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Hot Dining

Top 5 Saucy Secrets

Photo by Ian McCausland

Photo by Ian McCausland

Anyone who’s been guarding a family bolognese recipe will tell you that a pinch of the right secret herb or spice takes a good dish to transcendent heights. These spots have some tricks up their sleeves when it comes to the perfect condiment.

Breakfast, brunch, and lunch at Clementine are divine, with inspired ingredients elevating morning fare. The fried beets, accompanied by jewel yellow, turmeric-heavy curry aioli are a must-have side dish. 123 Princess St, 204‑942‑9497, clementinewinnipeg.com

Beef may be 529 Wellington‘s bread and butter, but the pan seared black cod (pictured) is one of the best fish dishes in town thanks to chef Fraser McCleod’s sweet and briny mirin butter sauce. 529 Wellington Cres, 204‑487‑8325, 529wellington.ca

The silky, slowly simmered bolognese at Italian eatery Cibo gets its rich, savoury depth from veal stock. 339 Waterfront Dr, 204‑594‑0339, cibowaterfrontcafe.com

The butter chicken sauce at East India Company is good enough to eat by the cup—luckily, bottles of the rich, tomato-based curry are available for purchase for home cooks. 349 York Ave, 204‑947‑3097, eastindiaco.com

Golden, buttery hollandaise sauce is a brunch essential, and Stella’s version, packed with strands of dill and ladled over lox eggs bennie on rosemary scones, is the stuff of all-day love affairs. 166 Osborne St, 204-453‑8562; Plug In Gallery, 460 Portage Ave, 204‑772‑1556; Centre Culturel Franco-Manitobain, 340 Provencher Blvd, 204‑477‑8393; Kenaston Village Mall, 1895 Grant Ave, 204-488‑7810; 116 Sherbrook St, 204-477‑5556; James Armstrong Richardson International Airport, 2nd floor, 204-779-1415; 1463 Pembina Hwy, 204‑275‑2001, stellas.ca

Hot Dining: Now Open

Photo courtesy of Khao House

Photo courtesy of Khao House

New charming West Broadway spot Khao House is making waves with crave-able Laotian comfort foods, like steamed buns, fried chicken and naem khao (pictured). 126 Sherbrook St, 204‑783‑3642, khaohouse.com.

Gourmet burger joint Nuburger, a local favourite for creative toppings and healthy ingredients, is joining the ranks of stellar dining options at The Forks Market, with a shortened menu of signatures. The Forks Market, 1 Forks Market Rd, theforks.ca

Newly renovated and revamped, Carne Italian Chophouse delivers impressive eats in a slick downtown atmosphere. Chef Michael Dacquisto’s menu incorporates classic Italian dishes from grilled octopus to veal marsala, along with a collection of creative sides. 295 York Ave, 204‑896‑7275, 295york.ca

Hot Dining: Flipping Burgers

Photo by Ian McCausland

Photo by Ian McCausland

The team behind slick spot Nuburger has given fast food a gourmet makeover, with dressed-up beef, chicken, bison, and veggie patties boasting wild toppings like house made boursin cheese and blueberry barbeque sauce. Committing to local sourcing, choosing to make everything in house, and ensuring all napkins and take out containers are compostable has set this burger joint apart. By working towards a greener, healthier, tastier world, Nuburger proves that the humble hamburger just might be the ultimate superfood. 472 Stradbrook Ave, 204-888-1001; 1-1650 Kenaston Blvd, 204‑615-2009, ilovenuburger.com

Top 5 Restaurants with Live Music

Photo courtesy Prairie Ink Restaurant

Photo courtesy Prairie Ink Restaurant

Dining is not just about taste; get the other senses involved at these restaurants, which offer live music in harmony with mouth-watering flavour.

Prairie Ink Restaurant (pictured), inside McNally Robinson Booksellers, hosts sweet music every Friday and Saturday night. Acoustic crooners and jazz trios are the backdrop to healthful eats like kicky curried spaghetti squash. Reservations preferred. 1120 Grant Ave, 204‑975‑2659, mcnallyrobinson.com/restaurant

Hip venue The Good Will slings java during the day and sates late night cravings with slices from Little Pizza Heaven. Indie rock, jazz, and hip hop artists usually take the stage. 625 Portage Ave, 204-221-1577, thegoodwill.ca

Excellent pub grub, like indulgent pulled pork poutine, makes Le Garage the place to lounge. Consistent live shows range from local legends to open mics. 166 Provencher Blvd, 204‑237‑0737, garagecafe.ca

Expert musicians tickle the ivories at swanky Palm Lounge inside the Fort Garry Hotel while the kitchen plays with on seasonal, scratch-made fare. Jazz and classical piano is de-rigeur, often with a talented vocalist joining in. 222 Broadway, 204‑942‑8251, fortgarryhotel.com/dining

Winnipeg’s stellar jazz scene can be found at Nicolino’s every week at the Wednesday Night Hang. Budding musicians and seasoned pros share the stage, while diners sample rustic Italian cuisine. 2077 Pembina Hwy, 204‑269‑5004, nicolinosrestaurant.com

Hot Dining: Now Open

Photo courtesy The Forks

Photo courtesy The Forks

The eagerly awaited renovations to the Forks Market Food Hall have transformed the space into a sleek and modern dining hall complete with communal tables, attention-grabbing light fixtures, and black accents. Anchoring the room is The Common, a craft beer and wine station offering local pours in flights presented on a board shaped like our province. Other new venues include Fusian Sushi and Argentinean spot Simon’s Cuisine, as well as a new rotating food stall, NEXT, which acts as a permanent pop-up, showcasing a different local chef or restaurant every month. A few remaining expectant stalls guarantee that more good eats are in the works. 1 Forks Market Rd, theforks.com

Top 5 Riverside Dining Locations

Photo courtesy The Forks

Photo courtesy The Forks

Winnipeg was built around the convergence of the Red and Assiniboine Rivers, and these waterways have provided everything from trade and industry to a place to canoe and kayak to the city’s residents over the years. Take in the city’s signature streams from these idyllic spots where beautiful food is matched with stunning river views.

Just outside the city, The Gates on Roblin shows off the prairies’ pastoral side. Lush riverbanks are visible from the atrium of this converted country estate, which serves local ingredients like bison, beets and pickerel. 6945 Roblin Blvd, 204‑224‑2837, thegatesonroblin.com

The Forks is the place to be on warm summer evenings when the breeze off the rivers hits The Beachcomber’s patio just right. Diners share seafood dishes like mussels swimming in smoky ancho chile sauce. 1 Forks Market Rd, 204‑948‑0020, thebeachcomber.ca

Ice cream parlour Sargent Sundae‘s proximity to the quiet footbridge that crosses the Assiniboine River into Assiniboine Park makes it a popular pick. 2053 Portage Ave, 204-832-5021

A scenic drive along the Red River leads to Half Moon Drive In in Lockport, where the menu of hot dogs, burgers and ice cream is the stuff of family traditions. 6860 Henderson Hwy, 1-204‑757‑2517, halfmoondrivein.com

Set right on the Red River, Cibo Waterfront Café provides one of the best views of the city’s skyline as backdrop for sumptuous arancini and bruschetta. 339 Waterfront Dr, 204‑594-0339, cibowaterfrontcafe.com

Hot Dining: Now Open

Photo by Alexandra Johnson

Photo by Alexandra Johnson

The hotly anticipated Oh Doughnuts shop has opened its doors with 12-16 wild flavours that change daily. With flavours like torched lemon meringue, chai glaze, and vegan maple whiskey “bacon”, best to arrive early for a fully stocked case. 326 Broadway, 204‑615‑0802, ohdoughnuts.com

The team behind nationally recognized tapas spot Segovia has branched out into the brunch game. Breakfast and lunch locale Clementine Cafe is set to inject culinary adventure into morning routines, through items like fried chicken on toast with pimento cheese spread and bittersweet ribbons of squash (pictured). 123 Princess St, 204‑942‑9497, clementinewinnipeg.com

New downtown destination La Roca serves light, fresh Mexican fare in a sleek space. Stop by for a trio of tacos or an excellent margarita on the unique rooftop patio. 155 Smith St, 204‑615‑9605, laroca.ca

Hot Dining: Cute Creperie

Owners Phil Salazar and Candy Lam. Photo by Ian McCausland

Owners Phil Salazar and Candy Lam. Photo by Ian McCausland

Entrepreneur Candy Lam first encountered Japanese-style crepes while making buying trips to Asia for her clothing store. With the help of her husband, Phil Salazar, Lam re-imagined the crispy, cone-shaped versions of the beloved French pancake for Winnipeg. With unique sweet and savoury fillings and names like “Pump Up the Yam” and “It’s-A-Smore”, Kawaii Crepe shows how fun and food go hand in hand. 201-99 Osborne St, 204‑415‑2833; Unit D-1220 St Mary’s Rd, 204‑691‑3700

Hot Dining: Now Open

Peg Beer Co. photo by David Wakeman

Peg Beer Co. photo by David Wakeman

Peg Beer Co., the latest venture from Nicole Barry, former CEO of local Half Pints Brewing Company, has opened its doors in the Exchange District. A one-time warehouse turned skatepark is now home to this convivial brewpub, where craft beer is joined by family-style feasts. Chef Aron Epp’s menu takes inspiration from the earthy, farm staples of past generations with shareable spreads and ingredients pulled from Manitoba soil. 125 Pacific Ave, 204‑416‑2337.

Saperavi is the first Georgian restaurant to open on the prairies. The bright 2nd floor space serves Caucasus specialties like khinkali, a spiced meat filled dumpling, and shashlik, meat grilled on skewers. 709 Corydon Ave, 204‑416‑3996

Editor’s Pick: Top 5 Hidden Gem Restaurants

Folio Cafe courtesy CMU

Folio Cafe courtesy CMU

These little-known, out of the way, or surprising locales offer stellar eats for city explorers.

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Hot Dining: Eat Glocal

Chef Hu Guoguang, owner Tony Chow, and chef Pan Yewen. Photo by Ian McCausland.

Chef Hu Guoguang, owner Tony Chow, and chef Pan Yewen. Photo by Ian McCausland.

Like many first and second generation immigrants, owner Tony Chow of North Garden Restaurant has incorporated Manitoba ingredients into traditional recipes. The result is serendipitous Canadian-Chinese fusion food. During pickerel season, the local lakefish is simmered in a light and fresh watercress soup, stir fried with gaai laan, and bathed in rich chile oil. For North Garden’s customers, each meal is both familiar comfort and culinary adventure, often within a single menu page. 6-33 University Cres, 204‑275‑2591

Editor’s Pick: Top 5 Kid Foods Reimagined

Photo courtesy Marion Street Eatery

Photo courtesy Marion Street Eatery

With gourmet renditions of homey dishes on trend, chefs are getting in touch with their inner child. These childhood favourites are all grown up.

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