If you’re searching for a new culinary destination to explore, look no further than Winnipeg, Manitoba. This Canadian city is fast becoming a gastronomic powerhouse in the region, featuring some of the Great White North’s best eats.
Winnipeg is a melting pot of different cuisines and flavors, as well as a wealth of up-and-coming chefs from all across the world. It’s a stone’s throw away from the upper Midwest, making it the perfect tourist destination for those with adventurous tastes and sweet tooths. It’s also more affordable than other destinations for travelers, with the strong dollar making the trip 30 percent cheaper than a trip within the country.
One of Winnipeg’s specialties is tapas, a traditional Spanish meal made up of small plates that allow diners to sample many different dishes at once. Each restaurant brings its own unique style to the table, making a “tapas tour” a must while you’re visiting.
Segovia Tapas Bar
Segovia specializes in traditional Spanish cuisine, like their patatas bravas (fried white potatoes with spicy aioli) and boquerones pintxo (vinegar cured anchovies). It is beloved by locals for its intimate atmosphere and great service, along with delectable desserts such as churros and caramel crema and santiago tart with almond and bee pollen. Segovia’s menu changes with the seasons, making sure the food you’re eating is always fresh and supremely tasty.
Enoteca focuses on French and American food, with items like tuna tartare and Roast Magret duck breast. But their real claim to fame is their wine: they feature twenty unique wines, and each server is trained to provide the perfect pairing for your dish of choice. The restaurant is owned by chef Scott Bagshaw, who also runs local favorite Máquè.
Run by chef Mandel Hitzer, who is also known for his winter pop-up restaurant RAW:almond hosted on the ice of the Red and Assiniboine Rivers, deer+almond is a casual dining space set in the city’s famous Exchange District. The eclectic menu features everything from salt and pepper squid to grilled halloumi to fried chicken, but what you’ll really want to try are the daily specials, chosen by Hitzer and his head chef Don Lefrenais.
The South American food joint keeps it simple with a focus on steak and wine, though adventurous eaters will find a host of delicious alternatives such as vegetable empanadas and cachaca shrimp. Having just opened a second location in the South Osborne neighbourhood, this cultural getaway is also known for its drink menu, featuring wines from across the continent, including Uruguay, Venezuela, Chile and Argentina.
The Merchant Kitchen
This tapas bar is focused on Latin and Asian flavours, with dishes like tacos, szechuan wings and a delicious homemade guacamole. A staple of Winnipeg’s dining scene, The Merchant Kitchen is inspired by the cuisine of 21 cities across 14 countries. Often chosen to host private events, the Kitchen is across the street from the Burton Cummings Theatre (affectionately referred to as The Burt) and just steps from Bell MTS Place, Winnipeg’s downtown hockey arena, where you can watch the Jets or touring bands in action.
Featuring dishes from South Asia prepared in a French style, Máquè is known for its experimental style. It’s run by Scott Bagshaw, who also owns Enoteca, another feature on this list. Bagshaw’s experience and daring attitude inspire creative dishes such as Mongolian lamb, pork dumplings and prawn lo mein. The dishes are made for sharing, so make sure to bring some friends and loved ones in tow.