We’re back with Restaurant Roundup for 2015! This year’s theme: Where To Eat This Weekend. Every other week we’ll be profiling a different city in Canada with a list of great dining recommendations for you to check out – from fancy to hole in the wall and everything in between! Today Lindsay Nelson of Eat This Town gives us the low-down on which Halifax and Dartmouth restaurants you need to check out this weekend!
Where to Eat Brunch or Lunch in Halifax
The Coastal Café offers chef-driven breakfast fare in a casual environment. While the menu may seem fancy-pantsy in places (Cab Sauv reduction on your omelette?!), you’re still ordering at the counter in your pajamas. Breakfast and lunch is served until 2pm on weekdays. Weekend brunch features a more elaborate menu alongside staples like Huevos Rancheros or the McCoastal breakfast sandwich. This place is popular and seating is limited, but the wait is worth it and the price is right.
Robie St. Station
The newest addition to the brunch scene, Robie Street Station, specializes in all-day (til 3pm) “global comfort food” — from fish ‘n’ chips to bibimbap burgers and brunch favs like bread puddin’ French toast and Turkish poached eggs in yogurt. Or you can just have “The Remedy” for some good ol’ bacon and eggs. Robie St. Station is also a spot where you can grab a coffee and a baked goodie to go. Doughnuts make appearances on weekends. If you’re really lucky, you may get to try the notorious donairnut!
The Canteen is Dartmouth’s gourmet sandwich shop and always delivers something fresh and original with local meat, seasonal produce and fresh baked bread. Some menu items are available weekly, while others are semi-regular/random. Go on a Friday and you’ll see some variety of lobster roll. On hazy weekend mornings the Dartmouth Hangover breakfast sandwich reigns supreme. You could also encounter the Fried Green Tomato BLT, the Scallop Burger or a Banh Mi. Just check the daily menu and get there early because they're known to run out!
Dinner in Halifax
2 Doors Down
“We cook the food we as chefs love to eat: Fun, Rewarding, Unpretentious” — an accurate mission statement for 2 Doors Down, the sister restaurant of Chives Canadian Bistro (literally two doors down on the corner of Barrington and Salter Streets) where Chef Craig Flinn is creating a mini-empire. One of the busiest restaurants in the city, 2 Doors Down doesn’t take reservations. It's a touch more casual than Chives, with the best burgers in the city alongside fresh seafood, local meats and inspired vegetarian dishes. I was recently blown away by the smoked local pork chop served with a slab of deep fried mac ‘n’ cheese. This is how chefs love to eat? Bring it on!
You can’t really talk about the restaurant scene in Halifax without mentioning Edna, listed in EnRoute magazine as one of the best new restaurants in Canada in 2014. Edna is all at once a neighbourhood bistro, a late night wine and cocktail hotspot and one of the most popular brunch destinations in the city. Dinner is served until 11pm on weekends, but they don’t take reservations and it fills up quickly. The menu is a revolving roster of locally sourced dishes, updated every day at 3pm. I recently enjoyed a corn fritter dish (pictured), but whenever there’s swordfish on the menu I’m all over that!
This butchery-inspired restaurant specializes in local meats and craft beer, and is the latest addition to the Halifax dining scene. At Primal Kitchen everything is prepared in-house: the butchering of primal cuts, smoking, grinding and curing. There are raw items, a charcuterie menu and lots of meaty entrees. The calamari could very well be the best in the city and you gotta try the biltong — a cured meat of South African origin and recipe of the chef’s dad! Whether you opt for beef short rib, duck confit, steak frites or wild boar sausage, you're guaranteed a meaty indulgence!
Other Fun Places to Eat in Halifax & Dartmouth
Halifax has never been much of a hot dog city, but now we have the hot dog cart that Halifax deserves! The specialty item at T Dogs is authentic Texas Hots (i.e. chili dogs!). The hot dogs are handmade using local ingredients: pork shoulder, beef brisket, sheep casing. Condiments are also house-made. Daily specials vary — hot dogs dressed like Frito Pie, Banh Mi, Big Macs or L.A. Danger Dogs. You never know what these crazy hot dog guys will come up with! You can usually find them around North and Agricola or a food truck party near you.
Natalie Morin and Julien Rousseau had never been to Halifax, but after studying this fine city from abroad they decided to open their dream business here. Julien is the man behind the chocolate. At Rousseau Chocolatier you can see him in action through the viewing window while Natalie guides you through all the varieties of artisanal chocolates. My favourites are the lemon and the feuilletine, but you gotta love unique flavours like smoky chili and orange balsamic caramel. The house-made hot chocolate is a liquid injection of decadence, and the macarons …. Oh, the macarons! They're so soft and fresh in flavours like coconut, lemon, passionfruit, chocolate, and apple cinnamon. I think this place has ruined me for macarons.
DeeDee’s Ice Cream
In 2004 at scenic Peggy’s Cove, Dee Dee’s scooped up its first batch of handcrafted ice cream. Now its Cornwallis St. location is an iconic Halifax shop specializing in ice cream and burritos. They make their ice creams in nine litre batches with flavours like Mexican Chocolate, Banana Cardamom, Haskap Berry and, of course, Mint Chocolate Chip, just to name a few. Locals know this is the best ice cream in town. I’m personally a sucker for the burritos, which combine local free range chicken or grass fed beef with organic refried beans, rice, fresh salsa and guacamole — wholesome AND delicious.
More Great Places To Eat This Weekend
Here are most great places to eat across Canada this weekend! Where will you be eating?
- Where To Eat This Weekend: Vancouver Edition
- Where To Eat This Weekend: Edmonton Edition
- Where To Eat This Weekend: Calgary Edition 1 and Calgary Edition 2
- Where To Eat This Weekend: Toronto Edition
- Where To Eat This Weekend: Montreal Edition
- Where To Eat This Weekend: Winnipeg Edition
- Where To Eat This Weekend: Quebec City Edition
If you want more great suggestions on where to eat across Canada, be sure to subscribe to The FBC Food Lovers Newsletter. Twice a month we'll be featuring great posts from FBC members, mouthwatering recipe ideas, delicious places to eat, as well as occasional tasty offers from some of our partners.
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Where To Eat This Weekend: Halifax and Dartmouth Edition was written by Lindsay Nelson. Lindsay (Eat This Town) lives and works in downtown Halifax and has made it her mission to cover the restaurant scene, champion regional foods and to engage her fellow Haligonians in her food quests. A self-proclaimed food nerd, pizza junkie, burger ambassador, tofu apologist and friendly local, Lindsay knows where the good food is at, and will probably take you up on your offer to buy her a beer.
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