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River Cafe, a unique restaurant on an island in downtown Calgary, features seasonal local food

The fireplace at River Cafe in Calgary is a cozy sight in winter.
The fireplace at River Cafe in Calgary is a cozy sight in winter.
Courtesy of River Cafe, Calgary, Canada

Among Calgary's many fine restaurants, River Cafe is a favourite for its food and also for its location.

River Cafe is on Prince's Island

You will find River Cafe on Prince's Island.  This urban park is a pedestrian island connected to the rest of Calgary by three different footbridges.  It's very calming to leave the city behind and stroll across the Jaipur Bridge into the relaxing greenery of Prince's Island.

The Jaipur Bridge is at the north end of the Eau Claire area, and crosses to the south side of Prince's Island.  Eau Claire is the site of the Sheraton Suites Hotel, the Eau Claire YMCA, and of course, the Eau Claire Market.

There is another bridge a little bit further away, to the east, which also reaches Prince's Island from the south. Finally, the bridge on the north side of the island connects to the community of Sunnyside on Memorial Drive, and is the longest walk of the three choices.

Western Canadian seasonal food

River Cafe serves regional cuisine, featuring food from Alberta and British Columbia.  Much of it is organic.  The menu changes seasonally, and is always unique and fresh – a guaranteed winner.

Plan to linger here.  River Cafe delivers excellent value to those who appreciate good food and the ambience of the country in the city. The decor is tastefully rustic wood and stone, with a quiet and whimsical fishing theme. This is a salute to the Bow River, renowned for its trout fishing. Every table has a view to the outside, and in summer the patio is open for outdoor dining.

Two selections from the current Weekend Brunch menu:

Elk Bacon Benedict: House Cured North Fork Farm Elk, Brown Butter Hollandaise, $18
Baked French Toast: Anise Maple Syrup, Brown Sugar Figs, Brie, $16.

Both of these are substantial plates!  Round out the meal with home baked goods and specialty jams, or a savoury appetizer.

The full menu is available on the restaurant's website and is well worth a look.  River Cafe serves lunch, dinner, and weekend brunch.

Chef Scott Pohorelic graduated from the well-regarded S.A.I.T. culinary program where the innovative use of regional food has been a source of pride. Pohorelic started as Sous-chef at River Cafe in 1999 and became the Executive Chef five years later.

River Cafe, (403) 261-7670

Reservations are recommended and may be made by phone or via River Cafe's online booking form.

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