Some exciting new restaurants joined Calgary’s dining scene this past month, including a champagne lounge on Stephen Avenue, a grilled cheese restaurant in Bridgeland and two poke shops that opened within days of each other. Here’s what you need to know about the latest food-related openings, news and events in Calgary.
Grate & Barrel opens in Bridgeland
It’s not hard to spot the newly opened Grate & Barrel in Bridgeland — just look for the bright pink building off Edmonton Trail. There, you’ll Grate & Barrel, a small eatery that specializes in grilled cheese sandwiches with fun sides like tater tots with nacho cheese, tomato soup or chips like Bugles and Hickory Sticks. Keep your grilled cheese order simple with a Golden Calgarian (with Kraft singles and Wonderbread) or opt for a more elaborate sandwich like the MBF (with japaleno poppers, marinara sauce and monterey jack cheese). The restaurant will eventually serve beer and wine, but for now, you can get a soda or pie milkshake to go with your meal (flavours include the Broken City with apple pie and vanilla ice cream and the Blues Can with blueberry pie and chocolate ice cream). If this spot sounds familiar, it’s probably because Grate & Barrel opened in Mission for a short time in late 2015. So if you didn’t get to try one of their sandwiches then, you definitely should now.
627 1 Ave. N.E., @grateandbarrel
Kona Poke opens in downtown Calgary
Kona Poke, a build-your-own poke bowl shop, has opened in a +15 in downtown Calgary. This is one of Calgary’s first shops dedicated to poke, a Hawaiian dish that commonly features raw fish, soy sauce, sesame oil, green onions and other toppings on rice. At Kona Poke, you can choose your base (rice, field greens or tortilla chips), sides (like cucumber, red cabbage, avocado and crab), proteins (like tuna, salmon and octopus) and finish it off with your choice of sauce and additional toppings. Kona Poke will also be opening a second location in the Beltline this spring.
+15, 520 5 Ave. S.W., konapoke.com, @konapokeco
National holds Cider Sessions every Sunday in April
If you love cider, you’ll want to visit National on 17th this month. Every Sunday in April, the restaurant and bar will be holding Sunday Cider Sessions, where it’ll be offering pints of cider for $6.50 from specific breweries. Upcoming Sundays will feature deals on ciders from Lonetree Cider in the Okanagan on April 9th, Duke’s Cider from Tree Brewing Co. in Kelowna on April 16th and Calgary’s Big Rock Brewery on April 23rd. You can also enter to win prizes during the Sunday Cider Sessions.
Po-ke opens in Crescent Heights
GRAND OPENING SATURDAY APRIL 1st 11am – until sold out! 15% off all orders. Closed until then. . . We learned a lot during the soft opening. Had lots of amazing feedback. Working on reducing wait time. . . . . #tunapoke #customizepoke #pokebowl #yyc #weloveitraw #healthyfood #yycpoke #yycpokebowl #cleaneating #calgary #yycliving #yycnow #YYCFood #datenightyyc #foodyyc #StayHungry #yycadventure #fresh #yycbites #dailyhiveyyc #foodporn #instagood #yycfoodie #yyceats #yycbites #yycdining #narcitycalgary #loveyyc #lifeincalgary #poke_yyc #yycevents
Po-ke celebrated its grand opening in Crescent Heights on April 1st. This is one of Calgary’s first shops dedicated to poke, a Hawaiian dish that commonly features raw fish, soy sauce, sesame oil, green onions and other toppings on rice. The nearly 800-square-foot eatery serves four signature poke bowls, which range from the Po-ke Special Bowl (with ahi tuna, salmon, seaweed salad, mandarins, masago, avocado, sesame seeds, shredded nori and unagi sauce) to the Salmon Bowl (with salmon, cucumber, crab salad, corn, green and sweet onion, seaweed salad and sriracha aioli). There are also four kinds of sushi burritos, two po-ke dogs (think poke on a hot dog) and musubi. You can also customize your own bowl of poke by choosing a base, protein, mixer, sauces, toppings and finishes. Get your food to go or grab a seat at Po-ké’s communal table to satisfy your seafood cravings.
908A Centre St. N.E., 403-455-6507, po-ke.ca, @pokeyyc
Taste of Jamaica takes on April 15
On April 15th, the Jamaican Canadian Association Alberta will be hosting Taste of Jamaica. Held at the Thorncliffe Greenview Community Centre from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m., the event will feature reggae, gospel and folk music, live and DJ performances, a talent show, dancing, a raffle and plenty of tasty Jamaican fare like curry, fried dumplings and grapenut ice cream. For more information, visit jcaalberta.com.
Untitled Champagne Lounge opens on Stephen Avenue
The world’s most legendary Champagne still remains one of the best. Always in style, it shows layers of artisanal bread, apple, pear and mineral notes. There’s power to its vivid #Rosé Champagne, harnessed by a silky texture and a sense of finesse. Mineral-driven, with a rich, smoky underpinning, it offers an expansive palate of puréed raspberry and apricot preserves, with hints of candied kumquat, marzipan, graphite and star anise. #JAZZANDBUBBLES Tomorrow! #Cinqàsept – 6:00pm – 9:00pm 20% bottles – #Vintage and #NonVintage Music – #RnB (New & Old), House, #LIVE #Jazz Chill #HipHop @djcsik @deannematley @yungnino.mafrica and @djsonidef #champagnebar #inbubbleswetrust #champagnecampaign #classydrunk @domperignonofficial firstname.lastname@example.org call: 403.475.7226 www.untitledyyc.com
The team behind The Derrick has opened an approximately 2,000-square-foot champagne lounge right next door to the downtown restaurant on Stephen Avenue. Along with more than 60 kinds of Champagne and sparkling wine, Untitled Champagne Lounge offers sparkling cocktails like the cotton candy-topped Aviation Cloud Spritz, Champagne Mai Tais and Sparkling Negronis. Chef Marc Bourgeois heads up the kitchen, which serves small plates like oysters, veal sweetbreads, cheese plates, caviar and pork soup dumplings. For dessert, treat yourself to some macarons and truffles or tableside ice cream sundae bar service. Stop by on a Thursday night for the lounge’s weekly Jazz & Bubbles event, where you can listen to live performances from the Deanne Matley Duo and order vintage and non-vintage bottles for 20 per cent off from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
104, 620 8 Ave. S.W., 403-475-7226, untitledyyc.com