Five Indigenous Restaurants in the Canadian Prairies

Try dishes made with ingredients like bison and wild berries at these restaurants in Winnipeg, Saskatoon, Regina, Calgary and Edmonton.
 

Sage at at the River Cree Resort and Casino

As chefs continue to embrace nose-to-tail dining and use locally grown ingredients, more and more people are becoming interested in the culinary traditions of Canada’s indigenous communities. Here are five places to get a taste of First Nations cuisine.

Feast Cafe Bistro, Winnipeg

Chef and owner Christa Bruneau-Guenther opened Feast after noticing a lack of affordable food options for indigenous people looking to explore their culinary roots. Her menu is packed with simple, accessible dishes like salads, bannock burgers and Pow Wow tacos made with native Manitoban ingredients. Try the Feast Salad with sunflower seeds and a saskatoon berry vinaigrette.

Wanuskewin Heritage Park, Saskatoon

Wanuskewin’s onsite restaurant (no admission fee required) specializes in contemporary cuisine that utilizes the same ingredients the indigenous people of the Northern Plains would have used thousands of years ago. Chef Kirk Borchardt’s seasonal menus include both contemporary dishes, like a bison burger with house-cured bison bacon and saskatoon berry barbecue sauce on a bannock bun, and more traditional dishes like rabbit pot pie with muskeg tea.

The Bannock House, Regina

Community-owned and operated by the All RISE Project, The Bannock House is both a workplace training site and a restaurant open to the public. The focus is on traditional indigenous comfort foods like soup and, naturally, lots of bannock. Try one of the restaurant’s popular desserts, like its apple rings wrapped in bannock and served warm with ice cream.

Little Chief Restaurant at the Grey Eagle Resort & Casino, Calgary

This chic spot is located at the Grey Eagle Resort & Casino on Calgary’s Tsuu T’ina Nation. Executive chef Bill Alexander uses locally sourced and foraged ingredients such as bison, rabbit, rhubarb and sage to create modern dishes with indigenous influence. Try the smoked venison carpaccio, which comes with saskatoon berry bannock crisps, black garlic aioli, candied lemon peel and fresh pomegranate.

Sage at the River Cree Resort and Casino, near Edmonton

Sage is located  just minutes outside Edmonton on Enoch Cree Nation and led by executive chef and general manager Shane Chartrand, who is known as a leader in the realm of indigenous cuisine. He employs a largely indigenous staff and is committed to native ingredients. He incorporates such ingredients into the restaurant’s regular steak house menu, with dishes like the popular fry bread dessert with saskatoon berries and maple ice cream.

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