Alberta’s Best Patios
Written by Nicole Liboiron-Coles and Karen Anderson
Pandemic or no pandemic, Albertans love to spend time outdoors so, we’ve got your guide to Alberta’s Best Patios. Whether it’s plus 18 in February or plus 30 in June, Albertans need very little excuse to soak up every bit of outdoor sun and fun they can. If your visiting or new to the province, our list of Alberta’s Best Patios will take you straight to the action.
From Edmonton, Red Deer, Calgary, Banff, Lethbridge and Medicine Hat here’s some of our favourites.
The Ritchie neighbourhood is blessed with Biera in Blind Enthusiasm Brewery in the amazing Ritchie Market. We love chef Christine Sandford’s elevated pub food. Stay for dinner or have an appy and pick up meat from Acme and dessert from Little Duchess and Bob’s your Uncle!
Selected as one of Canada’s best new bars in Canada by Enroute Magazine it’s always enjoyable to sip a drink (or two) and enjoy the food on the patio at Bar Clementine.
And, if it’s tacos and tequila you are craving then, Old Strathcona’s El Cortez is the place to tackle it.
Want to dine and spend the evening? You’ve got it made in the shade with The Marc‘s chef Spencer Thompsons delightful seasonal local menu. Or, over near 124th you could make a rez at RgeRd‘s beefed up new parking lot patio takeover.
The original is still in downtown Lacombe but, we love the energy and the cocktail list at the new (ish) Red Deer location of Cilantro and Chive. Best Caesars anywhere!
Granary Kitchen is famous for their Dill Wings which wash down very well with cold local beers from nearby Troubled Monk and Blindman Brewing.
Now boasting two patios, The Nash has them both softly lit for everyone’s long-awaited date night. We
recommend reservations for this one.
Of course, there’s no more beautiful patio than River Cafe on Princes Island Park. The Bow River runs by (occasionally through) and sitting out on a fine evening under the canopy of green leaves you feel miles away in the heart of the city.
Tucked away from the exciting buzz of 17 Ave SW is the tropically themed oasis of a patio at Calcutta
Cricket Club. We love any and all of their cocktails and chef Amit Bangar’s contemporary Indian food.
One of the most fun rooftop patio’s is Free House in Kensington. In fact, in Kensington you have many options: Pulcinella for Italian, Container Bar, Eat Crow and Kensington Wine Bar for the food of chef Cam Dobranski. Whisky and Smoke Barbecue at Hayden Block. Tacos and Tequila at Blanco Cantina are a few within stumbling distance of each other.
Beer lovers love the Barley Belt district in Inglewood and Ogden. Our fave is Ol’ Beautiful. Start with a cold one there and then mosey on up the street to the city’s most secluded and productive garden patio at Rouge to taste what chef Dean Sly has on offer. Tip: Order the chef’s tasting menu created by Executive chef Paul Rogalski as a result of his foray into foraging with Les Stroud’s Wild Harvest.
Two of our favourite patios in Banff are quite opposite from each other but both glorious all the same. At the towering Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel, you will find several patios. Grab lunch or a coffee on the southwest side near STOCK Food and Drink for a truly casual spot. Or find the Lookout Patio and its gob-smacking view over the Bow River Valley on the eastern side of the hotel. Hot tip: Book yourself into our Friday afternoon Eat The Castle tour and we’ll share the behind-the-scenes stories and you’ll have a chance to meet the culinary team.
Looking for something a little more intimate? The Juniper Hotel on the Mt. Norquay road has an unbeatable view of the valley and a fun patio just off Juniper Bistro. We love it all year round!
Mocha Cabana is consistently voted the favourite patio in town. And just on the east side of town, you’ll find Broxburn Cafe. Shop the market but stay for lunch. We crave their famous Roasted Red Pepper Soup.
When you are in Medicine Hat check out Hell’s Basement micro brewery. They’ve got a new patio that we can’t wait to try.
And for a family friendly patio in the heart of downtown, check out the very instagram-able wall at The Yard