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Sep 18, 2009 06:35 PM

Ottawa... eclectic, ethnic?

My daughter has just moved to Ottawa from Toronto for university. She has grown up with a taste for good food, but hasn't the budget for it as a student. In Toronto, she could eat well, cheap... from Bacchus Roti to Pho Hung to Sushi Time on Queen. Can anyone recommend good, cheap eats in Ottawa? Also, I want to take her out for her birthday and I am stumped. DOmus looks great, but too pricey, same with Black Cat Cafe... we love to eat, and I'd love to treat her, but I'd prefer to take her somewhere that she could conceivably return to with friends for a celebratory meal..

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  1. The Elgin Street diner is always very nice. But Fils on Wellington is very nice and CHEAP for a student.

    1. Wellington Gastropub. The mains are all under $30 and absolutely delicious. I haven't had better ice cream anywhere in Canada-its house made. And I would have loved to hang out in this kinda place during my university days-lowkey, relaxed and friendly service. In fact-I'm heading back out there sometime in October-can't wait!


      Oh just to clarify-this suggestion falls under the "celebratory/birthday" category-I wouldn't expect a student to be able to afford those prices on a regular basis.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Splendid Wine Snob

        technically the ice cream was not "house made". it's made by a woman who has some kind of arrangement with the WGP.

        1. re: FRODO

          Thanks for the correction FRODO.

          I couldn't remember whether it was one of the female BOH staff that made it onsite or if she makes it offsite then sells it to WGP. Either way, its delicious.

      2. Which university is she attending? Ottawa or Carleton? Ottawa U is near the market, which is full of cheap eats; Carleton is close to the Glebe and Ottawa South.

        Near Ottawa U:
        Khao Thai (Thai, duh)
        Ahora (Mexican)
        Sweet Art (Vietnamese)
        Wasabi (sushi)
        Kasbah Village (Moroccan)

        Near(ish) Carleton:
        Sacred Garden (veggie Thai)
        Light of India or Taj Mahal
        Savana Café
        Wild Oat (vegetarian)
        Vietnamese Kitchen

        2 Replies
        1. re: piccola

          I have eaten at Ahora a couple times and find it just ok, kind of "average" mexican food and not too interesting. Affordable though.
          I hear Agave grill in westboro is very good though.

          Haveli lunch buffet, it is still $10 all you can eat,but they only have a buffet at lunch.
          Dinner is pretty expensive when ordering single dishes.

          Lone star cafe in the byward market is good.
          But only go for the specials or else it is not that worth it.

          Suisha gardens on Slater st has some very interesting appetizers and prices are ok, similar to Wasabi.
          Actually Suisha gardens also does take out and they have quite a few small dishes for under $5.
          The chilled tofu w sauce and fish flakes and shallots is $3- a nice healthy snack.
          Sushi orders start at $3 for vegetable sushi.
          They also sell their own home made salad dressing in 500ml container for $7, and it is very good!

          Basmati indian at Bank/somerset.
          Tandoori chicken wrap sandwiches for around $7.50 extremely filling and huge sandwiches.
          Also lunch plate specials and resonable meals.

          1. re: MiriamOttawa

            I haven't been to Ahora in about a year, so my memory might not reflect the current situation.

            Le Boulanger français is both in the market and the Glebe.

            Across the street from Ottawa U: Perfection Satisfaction Promise, a hippy-ish place that specialises in baked potatoes.

        2. Ceylonta (two locations, main one on Somerset just west of Bank) is extremely cheap and incredibly delicious Sri Lankan food... better than anything I've ever had in Toronto. This place is a true gem and given the low prices and great tastes, students go crazy for it! All the graduate students I know frequent it often.

          1. The Manx has decent food (pub food with a twist...for example they have crab cakes on the menu and good salads). Very reasonable prices but small and always quite busy.