As the season heats up, there’s nothing better than dining alfresco. Here’s a sampling of this summer’s best patios.
Rudy’s Eat & Drink
In Ferno’s Bistro
375 Graham Avenue As Elizabeth Taylor says, “Pour yourself a drink, put on some lipstick, and pull yourself together.” Then saunter down to Western Canada’s largest downtown street-side patio! 1950s good life design, happy hour-spirited sips and high-end home-style sups are extra yummy on this sunny urban patio. A host of house preparations, from bread to pickles to meats, are both building blocks and main features. The likes of Mac ‘N’ Cheese and Meat Loaf and House Smoked Sausage get genius accents like Bacon Jam and Red Eye gravy. Saturday date night? Two dine for $50.
312 Des Meurons Street This St. Boniface-spirited city favourite boasts a patio that’s got it all: spacious comfy seating, elegant outdoor lighting, a fire pit and lush greenery. And their celebrated plates of wholesome and creative International French fare provide the fait accompli! Chef Fern Kirouac orchestrates contemporary fusions like Bison Springrolls, classics like Card Confit à L’Orange, and traditions like Maple Sugar Pie. For something coastal, the Mussels done Madagascar style (cognac, cream and green peppercorns) are perfect for our summer heat. Also check out In Ferno’s on Academy, where you’ll find a unique menu and stellar entertainment.
Corrientes Argentine Pizzeria
The Current Restaurant & Lounge
137 Bannatyne Avenue This happening patio basically popped out of nowhere! Thanks to a cutting-edge experiment with parking and temporary boardwalks, this fabulous pizzeria has one of the city’s most lively and comfortable spots for dining alfresco. Surrounded by magnificent Exchange District architecture, experience the best of Italy and Argentina. Salmon Ahumado pizza combines pesto, red onion, smoked salmon, goat cheese and sunflower seeds, while Epanadas are stuffed with the likes of cream corn, mozzarella, bechamel sauce and caramelized onion. Cuban Melts are classically stacked with pork, provolone and pickles. Meet and eat here!
75 Forks Market Road Amazing riverside views have long been a feature of this Inn at the Forks signature restaurant patio. Adjacent to the Human Rights Museum, no spot out in the sun could be hotter than this one for summer 2014! The infectious energy extends into the menu of from-scratch and oft local-sourced ingredients. Small plates like Crispy Pickerel Cheeks with caper remoulade appetize. To follow? Everything from Lamb 2 Ways to a Portobello Wellington to refined cuts of Prairie Beef. A la carte Sunday brunch features bison sausage, vita eggs, latkes and bannock with blueberry preserve. Live jazz on the weekend!
The Forks Market Promenade Cafe and Wine
130 C Provencher Boulevard Incredible riverside views of The Forks, The Human Rights Museum and the greater Downtown is this patio’s claim to fame. And luckily, they’ve got the go-to French comfort food to make outdoor breakfast, lunch and dinner a real “St. Boniface” treat. Lots of local and oft organic ingredients feature in both Promenade’s seasonal a la carte menu and their signature four-course prix fixe. For regional flavour, the salmon is smoked Fort Gibraltar-style; and Manitoba Chicken scaloppini gets local with Peak of the Market parsnip, as well as Bothwell Truffle and red wine cheese. Live music Saturdays!
Mona Lisa Ristorante Italiano
1697 Corydon Avenue Among the first of Corydon Avenue’s great outdoor patios, Mona Lisa’s recently restyled street-side patio is among the largest in the city. Italian must-tries include the Mezzo Mezzo (a zesty Italian spin on sushi), creative home-style pizza like the Italiano Hawaiiano’s fresh pineapple, rosemary prosciutto, coconut and roasted almonds. Want to design your own dining event? Mona Lisa also opens up its new and private dining rooms or neighbouring La Cantina for all sorts of family and friend celebrations. They’ll even bring the party to your place! Live music Tuesday nights.
Resto Gare Bistro and Train Bar
630 Rue Des Meurons Hugging a 100-year-old train car and station in St. Boniface, this expansive ambient patio is in a class all by itself. Thanks to owner Linda Love’s modern take on French bistro dining, summer never tasted so good! The seasonal menu adds some new plates, like fresh lobster and shrimp summer melon salad, alongside trusted classics and reinterpretations. And Manitoba ingredients are used whenever possible. Sound good? It gets better: Thursdays feature live jazz by the likes of The Tim Cummings Trio, Brian Chipney, Helen White and others. Sommelier-selected wines wash it all down. 24 | STYLE MANITOBA | SUMMER 2014
@ The Forks 2014 is all about The Forks! No wonder! There is no better place to dig in than at this historic river junction. While summer really sees The Forks come alive with a dizzying array of events and shopping, be sure to nab a spot at one of the site’s various expansive and picturesque patios. Big contenders for patio pleasing include Old Spaghetti Factory for everything Italian flavour, The Beachcomber & BaJa Beach Club for southern island flair, and Muddy Waters Smokehouse for hearty meats. Also, sporty pub-style Finn McCue has a balcony patio with an impressive outlook. Or go simple: Grab a treat from one of the smaller market vendors like Tall Grass Prairie Bakery before heading riverside to picnic in community and natural beauty.
Santa Lucia Pizza
4 St. Mary’s Road At the foot of the Norwood Bridge and its triumphant River Arch symbolizing modern Winnipeg by international artist/designer Catherine Widgery, Santa Lucia Pizza is indeed in good company. First opened in 1971 as a little take-out pizzeria in Thompson, this “little pizzeria that could” has since gone on to become an icon for Manitoba’s taste. And that’s all thanks to their indulgent home-style approach to Italian and Greek favourites. The rooftop patio at the St. Mary’s location is the perfect place to enjoy it, offering gorgeously green and blue views of St. Boniface, downtown and the Forks.
Pine Ridge Hollow
67086 Heatherdale Road Located in Springfield near Bird’s Hill Provincial Park, this turn-of-the-century style Carriage House is a dream! Acres and acres of peaceful gardens embrace you as you tour the grounds, shop fine furniture and clothes, and experience a menu celebrating seasonal and wholesome prairie flavour. For breakfast, Lemon Ricotta Pancakes are served with house-made lemon curd. For lunch, wild mushroom perogies wow with ample mushroom filling; and for dinner, a garlicky 8-oz field raised Manitoba strip loin comes with parsnip puree. Enjoy it all on their peaceful patio outfitted with solid wood tables and chairs.