A delicious cause: Restaurants for Change in Calgary

As part of Restaurants for Change, many of the country’s top restaurants are raising money for programs tasked with improving Canada’s food systems and helping low-income earners eat delicious, nutritious meals. On October 21, when you eat at participating Calgary restaurants, these eateries will donate part of all the proceeds to Community Food Centres Canada and its Calgary outlet, which is now in development.

Scopa Neighbourhood Italian

2220 Centre St NE, Calgary, AB T2E 2T5

Located adjacent to Lina’s Italian Market on Centre Street Northeast, Scopa offers a contemporary take on the Italian neighbourhood restaurant. Its comfortably familiar but amped-up food prepared with local ingredients is a hit with families and foodies alike. Dishes include pastas such as spaghetti carbonara with boar bacon and four-cheese cannelloni, thin-crust pizzas from margherita to pancetta, and mains such as slow-roasted pork ribs, chicken saltimbocca and several steaks.

CHARCUT Roast House

101-303 Centre St SW, Calgary, AB T2G 2B9

On the main floor of Le Germain Hotel in downtown Calgary, CHARCUT has earned a huge reputation for its bold and beautiful meat-focused food as well as its involvement in culinary and cultural initiatives. Chefs John Jackson and Connie DeSousa serve food that’s delicious and fun. Heavy on Alberta ingredients, current seasonal plates include bison brisket with beech mushrooms and boar bacon, a sausage burger with cheese curds and a fried egg as well as line-caught fish (snapper or grouper) on polenta.

Bonterra Restaurant Ltd

1016 8 St SW, Calgary, AB T2R 1K2

Deceptively spacious and casually elegant, Bonterra Trattoria serves beautifully crafted contemporary Italian cuisine at the intersection of Eighth Street and Tenth Avenue Southwest. Its seasonal menu now features mains such as duck breast with date puree and charred broccolini and pork chop with romanesco broccoli, guanciale (crazy-good ham) potatoes and chanterelles. Also new is the mouthwatering steelhead trout in lobster-saffron broth.

Cibo Urbano Cucina

1012 17 Ave SW, Calgary, AB T2T 0A5

Situated in a refurbished, two-level redbrick building on 17th Avenue Southwest, Cibo features a variety of seating – relax bar-side or overlooking the avenue. Its open pizza kitchen keeps this hopping Italian spot fragrant. Ruggedly refined pies include prosciutto with fig jam, radicchio arugula, caramelized onion and grana padano cheese. Also recommended are the house-made ricotta gnocchi or ravioli, the veal Milanese and absolutely indulge in Cibo’s small-dish selection.

Custom Kitchen

113-1803 60 St Se, Calgary, AB T2B 0M5

Overflowing with good humour and refined deliciousness, Parc is also handsomely appointed in black-and-white tile and warm wood, and seating revolves around a central bar. The French brasserie serves fine European food. Naturally, the wine menu here is tops. Its à la carte menu features a generous assortment of dishes in several courses including mains such as steak frites, orange-sauce duck with lentils and a French-accented burger that’s magnifique. Regular nightly features include classic French dishes from beef bourguignon to cassoulet.

The Nash Restaurant & Off Cut Bar

925 11 St SE, Calgary, AB T2G 0R4

Helmed by chef Michael Noble of Notable, The Nash serves meaty Canadian cuisine in the chicly refurbished National Hotel building. Local ingredients are the order of every day. Sharable small plates include Quebec foie gras press and lobster mushroom velouté. Mains include lamb shoulder and roast duck breast as well as highly recommended wood-and-charcoal grilled salmon, chicken and beef, including a daily rotisserie selection.


1240 8 Ave SE, Calgary, AB T2G 0M7

This restaurant in the stately, red A. E. Cross heritage home in Inglewood is simply one of the city’s finest. Chef and co-owner Paul Rogalski serves French-influenced food that is militantly local, incorporating Alberta meat and produce as well as veggies from the restaurant’s own garden. Rouge’s seasonal menu features entrees such as brown-butter poached sturgeon and grass-fed beef flatiron steak as well as lamb loin with lamb confit.

Posto Pizzeria and Bar

1014 8th Street SW, Calgary, AB T2R 1K2

The smaller and more casual sister restaurant to Bonterra Trattoria, Posto is cheerful, charming and one of the best contemporary Italian eateries in the city. Settle in at a table or at the open-kitchen bar, and start with small plates such as salami with beans and artichokes and sunflower seed “risotto.” Watch the making and baking of your thin-crust pizza (try the gorgonzola with radicchio, figs and potato!) or go for a creative main dish such as perogies with fig crème fraiche and bacon jam.

The quintessential Mexican meal, tacos are also a relatively scarce commodity in Calgary. However, we’ve done some digging and unearthed the select few restaurants that make truly marvelous versions of these hand-held snacks.
The city’s summer season features a delicious dance card of culinary festivals and events. Many, such as Stampede-time pancake breakfasts, are easy to access the day of, but the various tasting and tippling shindigs listed here can fill up quickly, so purchasing tickets sooner than later for these foodie festivities is recommended. Image credit: iStock.com/kasto80.
The city’s pathway system is one of the longest in North America. Given its lengthy stretches, the occasional rest and snack stop, though few and far between, are a welcome sight when walking, biking and inline skating. Here are a few restaurants, cafés and snack shacks located on or near our scenic cycling system. Image credit: iStock.com/mihailomilovanovic.
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