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5 delicious reasons to eat through The Big Taste foodie festival


February 28, 2018

Read the latest in our bi-monthly food and drink series, which rounds up eats, drinks and food news!

The Big Taste is back

Now in its 17th year, The Big Taste foodie festival gives Calgarians the chance to sample a variety of dishes from their choice of more than 90 participating downtown restaurants. 

Savour three-course and five-course meals at a fixed price

Three-course lunches are $18 or $28 per person, while dinners are $28 or $40. You can also participate in gourmet five-course dinners for $65.

Maggie Schofield, executive director for Calgary Downtown Association, says the festival gives Calgarians a chance to dine at many of downtown’s acclaimed restaurants for a great value.

Several restaurants are returning this year like Charcut, Teatro and River Café.

“All these restaurants like to show off and I don’t blame them,” Schofield says. “They’re really good at what they do and this is even a chance to step it up a notch.”

She recommends making reservations online as restaurants are busy during the festival.

Take in a signature event

Choose from 12 signature events taking place during the festival. Some of the options include a three-course brunch at River Café with wine pairings for $65, and an interactive dinner at The Tastemarket by SAIT on March 10 for $90, where guests sample from five different stations. At each station a chef will share tricks and preparation techniques.

“These are spectacular special events that highlight fantastic chefs and food in Calgary,” says Schofield.

Try a new restaurant

Pasta at Cardinale/Photo by Silvia Pikal.

Several restaurants that opened late last year or early this year are participating, including modern Italian restaurant Cardinale, Donna Mac, which focuses on sustainability and seasonal cuisine, and Elwood and the Rabbit, which offers elevated comfort food.

Win dinner out every month for a year

Share your pictures on social media with #BIGTASTEYYC for a chance to win dinner out every month for a year. The lucky winner will receive 12 $50 gift cards at 12 different restaurants.

Support Calgary’s restaurant scene

While Alberta is recovering from the recession, Schofield says restaurants still need the support of Calgarians.

“They have a lot of increased costs and are trying to provide not just great value but a wonderful experience and hospitality.”

The festival runs from March 2 to 11. Check out the full list of participating restaurants online.

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