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I need some Calgary advice

I'm heading to Calgary for the August long weekend and I need some food advice!

I hope to have dinner at the River Cafe, but I'm not sure about the rest of the meals during my visit.

Some friends suggested going to the Broken Plate, but they're open to somewhere else in that price range if I can come up with something. I had another friend recommend Ho Won for Chinese. Any comments about these places or other suggestions? Places like Divino and Capo sound heavenly to me, but I have a feeling my friends may not be comfortable with the cost.

Also, any tips on food I can't get anywhere else that I should buy to take home would be welcome. My traditional "take home" is fresh Buddist veggie food from the Veggie House in Chinatown.

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  1. Try Aida's on 4th Street SW for cheap and tasty Lebanese cuisine. Also Sahara's for more upscale Lebanese food and belly-dancing...Moti Mahal on the corner of 14th and 17th for wonderful Indian meals...

    1. Any preference on cuisine?

      1. For Chinese, Tai Pan in China Town inside a building on 3rd Ave and Centre Street (it's on the north side). There are usually only Asians there, which is a good sign. Ho Won is dicey - if it's too busy, the food ends up suffering.

        I also second Moti Mahal.

        1. Could you maybe specify a price range that your friends would be comfortable with? That way, rather than shotgunning suggestions, we can suggest things that fall within your price range?

          For example, IMO, Capo and Divino fall into different price ranges. River Cafe is expensive, and Broken Plate is 15-25, so it isnt exactly cheap either. Im not sure what range you are looking for.

          Any additional info you can provide would help.

          1. IMHO, Moti Mahal is kinda meh- and I live less than a block from it. I very much prefer Glory of India or Tandoori Hut, but for great downscale Indian you cannot beat Tiffins.

            I sure hope people here are visiting Tibet on 10th- great lunch buffet at great price. It's not quite Indian of course but it's damn good. Their spicy potatoes are to. die. for.

            OP, I am wondering why the rec for Broken Plate- it's Greek you know, but you don't specify if you or companions specifically want Greek. Also, there are two locations, one in Kensington (a very cool urban vibe, near downtown with tons or restos), the other in a kind of mall/stripmall combo called Willow Park Village, in soul-destroying suburbia.

            1. I personally don't care about price and am open to anything. :)

              For the dinner with my friends, however, I would probably stick with around $20 or under for entrees. As for taste, they're pretty open except they don't like sushi. They're fairly new to Calgary, so they don't really know what's good and what isn't. The Broken Plate was suggested because they've been there once.

              Thanks for your suggestions; I'll see what they want to do. And if you have any more please let me know.

              1. I would recommend the following restaurants in no particular order:
                Siding Cafe
                Leo Fu's
                Thai Sa-On
                Pulcinella
                Mercato
                Cilanto's-caveat-have not been there for a while.
                Divino's-maybe out of your friends price range.

                Hope that helps.

                Chas

                1. My favourite thing to take home from Calgary is a vanilla croissant from Manuel Latruwe bakery.

                  1. Siding cafe for brunch (apple pancake!!!) on the weekend.

                    Shikiji sushi house for ramen noodles in awsome broth (don't get the sushi, it's not that great)

                    Peter's Drive thru for milkshakes and onion rings

                    Lina's for italian pastries (maybe you can do your take out here as it si also on center)

                    Boca Loca for Mexican (guacamole! and tamales!)

                    Aida's for dinner.

                    1. For dinner - CILANTRO on 17th ave. Everything is outstanding there. The food, the wine, the atmosphere, the patio, the service. You can't go wrong.

                      Some menu highlights (my fav's)

                      -Seared Beef Tenderlion with hot mustard (appetizer)
                      -Oven roasted bread with grilled whole garlic cloves (appetizer)
                      -Any Pizza( pear gorgonzala the best)
                      -Black pepper pasta

                      This is by far one of my all time favorite places in Calgary.

                      http://www.crmr.com/cilantro/index.php