The 15 best restaurants in Edmonton

Known as the capital of beef, Edmonton is much more than that—as proven by the best local restaurants
By Nadja Sayej |
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Edmonton is the capital of Canada’s largest beef producing province, Alberta. It follows, then, that the local food scene is filled to the brim with BBQ smoked sandwiches and potato-based soul food. But foodies should expect much more than the typical meat-based dishes: Edmonton chefs step it up on a daily basis. The best restaurants in Edmonton are charming European-style cafes offering delectable takes on traditional foods, classic hotel eateries with a bustling scene and, in true Western Canadian flair, wood-clad eateries overlooking the stunning Rocky Mountains. It turns out, ladies and gentlemen, that eating in Edmonton is one of the very best things to do while in town.

Best restaurants in Edmonton

1
Edisto Beach
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Cindy N.

Three Boars

What it is: Just South of the historic High Level Bridge, this casual dining spot is a meetup for birthdays, first dates and after-work drinks.

Why go: Those craving a locally-inspired dish have found their heaven. Try the peach teriyaki wings alongside a Grandma Gwen cocktail, made with gin and cherry liqueur.

Price: Average

2
Corso 32
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Maeby T.

Corso 32

What it is: The ultimate steak in Edmonton can be found at this Italian restaurant, which is one of the city's fanciest dining hotspots.

Why go: Led by chef Daniel Costa, all ingredients are locally-sourced and all the pastas are made by hand. For a standout experience, try the local Chinook salmon mandorla or share the pasta tasting menu.

Price: Pricey

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3
Hardware Grill
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Melanie E.

Hardware Grill

What it is: With a homey vibe, this cozy restaurant offers traditional Canadian comfort food with touches of French and Italian classics.

Why go: Chef Larry Stewart presents a seasonal menu that includes French-Canadian foie gras and a crispy duck leg confit with cherry marmalade. Those seeking a more traditional flavor should opt for the very hearty (and very delicious) pastas.

Price: Pricey

4
Café Leva
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Marianne S.

Café Leva

What it is: This European-inspired cafe is part bakery, part wine bar and all around, above-average coffee house. They offer a wide selection of hot drinks, from the classic espresso to soy and milk-based specialties, in a chill setting overlooking the leafy downtown streets.

Why go: Their cappuccino is a legendary classic. Pair it with the sumptuous Neapolitan pizza and you’ve got yourself an oh-so-delicious lunch that you won’t soon forget.

Price: Bargain

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5
Lock Stock Coffee
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Bonnie A.

Lock Stock Coffee

What it is: This rustic coffee house has been a city staple for years, offering a quiet getaway in which to pull out your laptop and catch up on emails.

Why go: The chai lattes and the homemade strawberry muffins alone are worth a visit. To indulge, try the malva pudding cake, a South African specialty. It’s basically a vanilla custard cake with apricots.

Price: Average

6
Rosso Pizzeria
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Brian Y.

Rosso Pizzeria

What it is: Located in one of Edmonton’s oldest neighborhoods, this organic restaurant offers Italian classics fused with a local flair.

Why go: All of the Sicilian-inspired pizzas here are cooked in a traditional wood-fired oven, so expect doughy crust made the Italian way. Try the pizza rucola, which is made with organic flour, parmigiano and amorosa tomatoes and pair it with the kale Caesar salad.

Price: Average

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7
Highlevel Diner
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/David C.

Highlevel Diner

What it is: This chillled out, homey nook takes the classic diner and updates it with modern touches, turning it into the perfect getaway after a long day of running around the city.

Why go: They serve classic Canadian meals, like the Alberta lamb shank, organic Chinook salmon and Alberta prime ribs. Among the wide list of Canadian beers, try the Beavertail raspberry ale for something sweet or the steam whistle pilsner if craving something a bit harsher.

Price: Bargain

8
The Marc
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Jonny M.

The Marc

What it is: One of the best places for a wind-down evening glass of wine, this classic French bistro offers a casual yet contemporary menu inspired by Parisian classics.

Why go: More than anything, this award-winning restaurant is known for their steaks. In the summer, dine on the palatial patio while facing a picturesque set of leafy trees. While inside, cozy up at the sleek bar made from salvaged marble.

Price: Pricey

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9
Padmanadi
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Jon C.

Padmanadi

What it is: This vegetarian and vegan restaurant serves Indonesian, Thai, Chinese and Indian-inspired dishes in an unpretentious setting with wooden furniture.

Why go: The founder, who hails from Jakarta, has been running restaurants for 40 years, so expect the perfect menu, infused with a variety of flavors.  

Price: Bargain

10
The Old Spaghetti Factory
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/元芳

The Old Spaghetti Factory

What it is: It may be a restaurant chain, but this is the ultimate family-friendly classic eatery. Set in cozy, turn-of-the-century décor, the eatery serves traditional Italian pasta dishes with sauces made from scratch.

Why go: Every meal is served with complimentary sourdough bread—warm. Try the chicken Alfredo or the mama Pulosi's homemade lasagna and get ready for your taste buds to go into shock.

Price: Average

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11
Sofra Turkish Restaurant & Wine CellarC
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Cindy N.

Sofra Turkish Restaurant & Wine Cellar

What it is: This authentic Turkish restaurant is a slice of Istanbul. With an exotic interior, spicy salads and grilled meat with kebab vegetables, the traditional Turkish dishes that you will eat here will sweep you away.  

Why go: To eat really outstanding Turkish food, of course. Try the traditional meze (a series of small appetizers to go with drinks) or the stuffed zucchinis. For lunch, try the hummus and house-made pitas, as well as the Turkish pizzas.

Price: Average

12
Chop Steakhouse
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Stephanie T.

Chop Steakhouse

What it is: Set in the heart of downtown, this elegant steakhouse attracts the business crowd for its sleek setting, but the menu is more than just meat and potatoes.

Why go: There are a bunch of high-end vegetarian and gluten-free items worth trying here. But, if you’re going all out, may we suggest the chicken tacos and vegetable tempura?

Price: Pricey

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13
Woodwork
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Cindy N.

Woodwork

What it is: This cozy, unpretentious restaurant brings a hip vibe to traditional Canadian meals. As a casual eatery, it’s known for serving seasonal, wood-fired mains.

Why go: If you’re looking for a light and easy—albeit delicious—meal, you’ve come to the right place. Try the hickory frites with a glass of pinot gris from the nearby Okanagan Valley in British Columbia.

Price: Average

14
Select
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Pankaj S.

Select

What it is: As the city’s ultimate fusion restaurant, Select epitomizes Canadian multiculturalism with a variety of dishes from various countries, right in the heart of downtown.

Why go: To try different cuisines in a single upscale dining atmosphere. This is the only place in the city where cheesesticks, palak paneer, prawn bibyani and cheeseburgers are found on the same menu.

Price: Average

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15
Sabor
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Jeannine N.

Sabor

What it is: This upscale eatery brings a western European flair to Edmonton’s downtown dining district, featuring fusion Portuguese and Spanish cuisine with Italian influences.

Why go: Snack on grilled calamari or try the douanier cheese plate from Quebec while watching a live salsa music concert here.

Price: Bargain

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