O, Canada. You do winter so fine. With fireplaces, warm, intimate settings, and heartening seasonal menus. Bright, spirited cocktails, too. Winter in Canada is not a season, it’s a reason — to relax, enjoy the long, lingering nights and dine out at cozy restaurants like these 10 hot spots. Whether you’re looking for a fireside table to set the mood on a date or you want to tuck into a toddy with your best friend, OpenTable has you covered with these and thousands of other restaurants around the world.
The Nook Chophouse-Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge, Alberta
It’s the ultimate cozy cabin escape — an upscale rustic mountain chophouse that serves hand-selected wild game, organic meats, and locally-sourced seafood — and a roaring stone fireplace for flame-side convos about your ski day or snowshoeing adventure. An extensive wine list (238 bottles!) makes a perfect pairing for a locally-farmed dry aged AAA Alberta ribeye or bacon-wrapped bison tenderloin, both served with applewood smoked potato gratin, Brussels sprouts with dried cranberries, and maple vinaigrette. Make a reservation at The Nook Chophouse-Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge.
Chez Muffy, Quebec City
Featuring family-style, farm-to-fork fare, this Old Quebec dining destination is a favorite of Quebecois. Housed in a historic 1822 maritime warehouse and sitting pretty on the St. Lawrence River, the original walls and wooden beams radiate charm while the menu, helmed by executive chef Julien Ouellet, shows off classical French and Canadian seasonal cuisine with ingredients sourced from the hotel’s farm on Île d’Orléans. Think deer sausage with apple spaetzle, pan-seared duck foie gras, lobster Champagne risotto, a Quebec cheese platter, and apple buckwheat cake for dessert. Make a reservation at Chez Muffy.
Taverne Square Dominion, Montreal
This tavern has good bones. Dating to the 1920s, it’s unpretentious yet refined with cheerful, dangling chandeliers and wintry comfort food, the kind you especially you crave on a snowy day including classic British dishes like Cornish hen, Scotch egg, and bangers and mash. And because freezing temps are a darn good excuse to eat a rich, comforting dessert, save room for the sticky toffee pudding. Pre-dinner, kick back at the handsome, elongated bar for a pint of beer, a glass of wine, or a Canadian Old Fashioned. Make a reservation at Taverne Square Dominion.
Maison Boulud, Montreal
This: a flame-throwing, glass-enclosed fireplace that’s the heart of the restaurant in the middle of the room between the bar and dining area. “We can definitely say that it is the centerpiece of the restaurant that brings a warm and cozy atmosphere,” says Francois Parmentier, Ritz-Carlton Montreal communication manager. The fireplace stokes heat as do the hearty winter dishes like oxtail onion soup with Gruyere cheese and sea bass with za’atar, chickpeas, and pomegranate. Make a reservation at Maison Boulud.
Sky Yard at The Drake Hotel, Toronto
Summer doesn’t own rooftop season at this stylish urban spot, with a Marfa-inspired terrace that’s all about lush greenery, bright colors, and intoxicating city views. The partly-covered, open-air, year-round rooftop remains toasty with heated lamps and winter-loving dishes like a roasted lamb sandwich with tomato jam, caramelized onion, and Gruyere; a sourdough brie grilled cheese; steak tartare; sushi rolls; and comfy classics like chicken leek pie and buttermilk fried chicken. Make a reservation at Sky Yard at The Drake Hotel.
The Grill Room at Fairmont Chateau Whistler, Whistler
The impressive stone fireplace is one reason to dine here in the middle of winter and, because it’s flambée season, go with the tomato gin soup made with locally-sourced mushrooms, double-smoked bacon or confit duck, flambéed tableside with Schramm gin. The wine list shows off British Columbia’s finest, including the occasional sabered bottle of sparkling wine. It’s also hot cocktail season — sip an alpine warmer like the chocolate raspberry peppermint liss (Chambord raspberry, peppermint schnapps, and hot chocolate). Make a reservation at The Grill Room at The Fairmont Chateau Whistler.