There’s something in the air in Central Alberta. It’s a hub of great taste and culinary excellence; where execution meets with local creativity. Right now, plenty of chefs in Central Alberta are creating exciting menus by combining the best of local cuisine and ingredients with the panache that fine dining brings. So with that in mind, we took it upon ourselves to outline restaurants, cafes and bars dishing out some of the best in the region. All you have to do is start with a place, and a whole offering of savoury delights are set to come your way.


Fine dining begins at Grouchy Daddy’s, a joint willing to go in any direction you’re looking for when it comes to fine dining. Dig into a delicious round of poutine burgers on their summer patio or grab some Thai chicken rice bowls to go. From there, it’s a quick walk around the corner for some Tasty Thai, a taste of Asian cuisine well done. It’s best to free up your entire evening, so you have time to get through some hefty courses of green curry, cashew chicken, and coconut rice. Most of the dishes are capable of being made in gluten-free iterations making it a great way to get more people to try out some Tasty Thai. From there, cap off your night with some homemade cupcakes over at Cocoa Tree Bake Shoppe. It’s not just cupcakes they’re talented with; we have it on good authority their custom, one-of-a-kind cakes are not to be ignored.

One hidden gem in Olds is Kinh Fine Vietnamese Cuisine, a great late-night option for those craving multiple helpings of chicken vermicelli or seafood pho. If you’re not in the mood for Vietnamese, may we suggest a switch-up? The aptly named Mr. Bowl & Sushi can be found off Highway 2A and deals a double order of Korean and Japanese cuisine. If you’re feeling feisty, challenge yourself with a visit to the Southern BBQ-dishing The Pit for some mouth-watering sandwiches, slow cooked to perfection. While we’re at it, don’t miss out on experiencing Narra Cafe’s fresh homemade chilli fries. This family-operated spot puts together healthy meals on the regular, all with fresh herbs grown right in front of you.

Blackfalds & Innisfail

Looking for a way to cool down after a hard workout? In Blackfalds’s Abbey Centre, you can also find the Taste Budz Grill, perfect for any post-recreation activity. Fitness enthusiasts can dig into a plethora of options like protein shakes, sandwiches, or salads – all of these being gluten-free.

Fans of quaint spaces will adore the Coffee Cottage in nearby Innisfail. It’s comfort food on a whole other level. Gorge out on freshly glazed cinnamon buns and their trademark turkey dill sandwiches but make sure to grab a hearty helping of their homemade soup before you go.

Mountain View

Mountain View is where the Rockies collide face-first with Central Alberta’s rustic and charming hospitality. The views are gorgeous from every angle, especially from the PaSu Farm. This sheep farm provides patrons with a great view of the mountains – plus fields of sheep! So many! – while they dine on a gorgeous blend of Mediterranean, South African, and Mauritian cuisine. Helming the restaurant/boutique shop/tourist destination is couple Patrick and Susan de Rosemond, from which the farm got its unique name, and the farm certainly benefits from this two-sided vision. Where else could you get grilled lamb ribs and curries served with papadums and rice for lunch?

After that, your options are twofold: go for a casual drink or two at the Bearberry Saloon Bar & Grill, or opt for rustic pub grub done right at the Water Valley Saloon, the local watering hole. Either way, expect mouth-watering burgers and plenty of cold beer at both. And finally, if you have time to visit Silver Willow, we suggest you do. This event-based centre dishes out mouth-watering BBQ at their Upland Cookhouse and you can be sure to find great wares at the fantastically-titled Gun Brothers Café.

So now that you know just how much great food is teeming in Central Alberta’s boundaries, it’s time you get going and sample as much of it as you can!

Image used courtesy of The Pit BBQ
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