Dining room at Fairouz

Ottawa-Gatineau cements its place as culinary destination

Canada’s 100 Best is the definitive guide to Canada’s 100 best restaurants, culinary scene, chef profiles, recipes, new openings and fresh market trends. This year’s ranking highlights what locals have long known: Ottawa-Gatineau’s culinary scene is heating up!

The lone local Québec institution, Les Fougères, cracks the Top 100 for the first time since 2015. The Chelsea favourite, which favours hyper-seasonal and hyper-local ingredients, makes its entrance at 98. Making its debut this year is Stofa, the Wellington W. spot by former Atelier chef Jason Sawision, which comes in at 91.

Modern Middle Eastern mainstay Fairouz returns, this time at position 62, while Riviera and Atelier both move nearly 20 spots, landing at 54 and 40 respectively.

All in all, as veteran Montreal food critic Lesley Chesterman quips in the Montreal Gazette, “Ottawa…combined with the Gatineau region, has become quite the funky dining destination.” And this year’s Top 100 Best list proves it.

Addendum: a previous version of this piece forgot to include North & Navy, who also made their debut this year at 74. This traditional Italian eatery has been an instant favourite since it opened in 2015, introducing the Ottawa-Gatineau population to Northern Italian fare. 

Canada’s 50 Best Bars

New this year is their list of Canada’s 50 Best Bars, where once again Ottawa-Gatineau makes a good showing. Véronique Rivest’s much lauded wine bar Soif is la belle province’s only entry, but also the region’s highest at 14. Elsewhere on the list we find local gem The Moonroom, with their fabled bar snacks, at 16. Ottawa’s only speakeasy Union 613 finds itself at 32, and used its inclusion in the list to leverage a donation to the Ottawa Food Bank, which is very much in line with why they’re a perennial local favourite. Hintonburg’s Bar Laurel and Old Ottawa South’s Belmont round out the list, at 44 and 48 respectively.

Head over to Canada’s Top 100 website to see who else made the list, and start planning your next foodie adventure!