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Oct 24, 2009 04:27 PM

Beltline area Calgary

we are fairly new to Calgary and live in the Beltline. Just looking for restaurant recommendations , we are looking for good quality at a reasonable price (if there is such a thing). Basically looking for places to go to when Im not in a mood to cook, or places to drop in when we're busy at lunch or dinner .
They also need to be in the beltline as we dont want to drive, there are so many places to eat in this area so what are your favourites?
Thanks so much

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  1. Wow- that's a lot of choice. Most places have decent value these days; in fact since the bad old days of The Boom are in increasingly distant memory I'd say that the Calgary resto scene is the best it's been since I moved here almost 10 years ago.

    Could you be more specific? Any particular cuisine, any particular part of the Beltline? If you live in, say, Arriva, then you're technically "Beltline" but to walk to, say, Jaro Blue is a pretty long walk.

    3 Replies
    1. re: John Manzo

      sorrry for being so vague but we are open to all types of cuisine. Just getting used to the different areas of downtown and only recently learned we lived in the beltline (yes we are newbies). we live on 15 ave & 8 St and walk pretty much everywhere. Thanks for your help John

      1. re: cneuen

        Well you're practically across the street from Kawa Espresso Bar, which is an superb coffeehouse with some very good food incl an amazing bottled beer assortment. Two other coffee places that are both beloved institutions in Cgy are Bumpy's to the north on 8 St b/t 10 and 11 Ave and Caffe Beano off 17th on 9 St (just look for the crowds), Then you are steps from three Starbucks, so really for coffee you're set :)

        Head east to 7 St b/t 11 and 12 ave is Laurier Lounge which is a really neat sort of French/Quebecois pub; they have twice-fried Belgian style fries but also several types of poutine in a nice old house- a gem. Great patio too.

        But of course the action is on 17th and west to east (starting at 14A) I'd suggest any of O Shima for sushi, Pho VK for an interesting Vietnamese buffet lunch and dinner, Green Chili for what has become my favourite Indian in Calgary, Moti Mahal for good if pricey Indian, 1410 Bierhaus for REALLY good pub food and beer (excellent thin crust pizzas), Co Do for much-loved Viet, Jaro Blue for lovely tapas, martinis and a chill atmosphere, Sammy's for massive and really tasty donairs, Golden Bell for what I consider the best Viet on 17th SW, Midori for good cheap sushi and Korean, King's for REALLY GOOD (as in not MDG addled junk) western style takeout Chinese, FARM for amazing small plates and charcuterie, and what I consider the best pure veg resto in Canada (not that I've been to that many, mind), The Coup. That takes us to 8 St, and I have a hockey game to watch :)

        1. re: John Manzo

          thank you so much. I think our only problem is that we are spoiled for choice. Thanks for the pub suggestions, its always hard to find a pub thats not targeting 20 somethings of which we are not.
          I have noticed that Kawa is always busy and didnt realise it was a licenced, very good to know. I had though Caffe Beano must be good because of the crowds outside.
          As for food I think we are going to work through your list because it all sounds amazing, we're going to have to pace ourselves!

    2. My favourite non-high-end Italian is on 17th near 8th St (Buon Giorno). There are a lot of other places on 17th (dozens!!) within a few blocks of 8th, like FARM (not reasonably priced IMHO but others like it), Classic Jack's (a bar, very cheap specials all the time, quality and service can be spotty), Ric's Grill on 8th (reasonably priced for what you get, their steaks are pretty good). Mirchi on 12th Ave near 8th St has very inexpensive Indian (Pakistani) food for takeout (just a few tables for dine-in), I think no liquor licence.
      You can just walk around, most places have their menus posted outside.

      1 Reply
      1. re: hsk

        I have heard that Buon Giorno was good and we have been to Ric's and had very good food and service. Good to know about Mirchi as we quite often fancy a takeaway and indian was always one of my favourites growing up but we havent had an indian takeway close by for years.

      2. I'm just going to put this out there, it might be considered a little lower class of places already mentioned..The Ship & Anchor Pub (17th Ave & 5th st. a quick walk from you) is a grubby english pub with excellent service, english soccer matches, saturday jams, 'road trips' to various venues around the city and the food is good and it's damn cheap - $8.95 for a loaded home made burger/fries. They have some veggie options too. There are daily specials (with the most expensive dish being about $10) and they serve brunch on Sundays.

        With that said, I must add that I go only there for food and a pint or Sat. jam. The crowd is very diverse. Lots of different types, different ages, even some families. I have no idea what it would be like at night. It's not refined and it's not pretty but I find it really good value.

        1 Reply
        1. re: TSAW

          Thanks tsaw, I enjoy good pub food once in a while as long as there is a veggie option. Im originally from the UK so pubs are pretty much part of my upbringing ha ha. Its also nice and close so we will give it a try although from walking past this summer it was pretty full on saturdays so will try a week night.

        2. For Thai in the beltline I really like Thai Sa-On on 10th Ave, and Chili Club on 11th is pretty good too. Thai Sa-On gets talked about on this board a fair bit- here is one thread:

          3 Replies
          1. re: Mawson Plan

            I would choose Chili Club over Thai Sa-On. I find Thai Sa-On to be hit or miss, and the service usually leaves something to be desired. Chili Club is a bit more expensive, but the food is always spectacular, probably the best Thai I've had in the city. The service is always great, too. (Thai Sa-On does have the best thai spring rolls, though.)

            1. re: chromatic

              We'll have to duke it out. I love the dishes, wine list and service at Thai Sa-On. Plus they make some very good spicy dishes if you ask nicely for extreme heat. Either way it's nice to have two pretty good Thai options in the Beltline.

              1. re: Mawson Plan

                ahem-Ruan Thai too. Have had nothing but good experiences with them lately.

          2. They might be a little more expensive than the other restos mentioned but a block East of the Ship is Cilantro and across the street from Melrose (roughly 17th Ave and 7th Street) is Brava Bistro.

            4 Replies
            1. re: Hart50

              Petite is located across from Community Natural Foods on 10th Ave, near Ruan Thai. Less expensive than Cilantro and reportedly (I've never been) quite good value.

              I like the atmosphere at Galaxie Diner (14th Ave and 11th St) and its Calgary Sandwich, but the line can be a big deterrent, especially on weekend mornings.

              Have you been to Tubby Dog (17th Ave, around 7th St)? It's definitely a unique experience! An order of onion rings is huge. Definitely a place to go after a night of hard-partying.

              And though it hasn't been mentioned in a while on these boards, Vogglio d'Pizza still makes very, very good pies. I'm partial to the Mexicana and the Fantasia.


              Petite Restaurant
              344 17th Avenue SW, Calgary, AB T3C, CA

              1. re: aktivistin

                After a long absence I had the "Caribbean" at Vogglio a couple of weeks ago- this is the one with tuna- and it was superb! I think it's important to NOT get the "thin" crust there; it ends up hard and brittle. "Regular" crust is the sweet spot.

                1. re: John Manzo

                  funny, I prefer the 'thin' crust, I find the regular too dough-y.

                  However my favourite beltline pizza recently has been Eddy's nest at 12th ave and 7th street. The pizza is excellent, heavy with fresh ingredients. The owner is really nice as well, and clearly very proud of his product.

                  1. re: marcopolo

                    I just noticed this place today while driving home, have driven past it numerous times. nice and close to me will have to give it a try