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Aug 5, 2013 01:52 PM

Suggestions for Ottawa restaurants

We will be travelling to Ottawa for our anniversary and will be there from Sunday to Wednesday. We will be staying in the downtown core and prefer to walk for dinner. Any suggestions for a special dinner for our anniversary on the Monday and other ideas for the other days. We like good, local, fresh cooking, seafood, Italian, French, we like it all.

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  1. In the Byward Market area, i really like Vittoria Trattoria. ( Their pizzas are outstanding. Also, Fatboys Southern BBQ is really decent BBQ fare. (


    And for me, no trip to Ottawa is complete without a stop at the Elgin Street Cafe for the Blue Plate Breakfast special. (

    1 Reply
    1. re: gaudreaur

      We had an enjoyable lunch at Vittoria Trattoria in October of 2010. Thanks for the reminder. Our diary says we split the artichoke and feta salad, followed by the mussels in red curry sauce, both excellent. Will go back and try the pizza.

      We are staying at the ARC Hotel and will be eating breakfast there as we get a credit. If you haven't eaten there, the food is excellent and their French toast a must.

    2. For fast food that has quality, Shawarma Palace on rideau, has the best shawarma I have ever tried. gta/ottawa/montreal included.

      1. I went to a seafood restaurant called The Whalesbone a couple years ago and did the chef's tasting. I think it was approximately $60 if I recall correctly. We ate at the bar and you can watch them cook the dishes behind the counter because of some well-placed mirrors. Food and service were excellent and I loved the meal and vibe. It's approx 2km from the downtown core so I would say it's walkable.

        3 Replies
        1. re: sumashi

          We have gone to Whalesbone each time we have been to Ottawa, with a friend for the oysters. We didn't order any food because the year previously thought the food was just so-so. Has the restaurant changed hands recently? It's also extremely noisy, so if you are trying to have a conversation, good luck.

          The oysters are wonderful and fresh, but the selection didn't seem to be as great as in previous years. Is this still "the place" to go for oysters or is there someplace else Chows would recommend?

          1. re: marshaw

            Oh, I had gone in feb 2010 so my rec is out-of-date. I really enjoyed it at the time but haven't been back to Ottawa since. Sad to hear if they are slipping!

            We sat side-by-side at the bar facing rear, furthest away from the door, so we had no problems talking with each other. I can see how it would be noisy otherwise though since it is a fairly small, cozy space.

            1. re: marshaw

              Has anyone tried the Pelican for oysters and seafood? We heard it was very good. Also anywhere else in the Byward Market area for a casual lunch?

          2. Not sure what your definition of "special" is. But the "best" restaurants and probably most expensive are:

            Restaurant 18

            The Shore Club

            You might find more interesting information at

            2 Replies
            1. re: mexivilla

              Thanks mexivilla, we have not tried any of these and the menus look wonderful. Special is celebrating 41 years of marriage, so good food at a top restaurant will fit the bill very well. We ate at Domus in 2010 and enjoyed our dinner there. Any comments on Domus?

              1. re: marshaw

                Sorry, that's one I haven't tried yet. I will have to put it on the to-do list.

            2. Unfortunately, our trip to Ottawa had to be cancelled, but now we have a go to list of restaurants for the next time.

              Thanks to all who responded.