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El Toro is known for serving some of the best Chateaubriand in the West. Located in the Irwin's Mountain Inn along Banff Avenue, it opens early and serves a great breakfast for early risers. The atmosphere is elegant and upscale but relaxed. Jeans are as welcome as suits, and the service is quick and friendly. The specialty of the house is Chateaubriand for two, but they also offer other cuisines, including fresh Mexican food and, for people who like to nibble, a selection of tapas. There is a large selection of seafood and Mediterranean and Greek entrees, as well as a full wine menu.
The name Old Spaghetti Factory is a name synonymous with delicious pastas and Spumoni ice cream all over Canada. This chain opened its doors in Banff in 2000 and has since become a favorite with locals. You can come here with a group of family and friends to enjoy the varieties of pastas, salads and drinks in a good homely atmosphere.
Nourish Bistro is a one-of-its-kind vegetarian bistros in Banff. A simple and cozy restaurant above Sundance Mall, it may be difficult to spot but is actually booked throughout the year; hence they advice making advance reservations. With a wide variety of soups, falafels, polenta, nachos, burritos, ravioli and noodles to choose from, this bistro doesn't fall short in any way.
What is a perfect pizza? Just the right crust, sauce, cheese, seasoning and fresh toppings. The Bear Street Tavern offers the very same. Absolutely delicious pizzas that patrons can't get enough of. You can enjoy it all here at a tavern that makes you feel right at home with its booths and patio. The menu includes the famous Bison pizza, the Wheeler Hut pizza, Mau Beef ribs and the Tavern classic, Pork Belly Mac n' Cheese. That's not all, they also offer take outs. And yes, they have the perfect beer menu that goes with all the pizzas and sandwiches. The tavern opens daily at 11:30a.
Opened by the Borden family in 1979 and set in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains in the Banff National Park, Melissa's Missteak has forever been a local favorite. Nowhere else to be found, its very famous Alberta beef and prime rib bring in crowds from all over Canada and beyond. The original Tudor exteriors and rustic woody interiors were retained giving this place it's unique charm. The upper floor has been dedicated to a sports bar where beer overflows over the matches that can be viewed on the 12 mounted television sets. The patio here is a perfect place for enjoying summers. Check their website to know more.
What better way to relax after a hectic day of sight-seeing, than in front of a roaring fireplace...or two! The award-winning Maple Leaf Grille & Lounge on Banff Avenue is more like a cozy lounge than a restaurant and bar. A scenic view of the neighboring mountains just adds to your feel-good factor, along with the hearty Canadian fare and great alcohol selection, of course. Chef Polizzi whips up a tasty selection of seafood and meat dishes. Dollops of good food and award-winning wines along with a dash of hospitality...ahhh, perfect! They are open for dinner from 5p onwards.
If you happen to be in Banff, then Eddie Burger + Bar is a must stop. Enjoy the scrumptious burgers and wings with drinks from their impressive menu. With specials like Alberta Bison Burger, Gluten Free Burgers, Veggie Burgers and King Eddie on the list, you'll be spoiled for choice. You could also grab a pint while watching the latest sporting action on the televisions. They also have a kids' menu and only use high quality and fresh ingredients.
A 40-year old Japanese rice wine bottle above which rests a caribou head mounted on the wall welcomes patrons at the Magpie & Stump Restaurant & Cantina. Inspired by the Wild West theme, the decor of this restaurant and saloon is rich in character featuring matchbooks, old bottles and animal heads. The menu offers a thorough Mexican fare with tacos, nachos, fried ice cream and a variety of tequilas. The energetic vibe of the cheerful staff and the friendly locals creates a festive atmosphere on every occasion. So drop in and enjoy life the Tex-Mex style!
The Balkan is one of a few representatives of a culinary genre that is rare in the Canadian west; garlic and olive oil spiced Greek dining. While far from the rustling orchards and soft breezes of the Mediterranean, this Hellenic spot still manages to serve up a mean platter of kalamari and keftethes. Colorful Mediterranean paintings and marble busts are interspersed with clambering, tangled vines. The 20 or so tables fill up quickly around suppertime, so it's a good idea to reserve.
When in Banff, don't miss on a chance to visit Elk & Oarsman. A favorite with the locals and tourists alike, this eatery is a haven for foodies. Elk & Oarsman delights them all with a special menu that changes each week. Enjoy pizzas, burgers, fries, steak sandwiches, ribs with beer and live music in the background. Vegetarians won't be disappointed either with selections for them on the menu. And of course, you can do all this while cheering for your favorite team in the game airing on television.