48 Hours of Gluttony: Best Edmonton Restaurants

Some posts on this site contain affiliate links, meaning if you book or buy something through one of these links, I may earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you!). Read the full disclosure policy here.

I love underdog cities, they tend to be friendlier and more interesting. Edmonton has character and a personality that is different than big brother Calgary. I had a great time discovering the best Edmonton restaurants.

While it was once called Deadmonton, that couldn’t be further from the truth. People are doing some really cool things here and it’s worth checking out.

Unfortunately, when the famous West Edmonton Mall moved into town it crushed the downtown. It’s a story that I’ve seen in cities all over North America.

But in the last few years entrepreneurs have worked together to rebuild a flourishing downtown, making it more interesting than ever.

Discover the best Edmonton restaurants with a free 22 page guide on where to eat in Edmonton Alberta

 

Best Edmonton Restaurants

Nongbu Korean Eatery, just one of the best Edmonton restaurants, Check out our 48 hour guide to see where to eat in Edmonton.

Nongbu

Located in the heart of Old Strathcona, I love everything about NongBu Korean Eatery.While vintage Korean films are projected on the wall, that’s the only thing you’ll find that’s old.

Owner John Ahn went to Korea to seek out what Koreans are eating now and is serving modern Korean street food and sharing plates.

Without a doubt it’s a must visit.

Bar Bricco

Our final and favourite stop in Edmonton, Bar Bricco reminded me of Toronto – small, dark and awesome food. Yet it didn’t have a bunch of people needing to “be seen” so maybe a better version of Toronto.

A 28-seat Italian wine and spuntini (snack) bar, you must get the Eggs Moliterno ‘Cacio e Pepe’ Crostini. This is a must-visit.

MEAT, just one of the best Edmonton restaurants, Check out our 48 hour guide to see where to eat in Edmonton.

MEAT

I loved the minimalist design in this locally owned and operated smokehouse in Old Strathcona, Meat is very popular for brunch. If you don’t like eggs benny you can also catch the regular menu.

I loved the beef brisket with sautéed onions, pickled and horseradish mayo. If you like quirky hats ask friendly staff to buy one of the trucker hats that say MEAT.

Farrow Sandwiches

There’s nothing better than a good sandwich.

It’s easy to be suspicious of the hype when you see a line-up out the door but Farrow has killer sandwiches.

An efficient team of three man the shop offering a few sandwiches that can change as you’re in line based on availability.

Unbelievably in the first 10 months they were open they served over 100 different sandwiches.

 

Tres Carnales, just one of the best Edmonton restaurants, Check out our 48 hour guide to see where to eat in Edmonton.

Tres Carnales

Normally I’d be wary of a taco joint in a smaller city but this is the real deal. Tres Carnales is run by 3 “homeboys” or carnales in Mexico, it’s a fun but authentic take on Mexican street food.

Sorry TexMex fans there are no nachos or burritos here.

I devoured the tacos al pastor; smaller, doubled up tortillas just like in Mexico. No soggy tacos here like at home.

Rostizado, just one of the best Edmonton restaurants, Check out our 48 hour guide to see where to eat in Edmonton.

Rostizado

Rostizado literally means roasted; this restaurant is the second venture of the guys from Tres Carnales and we loved that they opened a family style rotisserie.

It turns out everyone else loves it too, be sure to book a reservation as without one you may have to wait for dinner.

North 53

The cocktail craze has also made its way to Edmonton. While the city isn’t one that is open late into the run North 53 serves some of the best cocktails around the world and food until 2am.

Woodwork, just one of the best Edmonton restaurants, Check out our 48 hour guide to see where to eat in Edmonton.

Woodwork

A great place to stop for a drink and a bite, with an extensive cocktail list and a wood fired oven.

Woodwork is located in Edmonton’s historic McLeod Building, the interior is very modern with an open kitchen. Food is self described as a blend of southern US, French and barbecue.

Corso 32, just one of the best Edmonton restaurants, Check out our 48 hour guide to see where to eat in Edmonton.

Corso 32

Chef Daniel Costa’s first restaurant, Corso 32 is located next door to its sibling Bar Bricco. It is considered one by many as one of the best Edmonton restaurants.

The restaurant is small, intimate and always full so be sure to get a reservation well in advance. It’s hard to pick a favourite dish as Chef Costa does everything so well.

RGE RD

“At the Intersection of Farm, Food, and Friends,” Range Road is well known for its participation in the farm to table movement.

It opened it 2011 and quickly became a favourite, focusing on seasonal cuisine from Alberta farms.

Three Boars, just one of the best Edmonton restaurants, Check out our 48 hour guide to see where to eat in Edmonton.

Best Edmonton Restaurants We Missed

Three Boars

I really wanted to come here but ran out of time. Locally inspired small plates, and a place that doesn’t take itself too seriously. I’d love to come back on a Sunday or Monday for its Industry Night.

Prairie Noodle House

I have a lot of heart for restaurants that also started as pop-ups, unfortunately Prairie Noodle House was not open yet during my visit.

Best Edmonton restaurants, Check out our 48 hour guide to see where to eat in Edmonton.

Getting Around Edmonton

Like Calgary, Edmonton is an orderly city, which makes it easy for a traveler to understand where they are.

The axis of the city is 100 Street and 100 Avenue; as you go north the avenue numbers increase, as you go West they increase.

Edmonton has both bus and light rail transit (LRT). If you’re heading to the airport you can take route 747 by public transit, one of the shuttles or a short taxi ride.

Where To Stay in Edmonton

In the heart of downtown The Matrix Hotel has large modern rooms and an amazing breakfast buffet. I prefer to walk as much as I can and this was a great home base.

Read Reviews on TripAdvisor or Get the Best Rate with Expedia

Discover the best Edmonton restaurants with a free 22 page guide on where to eat in Edmonton Alberta

And if you’re also heading to Calgary don’t miss my Best Calgary Restaurants Guide.

What best restaurants in Edmonton did I miss? Where should I go next time? 

 
Disclosure: I created this guide as a paid partnership with Travel Alberta; however, I approached them with the 48 food guide idea and what Edmonton restaurants I wanted to visit. 

Join the Conversation

  1. Patrik Sonesson says:

    DARAVARA

    10713 124st
    Edmonton, AB

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Thank you SO much for contributing, tell me what you love about this place and what people should eat – we’ll revise the post to include your recommendations.

      1. Don’t forget about cool shops like Carbon Environmetal and Urban Timber Reclaimed Wood!

    2. I had a great brunch at the Duchess! That’s worth mentioning for sure!

      1. Oh hell yes. Duchess. I mean, wow. I have had something from Duchess on ever trip back to Edmonton in recent years. SO good.

  2. Shantastic says:

    Congrats on hitting every single douchey hipster place – minus Prairie which is the worst of all (seriously, who “interprets” ramen – it was my worst birthday lunch ever) – owned by 5 people. Maybe try again with REAL recommendations from people who actually give a damn. Edmonton has incredible food – I am sad you found the lowest common denominators for everything.

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      We love feedback even when it’s hater-ish. We are new to Edmonton so we’d love your thoughts on top 3 spots to visit and we’ll revise the post to include them.

      1. Steel Wheels by Whyte Avenue!- Korean Pizza!Grimy with graffitti all over the wall but my favourite place to go after some drinks on Whyte.
        Barb & Ernie’s – amazing German food and an Edmonton institution been going since I was a kid.
        Insert good douchey hipster place lol – RGE RD is good/Three Boars/Woodwork etc. there’s a lot of them and they usually have good food!

        1. B&E hey? If you wanna smell like grease for the rest of your day this is the place to be! Foods “meh” IMHO and not worth waiting for in the ridiculous Sunday morning line up.

    2. Agreed – be happy you missed Prairie Noodle – hands down the worst dining experience I have had ever. Food was over-priced and mediocre at best, 1 server for whole restaurant at lunch while the other owners/chefs/whoever they were stood around and the long common table! Nightmare – the 2 loud/ dumb girls sitting beside us (as in hip to hip with us) were having the most disgusting conversation – not appropriate for public consumption. We won’t ever go back! If you want a noodle house, Ninja Club is where its at!

      The others on your list are good with Rge Rd being the best.

      And, no we aren’t related to Calgary – they are their own city just like we are our own city. Why do people try and make crazy comparisons – this isn’t the centre of the universe otherwise known as Toronto.

    3. I spent about 26 years living in Edmonton and I think a lot of these places are pretty interesting and exciting. Of course there are plenty of different options out there, but I’ve heard spectacular things about Rge Rd. I loved Tres Carnales on my last visit back home.

      Others in the thread here mention Barb & Ernies (which is about as anti-‘hipster’ as you can get)and I used to go all the time when I lived in Edmonton, and it’s always fun but never really GREAT. Very HEAVY food, and frankly that’s the kind of eating that I feel defined Edmonton food for a long time.

      Padmanadi vegetarian food has been a longtime staple of the Edmonton food scene, and I hear amazing things about it from family and friends. Though I haven’t been in some time, I always liked the Golden Rice Bowl for Cantonese food and Dim Sum. Chinese food is one of those highly personal things, but I liked it enough to have my wedding banquet there.

      As a last thought in response to the original comment, I’m curious what the ‘interpreted’ ramen was and what the problem was. Ramen is a pretty widely variable dish in Japan, with enormous regional variation. I mean, ramen itself is a Japanese interpretation of Chinese la mien (pulled noodles, 拉麵). Obviously taste is king, and if you didn’t like it then that’s 100% fair, but I don’t think there’s a problem with making variant or interpreted ramen in general.

      Anyway, glad to see some other choices (and some interesting debate) popping up in the comments. 🙂

  3. Janice MacDonald says:

    While you are digesting your food between classy meals, why not pop over to Audreys Books and buy an Edmonton novel? Perhaps a mystery novel set in Edmonton?

    And think about going to see a show — Edmonton’s theatre scene is fabulous.

  4. Wow, you hit a lot of great spots here in Edmonton! So glad we got to meet when I came out to Toronto a few months ago. Hope you can make it out this way again some time now that we’re open at Prairie Noodle. Loka was fantastic!

  5. Love seeing some love for my hometown. Edmonton is pretty underrated, and has some great restaurants to check out. I’ve been to a few of the ones you listed but still need to checkout Farrow, Woodwork, Corso 32, and RGE RD. Some of my favourite Edmonton restaurants include Duchess Bakeshop (a French-style bakery and cafe), Battista’s Calzones (they just have calzones but they’re so good), Sloppy Hoggs Roadhus (delicious BBQ and southern food), Syphay (a Thai and Laotian restaurant), and Dadeo’s (Cajun cusine and they have the best sweet potato fries in the city).

    1. Amen to Dadeo’s! Love the southern diner vibe.

  6. Doug McLean says:

    Thanks for sharing and diving into our good scene here in Edmonton. My only objection? We are far from a younger sibling to Calgary. Different cities, yes, but sorry we won’t defer like that to our southerly neighbours.

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Fair enough I think that’s a good argument. Would you think it’s appropriate to say it’s a more boisterous sibling?

      1. Doug McLean says:

        Calgary as boisterous? Yes, that’s a fair way to put it. We here are guilty of being understated but in many ways it’s one of the city’s best attributes. We’re lucky in Alberta…two unique, similarly sized (1.3 million each) and great cities.

        Thanks for visiting ours! It was a really good piece you wrote.

  7. Darrell Bateman says:

    Edmonton is the “big brother” to our rivals down the QE2. founded in 1795 compared to Calgary’s later 1875 conception, In recent decades Calgary passed Edmonton in size though metro areas are pretty well neck and neck, While Calgary has a more “white collar” American western feel to it Edmonton has always been the magnet for immigrants from around the globe hence the more diverse vibe both in feel and cuisine….And while we come across as more subtle… our restaurant scene is moving fast and furious in many hidden pockets across the city and its surrounding suburbs…..Some FANTASTIC ways to sample a lot of Iconic Edmonton tastes is to hit “The Taste of Edmonton” in Sir Winston Churchill Square during the summer, Heritage Days in Hawrelak Park, Our Food Trucks around the city and booths during the worlds second largest Theatre Festival in August “Edmonton International Fringe Festival” Right behind the largest in another “E town”……Edinburgh, Scotland Booths manned by iconic restaurants from across the city to show our city’s true love of food and style. Summer is a 3 month long festival of food, culture and fun here in the Northernmost major city in North America! I lived in Vancouver and Glasgow and have traveled to 27 nations on this rock we all call home seeing 6 continents and Edmonton is one gem that is on the rise in regards to being a destination. I am so glad I moved back home!!!

  8. Linda Chang says:

    I have been to many of the restaurants you mention and agree that they are all lovely. I would just like to add some restaurants: Boualouang (Lao food in Chinatown), Narayanni’s (South African Indian in Old Strathcona), and Izakaya Tomo (authentic Japanese). Also, the Matrix, where you stayed, hosts a fabulous restaurant: Wildflower which has wonderful appetizers (I get 2-3 of them instead of a main).

  9. Extremely great read & very well written. I agree with almost all of your selections & comments. For future consideration, try Izakaya Tomo, Prairie Noodle House & especially vivo.

  10. All of these restaurants are great. Nice work! Thanks for highlighting Edmonton! Here’s a few additions worth checking out.

    El Cortez – I don’t know what the deal is, but Edmonton has been knocking out great tacos lately.
    Sugerbowl – Who cares if people get judgemental about hipster places. Hipster places have great food and beer. Like this one. Plus the High Level Diner is pretty much next door.
    Donairs/Green Onion Cakes – These foods ARE Edmonton. Eat them wherever/whenever you can.

  11. Ruth Donovan says:

    The Bauernschmaus( off 99th Street) is a well-kept secret family-run Austrian restaurant with a summer patio and some of the best hearty meals and most delicious traditional deserts in the city. Clean kitchen, interesting decor, and consistently good food- try the paprika hendl, and the sacher torte or strudels- great side salad comes with meals. Good idea to make reservations- not fast food, but can accommodate a big family get together- save room for exceptional deserts. A long-time favourite with locals.
    Address: 6796 99 St NW, Edmonton, AB T6E
    Phone:(780) 433-8272

    See also The Upper Crust, who have good deserts too- a great salad selection, and interesting entrees. outdoor patio in summer, near University on 86th off 109th Street. Monday night poetry readings /open stage at theThe Stroll of Poets Society “Poets Haven” series Sept-March in the back room.

  12. Don’t forget to check out tzin wine and tapas chef Corey Maguires bacon dish will keep you coming back for more

  13. damien gensanne says:

    I’ll do the same for my next Travel in Marrakech ! 😀
    It will be here : http://riad-alma-marrakech.com/

    Thanks for this good article 🙂

    Damien

  14. Phew! Some fierce love and debate here. As a former YEGGER avec un bebe, I can’t sing the praises of the kiddo-friendly eateries of Dirt City. My three hands-down faves are: The Sugarbowl, Juniper Café & Bistro and Little Brick. I loved this piece and great job – makes me excited for my next return to visit our family there. SO.MUCH.GOOD.FOOD!

    1. Thanks for adding your thoughts on that bit! I’ve got two little ones who (thankfully) can stay with the grandparents at times when I’m back in YEG, but it’s wonderful to have options that include them too. The Sugar Bowl was always a favourite when I was a student at the U of A, but I’ll have to hit it up with the wee ones too. As for the other two, I didn’t know about them at all – so they’re going on the list!

  15. I never considered Edmonton a food destination, but you’ve changed my mind!

  16. The Curious Creature says:

    I’ve never been to Alberta — this may change that 🙂 Bar Bricco sounds like my kinda place

  17. Marie-Pierre Breton says:

    That’s it! I”m convince, I have to visit Edmonton ASAP! Nice post!

  18. Carole Brown says:

    you have managed the impossible – I am now very tempted to hop on a plane and go to Edmonton!

  19. Oh my you’ve sparked some debate with these comments! Always fun to read a post on the city you are living in. Edmonton is definitely in a revival and there is lots to love, with an interesting tension between the old and new (as highlighted in these comments). I guess they call that growing pains! There are so many fantastic young, passionate food entrepreneurs that one can only hope the future remains bright for Edmonton’s food and drink scene.

  20. Colleen Milne says:

    I haven’t been to Edmonton in years. (And I live in Kelowna, BC, not far). But you make me want to go there and just eat for an entire weekend! Thanks for posting.

  21. I am PSYCHED that you posted this. Though I live in Vancouver now, Edmonton is my home town and I’m back there pretty regularly. But having moved away in 2008, I feel pretty behind on the food scene. A LOT has changed since then – I think Edmontonians have realized that they have some incredible local ingredients and culture to work with, and the culinary world is really growing up and hitting its stride. When I get back home to visit I try to get out to explore the new stuff, but it’s always tricky tracking things down and figuring out what to do with your limited time. I’ve been to Tres Carnales and I agree, it’s amazing. Even that bottle of Analogue 78 Kolsch at Woodwork got me excited – I love that beer! This article is my new to-do list!

  22. Mardi (eat. live. travel. write.) says:

    Goodness gracious, what a wonderful list. I’ve only even been to Edmonton once for a conference and didn’t have time to check out the food scene but this makes me think I need to get back there asap!

  23. Your comments about a good sandwich are well understood by fellow food lovers. Your stay at the Matrix Hotel, with their delicious breakfast and ambiance, must have topped off this experience.

  24. Having gone back to school, I can’t afford to eat at most of these places, but from when I used to go out more, there are a few places I would recommend. Someone already commented on Boualouong, and I couldn’t agree more. Their food is delicious. Their stuffed chicken wing appetizer is a must-have everytime I go. I also love Three Amigos more than Tres Carnales. Tres Carnales is designed to be a fast-food type atmosphere, so they want you in and out. If you want somewhere to hang out, Three Amigos is better (the southside location especially) and is actually run by 3 brothers from Mexico and who all do the cooking. You also get more food–rather than just 3 tacos, for a few dollars more, you’ll get rice and beans on the side, so you actually get a full meal. The Pagolac is one of the best places for a variety of Vietnamese dishes, and they have delicious salad rolls and beef satay soup. I’ve been going there for years. Little India in Mill Woods is an amazing place for Indian food as is All India Sweets & Restaurant. Langano Skies dishes up authentic and delicious Ethiopian food. I love their spicy lamb, red lentils, and spinach dish with farmer’s cheese served with injera. I also second Bauernschmaus and Barb & Ernie’s. I love the fact that we have these wonderful news chefs with kitschy restaurants to keep Edmonton’s culinary scene interesting, but there’s a reason why some of these other restaurants have stayed in business so long. Anyone visiting Edmonton should be checking out some of these older, established restaurants as well.

    As a native Edmontonian that’s also a foodie, I have long been aware of how little people know about our amazing restaurant scene.

  25. Wow, you hit a lot of great spots here in Edmonton! So glad we got to meet when I came out to Toronto a few months ago. Hope you can make it out this way again some time now that we’re open at Prairie Noodle. Thanks for posting.

  26. Kristen Betts says:

    I just love this place. Vegetarian & vegan spins on Indonesian, Thai, Chinese & Indian dishes served in a simple setting.

  27. Taylor Ronald says:

    Great article to read. This guide will help me to choose the best restaurant without spending much money.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Close
© Copyright 2021. Bacon Is Magic. All rights reserved
Close