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Mar 8, 2013 06:19 AM

Banff 2013

I've read the older threads. Are there any new restaurants, pubs or bakeries?

Which places would you recommend the most these days?

How is the Bison lately?

The Maple Leaf Grille looks good.

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  1. I went to the renovated Balkan for lunch (souvlaki sandwich) a while back, it was quite good and only $10. Their tzatziki was awesomely garlicky. It's a really nice space now.

    There's a new sandwich place called "Squish" that's right on the main strip. Looks interesting.

    I still love Wild Flour Cafe and Bear St Tavern - they have homemade pepperoni and it is simply awesome.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Shazam

      Thanks! Haven't been to the Balkan in years. I've also heard good things about Barpa Bill's souvlaki.

      Will take a look at the other places you've suggested. :-)

    2. Haven`t been to The Bison but have had several friends recommend it.
      The Maple Leaf Grille seems to be consistently "average". We have eaten there many times over the years, mainly breakfast & lunches. Service is "spotty", the food as above, "average", love the wood/rock interior.
      We always stay at the Fairmont Banff but I wouldn`t recommend any of the restaurants there. Way overpriced for average fare.
      Good Luck! We are staying in Banff for 4 days in early May so will check out the Bison.

      5 Replies
      1. re: rancher rick

        Fairmont Banff is horribly expensive but they have the best chicken breakfast sausages in the universe.

        1. re: rancher rick

          Thanks rancher rick and shazam! Will check out the brekkie at the Maple Leaf Grille.
          Are there any greasy spoon breakfasts in Banff?

          1. re: prima

            Phil's was recommended as a diner option on Tripadvisor, and I noticed there's a Ricky's, that would offer greasy spoon-style options.
            Also found this info about Banff breakfasts:
            Does anyone recommend any particular baked goods at Evelyn's?

            1. re: prima

              Bit late, but I'll put this up for prosperity's sake.

              The Banff Phil's is not very good. I go there because of the kids, but I find it well below par compared to the Phil's in Calgary. Everything is prepared worse - especially their pancakes, which are delightfully fluffy in Calgary but are more akin to hockey pucks in Banff. Their lunch items are not prepared well.

              I would not classify Ricky's as a "greasy" spoon, it's actually a fairly nice if perfectly pedestrian spot. Food is far better than the Banff Phil's.

              Now, if you want greasy, go to Melissa's. Place is old, the food can be hit or miss, the service can be gruff, but it's the mountain version of the greasy spoon if there ever was one.

              Canmore has Craig's Way Station. It's also a prototypical diner. I'm always leery when I go there but the food always surprises.

              1. re: Shazam

                Thanks! I'm familiar with the Ricky's in Spruce Grove. I agree- it is fairly nice, and probably shouldn't be classified as a "greasy" spoon. It is a good place for bacon + eggs, as well as more brunchy options. I'll try Melissa's breakfast next time I go for breakfast in Banff.

        2. Which is the best restaurant for steak in Banff? Saltlik?

          4 Replies
          1. re: prima

            I have to say that I haven`t had steak at the Banff Saltlik but my wife & I had dinner at the Calgary location a few years ago. The steak was good but unless you want to pay exorbitant prices for a baked potato($8) and slightly less for say, asparagus you may want to reconsider Saltlik. The ribeyes alone were $37 each. We appreciate quality food & don`t mind paying premium prices but that experience was "off the map".
            And I do not recommend Beaujolais in Banff. We dined there on the recommendation of friends + a food critic`s review. It was one of the 5 worst meals we`ve ever had: great service from a young server from Switzerland, a pleasant ambience & terrible food. My dinner was Ok but my wife`s steak was terrible. Her standards are very high so I thought she perhaps was being "picky".......I had a bite of her steak & it was, indeed, awful! Tasted like it had been boiled first.
            We had a conversation with the maitre`d but he seemd quite indifferent to the issue. Never again!!
            Best of luck!

            1. re: rancher rick

              Thanks for your comments! Will avoid Beaujolais. :-)

            2. re: prima

              Best steak, and probably one of the best meals I had in Banff, was at The Bison.

            3. Have had many average meals in Banff but last trip we had a knockout meal at the Buffalo Mountain Lodge restaurant. It's a bit outside of the main downtown (up on Tunnel Mountain Rd.) but I would definitely give it a try if you have time.

              1. I second Buffalo Mountain Lodge. I've gone there a few times over the years and always enjoyed their food. Another vote for Barpa Bills. I also like Chaya for their noodles. The Fairmont is expensive, but their weekend brunch is a delight.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Office Broccoli

                  Thanks for the recs, crazy_eoj and Office Broccoli!