Wednesday, 25 June 2014

A Taste of Halifax - A Guide to Dining in Halifax, Nova Scotia

How good is the food in Halifax? This post could easily been titled how to gain 10 lbs in four days in Halifax. The food is that good. Luckily for my waistline, I was traveling with a foodie companion who doesn't mind sharing, which allowed me to consume everything you see below. If you are a regular reader of our site you've probably already read about my recent trip to Halifax in my five "Must Do" Experiences article. If not, take a couple minutes to get caught up, we'll wait here for you. Now that we're all caught us here is my guide to dining in Halifax.


WARNING: WHAT YOU ARE ABOUT TO SEE WILL MAKE YOU HUNGRY

Breakfast: 

We all know it's the most important meal of the day. Getting your day, or vacation, off to a good start with a delicious meal fit for a king always sets the tone for what lies ahead. So where better to start a dining guide?

Bluenose II - Just a few blocks from the waterfront this small restaurant serves up huge pancakes and classic breakfast food. It's no exaggeration that a pancake here is the size of a dinner plate. Check it out for a casual breakfast while you map out the rest of your day.

The Coastal Cafe - While technically a brunch hot spot, The Coastal Cafe gets the nod for breakfast too. with generous portions of unusual, yet delectable food combinations (including my personal favourite, the Elvis – which includes a waffle adorned with peanut butter, banana and bacon) you will soon realize that the food is worth the wait to get in!

Brunch Halifax
The Elvis!
Brunch Halifax
The McCoastal breakfast sandwich
Lunch: 

All over Halifax there's amazing food waiting to be enjoyed mid day, a good many with views of the ocean. Here's a rundown of the places we enjoyed

Salty's - With a picturesque view of the harbourfront and a comprehensive menu offering many fresh seafood options, I quickly understood why this was a harbourside hotspot amongst locals and tourists alike.

Lunch Halifax
Delicious crab cakes from Salty's
Brooklyn Warehouse - Offering a simple, yet appealing menu including Nova Scotia beef, fish and pork options. Located just outside of the downtown Halifax core, Brooklyn Warehouse provides a relaxing atmosphere for a casual lunch or dinner with friends.

Lunch Halifax
The Brooklyn burger - N.S beef, P.E.I cheddar and beer infused mustard/mayo. So manly, so good.
Rhubarb - Take my advice from the last article and drive out to Peggy's Cove, but do yourself a favour and avoid the tourist trap lunch spots there. Instead, drive five minutes west on the Route 333 coastal highway to this quaint spot with an ocean view. Rhubarb is a great place to enjoy a casual meal after taking in Peggy's Cove. Menu options include gluten-free battered fish, a Propeller soda marinated beef brisket sandwich, and a variety of thin crust pizzas made with Canada Dry Ginger Ale dough.

Dinner:

The Real Man Travels vacation dinner philosophy is simple. Go big or go home. As the trip diva of the group I may take that a little further than others, however, I found a few absolutely amazing restaurants in Halifax that you just have to try for yourself.

McKelvies - A Halifax landmark, this former fire station (how cool is that?) is located right near the harbour. One of their most popular menu items, the lobster thermidor, is sure to send your tastebuds on vacation. With a romantic yet casual atmosphere, McKelvies is a great spot for a date or to enjoy a nice dinner with family.

Dinner Halifax
Lobster poutine! How much more East Coast Canadian can you get?
Dinner Halifax
McKelvies signature seafood platter is a home run for any seafood lover
Dinner Halifax
Surf and turf with lobster thermidor
Bistro Le Coq - For some incredible and decadent French cuisine, Bistro Le Coq is sure to impress even the most meticulous critic. With sharable cheese and charcuterie platters, a variety of French classics (including croque monsieur, quiche and crepes) and foodie favourites, along with understated yet sophisticated atmosphere, Bistro Le Coq is a perfect spot for a leisurely lunch or dinner. Located in the heart of Halifax's lively Argyle Street, its also a great place to dine before taking in a show at the nearby Neptune Theatre. NOTE: Not pictured is an absolutely amazing mussels appetizer that I highly recommend.

Large cheese plate that is to die for
Classic french onion soup
Scallops with ratatouille 
Prime striploin with fingerling potatoes
Chive Canadian Bistro - If locally sourced food is up your alley, Chives Canadian Bistro is a definite must-see. Offering a chic interior that contains beautiful wood, rock and water features, and providing a number of meat, vegetarian and gluten-free options to patrons, guests leave feeling satisfied and attended to. Consistently ranking among the best restaurants in Canada, it will not disappoint any hungry traveler.

dinner halifax
Cape Breton snow crab spring roll with braised pork belly
Dinner Halifax
Lobster gnudi "A La King"
Dinner Halifax
The fish dish - Always local, always fresh
Dinner Halifax
Steak 2 Ways
Dessert- There's a clear cut run away winner for where to get dessert in Halifax. As I type this I can't help but drool all over my keyboard.

The Middle Spoon - The Middle Spoon is the place to go. Period. End of story. The convenient location right off Barrington Street, combined with a romantic atmosphere (decorated with lots of white, black and red fabrics) and desserts that are big enough to share, make this the perfect spot for a late night treat with that special someone. The molten lava chocolate cake is out of this world, and you can build your own sundae with unique and delicious topping choices.

dessert in halifax
Unreal molten lavacake
Sundae with cookie dough, chocolate sauce and peanut butter drizzle
Night Cap - Here's a fun little tidbit you aren't likely to find elsewhere. There's this speakeasy in Halifax called The Noble. If you know the secret phrase you can enjoy unique twists on classic cocktails in a secret bar located right near one of the places mentioned in the article. I really shouldn't even be telling you this. This place is like Fight Club. The first rule of The Noble, is don't talk about The Noble. Even the staff plays dumb when you mention it without the password. Just go to their twitter account and click around. Put your email in, and Thursday morning they will send you the pass phrase. You didn't hear it from me, capeesh?


Well there it is, my guide to dining in Halifax. Whether you enjoy seafood, meat or vegetarian options; have a moderate or exquisite budget; are looking for a large meal or a quick bite, Halifax has something delicious and amazing for you to discover. Bon appetit!

Have a favourite place we didn't mention? Let us know in the comment section below

Sam

About the Author

Sam Williams is a content creator for Real Man Travels. He is also the site's dedicated sales and sponsorship man. Connect with Sam on Twitter or Instagram.

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