After several months of eating non-stop comfort foods and hearty winter meals, it's time to beckon in the freshness of spring and the fare that comes with it. Put these 11 restaurants, eateries and distilleries on your spring food map and get noshing!
1. Boho Soul Market
66 MB-16A, Minnedosa
Spring tends to give us the motivation we need to get off the couch and start thinking healthy, and this new concept in Minnedosa will help you along the way. Boho Soul Market offers a daily fresh lunch menu (think nutritious bowls, protein balls and salads) as well as a variety of health products and fermented foods.
2. The Lighthouse Inn Restaurant + Lounge
Gull Harbour Marina, Highway 8, Hecla
If you're taking a daytrip to Hecla Island to watch the ice break up on Lake Winnipeg, you need to stop into this brand new restaurant at the Gull Habour Marina. The Lighthouse Inn Restaurant + Lounge is designed for a maritime feel, with an incredible deck that overlooks the lake. Even if the weather isn't cooperating by spring standards, you can warm up by the wood-burning fireplace and enjoy tasty dishes featuring pickerel fresh from Lake Winnipeg.
3. Big Smoak BBQ
69 Main Street, Grunthal
After putting a BBQ restaurant on our last winter food blog, we were informed about another great spot in Manitoba: Big Smoak BBQ in Grunthal, Manitoba. And really, BBQ is completely suitable for any time of the year. If you've got a hankering for mac n' cheese, ribs, corn bread, wings, pizza or pulled pork - you've come to the right place.
4. The Crabapple Tree
Start spring with style at the next Crabapple Tree Pop up. This 10-course tasting event happens on March 24 and features light and refreshing (and very well presented) dishes made from season and locally influenced ingredients.
5. Akin's Restaurant + Bar
570-a Sargent Avenue, Winnipeg
Get a taste of authentic West and Central African cuisine at the newly opened Akin's Restaurant + Bar. If you're wondering what kind of dishes to expect, here are just a few from the menu: Goat pepper soup, cassava fufu and ewa agoyin.
6. Sargent Taco Shop
698 Sargent Avenue, Winnipeg
If you're looking for authentic Mexican tacos in Winnipeg, this is the place. Not only are the prices at Sargent Taco Shop super reasonable (3 tacos, refried beans and rice for $10), the flavours are simply amazing (don't miss the beef taco with fried cheese). With only a few tables inside this eatery, consider getting take-out as a back up plan if there's no room to sit.
7. Loft 180
484 McPhillips Street, Winnipeg
This newly renovated space in the McPhillips Station Casino is worth a visit, even if you're not inclined to gamble. Plus, the shareable plates make it the perfect spot for a party or get-together with friends.
8. George's Kitchen + Ice Cream
802 Thornhill Street, Morden
With warmer weather comes cool treats, and tons of drive-ins are beginning to open their doors by the end of March. This cute restaurant in Morden, Manitoba serves up pizza, poutine, burgers and hotdogs - and really, what more could you want?! Follow George's Kitchen + Ice Cream on Facebook for an official spring opening date (to get an idea, last year it opened on March 22 - fingers crossed for a similar date this year)!
9. Nora's Diner
616 Seventh Street, Gretna
Okay - maybe we're not done with comfort foods after all. And with spring being a great time to drive to some small towns in Manitoba, a stop into Nora's Diner in Gretna, Manitoba just makes sense. The diner promises "warm, uncomplicated character welcoming patrons with a cozy conglomeration of comfort foods ranging from the aromatic to the simply scrumptious." Doesn't that sound just perfect?
10. Patent 5 Distillery
108 Alexander Avenue, Winnipeg
Patent 5 Distillery is creating quite the buzz in Winnipeg, largely due to the fact that it is bringing whiskey production back to the city's historic Exchange District for the first time in 139 years. Housed in one of the area's turn-of-the-20th-century warehouses, Patent 5 Distillery makes for the perfect atmosphere to enjoy a craft cocktail. We are waiting on the edge of our seats for an opening date - which should be any day now - so keep an eye on their Facebook page for updates!
11. Bao House
637 Corydon Avenue, Winnipeg
You no longer have to wait until summer to enjoy the flavours of Baohouse. This food truck turned brick-and-mortar restaurant opened last week on Corydon, which means effective immediately you can get your fix of bao (steamed buns) with fillings like Peking duck and butter chicken. Yum!