What is the ultimate game-day experience in Edmonton?
Let me start by saying, I don’t think there’s just one ultimate game-day experience; with the rink moving downtown and businesses opening around the area thanks to the efforts of incredible local entrepreneurs, there’s so many ways to do the game right.
We’re going to target out-of-town guests, and we’re going to do this depending on where you stay around the inner core.
We’ll start with the Westin, Hotel MacDonald, and other hotels and short-term rentals in that area of downtown. There’s so many great places, but of course you gotta start with some tacos at Tres Carnales. My personal favourite is the al pastor, but the fish tacos are outstanding and don’t miss out on the guacamole and chips. If you want a beverage, the sangria would be my recommendation. After the game, don’t sleep on Sherlock Holmes pub. A great selection of beers, great post-game snacks and pub food and you’re close to where you’ll lay your head that night… aka it’s stumbling distance in such a cute little area of town.
If you’re staying right at the JW Marriott, of course the hotel lobby bar is a great spot and has good food… but you’re so close to so much. So, if you want to go for pub food, I’m telling you to get down to Kelly’s Pub on 104 St. just south of 102 Ave. I was just there on Saturday night before that Oilers win against Chicago, and it was packed with Oilers fans. They have sports on all the TVs and delicious pub food – I had the veggie burger with fries, and I loved it and ate too much of it! If you want something more refined, walk through the Ice District Plaza from the hotel up 103 St. and go to Bodega; it’s a little tapas bar at the front of Sabor. GET THE MUSSELS, no matter what you do. There’s a lot of great little eats on that menu but GET THE MUSSELS and you’ll want an extra baguette to soak up that mind-blowing sauce. This way it’s an easy walk back through the plaza (say hi to Bob and Doug McKenzie, and trust me they’ll probably startle you if you aren’t prepared for life-sized statues sitting on a bench, I’ve jumped many times) to the game, as there is an entry right there. After the game, hurry the heck up and find some space at Baiju for incredible cocktails like the Baiju Barbie; it’s sweet but delicious with coconut tequila which I have developed a new obsession for.
This is only scratching the surface, here’s more depending on what you’re looking for:
- Deep dish style pizza? Campio and bonus it’s a brewery with delicious craft beers
- Some of the best Italian you’ll eat in your life? Make a reservation at Uccellino and always get whatever Crostini they have on the menu.
- Japanese food? Dorinku right on Jasper Ave. between 104 and 103 St. is incredible and a can’t miss. (I haven’t been there pre-game so I don’t know the vibe, I’m just telling you for the food)
- Can’t make a decision on a genre? Joey’s Bell Tower has everything, they do it all well and there will probably be a lot of cool people there.
We are so lucky here in Edmonton because we’ve got so many hotspots for incredible food and so many breweries. After the game, if you’re heading back west, be sure to stop at Odd Company brewing in the beautiful Oliver Exchange Building and get an IPA.
Oh, and if you’re cheering for opposition, first off… condolences, but we will let you enjoy our gems.
What are some of your favourites, Edmontonians? Do you agree with my suggestions?
What else do you want to know from me? I need more questions.