9 pm, Tuesday–Wednesday from 4.30 pm to 9 pm, Thursday from noon to 9 pm (closed on Mondays)

    Phone: +1 403-984-3365


    photo by Jeff Hitchcock (CC BY 2.0) modified


    River Café

    A picturesque seafood restaurant on a quiet river island

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    The River Café is a relaxed fine-dining restaurant in Calgary featuring seafood and an extensive wine list. It offers a picturesque dining experience inside an old concessions building on Prince’s Island Park.

    You’ll have plenty of photo-ops here, but regulars often come for more than just the beautiful location – the Kolb Farms bison and succulent lobster will more than do the job. Seasonal and local ingredients paired with one of Calgary’s most attractive locations ensure a memorable experience. Don't skip dessert – their Earl Grey doughnut and chevre cheesecake are some of the most intriguing sweet treats you’ll ever try.

    Location: 25 Prince's Island Park, SW, Calgary, AB T2P 0R1, Canada

    Open: Wednesday–Friday from 11 am to 10 pm, Saturday–Sunday from 10 am to 10 pm (closed on Mondays and Tuesdays)

    Phone: +1 403-261-7670


    photo by Mack Male (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified



    Fine international dishes and homemade desserts

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    Alloy serves up a fine-dining experience in Calgary with worldwide influences. From Italian truffles to Japanese tempura and Mexican chipotle, the flavours here represent the chefs’ global travels.

    To make the most of your visit, try all 7 courses, which include dishes like bison striploin and truffle gnocchi. The seared tuna with togarashi aioli will satisfy any fish-lover, while the pistachio meringue or coconut panna cotta rounds the experience off nicely.

    Location: 220 42 Ave SE, Calgary, AB T2G 1Y4, Canada

    Open: Tuesday–Friday from 11.30 am to 2 pm and 5 pm to 9 pm, Saturday from 5 pm to 9 pm (closed on Sundays and Mondays)

    Phone: +1 403-287-9255


    Last Best Brewing & Distilling

    Pub fare and homemade brews

    Last Best Brewing & Distilling adds a twist to the pub-going experience in Calgary. Not only is the craft beer made in-house and paired well with the food, but it also comes in exciting new configurations. Servings of the tangy fried pickle chips often disappear before your eyes, and the braised pork and the pomodoro rigatoni are highly recommended.

    The 16-hour smoked brisket is for the Cowtown meat lovers, but locals know that Last Best is one of the best spots to share a pizza. Don’t miss the strange yet tasty gorgonzola and honey selections. Open late, it’s a great way to start (or end) the night in Calgary.

    Location: 607 11 Ave SW, Calgary, AB T2R 0E1, Canada

    Open: Friday–Saturday from 11.30 am to 2 am, Sunday–Wednesday from 11.30 am to midnight, Thursday from 11.30 am to 1 am

    Phone: +1 587-353-7387


    Chairman's Steakhouse

    Tender, juicy steaks in a romantic and intriguing atmosphere

    Chairman's Steakhouse keeps the flame-grilled tradition alive in Calgary and adds a chic twist to the steakhouse concept. Right away, you’ll notice the eclectic interior – a blend of a classic lounge and an open-concept space.

    Must-try dishes include the half-rack Alberta lamb and the Chilean sea bass. Don't stop at the meat and fish – add a gouda and bacon-drizzled potato rösti and an Old Fashioned to round out the experience.

    Location: 2251 Mahogany Blvd SE, Calgary, AB T3M 2V6, Canada

    Open: Monday–Wednesday from 4 pm to 11 pm, Thursday–Friday from 4 pm to midnight, Saturday from 4.30 pm to midnight, Sunday from 4.30 pm to 10 pm

    Phone: +1 587-291-9898


    The Lake House

    Meat and seafood with a gorgeous lake view

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    The Lake House is a fine-dining must for romantic dinners with a view in Calgary. Here, you can enjoy seafood and tender meat dishes prepared to order in a rustic, Rocky Mountain interior. Choose to sit on the outdoor patio for views of Lake Bonavista, or stay inside and dine near a roaring fireplace.

    For dinner, try the beef tenderloin or veal cheeks, and add the malted milk chocolate crème brûlée or banana churros for dessert. Come early for brunch to enjoy French-Canadian comfort food. The brioche French toast comes draped in strips of bacon alongside a serving of real maple syrup.

    Location: 747 Lake Bonavista Dr SE, Calgary, AB T2J 2M2, Canada

    Open: Tuesday–Friday from 11.30 am to 1.30 pm and 5 pm to 8.30 pm, Saturday–Sunday from 5 pm to 8.30 pm (closed on Mondays)

    Phone: +1 403-225-3939



    Sharing plates in a chic wine bar

    Pigeonhole is a Canadian tapas joint where you can expect a casual atmosphere, plenty of drinks and larger-than-expected ‘small’ plates. This wine bar has a welcoming rustic-chic theme that easily makes you want to stay awhile. You'll find ingredients fresh from the market in dishes like the ricotta dumplings or charred cabbage, as well as the more meaty lamb tartare and deboned confit duck.

    Get the most out of the experience by coming in as a small group – these dishes were meant to be shared. Pigeonhole is a wine bar at heart, but local beers also flow. Wrap it all up with an order of mille-feuille or lemon meringue.

    Location: 306 17 Ave SW, Calgary, AB T2S 0A8, Canada

    Open: Wednesday–Thursday from 5 pm to 11 pm, Friday from 5 pm to midnight, Saturday from 11 am to midnight, Sunday from 11 am to 4 pm (closed on Mondays)

    Phone: +1 403-452-4694


    photo by Mack Male (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified

    Benjamin Gorman | Contributing Writer

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