One of the best parts of spring break is stepping out of the boring, brown bag lunch and 30-minute weekday meal routine to try some new and exciting eats. While you’re taking in the sights and activities of the city, there are plenty of culinary options — from all-day breakfasts to rolled-up ice cream creations — that will satisfy even the pickiest family member.
Stella’s – With multiple locations across the city, it’s easy to tuck into a hearty breakfast, like the Mexican Scramble, or grab some lighter fare. Whatever you choose, get a side of toast so you can smear on the house-made jam. Breakfast served all day.
The Original Pancake House – A short stack, pile of whip cream, dusting of powdered sugar, fresh fruit — whatever you want, you’ll find it at this family favourite restaurant that’s been serving the city since 1958 (the original is on Pembina Hwy, while you'll also find locations on McGillivray Blvd, inside the Clarion Polo Park, and at The Forks Market). If you dare (and want to share) try the giant apple pancake - a house specialty. Breakfast served all day.
Clementine - While it may seem like this restaurant leans towards adults and teens, there’s no shortage of options for all at this hip cafe that’s one of Canada’s most buzzed about brunch spots. Surely every age can agree that the Brussels style waffles with strawberry compôte, whipped cream, and lemon poppyseed milk crumble (with a glass of fresh-squeezed OJ) is a good choice. Breakfast served all day, although they are only open until 3 p.m during the week, 4 p.m. on weekends.
Marion Street Eatery - This cozy spot in the heart of St. Boniface serves up simple comfort food. Portions are large, but you’ll want to finish every bite of your omelette, breakfast wrap, or eggs benny. Make sure to get a side of cinnamon bannock. Sunday is breakfast only, otherwise breakfast is served until 11 a.m.
Nuburger – Made with Manitoba-raised beef, and other locally sourced ingredients, these aren’t your typical burgers. Take the Obi-Wan Pierogi for start - layers cheese, canned bacon, crispy potato thins, and dreamy herb sour cream. But never fear, classic options are available, and chicken and veggie burgers can often be swapped for beef. Multiple locations across Winnipeg.
Miss Browns - If you’re craving a good, deli-style sandwich, Miss Browns’ homemade, house-smoked pastrami, corned beef, smoked chicken, slow roasted pork, and weekly specials will not only stratify it, but will have you thinking about it until dinner time. Newest location: Hargrave St. Market food hall.
Lark - This little bright spot in the Exchange District is perfect for fresh, seasonal sandwich and salad options. Try the classic egg served on a bun with cheddar, greens, and tomato, or veg out to the roasted zucchini with red lentil hummus, kale, roasted poblanos, and za’atar on fresh bread. Pro tip: Save room for the fresh baked pastries or take some to go.
Brazen Hall Kitchen & Brewery - This lively spot is home to 2019’s Le Burger Week winner (and 2018’s AND 2017’s), but you’re also going to find some awesome appetizers, hearty bowls, and house-smoked Manitoba meats that are a bold representation of what this province has to offer.
Kevin’s Bistro - Tuck into 11 varieties of the ultimate comfort food — mac and cheese. You gotta try the sweet and salty Canadiana, which combines Manitoba’s own Old Dutch salt & vinegar chips, maple syrup, and bacon. Or for a classic, fill your fork with Raffald’s blend of aged cheddar, provolone, and gruyère topped garlic breadcrumbs. There’s also some great shareable sides and starters.
SMITH – If you’re looking for some upscale Canadiana, slide into an HBC blanket-lined booth here. Parents will love the ambience (and the great beverage menu), while the rest of the fam can enjoy the elevated buttermilk fried chicken, truffle fries, and even (gasp) Brussel sprouts.
Harth Mozza and Wine Bar – Pull out your pasta twirling forks for the house-made tagliatelle, spaghetti, and bucatini, or select a couple Neapolitan-style pizzas (you can never go wrong with the aromatic Margherita). Dishes are served family style, so everyone can try a little bit of everything, while spending some quality time together.
Magic Bird Fried Chicken – It may be hard to pick how you want your crispy, juicy, and sometimes spicy, fried chicken. Get it as a drumstick with some slaw, on a fresh bun with a side of macaroni salad, or as saucy wings. There’ll all good choices. A Winnipeg MUST is a dollop of honey dill sauce with your chicken strips. Note: The restaurant is tucked inside The Handsome Daughter, a live music venue/bar, on Sherbrooke Street.
Sweets and Snacks
And now for the real fun stuff.
Doughnuts: You can’t go wrong with a dozen speciality varieties from Oh Doughnuts, or see what the flavour of the week is at Bronuts.
Ice Cream: Indulge in some of the crazy rolled ice cream creations of Milksmith, try a flight of Chaeban’s fresh, from scratch varieties (great vegan options as well), or pair your cone with puppies at Fête, the city’s newest ice cream and coffee shop located next to a dog park.
Pastries and Sweets: Learn that parents and kids will both love a fuzzy peach macaron or cup of cookie dough from Jenna Rae Cakes, let your eyes gaze at the stacked pastry case at La Belle Baguette, and picking up an imperial cookie from High Tea Bakery is a must as they’ve been served to celebrities and royals alike.
If you want it all? The Forks Market is truly a one-stop for a sampling of the great food and beverages Winnipeg has to offer. From numerous ethnic options, to staple burgers and pizza, to fresh cinnamon buns, it’s all there.