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Hot Dining, Part I

The newest hot spots, Calgary’s top 5 burgers, and where to find a taste of Canada

By John Gilchrist

Photographer: Blair Hill


The iconic Smuggler’s edges into the new decade with a modern re-do of one of their dining rooms and an all-appetizer menu. Pulled pork sliders, pecan-crusted goat cheese, wild boar bacon-wrapped tenderloin, and wonton-crusted prawns are plated for sharing and are all under $14. Tango Bistro makes Smuggler’s hot again.


A 12-oz. AAA Angus rib eye topped with truffled wild mushrooms and a fried organic egg, sided with organic matchstick fries, and served with a pint of Sleeman’s Honey Brown ale—the perfect Canadian dish for watching the Stanley Cup playoffs. Indulge at Thomsons in the Hyatt Regency.

The juicy house-ground sirloin burger at Buchanan’s. Photographer: Chad Shier


1    Buchanan’s
The house-ground sirloin burger at Buchanan’s has the downtown lunch crowd tossing their ties over their shoulders to avoid the juices. Fresh and meaty, it’s just the way a good burger should be.

2    Charcut
The Charcut “shareburger” is built and sold by the ounce. Got a group? Try a 20-oz. burger formed from dense sausage meat and topped with fried eggs. Slice your own chunk into a warm brioche bun.

3    Loungeburger
From elk to ahi, the Loungeburger team grinds it and grills it. The lamb is tempting; the salmon with a lemon-caper aioli is too. But there’s something about the prawn burger that’s simply sublime.

4    Saint Germain
Chef Grayson Sherman knows how to grind, build, and serve a burger. Not for the tame of palate or the small of mouth, this mountain of food will keep you busy for a long time.

5    The Eddie (Banff)
If you’re feeling flush and pumped with an alpine-sized appetite, try the one-pound Kobe-style burger served with a bottle of Phelps Insignia at The Eddie in Banff for $299. Or maybe just a bison burger for a lot less (6137 Banff Ave, Banff).

Photographer: Doug Taub


Cloaked in black and barn-board brown and with an open kitchen spewing meaty scents across the room, Charcut is the hot new place this spring. Mortadella cured in a pig’s head, tuna conserva drizzled with olive oil, ham made from lamb, rotisserie prime rib fork-tender and juicy—Charcut is about meat done with creativity.

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