Winnipeg, Manitoba has a growing food culture with lots of delicious spots around the city with more popping up each week. The list of where to eat in Winnipeg was extensive and didn’t match up to the 4 days I had in the city and my tiny stomach.
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That said, if I had to do it all again, I would revisit these spots:
Blink as you walk by and you can easily miss the stairs down into Clementine, a brunch place located in the Exchange District. The menu, while small, offers up a variety dishes inspired by the flavours of the world from Spain to Turkey. While you can spot some classics like eggs Benedict and waffles, be prepared for a new take on these classics. They also have a fantastic collection of drinks from coffee to cocktails if you require something strong.
I opted for something a little bit different with the smoked arctic char which is served with crispy potato cake, créme fraîche, horseradish, cured dill cucumbers and boy was it delicious. Those crispy potato cakes were wonderfully crispy on the outside and soft and pillowy inside. The horseradish and cured dill cucumbers, while you can taste their presence, does not overwhelm the delicate smoked arctic char.
Being a small eater, I opted to not pick a side, but I did manage to snag a couple of their potato home fries (with salsa negra & lime mayo) from my dining companion to taste. The sauce served with them were fantastic.
I visited on an early Tuesday morning and there was no line, but I have been assured that it normally is quite busy. If you’re seeking an out of the ordinary breakfast and brunch experience, I would definitely recommend trying out Clementine.
123 Princess Street, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Weekdays 7 AM – 3 PM; Weekends 8 AM – 4 AM
Lunch: Market at the Forks
The Forks, the meeting place of Winnipeg, is one of their top places to explore for a visitor. Where the Assiniboine and Red rivers meet, there are lots of shops, restaurants and entertainment options. Typically when faced with places like these, my hopes are not high for good food, but I managed to find something tasty and unique.
Inside the market itself there are number of places to grab a quick bite to eat with offerings from all around the world. I opted to go with Bindy’s Caribbean Delights, one of the original market tenants. I opted to go with one of their roti filled with potato and vegetables. Turns out, they’re known for their roti which is thin and delicate. The restaurant makes the shells on site and sells them wholesale to stores and restaurants all over the world.
#151 in The Forks Market
1 Forks Market Rd, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Sat – Wed 9:30 AM – 9 PM; Thurs – Fri 9:30 AM – 11 PM
Having just been to Spain earlier this year, I was especially excited to try out Segovia after reading about its delicious food. Located in the heart of Osborne Village, Segovia is the sister restaurant of Clementine and serves up small sharing plates of Spanish inspired dishes for dinner.
On its menu you can spot classic Spanish tapas like patatas bravas, pan con tomate and Ibérico ham, but also a selection of contemporary dishes that shows off the chef’s creativity. Not to mention the daily specials which highlight fresh and local ingredients of the area. In fact, my favourite dish of the evening was their special of the day which was a gnudi with mushrooms.
Beyond the daily special, we also tried the patatas bravas, asparagus and snap pea salad with burrata, beef tartare, and a scallop ceviche. The beef tartare and scallop ceviche, while tasty in their own right, were overshadowed by the other dishes on our table however.
The patatas bravas, one of my favourite tapas and a must order whenever I see it on the menu, is reminiscent of the potatoes served at Clementine – crispy and doused in that wonderful sweet and spicy sauce.
I also enjoyed the asparagus and snap pea salad because who can go wrong with burrata? The subtle lemony and nutty flavours also came through making each bite interesting.
Our meal ended on a sweet note with churros con chocolate. While nothing like their counterpart I had in Spain, it was the perfect ending to a fantastic meal.
484 Stradbrook Avenue, Winnipeg, Manitoba,
Mon, Wed, Thurs & Sun 5 PM – 11 PM; Fri & Sat 5 PM – 12 AM
Dessert: Baked Expectations
Imagine a room with display case after display case overflowing with cakes in every imaginable flavour from lemon chiffon to red velvet to chocolate, each cake standing taller than its neighbour. This is Baked Expectations. With over 30 different types of on the menu, it’s really overwhelming to decide on just one. In the end my friends and I opted for two slices to share: deadly chocolate mousse and the mocha torte.
The deadly chocolate mousse was in fact deadly and I could only manage a couple bites of the overwhelmingly chocolate-ly dense cake. The mocha torte was much more to my liking with a good balance of coffee and chocolate which wasn’t too sweet.
Not in the mood for something sweet? They also have a selection of hot food like burgers and sandwiches, but really you’d be doing yourself a disservice by going to a place called Baked Expectations and not having something, well, baked. So get yourself a slice of cake!
I loved the 50s diner feel they have going on in the restaurant and I appreciate their punniness in their window displays. Baked Expectations is perfect if you’re seeking a sweet treat and have some baked expectations of your own.
161 Osborne St, Winnipeg, Winnipeg
Mon – Thurs 11:30 AM – 12 AM; Fri – Sat 11:30 AM – 1 AM; Sun 11 AM – 12 AM
Honourable Mention: Carnaval Brazilian BBQ
This place gets a mention because of its novelty. There is an absence of good Brazilian food in Vancouver so when I heard I was headed to a Brazilian BBQ restaurant as a part of the Little South America food tour held by the Exchange District BIZ, I was really excited. Staff come by cutting off pieces of meat from sirloin to beef ribs to lamb shoulder all seasoned and cook deliciously (called Rodízio). Using cards to signal yes or no, more and more food comes to the table until you tell them to stop.
I also loved that they were serving caipirinhas. I haven’t had a really good once since my Japanese-Brazilian friend introduced me to them when I was living in Budapest. This one was strong (almost too strong), but so delicious.
Accompanying the meal were also a selection of side dishes and vegetables so it wasn’t all just meat. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and everything was so tasty. I wish I could go again! Perhaps for a birthday.
270 Waterfront Drive, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Lunch: Thu – Fri 11:30 AM – 1:30 PM
Dinner: Mon – Thu 5 PM – 9 PM; Fri – Sat 4:30 PM – 10 PM; Sun 4:30 PM – 9:00 PM
So there you have it. Winnipeg in three meals, more or less. Whenever I think of my time in Winnipeg, these bites stand out to me as highlights and would be places I would return to in a heartbeat.
Have you been to Winnipeg? What places did you taste?
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