Food and Wine

101 Tastes To Try Before You Die

Two months, dozens of meals, hundreds of taste tests, and one order of braised veal sweetbreads later, we’re thrilled to reveal Ottawa Magazine’s first 101 Tastes list. We took a spectacular culinary stroll through the capital region, stopping to taste all that caught our fancy along the way. The only parameters? From bread to honey and burfi to rendang, the food and drink that made the cut had to be either made in Ottawa, unique to Ottawa, or hard to find elsewhere. Bon appétit!


SIMPLE PLEASURES

Comfort food goes haute, with gourmet pies, ice cream, and ­— to wash it down, a fine microbrew

1 Beau’s Lug Tread Beer
You’ve gotta love a family-run homegrown microbrewery with its own band, called the Oh-Yeah’s. The beer, made with certified organic malt and local spring water, is just as refreshing as its quirky branding. $7.65/750 mL. Available at many restaurants, bars, and LCBO stores. www.beaus.ca.

2 Pascale’s ice cream
Made with heart and a whole lot of cream, eggs, and sugar, Pascale Berthiaume’s decadent homemade ice cream has the city swooning. The peanut butter salted caramel is a party in a half-pint and proves there’s no such thing as being too rich or too yummy. $10 for a half-pint. The Piggy Market, 400 Winston Ave.,613-371-6124. For other locations, check www.pascales-icecream.com.

3 Bryson Farm’s baby salad greens
Digging into a bag of Bryson Farm’s organic salad greens is like opening nature’s box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get: mâche, endive, frisée, kale, arugula, cress, sorrel, beet tops, chards. From sweet and lemony to mustardy and spicy, more than 100 varieties are grown and snipped with care throughout the year. 23 Stewart Rd., Shawville, 819-647-3456, www.brysonfarms.com.

4 Memories’ triple berry pie
Raspberries, blackberries, and cranberries. Oh, my! This stunning deep-dish wonder is refreshingly tart, bursting with bright berry flavour, and topped with crunchy brown sugar oat crumble. The only thing better? Three words: à la mode. $7.25. Memories, 7 Clarence St., 613-241-1882.

5 Lamb tourtière from Les Fougères
Lots of meat in this ground lamb tourtière, made moist with the addition of pork, as well as goat cheese. Its fruitiness comes from red peppers, red currant jelly, and balsamic vinegar. $6/single, $16/four servings. Les Fougères, 783 Hwy. 105, Chelsea, 819-827-8942, www.fougeres.com.

6Coriander pesto
Gentle and creamy, this pesto hasn’t a sharp bone in its body. Good for any wide noodle (which you can also pick up here). Made-in-house and pret-à-porter. $8.50/4-person serving. Pastina, 355, boul. Gréber, Gatineau (Gatineau sector), 819-243-0546.

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  • One of Ottawa’s Real Foodies

    I have to give a shout out to 4 other high, high local quality products.

    1) Siren Bakery’s granola (new in Ottawa as of May 2010) at local stores – check website.

    2) William J Walter Saucissier on Boul Saint-Joseph by Rue Montcalm. To die for sausages. Good luck making up your mind. The selection is endless. I can’t eat anyone else’s sausages now. Prices decent.

    3) La Cigale in Chelsea for their ice cream. On Rue Scott. Great garden outside too if you want to rest and lick.

    4) michaelsdolce jams available at similar local stores to Siren Bakery. Check his website.

  • Don (@foodieprints)

    To the Ottawa Magazine, may I ask if you will be revisiting the list? As Anne pointed out in the comment above, we’ve a plethora of new products from Ottawa’s wonderful local producers.

    Also, many of the local food bloggers are putting together checklists (myself included), now that your updated 101 lists to try are finally online.

    Kudos for helping to make Ottawa’s signature foods accessible!

  • Prettytastyreviews blogspot

    This list is very interesting and I learned of a lot of new places.
    I think I will “borrow” your idea and make my own list of my blog.
    There are many other places that are not listed,and I would also like to see a list where people can get around by bus or bike…since I am vehicle challenged.

  • Goinout

    We tried number 19 Barbe’s Roast Pork Sandwich. The sandwich was one thin slice of pork and not much taste. The total for 2 small sandwiches, 2 coffee and 1 small side of fries came to $19.50. I questioned the bill and was told the sandwich alone was $6. Unbelievable. Will never go back

  • Dave

    Working my way through it :)

  • One of Ottawa’s Real Foodies

    Since this list was put together, I feel like I need to do a shout out to Edgar at 60 rue Bégin Gatineau (Hull sector). I go for the soups. Others can’t get enough of her paninis or bakery treats. Opened Halloween 2010. Maybe we will see it on the 2011 list. Maybe. 58 people rated it on Urbanspoon.com. 100% liked it. Sure Marysol has her groupies, but it appears that anyone lured there by all the buzz has left with belly happiness.

    Although the Golden Palace’s egg rolls aren’t quite the posh of bison egg rolls found at La Trappe à Fromage, they just seem to be an Ottawa institution that is worthy of 101 Tastes status. People flock from miles around to get them. Many a GF egg roll has been security checked at the YOW.

  • lola

    I have recently visited a ‘tasteful’ little restaurant on Preston Street called Ristorante La Dolce Vita. They serve up some wonderful Italian recipes and also boast an amazing gluten-free menu. Their Gourmet pizzas are to die for.

    They should surely be mentioned in the 101 Tastes.
    Try them and you will believe. http://www.ladolcevitapreston.ca