“When did Calgary become a secret foodie paradise?” is something I’ve wondered to myself many times since I moved here.
I often travel for food, and Calgary wasn’t even a blip on my culinary radar until I arrived. Thankfully, if you’re a food lover in this town you’re in luck! The food scene here is exploding with so many exciting eats, events and people.
2011 was definitely a year to remember, as it saw several new and innovative restaurants pop up, two local chefs, Connie DeSousa of Charcut Roast House and Rebekah Pearse formerly of Nectar Desserts, compete for the title of Top Chef Canada, and the launch of the YYC Food Truck craze.
Step into 2012 and here we are with another contender for Top Chef Canada, Xavier Lacaze of Muse Restaurant and Lounge, and when Western Living Magazine announced their “40 Foodies Under 40: Class of 2012” six Calgarians were on that list.
While we’re on the topic of accolades, Where Magazine had their “Where to Dine” Awards recently, in celebration of Calgary’s top eats of 2011 and many of the winners and finalists will be participating in Calgary’s Dining Festival, The Big Taste from March 2-12, including:
“Best Overall” Charcut Roast House , who was also a Finalist in the “Canadian” category.
Vintage Chophouse won the “Alberta Beef” category.
River Café took top prize in the “Canadian” category, Home Tasting Room was a Finalist and Blink received the Staff Pick.
Rush was the Staff Pick for “Dessert.”
The Old Spaghetti Factory was the Staff Pick for “Family Fare.”
Teatro and Muse were Finalists for “Fine Dining,” with Sky 360 taking the Staff Pick.
Bistro 2210 and Laurier Lounge were Finalists for “French” and the Staff Pick was Bistro Piq Niq.
“Gourmet Burger” Finalist was Buchanan’s Chop House & Whisky Bar and Staff Pick went to Trib Steakhouse.
“Hotel Dining/Bar” winner was Chef’s Table, while Finalists were Raw Bar and The Rimrock and the Staff pick was Thomsons Restaurant.
“Indian” winner was Mango Shiva.
Bonterra Trattoria was a Finalist in “Italian” and Staff Pick was Osteria de Medici.
Double Zero was a Finalist in the “Pizza” category.
“Seafood” winner was Catch & The Oyster Bar, while Bookers BBQ Grill & Crab Shack was a Finalist and the Staff Pick went to Embarcadero.
Vin Room was a Finalist for “Tapas/Small Plates.”
Special Categories included “Seafood Sustainability,” which was won by The Rimrock and “Best New Restaurant” (Editor’s Pick) went to Ox and Angela.
It’s going to be be an incredible line up for this year’s Big Taste, March 2-12, 2012! If you love food don’t miss out on your chance to indulge in this once a year opportunity.
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