Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Ottawa Metro Restaurant Reviews

From September 2009 to June 2012, I was a weekly food and wine columnist for Metro Ottawa newspaper. I wrote 140 restaurant reviews for the urban foodie and lunch crowd. Sadly. Metro has archived all the articles and some of the restaurants have closed. Someday I'll update this list with links to reviews for restaurants that are still open.

Ottawa Urban Foodie Reviews

La Porto a Casa 4/5 ~Best Italian in Ottawa

222 Lyon 4/5 ~Small plates

Issac's 3/5 ~Lots of veggies (Closed)

Murray Street 4/5 ~Inspired

Wellington Gastropub 4/5 ~Comfortable and animated

Bombay Masala 3.5/5 ~Pleasant Indian fare

Pelican Grill 2.5/5 ~Not enough charm

Sweetgrass Aboriginal Bistro 4.5/5 ~Sweet times (Currently closed)

Black Cat Bistro 5/5 ~Impeccable

Ahora 2.5/5 ~Mexican mood and food

La Cucina 3/5 ~Satisfying

Mystiko 3/5 ~Authentic Greek cuisine

The Moonroom 3.5/5 ~Enchanting

Absinthe 3/5 ~Go for the green fairy

Benny's Bistro 4/5 ~A touch of Paris

Navarra 4/5 ~Octopus and pig cheeks

Canvas 3/5 ~Fit for summer

Black Dog Bistro 3.5/5 ~Intimate, charming

The Grand Pizzeria & Bar 2.5/5 ~Go for the pizza

Island Jerk 3/5 ~Homey Caribbean

Amber Garden & Dalmacia Restaurant 3/5 ~Loosen your belt

Graffiti's Italian Eatery & Saloon 2/5 ~Satisfactory

Von's Bistro 2/5 ~Friendly but tired

Savana Café 4/5 ~Taste the islands (Closed)

The Diner 2/5 ~Hospitable and comforting

Zuni Grill 3/5 ~Intersection of flavours

Restaurant E18ghteen 4.5/5 ~A top notch restaurant

Shafali, Sitar, Haveli 3/5 ~Two buffets and one lunch special

La Cabana 2.5/5 ~El Salvadoran food

ZenKitchen 4/5 ~Fusion vegetarian

Allium 3.5/5 ~Flavourful bistro

The Whalesbone Oyster House 4/5 ~Sustainable seafood

Big Easy's Seafood & Steak House 3/5 ~New Orleans' style seafood and steak

ZaZaZa 3/5 ~Novel but flat

Flying Piggy's Bistro Italiano 2.5/5 ~Whimsical but tired

Sukhothai, Royal Thai, Sala Thai, Singha Thai 4/5, 3.5/5, 3/5, 3/5 ~Pad Thai best at Sukhothai

Atelier 5/5 ~Food and science

Tavola 3.5/5 ~Reasonable Italian

Chez Lucien 3/5 ~Gourmet burgers and pub fare

West End Station Bistro (now closed) 4.5/5 ~Fine Food

Lunch Rush Reviews

Simply Biscotti 4/5 ~Double-baked goodness

Nandos 3.5/5 ~Less fat, more flavour

K&S On the Keys 3/5 ~Tasty bites in the burbs

The French Baker 4/5 ~Freshly baked bread

Pure Power Juice Bar 3.5/5 ~Hot crêpes, cold smoothies

Shaan Curry House 4/5 ~Kiss of India

Serious Cheese 4.5/5 ~Cheesy comfort

La Bottega Nicastro Fine Food Shop 5/5 ~Best sandwiches in Ottawa

Mucho Burrito 4/5 ~Mucho choice and taste

Merivale Fish Market 4/5 ~Best fish 'n' chips in town

Indian Express Food & Sweets 5/5 ~Best Indian food in town

Whalesbone Sustainable Oyster & Fish Supply 4.5/5 ~Best sustainable fish sandwiches

Smoke's Poutine 1/5

Green Rebel 3/5 ~Healthy and fast lunches

The Piggy Market 4/5 ~A taste of local

The Green Door 4.5/5 ~Vegetarian plates by weight that taste great

House of Georgie Sorento's 3.5/5 ~Pizza 'n' gravy

Wild Oat 3.5/5 ~All natural goodness at Glebe hangout

Hintonburger 4/5 ~Best burgers

Ombrella Pizza Cones 3/5 ~Pizza cones - a fresh idea (Closed)

DiRienzo Foods 3.5/5 ~Simple but good sandwiches

The Scone Witch 3.5/5 ~Spellbinding scone sandwiches

Jean-Albert's 3.5/5 ~Nostalgic eatery serves up Southern comfort

Sweet Basil 2.5/5 ~Sweet but misses the mark

Millers Oven 2.5/5 ~A trip back in time

Phu Yen 3/5 ~Kanata's hottest little pho house

Thyme & Again 4.5/5 ~Delightful lunch time after time

Kettleman's Bagel Co. 4.5/5 ~A quick bagel bite that's open all day

Life of Pie 4.5/5 ~A constant craving

Panda Garden Buffet 3/5 ~Buffet hits and misses

Shawarma Palace 4/5 ~Ottawa: Canada's shawarma capital

Vera's Burger Shack 4/5 ~Vera's Burger Shack stacks up

Go For Sushi 2.5/5 ~Sushi a go go

Papa Sam's 4/5 ~Papa Sam, you make good pizza

Art-is-in-Bakery 5/5 ~Mastering the fine art of the perfect sandwich

Parma Ravioli 4/5 ~Heavenly meatball submarine sandwiches

Stone Soup Foodworks 4/5 ~Souplicious

Misto Fine Food Emporium 4.5/5 ~Veal Manicotti that's worth the drive

Wild Wing 3.5/5 ~101 wild flavour options

Zola's 3.5/5 ~Warm comfort food never gets tired

Cuisine & Passion 4/5 ~Passion for cuisine

Tomaso 5/5 ~Thin crust pizzas are the specialty

Ralph & Sons 4/5 ~Old-fashion Diner goodness

LUNCH 2.5/5 ~A brown-bag lunch to go

Pestos 2.5/5 ~Italian deli needs better sandwich artist

Edgar 5/5 ~Tiny bistro, impeccable food

Luna Café 4/5 ~Charm and Crêpes

Louis’ Restaurant & Pizzeria 4/5 ~pizza pies with personality

Nile Bakery 4/5 ~Traditional Lebanese pies stuffed with tasty fillings, and CHEAP

Baja Burger Shack 4.5/5 ~Travel to Baja without ever leaving Ottawa (Open in the summer)

3 Sisters Bakery 5/5 ~A tale of 3 Sisters and their delicious eats

The Greek Souvlaki Shack 5/5 ~Souvlaki and other drool-worthy items

Bite This 5/5 ~Tuck into food truck eats

Murray's Market 4/5 ~Charm and great food

Pure Gelato 4/5 ~Not purely gelato

Coconut Palm Restaurant 4.5/5 ~Crispy noodles are very addictive

Le Muffin Plus 5/5 ~Ottawa's Soup Guy

Credible Edibles 3/5 ~Not incredible (Closed)

Mamma Grazzi's 4.5/5 ~Brado is bravo

Bexx 3.5/5 ~Food truck perogies

Mekong 4/5 ~Mekong magic

The Red Apron 4.5/5 ~Lavish lunches

Grocery Store Salads Farm Boy, Metro, Sobeys ~which one was the best?

Five Guys 3/5 ~Although it beats out drive-through eats, some areas need work

Wellington Sandwiches 3.5/5 ~Homey charm

Sippy Cup Café 3/5 ~Best of both worlds — kids can play while you sip a steaming cup of java

The Smoque Shack 5/5 ~The search for finger-licking good ribs in Ottawa is over

Colonnade Pizza 3.5/5 ~A taste of traditional goodness at Colonnade

Nokham Thai 3.5/5 ~Best Hot & Sour soup

Bowich 5/5 ~Bowich has the secret to the perfect sandwich

Lapointe Fish 4/5 ~Fish great; fries not

Thi Fusion 3.5/5 ~Stylish take on a taste of Asia

Sausage Kitchen 4/5 ~Hearty lunch

Lazy Pickle 4.5/5 ~Not lazy after all

Brian’s Butchery & Deli 3/5 ~Deli delivers simplicity

Salang Kabob House 3.5/5 ~Eats flavoured with Afghan tradition

Pressed 4.5/5 ~Panini perfection

Golden Palace 2/5 ~Egg rolls reign

Corazón de Maiz 4/5 ~Mexican eats to warm winter

Mugena's 3/5 ~Jammin’ & eatin’

Stella Luna 4.5/5 ~Start Valentine's with Paninis at Stella Luna then go skating on the canal

Rainbow Foods 3.5/5 ~Fresh eats

Francesco's 2/5 ~Italian charm, but...

Viva Loca 4/5 ~Classy and locally-made

Hintonburg Public House 4.5/5 ~Home away from home

El Tucan 3/5 ~Deep-fried ice cream

Tennessy Willems 4/5 ~Cast a pizza wish & be enchanted

Bread & Sons 4/5 ~Follow the brown paper bags to tastiness

Arturo’s Market 3/5 ~Tasty soup options

Los tacos de Mauro 3.5/5 ~Dreamy guacamole

Schnitzel Works 3.5/5 ~This schnitzel works

Planet Coffee 4/5 ~Tasty eats and sweet treats

Grounded Kitchen 4.5/5 ~Grounded in plenty of tasty options

42 Crichton St. 4.5/5 ~42 Crichton Street Fine Food is mighty fine

Odile 5/5 ~Perfection in the details

Fleur Tea House 3/5 ~Tea shop could be a winner with a few small tune-ups

BOM (Burgers on Main) 3.5/5 ~OM burgers fail to blow taste buds away

Pasticceria Gelateria Italiana 3.5/5 ~Buon appetito! Manicotti, gelato and cannoli all shine

All good things come to an end: a look at Lunch Rush