Winnipeg, Manitoba may not be your idea of a foodie mecca. However, a tough prairie climate and an entrepreneurial spirit have made the people of this city resourceful, vibrant and friendly – and this translates beautifully to great new Winnipeg restaurants opening up all the time. To put some order into the hodge-podge of new openings, these are some of my picks for the best new Winnipeg restaurants.
The Tallest Poppy
685 Westminster Ave, Winnipeg, MB
Right off the bat, I’m going to tell you that I lied: The Tallest Poppy is not a new Winnipeg restaurant. In its former life, The Tallest Poppy was a two-room eatery on the main strip of Winnipeg’s inner city, open only for lunch and epic Sunday brunches. But the size and location eventually ended up being its demise, causing owner Talia to shut her doors until a better location came up… And now, with its new home on Sherbrooke Street, it’s clear that The Tallest Poppy has found its groove! The breakfasts here are amazing, but I was particularly excited to check out their dinners and late-night partying on the First Friday of every month. Having eaten there three times during my last visit, I can honestly say – The Tallest Poppy may be the best new Winnipeg restaurant at the moment.
The Black Rabbit
135 Osborne St, Winnipeg, MB
Expertly made craft cocktails and gluten-free pizza – could I ask for more??? The Black Rabbit is definitely my kind of restaurant – its decor is relaxed and minimal, and the drinks here speak for themselves. If you’re not looking for cocktails, they also have a great beer selection. Plus, it’s located on one of Winnipeg’s liveliest strips: Osborne Street. I know where I’ll be heading next time I’m in the area.
Sherbrooke Street Deli
102 Sherbrook St, Winnipeg, MB
Winnipeg is home to the third-largest Jewish population in Canada. However, you wouldn’t know it by looking at its restaurant selection: up until recently, there was only one Jewish deli remaining in the entire city. Now, Sherbrooke Street Deli has come to fill that gap. With a charismatic young chef, a stylish design and house-made sodas, Sherbrooke Street Deli is the hip Jewish deli Winnipeg has always wanted. The borscht could use more vinegar, but otherwise the food here is excellent.
Unit A – 100 King Street, Winnipeg, MB
This place was probably one of my happiest finds this visit. An unassuming fast-food style eatery that just sprung up in Winnipeg’s exchange, the city’s oldest and most beautiful heritage neighbourhood, there’s actually a lot more to Chosabi than meets the eye. Specializing in sushi burritos and rice bowls, the fish here is fresh and plentiful, the vegetables crisp, and the sauces are piquant. When you learn that Chosabi is the newest venture from the household name of Wasabi, one of Winnipeg’s most celebrated sushi restaurants, it all starts to make a lot more sense.
285 Portage Ave, Winnipeg, MB
I came to Planit based on the recommendation of a former co-worker, and I knew upon first glance this place was going to be good… I just had no idea HOW GOOD. Entirely LGBTQ*-owned and operated, Planit showcases local art and food like few restaurants of its price range can. The food here was delicious and clearly fresh, and the atmosphere relaxed and pleasant. I hear the place is packed right before Jets games, when they run a game-night special, so you may want to make a reservation if that’s when you’re heading to Planit.
The Roost Social House
651 Corydon Ave, Winnipeg, MB
The Roost is the only place on this list of best new Winnipeg restaurants that I haven’t visited myself… and not for lack of trying – we went there once on a night when it was randomly closed! However, I heard so much great things about this tiny cocktails and small plates bar, I knew I had to recommend it… even if only one of actually made it there. Greg’s photos from the The Roost may look a little fuzzy (I think the four craft cocktails he had may have something to do with it), but he had nothing but high praise for this little neighbourhood joint. And with prices ranging between $8 and $14 for a double, this place may have some of the cheapest drinks in Winnipeg… which is a testament to its fresh and unassuming vibe rather than the incredible quality of the food and drinks. The Roost is a must for your next visit to Winnipeg.