Luckily for you, we are a city that cooks well. Very well. We can’t help it, it’s in our blood. People have been eating off this land for over 6,000 years and you can still experience some of those ancient traditions today.
For a true taste of traditional Indigenous cuisine, head out to Wanuskewin. Try a bison summer sausage, venison or wild rice burger (did you know wild rice grows in northern Saskatchewan?) on a bannock bun. There’s several ways to taste foraged foods incorporated into contemporary menu items, like the muskeg tea battered whitefish or the roasted squash salad with birch syrup vinaigrette.
Saskatoon is home to a number of chef-driven restaurants putting us on national best places to eat lists. Celebrity chef Dale McKay opened Ayden Kitchen and Bar in 2014, bringing foodies to the city in droves. Ayden is the downtown spot to see and be seen whilst dining on modern prairie cuisine and sipping craft cocktails. Check out his Italian-focused venture Little Grouse on the Prairie and the Pan-Asian Sticks and Stones.
In Riversdale, chefs Christie Peters and Kyle Michael’s The Hollows emphasizes whole animal butchery and sustainable food practices. Their commitment to supporting small, local farmers, producers and foragers never wavers. At their Italian-themed Primal, the pasta is handmade from Saskatchewan heritage wheat varieties.
Bring out your cultured side at Shift, located in the Remai Modern. Shift’s contemporary cooking is rooted in Canadian flavours so you’ll find anything from braised daikon with Saskatchewan-grown beluga lentils to beef tartare with za’atar bannock crisps. Dishes here showcase Saskatchewan’s culinary customs and celebrate our diverse cultures.
Nosh on Broadway Avenue is a top choice for vegetarians and a great place to celebrate Meatless Monday with your crew. The whole and healthy food choices continue at Leyda’s. It’s the only gluten and nut-free restaurant in the city that sources entirely from organic farmers.
In addition to local food, restaurants here have really gotten behind the artisanal spirit scene and often feature Saskatoon-made spirits, beer and wine. Black Fox Farm and Distillery is a hyper-local venture where the owners combine agricultural passion with the skill of distilling. Don’t turn down a chance to sample the world’s best cask gin. Living Sky Winery makes fruit wine using cherry varietals developed right here in Saskatoon, while Lucky Bastard Distillers (yes, you read that right) has a Ukrainian-inspired honey pepper vodka (Horilka) that will make you shout “Na zdorov’ya!”