When the first day of crisp air sets in and it’s time to search closets and trunks for a fall sweater, OpenTable diners who love autumn pack the car and set out to catch a glimpse of the changing leaves in all their splendor. From Montana to Texas, Western Canada to Nova Scotia, and everywhere in between, there’s no shortage of grand locales where diners can take in the foliage sights and have a dining experience worthy of the fall fireworks we all wait all year to enjoy. Here are 10 of our favorite restaurants for leaf peeping (and fueling up afterward).
The Tea House Restaurant, Stanley Park, Vancouver, Canada
In what is one of British Columbia’s most exquisite parks, Vancouver’s Stanley Park and fall colours go hand-in-hand. One of the best reasons to visit Stanley Park is to stop for a meal at The Teahouse Restaurant. Mussels, baked British Columbia goat feta, and lamb riblets with grape olive glaze are just a few reasons to pause from the leaves for some sustenance. For seafood lovers, choices include sablefish, British Columbia salmon and halibut among others, while the tenderloin and wild mushroom ravioli satisfy hungry diners. Make a reservation at The Tea House Restaurant.
The Brewer’s Table, Austin, Texas
Grilled cheese and soup is to fall like ski slopes are to winter – a perfect match. This is especially true when dining in Lager Garden at The Brewer’s Table in trendy Austin, Texas. Prepared with camembert and whipped goat cheeses set in pumpkin and pear soup, this cheesy, melty goodness gets a crunchy treatment with cheese crisps crumbled inside the dried apricot brioche baked fresh daily at The Brewer’s Table. This signature fall dish is served with fresh apple slices and apple butter. Make a reservation at The Brewer’s Table.
The Boat Club at Lodge at Whitefish, Whitefish, Montana
A stone’s throw from Glacier National Park in one of Montana’s loveliest small towns, Whitefish is home to a charming Main Street community and is the gateway to some of the state’s most glorious fall adventures. Culinary-focused guests flock to the Boat Club for the views of Whitefish Lake and dishes like the charcuterie board with elk sausage with pear, proscuitto, soppresata salami, artisan cheeses, and Flathead cherry chutney. The elk meatballs arrive at table with a savory-sweet huckleberry barbecue glaze and crispy jalapeno dust while on Saturdays, guests line up for the prime rib. Make a reservation at The Boat Club.
Sunset Terrace at The Omni Grove Park Inn, Asheville, North Carolina
The Western North Carolina Mountains are full of legend and lore, historic hotels, and storied cuisine. For one-hundred and five years, the Grove Park Inn has served breathtaking views from its Sunset Terrance, where fall dining includes things like beet steak, bone marrow, and oxtail marmalade, and lamb. Make reservations in advance to catch a seat at the iconic stone lady. Make a reservation on The Sunset Terrace at the Grove Park Inn.
Imperial, Portland, Oregon
Within the historic Hotel Lucia in Downtown Portland, Imperial shares the best ingredients Oregon has to offer, including one of Imperial’s signature fall dishes guests salivate to enjoy. Served in a cast iron skillet, the coal-roasted sweet potato is cooked in the embers of Imperial’s wood-fired grill and paired with housemade charred onion butter and pepita salsa. Make a reservation at Imperial.
LaurieRaphael, Québec City, Canada
National parks, mountains, and fine dining define the outdoor and indoor experience in this thriving region. Between days spend driving the winding rural paths and returning to Québec City, dining at LaurieRaphael is more like stepping into a lovely alternate universe than just a restaurant. An adventure of the gastronomic kind, the chefs present the menu in themes with dishes like green tomatoes carpaccio with Québec red tuna tartar and Kamouraska sea urchin espuma, Orleans Island smoked lettuce with grilled pork confit and foie gras terrine, seared scallops with seasonal vegetable velouté, and seared veal with mixed herbs crust. Make a reservation at Laurie Raphael.
Silver Pine Restaurant & Bar at Little America Hotel, Flagstaff, Arizona
Flagstaff is known as much for its breathtaking fall vistas as for its colorful cuisine. Silver Pine Restaurant & Bar at Little America Hotel has debuted a new fall menu to include polar opposites to honor the light and the hearty. The Mother Earth salad is brimming with roasted vegetables, tomatoes, toasted almonds, garbanzo beans, and quinoa while the turkey plate is a nod to home-cooked holiday food. What makes this little gem a great stop for leaf peepers is the neighboring 500 acres of Ponderosa pine forest at the base of the San Francisco Peaks – all enjoyed al fresco at 7,000 feet in elevation. Make a reservation at Silver Pine.
Momofuku Kōjin, Toronto, Canada
Between Allan Gardens, Moss, and other tree-lined city parks, guests at Momofuku Kōjin find hearth-fired goodies like fingerling potato cheesecake layered with aged Gouda, coconut rice topped with caramelized coconut, and a carnivore’s delight steak menu sourced from Ontario purveyors. The menu includes bone-in filet mignon, dry-aged boneless ribeye, and bone-in striploin alongside seafood boxes brimming with oysters, fluke crudo, shrimp ceviche, poached shrimp, snow crab, and seasonal garnishes. Be sure to order the lacquered pork chop for the table or the chicken in a pot with crispy rice, green onion, and corn in a sharing portion that feeds two-three diners. Make a reservation at Momofuko Kojin.