2015 Top 100 Outdoor Dining Restaurants in Canada + 10 Most Instagrammable Patios

Dust off your sandals and bust out the sunscreen, diners! Summer is here, and to kick things off we’re unveiling the 2015 Top 100 Best Outdoor Dining Restaurants in Canada. The awards reflect the combined opinions of more than 275,000 restaurant reviews submitted by verified OpenTable diners for more than 1,600 restaurants in Canada.

Featuring restaurants that offer some of Canada’s most stunning views and dining experiences, the complete list includes winners from picturesque regions such as Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Stanley Park, British Columbia, and Banff, Alberta. Ontario leads all provinces with 41 winning restaurants, followed by British Columbia with 28, Alberta with 18, and Québec with 12. Restaurants associated with wineries, such as Miradoro at Tinhorn Creek Winery in Oliver, British Columbia, and Vineland Estates Winery Restaurant in Vineland, Ontario, are well represented among the winning restaurants.

Forget phone etiquette for a moment when you visit any of these honorees, and open your Instagram app to share snaps of these fabulous outdoor seating areas.  Need inspiration? Check out 10 of the most Instagrammable restaurant patios from this year’s Top 100 below.

Continue Reading

OpenTable Reviews Reveal Inaugural #DinersChoice Top 100 Best Restaurants in Canada

five sailsWe are excited to announce our first ever Top 100 Best Restaurants in Canada list. The list reflects the combined opinions of more than 275,000 restaurant reviews submitted by verified OpenTable diners for approximately 1,500 restaurants in Canada.

The Top 100 list includes award winners from eight provinces, with restaurants as far west as British Columbia’s Wolf in the Fog and as far east as Newfoundland’s Raymonds.

A unique trend seen this past year in Canada was the popularity of wineries, which made up 20 per cent of the Top 100 including Quails’ Gate Estate Winery, Peller Estates Winery Restaurant, and Trius Winery Restaurant.

Ontario dominated the list with an impressive 38 restaurants making the Top 100, followed by Québec with 21, British Columbia with 19, and Alberta with 15.

French fare was the most popular choice among Canadian diners, with Italian trailing closely behind. Canada’s diverse culinary landscape was well represented with cuisines such as Japanese, Mediterranean, Syrian, and Turkish ranking in the Top 100.

Continue Reading

Trending on OpenTable Restaurant Reviews: Tartare

tartareThe very best steak tartare I ever ate almost had too much of everything — spice, salt, lemon. Almost. And, yet, it was perfection, coming right up to the line without crossing it. Indeed, if you like your beef wriggling and raw, as Gollum would say, and well seasoned, then tartare is the perfect dish for you. Most aficionados understand that it is a dish that can go very, very right — or very, er, not so right. Fortunately, OpenTable diners are encountering absolutely sublime versions of this raw delight. While versions of steak tartare date back to the beginning of the 20th century, my copy of Larousse Gastronomique from 1961 has a recipe for a very contemporary take on tartare. Find out what your fellow eaters are saying about this fresh meat treat. 

Auberge du Pommier, Toronto, Ontario: “The most memorable and tasty meal I have enjoyed in a while…foie gras, frogs’ legs, steak tartare, squab…all were terrific.”

* Belly and Trumpet, Dallas, Texas: “The antelope heart tartare was very good.”

Central 214, Dallas, Texas: “We sampled several appetizers/small plates to start, including steak tartare, melon salad, and scotch egg. But the tartare was perfect; I’d have been happy with an entree sized portion.”

Crush, Seattle, Washington: “All of our courses were delicious and inventive, although I’d say my carrot soup was the best and my husband would say his beef tartare was the best.”

Eleven Madison Park, New York, New York: “Especially liked the tableside take on steak tartare that was made with carrots and the duck.”

Fig & Olive-Melrose Place, West Hollywood, California: “Our favorite dish was the beef tartare, unique with its delicious olives blended with the meat. We both said we’d be back for that dish again.”

Gentleman Farmer, New York, New York: “Every dish we had was a culinary slay. I highly recommend the bison tartare and the filet mignon with foie gras. ”

Gordon Ramsay Steak, Las Vegas, Nevada: “The steak tartare was delicious with a great smoke flavor smoked right under a glass dome at the table.”

Le Patriarche, Quebec, Quebec: “Many aspects of our meal were outstanding, but the trilogy of young buffalo (tartare, carpaccio, and terrine) narrowly beat out the lamb as the best dish of the night.”

Continue Reading