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Girl's Weekend in Edmonton

I will be in Edmonton for a Friday & Saturday night meeting some ladies that currently live in Ft. Mac. They are starved for great food & I've only ever been to Edmonton once so I need help. We are all adventurous eaters and we aren't too budget limited so pretty much anything goes. We are staying on Whyte Ave and would prefer to dine near there if possible to cut down on driving/cabbing to the restaurant.

One request from the group was for Italian food??? Like I said, anything goes but I would prefer not to go places that are chains (King & I, Keg, etc).

Thanks in advance!

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  1. If proximity is key, you might consider Packrat Louie, which is just off Whyte. It's been around forever and is quite good (albeit not Italian)

    http://www.packratlouie.com/

    If you're willing to cross the river downtown, Sorrentino's would be a nice Italian choice.

    http://www.sorrentinos.com/sorrentino...

    Other non-Italian downtown restos that the girls might enjoy would be Wildflower Grill, Hardware Grill, Moriarty's (more casual but beautiful interior), MRKT (also more casual but a cool spot), and I know I've been meaning to try The Marc as well.

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    Packrat Louie
    10335 - 83rd Ave, Edmonton, AB T6E 2C6, CA

    Wildflower Grill
    10009 - 107 Street NW, Edmonton, AB T5J 1J1, CA

    Sorrentinos
    4208 Calgary Trail South, Edmonton, AB T6J 6Y8, CA

    2 Replies
    1. re: lainekerr

      totally agree with all these above suggestions except for Sorrentino's. IMHO it is The Worst Italian in Edmonton.

      Unfortunately I cannot think of any Italian places on/near whyte ave. However, You are close to Culina Millcreek or Red Ox Inn, both amazing places.

      Other Italian, not far away (downtown): Allegro, Pazzo Pazzo, Il Violino, Il Pasticio, Scilian Pasta Kitchen (not my fav, but many people love it).

      -----
      Culina Millcreek
      9914-89 Avenue NW, Edmonton, AB T6E 2S7, CA

      Red Ox Inn
      9420 91 Street, Edmonton, AB T6C 3P4, CA

      1. re: cleopatra999

        Completely agree re: Sorrentino's. Culina is great.

        -----
        Sorrentinos
        4208 Calgary Trail South, Edmonton, AB T6J 6Y8, CA

    2. I had an excellent Italian meal at Bistecca last month on the south side. I'd put it above Il Pasticio and Sicilian Pasta Kitchen, haven't tried the other Italian recs.

      4 Replies
      1. re: rob1234

        Bistecca is part of the Sorrentino's group and shares an executive chef with the downtown Sorrentino's (Sonny Sung).

        There are a few Italian restaurants in Edmonton that are "good", none that I have been to that are great, and none of them are all that authentically Italian either.

        I would recommend broadening the choices and considering somewhere non-Italian. In my opinion the best combination of walking distance and good food is Packrat Louie's. The other places that have been mentioned (Culina, Red Ox, Wildflower) are all wonderful but not within walking distance.

        Murrietta's is right on Whyte Ave. and is kind of a chain but they have very few locations (Calgary, Edmonton, Canmore) so most people I know haven't necessarily been and their food manages to be at least one step up from typical restaurant chains like Keg, Joey's, Earls etc.

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        Packrat Louie
        10335 - 83rd Ave, Edmonton, AB T6E 2C6, CA

        Sorrentinos
        4208 Calgary Trail South, Edmonton, AB T6J 6Y8, CA

        1. re: egon61

          I would disagree that Culina is not within walking, but that is just me....

          1. re: cleopatra999

            Fair comment, Google maps shows about a 20 min. walk from the hotels on Whyte, which many people would consider reasonable to go to/from dinner.

        2. re: rob1234

          I've been meaning to try Bistecca for awhile now, but it's not a convenient location for me unfortunately! I had an OK experience at Il Pasticcio and agree with cleopatra999 about lots of people liking SPK (I don't care for it myself).

          Edmonton is definitely lacking great authentic Italian restaurants. But for friends visiting from Fort Mac, anything we have would beat Fort Mac hands down!!

        3. Thanks everyone for the info so far. We are definitely up for non-Italian....it was just one of the things mentioned by my girlfriends.

          Keep the recommendations coming. Thanks!

          1. Da-De-O's is right on Whyte if you're willing to do more casual and have cajun food. Sabzy's is also on Whyte, and does Persian food.

            1. Although I am not a big fan, I know lots of people who enjoy Chianti's (corner of Whyte and Calgary Trail.

              I would highly recommend Mongolie Grill (either downtown or southside) - choose your items from their raw food bar (please don't think you eat raw food), nice selection of meats, seafood, veggies and more, then choose your sauce and they stir fry it fresh for you and bring it to your table. Served with your choice of soup, and make sure to ask for wraps! You pay by weight, which can be pricey if you put lots in your bowl, but it is very tasty!

              1. Thanks for everyone's suggestions. We ended up eating dinners at Yani's, The King & I and Packrat Louie.

                I would say that Packrat Louie was my favorite. I had their seafood special with halibut cheeks and prawns over tomato risotto. It was exceptionally well prepared. Our entire group was very happy with their meals.

                The King & I was delicious. My girlfriends from Fort Mac were dying for Thai. We went with the Chef's feast which gave us 3 appetizers (with 5 pieces of each) and 5 main dishes (we had 5 ppl in our group) for $27 per person. We let the chef pick the dishes though they will also let you pick your own. Everything was very tasty and we all left stuffed & the one Edmontonian got to take a big bag of leftovers home.

                Yani's was pretty good but my least favorite of the 3. There were 3 of us for dinner that night so we shared the dinner for 2 and added calmari. The appetizers and salad were very good but the dinner was only so/so in my opinion. The chicken was nothing special while the salmon and lamb were better.

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                Packrat Louie
                10335 - 83rd Ave, Edmonton, AB T6E 2C6, CA

                3 Replies
                1. re: Merry113

                  Thanks for the reply Merry113. It's always nice to hear about the actual meals. On a side note, I'm a sucker for halibut cheeks too.

                  1. re: Merry113

                    Yanni's is consistently one of the busiest places in the city. They never seem to screw it up but on the other side, never really inspire or surprise. Just basic grilled skewered meat at what seem to me to be high prices. I think they do well with groups because of the location and because even picky eaters can find something they like there.

                    1. re: egon61

                      Yeah, I have the same feeling about Yanni's. Not amazing, but definitely not terrible.