JG posted EnRoute's annual top new restos in Canada list and two Calgary spots made the top ten- and FOUR made their new "next 25" (which are akin to honourable mentions) list- this made six extolled out of 35, the same number as Toronto and Montreal and one more than Vancouver! Anybody who says Calgary hasn't arrived isn't paying attention!
The top 10, from JG's herald column:
1. Nu, 1661 Granville St., Vancouver, B.C., 604-646-4668
This year's winner combines cutting-edge West Coast style and a fabulous view of False Creek with an innovative menu of pork belly, goat-cheese stuffed chicken wings, fresh seafood and classic creme brulee.
- 2. Capo, 1420 9th Ave. S.E., Calgary, 403-264-2276
This 32-seat restaurant showcases Giuseppe Di Gennaro's sumptuous take on classic-contemporary Italian cuisine. Capo is a triple-E restaurant: exact, exquisite and expensive.
- 3. Dayboat, 5033 Rustico Rd., Hunter River, P.E.I., 902-963-3833
The best of PEI's seafood is served in chowders, under citrus glazes, in dumplinged stews and simply raw and fresh in what star chef Michael Smith says is the best restaurant in the Maritimes right now.
- 4. Cava, 1560 Yonge St., Toronto, Ont., 416-979-9918
This Mediterranean-influenced wine and tapas bar has become instantly popular in the neighbourhood surrounding Yonge and St. Clair in the heart of Toronto.
- 5. Rare, 1355 Hornby St., Vancouver, B.C., 604-669-1256
The first address to appear on the enRoute Best New list twice (Bis Moreno rated No. 2 here in 2003), Rare aims to hang around longer. The October menu features rabbit roulade, an Aldergrove capon and crab combo and a blackberry clafoutis.
- 6. Pintxo, 256 rue Roy E, Montreal, PQ, 514-844-0222
Small in size, but big in flavour, Pintxo's tapas impressed enRoute's reviewer. The food is Spanish with strong Basque overtones, the wines are Spanish too, and the prices are as lofty as the Plateau address.
- 7. Harvest, 106 Bridge St., Picton, Ont., 613-476-6763
Situated on the shores of Lake Ontario near Kingston, Picton is loaded with history and great access to Ontario produce. Harvest does a form of "country cuisine" that features duck rillette, local fruit, nuts and vegetables, and wines and ciders from just down the road.
- 8. Treadwell, 61 Lakeport Rd., Port Dalhousie, Ont., 905-934-9797
Moored at the St. Catharine's end of Lake Ontario, Port Dalhousie is being revitalized with farm-to-table eateries such as Treadwell. Named after the father-son team that own and operate the eatery, Treadwell features local products, including an array of Niagara wines.
- 9. Joe Beef, 2491, rue Notre Dame O, Montreal, PQ, 514-935-6504
Smaller than Capo at just 25 seats, Joe Beef is named after a real 19th-century Montreal saloon-keeper. Apparently the room is small, but the servings are huge and well-prepared, and the atmosphere itself is worth the trip.
- 10. Saint Germain, 115 12th Ave. S.W. (Hotel Arts), Calgary, 403-290-1322
The stylish Canadian-French restaurant attached to the Hotel Arts comes in for praise for its meats, its seafood and its desserts. Their dedication to local and seasonal products is admirable, too.