New Restaurants Continue To Open During Pandemic
In spite of the ever-changing public health regulations, more than 4,000 new businesses opened in Edmonton between March and November 2020. Not all of these businesses were in the food and hospitality sector, but they are among the most visible.
Even this month, as in-person dining restrictions continue until at least January 14, new establishments and concepts continue to pop up. Transit Smokehouse & Bistro, the new restaurant in the renovated Transit Hotel, was set to open by New Year’s Eve, but has since delayed their opening date. The ramen bar in Dorinku Osaka Downtown has been replaced by a new concept called Korea Town.
- Restaurants including Otto and Filistix continue to adapt to changing conditions to stay afloat during the pandemic.
- Some businesses that opened during the pandemic are optimistic about community support, but others are struggling.
- XO Bistro’s second location will be open in February in southwest Edmonton, located at 5021 Mullen Road (Rabbit Hill Crossing).
- There appears to be a third Jollibee location in the works in west Edmonton.
- Mondo Pizza has opened in the space formerly occupied by Die Pie (11215 Jasper Avenue).
- Spirit Bistro is a new-ish Chinese restaurant located at 10824 97 Street.
- The menus for the fourth annual Chinatown Dining Week are up. The event runs January 14-24, 2021 and features 9 restaurants offering $10 and $18 takeaway deals.
- Filistix held a couple of successful Kamayan feasts pre-pandemic. They’ll be bringing it back for home consumption on January 16, 2020 for pick up only.
- In late December, Smokey Bear experienced a break-in where their kitchen equipment and wine was stolen. This has delayed their launch of Bandits – their fried chicken concept.
- Phil blogged about Siam Thai Kitchen, the first of the restaurants he featured in his best dishes column on CBC Radioactive.
- After announcing their closure, Frickin’ Delights in Devon was able to return to business after regrouping for 6 weeks.
- A couple of year in review round-ups for consideration: I wrote one, and Twyla penned one for Eat North.
- In that same post, Twyla also confirmed the closure of Eat Local, which could not continue to operate without ad revenue.
- Kathryn Lennon and Kyla Pascal are starting Hungry Zine, a “community-focused zine centering radial food stories, art and culture.”
- The convenience of ghost kitchens might be fueling their expansion, but it’s hard not to think of them as soulless and depressing.
- The Downtown Business Association has a listing of all Downtown restaurants offering curbside pick-up and delivery.
- Congratulations to the couple behind Mini Kitchen and El Gringo Foods who tied the knot this year.
- Workshop Eatery fundraised enough to donate 786 meals to the Ronald McDonald House.
- Chef Serge Belair was excited for the opportunity to prepare Christmas dinner for guests at the 24-7 shelter at the Edmonton Convention Centre.
- This reusable container program is an interesting alternative to single-use packaging being tried in Toronto.
What I Ate
- Mack and I treated ourselves to some cocktails from Woodwork over the holidays! Convenient single servings and pre-mixed, it was easy to order from their online system to boot. I found the Nocturne to be deliciously refreshing, and Mack loved his WW (boozy) egg nog.
Nocturne from Woodwork
- We also dug through our freezer for provisions last week and sampled Nepa Food’s chicken momos. They had great flavour and just a bit of a kick. Find them at the Edmonton Downtown Farmers’ Market.
Chicken momos from Nepa Food
- On the occasion of Mack’s birthday, we finally tried pizza from High Dough. We loved that the Detroit-style crust was thick, but fluffier than expected. We ordered the Dirt City de Luxe.
Dirt City de Luxe from High Dough
- A quiet birthday deserves an epic cake! We decided to go all in for an old fashioned carrot cake from Rosewood Foods (it smelled amazing, and didn’t disappoint).
Happy birthday, Mack!