In the realm of gastronomy, Canada has always been a country of diverse flavors and culinary excellence. Every year, the nation’s food scene evolves and delights us with new and exciting culinary talent. Air Canada, a global leader in the airline industry, recognizes the importance of celebrating this exceptional talent by unveiling the top 10 new restaurants in Canada for 2023. Join us on this culinary journey as we explore the most exciting culinary destinations across the country.
The Culinary Landscape of Canada
Canada’s culinary scene has evolved into a rich tapestry of flavors, drawing inspiration from its multicultural roots. From the bustling streets of Toronto to the scenic landscapes of Vancouver, Canada boasts an array of restaurants that showcase its vibrant food culture. Each province has its own unique culinary identity, making the country a melting pot of diverse tastes.
Air Canada’s Commitment to Culinary Excellence
Air Canada has long been committed to promoting Canadian cuisine and supporting the country’s talented chefs. The “Canada’s Best New Restaurants” list is a testament to this commitment. By unveiling this annual list, Air Canada aims to shine a spotlight on the most promising culinary talent across the nation and provide travelers with an opportunity to experience these gastronomic gems.
Top 10 New Restaurants in Canada
Without further ado, let’s dive into the culinary highlights of the year. The top 10 new restaurants in Canada for 2023 offer a delightful array of flavors and experiences that are sure to tantalize your taste buds. Here is a sneak peek at what each restaurant has to offer:
- Kappo Sato (Toronto, ON): Chef-owner Takeshi Sato, who worked at Tokyo’s Michelin-starred Ukai, conducts a two-and-a-half-hour kappo omakase in a tranquil room, where a tasting menu is prepared entirely in front of guests sitting comfortably wrapped around a smooth wooden counter.
- Wild Blue (Whistler, BC): The luxurious steakhouse Wild Blue has elevated fine dining in the resort town Whistler. Highlights from Chefs Alex Chen and Derek Bendig include a tender pink ribeye, served with the ocean-deep umami of yakiniku sauce, and buttery pommes purées.
- Marilena Café and Raw Bar (Victoria, BC): Chef Kristian Eligh and his team provide a new form of Vancouver Island hospitality that is upscale yet assertively unstuffy. Negroni’s on tap mix well with the Victoria restaurant’s seafood towers, plush pea agnolotti tossed with truffle butter, and ceviche mixto with pomegranate seeds.
- Rizzo’s House of Parm (Fort Erie, ON): Chef Matty Matheson’s hometown of Fort Erie is host to his newest restaurant. Hefty mozzarella sticks with a fresh marinara dipper are a must for the table before enjoying the name-sake saucy, cheesy, and broiled Parms, available in chicken, eggplant or veal.
- Petit Socco (Winnipeg, MB): The intimate restaurant has 10 seats, an open kitchen and only two employees; co-owners and life partners Adam Donnelly and Courtney Molaro. The four-course dinner includes tempura shishito peppers coated in house berbere- spiced mayo sprinkled with sesame seeds and a giant tostada for two piled high with chopped poached prawns, sushi-grade tuna, Salvadoran curtido and avocado crema.
- Bonheur D’Occasion (Montreal, QC): Chef-owner Philippe Gauthier creates one of the most generous meals of the year with a level of hospitality best described as kindness. One of the most beloved dishes is the mille feuille by pastry chef Victor Adnet made with phyllo dough, deeply caramelized with maple sugar and layered with gently whipped clover cream.
- Folke (Vancouver, BC): In the hands of co-owner and chef Colin Uyeda, Folke’s vegan food is for anyone who enjoys gorgeous, inventive and extremely delicious food that happens to be plant-based. Co-owner and pastry chef Pricilla Deo bakes a magnificent chocolate cake, layered with mousse, strawberry gelée, Earl Grey custard and fudge crunch.
- Le Molière par Mousso (Montreal, QC): Chefs Antonin Mousseau-Rivard, Daniel Vézina and Samuel Sauvé-Lamothe bring the classic brasserie to life in a soaring new Quartier Latin space. Stay for dessert and order the doré meunière that usually is pan-fried in browned butter with hazelnuts and lemon, but here, uplifted with siphon sauce.
- Espace Old Mill (Stanbridge East, QC): Jean-Martin Fortier’s inn and restaurant in Quebec’s Eastern Townships, provides visitors the most pleasant of countryside experiences. Guests will enjoy Chef Éric Gendron’s hand-chopped Legacy Speckle Park beef with sweet peppers and nasturtiums from just outside the window.
- Darlings (Bloomfield, ON): Jesse Fader left Toronto for Prince Edward County, where he has opened this upscale pizza restaurant in Bloomfield. Dishes worth visiting include the fresh-made Stracciatella made by Fader, which is suggested as a dipping sauce, and slices of sugar pie served in crimson County cherries.
This list is just a taste of the culinary wonders waiting to be explored in Canada. As Air Canada continues to celebrate the country’s culinary talent, it’s the perfect opportunity for food enthusiasts and travelers to embark on a gastronomic journey across the nation.