Elizabeth Chorney-Booth is a freelance writer and Best of Bridge cookbook co-conspirator. A Calgarian obsessed with retro dish ware, she avidly collects vintage recipe books, Pyrex and jelly salad molds. She writes food, travel and lifestyle stories for Avenue, Today’s Parent, The Calgary Herald, Swerve, Culinaire and City Palate and co-edits Rolling Spoon and Wapawekka Travel.‬
Grabbing dinner and a drink after a long day at work is a luxury that’s so much easier to justify when you can hit a value-priced happy hour. Here are some of the best places in the city that feature early evening deals for the budget conscious. Now that’s something to be happy about! Image credit: iStock.com/ultramarinfoto.
Brunch is a weekend dining ritual, and one that hungry Calgarians can’t get enough of. These restaurants are some of the city’s top brunch destinations, serving their own unique takes on eggs Benedict, belly-busting breakfast burritos, wild Western combo breakfasts as well as fancy French toast, far-out frittatas and much more. [Photo at The Nash by John Gaucher Images]
Shawarma – a Middle Eastern dish consisting of roasted meat shaved off of a spit and usually served in a pita wrap sandwich or as part of a meal platter – has become a grab n’ go staple food in countries all over the world. These Calgary spots serve up some of the best shawarma in the city with all of the traditional accouterments as well as other favourite Middle Eastern dishes. [Image credit: iStock.com/Lauri Patterson]
Looking to enjoy a tipple on the down low? Prohibition-style speakeasies are all the rage in lounge culture these days, from secret backroom bars to cool lounges featuring ’20s-style cocktails. Not all of these bars are true secrets, but they all carry a bit of the speakeasy spirit. [Image credit: iStock.com/ThisLifeInTrips]
When you’re shelling out for a restaurant meal the quality of the food is obviously important, but so is the experience. Some restaurants just feel good. These Calgary spots offer both great meals and appealing atmosphere for an always-special dining experience. [Image: Bow Valley Ranche Restaurant]
With its distinctive flavour and fatty richness, duck is a poultry ingredient that is considered a luxurious treat. Particularly prominent in both French and Asian cuisines, duck can be prepared in many different ways, all of them almost universally delicious. Here are a few spots in Calgary where you can get your duck fix. [Image credit: iStock.com/giovanni1232]
When you go out for a nice meal, you’re supposed to order wine with dinner, right? Think again – these Calgary restaurants are known for serving great food, but they’ve all got fine beer lists if you’re looking for a particularly good cold one to pair with your meal. [Image credit: iStock.com/Angelika Kagan]
Some restaurants are cavernous, giving patrons room to spread out and feel anonymous. Sometimes, though, it’s nice to get seriously cozy and settle into an intimate dining experience. These restaurants may be small on space, but they’re big on atmosphere. [Image credit: iStock.com/Predrag Vuckovic]
The idea of nose-to-tail butchery – cooking and eating as many parts of an animal as possible rather than just the traditional prize cuts – is increasingly popular, especially among those concerned with reducing food waste. But have you had a chance to try cheeks, intestines or marrow? Here are a few Calgary restaurants that offer dishes that go beyond your typical chops and loins. [Image credit: iStock.com/Bocky Tandiono] 
A wide variety of the national cuisines of Mexico and the countries of Central and South America can be enjoyed in Calgary. Serving dishes from tangy tacos to simply salted Brazilian steak and savoury Argentine-style pizza, diners will find a Latin American eatery to suit every taste. Here are a few to get you dreaming of locations (far, far) south of the border. [Image credit: iStock.com/rodrigoba]
While healthy eating and fresh produce will always be in style, sometimes you need to indulge in rich, luxurious, “special occasion” ingredients. Whether you’re in the mood for foie gras, pâté, truffles, pork belly or imported cheeses, these Calgary restaurants serve dishes that promise over-the-top decadence. [Image credit: iStock.com/SvetlanaIlnitskaya]
The bento box – a Japanese lunch consisting of numerous food items placed into a box divided into compartments – is arguably the perfect lunch for anyone looking for variety and a (relatively) low price. These Calgary restaurants have mastered the art of the bento. [Image credit: iStock.com/R9_RoNaLdO]
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