24 Top Restaurants in Ottawa to Explore

Top Restaurants in Ottawa

Canada’s capital city of, Ottawa, has a long history of being a cosmopolitan metropolis, with thousands of eateries that draw their culinary inspiration from around the globe.

Once you arrive in Ottawa, you may be sure to locate your new favourite spots, including quaint bistros, secret local eateries, and top restaurants in Ottawa.

You’ll always have great restaurants in Ottawa since a new, up-and-coming eatery debuts every day.

From oyster bars & fine-dining fare to little bistros and local eateries, you’ll have a lot of options, so choosing where to eat next could be challenging.

Top Restaurants in Ottawa

You need nowhere than this list of the top restaurants in Ottawa if you’re a visitor to Canada’s capital or a local who wants to explore.

1. Fraser

Fraser Takeaway & Bottle Shop – Fraser Restaurant, Takeaway & Bottle Shop
Source: Fraser

Fraser, which is right across the Rideau River, is a must-stop for brunch in Ottawa. Here, you’ll discover delicious, nutritious, and inventive food in a fun, relaxed setting.

If you’re hungry and not in a rush, stop by, you’ll depart with a full heart and stomach.

It’s highly advised to try the Crispy Tofu. The tofu’s crispy breading and the light and flavorful house sauce are the ideal complements to one another.

Although that may seem obvious, be assured that you’ll return for this holy moly!

2. Gitanes

Gitanes - Ottawa
Source: Gitanes

Visit Gitanes, an authentic French restaurant that can entice you with its rich, hedonistic eating experience & romantic ambiance right away.

Gitanes has always been so endearing from the inside out, just like the very soul of France. This restaurant is among the top restaurants in Ottawa.

Therefore, reserve a table here before it’s too late and you regret it forever! Start with a simple but classic dish like the typical French onion soup.

You can taste a little of the onion’s heat and varied crunch from different vegetables & the cheese on the topping complemented the soup.

There are numerous layers of texture and flavour going on. With some bread to sop it up, you’re good to go!

Continue with some Steak Frites, which are straightforward yet flavorful as always, with the sauce’s little acidity to cut off any trace of the steak’s grease! Or the famous Gitanes Burger, which is just as delectable, filling, and delicious!

3. Stofa Restaurant

Source: Stofa

For those residing in Ottawa, Stofa is a treasure since it offers exquisite Canadian food in a welcoming environment. Here, you’ll find incredibly beautiful and inventive meals cooked with common local ingredients that bring a cozy yet contemporary vibe to every meal.

It should come as no surprise that Stofa is constantly packed on the weekends, so you want to make a reservation!

They always succeed when you order the Baby Back Ribs, Butternut Squash Soup, & Potato Mash. This meaty and delicious pair won’t leave you wanting more! It comes under the list of top restaurants in Ottawa.

Enjoy a treat of soft, flavorful Quebec duck breast served on confit chicken spring rolls and prepared with pink peppercorn, beet puree, & baby fennel.

Oh, and be sure to spare room for their insanely delicious toffee puddings!

4. Chez Lucien– One of the Top Restaurants in Ottawa

How should you spend your weekends? Visit Chez Lucien sometime!

This amazing location, one of Ottawa’s most well-liked hangouts, may win your heart, including its exposed burgundy brick, lively, rustic atmosphere, and, more importantly, outrageously good burgers and drinks!

Additionally, live jazz performances on the weekends can enhance the ambiance, so pick up the phone and reserve a seat!

People love returning for their famous Lucien Burger, which is heavy, creamy, and delicious in every mouthful due to the bacon, roasted mushroom, vegetables, and copious amounts of cream cheese!

Anybody who is eating and has a smile on their face is eating a Chez Lucien Burger.

Even though they have a broad selection of burgers, their sandwiches are worth tasting, especially the Chicken Sandwich featuring sun-dried tomato, juicy, succulent chicken breast, and mayo on top.

For a refreshing, healthy peach-flavoured cider on a hot day, try a bottle of Stadium Island Peach.

5. Fauna- Fine Dining Restaurant

Fauna Ottawa
Image from Fauna

Fauna is unquestionably the place to go if you’re searching for a luxury restaurant in Centretown.

Fauna is where you may find a flair of flavours from France, Korea, Malaysia, & Japan! It has earned its reputation in Ottawa’s culinary community.

Comes in top restaurants in Ottawa, Fauna promises to satiate all tastes, inclinations, and moods with its abundance of enormous windows facing out into Bank Street, a comfortable red brick wall, an exquisite setting, and amazing food & wine selection!

Don’t hesitate to order their Venison Tartare, Elk Carpaccio, & Dan Dan Dumplings since it is advised to select three to four courses for a successful dining experience!

6. Sansotei Ramen

Do you feel like some ramen? The town’s most authentic Tonkotsu ramen restaurant, Sansotei Ramen, is here!

With 14 different ramen options and a wide variety of side dishes, at Sansotei, you can be certain to discover your favourite flavour without being dissatisfied!

When visiting Sansotei, you must eat some authentic Tonkotsu ramen. Cha shu pork belly, soft-chewy ramen noodles, a soft medium-boiled egg, and a broth with a strong pig taste are a must-try.

7. Play Food & Wine

Source: Play food

Play Food & Wine, a contemporary, open-concept restaurant offering small seasonal meals and a changing list of wines and cheeses to match them, is situated in the Byward Market.

With a typical restaurant’s small-plate format, you may sample as many different meals as you choose without having to settle for just one main course.

You can enjoy the signature dish, smoked bacon burgers, ricotta stuffed meatballs, Asian-inspired seafood, braised Ontario lamb shank, jerk chicken, craft beer, and many kinds of locally sourced food in this relaxed atmosphere restaurant.

Visit them soon to eat in their welcoming dining room or lively kitchen bar while sipping wine! For a full supper, it is advised that you purchase at least three small plates.

Although the flavour of the duck is unexpected, subtle, and exquisite, the seared pork is flavorful, has a gorgeous golden colour, and has a crisp exterior.

MasalaPanna Cotta is a delicious way to finish your supper. We assure you that once you experience this sophisticated, delicious flavour with undertones of spice & herb, you won’t be able to forget it.

8. Mati

It is a Greek- restaurant with a menu that emphasizes charcoal-grilled meals and fresh seafood.

Mati has the sophisticated style that discerning diners have come to expect, with white quartz, black granite, textured wood, and gold accents. It has the bearing of a contemporary environment.

A double-decker seafood extravaganza with oysters, Atlantic lobster, swordfish crudo, & a variety of sauces and mignonettes is the best thing ever.

After each bite, your palette will be begging for more! Enjoy a wonderful meal, perfect wine accompaniment, fenugreek cream curry, grilled onion gremolata, and many locally sourced food here.

9. Brassica

Source: Brassica

Brassica, a well-known contemporary Canadian cafe in the area, greets you with platters of vivid, brilliant flavours that accentuate the beauty of regional products.

Come by and experience the pleasant, comfortable ambiance that is created by the dimmer, more romantic lighting at night!

Please don’t be hesitant to order the Crispy Shrimp Tacos; they are what keep folks coming back to this hidden gem.

It comes with popcorn shrimp and crisp slaw and is mixed in a rich tomato-chile combination before being heaped onto tortillas with melted cheese.

Move on to dishes like Flat Iron Steak & Frites, Maple Roasted Duck Breast, or Duck Rillettes; they are some of the most spectacular culinary conjurings ever and can bring you to tears of joy.

And don’t leave without trying their incredible Banoffee Pie for dessert!

10. Aroma Meze

At Aroma Meze, which features a small Mediterranean dish style of dining, you should order between 3 and 5 items to complete your meal.

Start with the creamy, cheesy, and light-tasting Eggplant Roulade, which is eggplant wrapped in spinach & feta, covered with mozzarella, & drizzled with balsamic reduction.

Continue to the Aged Salmon Crisp, Octapodaki, & Pulled Lamb Tacos instead of stopping there. The octopus is somewhat bolder with notes of smoke, but the salmon remains light and well-balanced in terms of flavour and texture.

11. North & Navy

You should go to North & Navy on Nepean St. if you’re seeking good Italian food in Ottawa.

The menu at North & Navy includes classic Italian meals, particularly those from Venice and Northern Italy, as well as expertly prepared pasta dishes, salads, and bar snacks.

You should try Scallop Crudo & Spaghetti Grano Arso since they are the menu’s standout items. It consists of thinly sliced raw scallops that are topped with extra virgin olive oil, as well as a sprinkle of red pepper.

Spaghetti Grano Arso is smoky & slightly spicy thanks to star anise and onions, in contrast to the delightful, creamy mozzarella-tomato sauce that tops the ricotta gnocchi.

Finish it off with their wonderful parsnip cake and walnut buttercream!

12. Sidedoor

Sidedoor Ottawa
Image from Sidedoor

All you fans of street food, shout out—this is your place!

You will encounter the same spirit of street food at Sidedoor, which was inspired by the street food of Southeast Asia, but with a completely new level of flavours and scents.

Step into the inviting room with the stone walls and let Sidedoor entice you with tacos, dumplings, a seafood platter, & more!

The Green Papaya Salad, which is crisp, fresh, a bit tart, and has a hint of sweetness, is a must-try if you like spicy food. This well-known dish from Thailand will surely tantalize your palate!

Give the mouthwatering Pork Carnitas or the flavour-packed Crispy Duck Tacos a try. We’re sure you will only want to eat tacos or carnitas once you’ve had them at Sidedoor!

13. Riviera 

When it comes to restaurants in Ottawa that are inspired by the art deco vintage style, Riviera, which is located in a historic bank building and is ideal for a nice date night, is seen to be the most stylish.

Enjoy some steak fries, braised lamb shank, & lobster spaghetti. When visiting Riviera, those are some of the top recommendations.

While the Lamb Shank is meltingly delicate and cooked to perfection in a deep red wine sauce, the spaghetti comes out with wonderful lobster meat, which tastes like heaven when mixed very well with the garlic-based sauce.

Let’s have some dessert before you leave; why don’t we? If you enjoy chocolate crumbs, a creamy filling, and a strong peanut butter flavour, try the chocolate and peanut butter pie.

Or the delicate, flavorful Lavender Lemon Pie that seems too airy and lovely to be real!

14. Restaurant E18hteen: Local Restaurants in Ottawa

Source: Restaurant 18

Restaurant E18hteen has been a local favourite for excellent dining. It serves traditional French food with seasonal Canadian elements, as well as an elegant and varied wine list.

Visit this stunning, secret eatery in a ByWard Market neighbourhood heritage stone building and let yourself be enchanted.

The Miso Glazed Black Cod, Wagyu Carpaccio, & Lobster Gnocchi are always recommended. They will always succeed in delivering the best.

The steak tartare is delicately seasoned with a spicy taste from the addition of red peppers, mustard, & onions. The black cod fillets come out quite soft, moist, and surprisingly good.

You can tell this meal is wonderful right away since it combines delicious potato gnocchi with a subtle taste of soft goat cheese in a rich, creamy lobster sauce.

15. The Belmont

The Belmont, a neighbourhood hangout with a cottage-chic vibe, casual dining options, and cozy settings, is situated in Old Ottawa South.

When visiting The Belmont, expect to sample some of the most traditional dishes, including salads, steak fries, and fish & chips—basic but timeless, baby!

The Belmont manages to surprise us despite its simplicity by imaginatively remaking recipes with local products.

Please don’t be hesitant to order their legendary Steak Frites, which are paired with buttered black beans, truffle fries, & horseradish mayo.

Take a mouthful, and notice how juicy and tender it is in your mouth. Alternatively, you might have the Serena Burger, which has a beef patty and is served with burnt gouda, bacon, & mushrooms.

If you’re visiting for brunch, the Billy Jean Benny, which features poached eggs, smoked ham, & hollandaise sauce on a toasted English muffin, is a must-try.

16. Absinthe: Contemporary Restaurants in Ottawa

Source: Absinthe

The popular contemporary cafe Absinthe offers a constantly-evolving menu of gourmet European food and drinks.

The Absinthe Café, which lives up to its name in terms of both décor & food, is modelled after the nineteenth Parisian cafes where the ‘green fairy’ became a fabled green drink.

The dark oak tables, black leather booths, and moody lighting all perfectly complement the restaurant’s theme.

One of the top dining spots in Ottawa may be found when you combine it with modern comfort food and French specialties. The popular Absinthe Steak Frites, which consists of a marinated & grilled AAA steak with green beans, fries, & horseradish aioli, is something we highly suggest.

17. La Bottega Nicastro

La Bottega
Image from La Bottega

La Bottega Nicastro is a specialty cuisine restaurant that offers handmade lunch, wine, & take-out deli sandwiches, it also has a quality espresso bar.

Since it first opened in 1995, this Italian grocery store in the heart of the Byward Market has become a local favourite for its fantastic food, fantastic staff, huge assortment of deli items, and amazing wine collection.

The sandwich bar has a variety of mouthwatering selections, so we suggest selecting your preferred meat, bread, & cheese & adding the Spicy.

Remember to match it with your preferred cup of coffee from the Illy Coffee Bar or a glass of wine from La Bottega Wine Shop, & finish your dinner with the delectable Tiramisu, another menu staple.

18. Cumberland Pizza: Authentic Restaurants in Ottawa

For more than 45 years, Cumberland Pizza has provided dine-in & delivery customers with pizza and authentic Greek food.

Visitors to Ottawa should make a point of visiting Cumberland because, according to regulars, it delivers the greatest and tastiest pizza in the city.

From a selection of delectable toppings, including Mexican, Lebanese, and steak, you can pick two of your favourites and ask for half-and-half.

Try the well-known Pesto on Thin Crust, a straightforward option with pesto, feta, & mozzarella cheese, to make the most of your purchase.

19. Hunter’s Public House Restaurant

It is a cutting-edge neighbourhood bar that offers premium fare and drinks in a warm and welcoming setting.

Along with a wide variety of whiskies and regional craft beers, they also provide excellent pub food, including beer-infused nibbles, appetizers, sandwiches, salads, & main dishes.

Additionally, they have the best terrace for both summer & winter, a sizable, kid-friendly dining space with high ceilings and bright lighting, trivia nights, games, & live music for a fun atmosphere.

20. Amuse Kitchen & Wine

Amuse Kitchen & Wine is a casual, modern restaurant that serves a variety of sharing dishes, fish, and meats in addition to wine, beer, and other beverages.

If you’re looking for restaurants in the area of Kanata, you’ll adore Amuse Kitchen & Wine, which offers upscale and inventive fare in addition to a daring wine selection and tasty beverages.

All of them are presented in an enticing, unique, and imaginative dining setting with contemporary and stylish décor that feature exposed brick, rugged furniture, & neutral tones.

21. Aperitivo: Quirky Restaurants in Ottawa

Aperitivo is a quaint, hip gastropub inside Kanata Centrum Shopping Centre that serves craft cocktails and small plates with international influences.

A drink or snack that is provided before dinner to “open” the palate is known as an aperitivo in both Spain & Italy.

This is the place to enjoy “aperitivo,” with excellent shared platters, top-notch cocktails, & knowledgeable servers all working together to create a pleasant atmosphere.

The menus are constantly changing, but there’s always the charcuterie board, to which you may add cheese and oysters. If you see cornbread on the menu, you absolutely must have it!

22. Beckta Dining & Wine Pairings

Source: Beckta

A high-end restaurant with a sophisticated seasonal New Canadian menu & its wine bar is called Beckta Dining & Wine.

The menu features everything from seafood with Asian influences to Canadian & Caribbean fare.

You can choose between a five-course, interactive chef’s tasting menu and the à la carte menu at Beckta’s stunningly restored historic building.

All menus and wine pairings are incredibly affordable for a gourmet restaurant, but if you want to cut costs, you can carry your wine & pay a corkage tax per bottle.

With string beans, baby leek, spent grain duxelles, a Dijon vinaigrette, & an heirloom tomato demi-glace, their trademark dish, the Ontario AAA striploin, is to die for.

23. Shinka Sushi Bar

Shinka Sushi Bar
Image from Shinka Shushi Bar

Different from other restaurants in Ottawa, this modest Japanese eatery with a club-like environment, Shinka Sushi Bar first opened its doors and offers a variety of sushi rolls in addition to hot and cold sake.

You’re in luck if you’re looking for an all-you-can-eat sushi restaurant in Ottawa since Shinka is one of the greatest. In comparison to all-you-can-eat sushi restaurants, the alternatives available here promise upscale treats at upscale prices.

Enjoy them in a chic setting with a cozy and welcoming atmosphere. Vegetarian options are available to satisfy your dietary needs.

If you want to treat yourself, get the Unagi with pan-seared foie gras or the Osaka, which is made with red tuna, crabstick, & avocado.

24. The Green Door

Chocolate Peanut Truffles
Source: Green Door

The Green Door is a bustling restaurant that serves organic vegetarian meals & desserts without gluten.

This establishment is perfect for health-conscious individuals or foodies who wish to take a break from being in the kitchen.

It is a sizable self-serve buffet where you pay by weight for a changing seasonal selection of hot dishes, salads, and desserts.

Try their Noodles, Mushroom Lasagna, and a variety of vegan desserts, from Mint Cheesecake to Citrus Blueberry Squares, in addition to perennial favourites like tofu-broccoli stir-fry and avocado salad.

Final Note: Restaurants in Ottawa

We made this detailed guide on Top Restaurants in Ottawa from which we hope you can find some of your favourites among the countless options and have a wonderful dining experience on your subsequent visit to Ottawa.

Truth be told, one can always fall in love with too much of the delicious food provided at Ottawa’s top eateries. Have fun exploring!

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