Canada’s Halton region is a great place to visit and an even better place to live. Why do I say that? There are a lot of reasons I could give. The people. The culture. The sense of community. But I’d be lying. The real answer is the food.
Halton’s dining scene might just be one of Canada’s greatest culinary hidden gems. A single meal at any of the restaurants listed below is enough to send even the most skeptical out-of-town foodie browsing the Halton real estate listings.
Lettuce Love Café
Vegan food has never been hotter than it seems to be right now, and that’s true not only for dedicated vegetarians and health food nuts, but also for anyone who loves a tasty meal. Restaurants like Lettuce Love Café in Oakville are a big reason for that, showing that eating healthy doesn’t have to mean eating bland.
Despite the café’s name, salad isn’t the only thing on the menu here. Lettuce Love’s offerings include everything from meat-free Reubens on gluten-free bread and seasoned avocado fries with chipotle mayo to hearty tempeh chili with almond parmesan and pulled jackfruit BBQ. And it’s all made with the most important ingredient of all: passion. Nothing tastes better.
Mess Hall Poutinerie
It’s hard to think of a Canadian dish more iconic than poutine, and really, why would you want to? Heck, why eat any other food at all when poutine is so versatile? One visit to the Mess Hall Poutinerie in Georgetown, Halton Hills, provides ample enough evidence of that. Whether you’re looking for something gourmet and elevated or heart-stoppingly indulgent, you’ll find it here.
Classic-style poutine with Quebec cheese curds and house-made gravy? Yeah, they got that. Loaded baked potato poutine topped with cheddar, sour cream, bacon, onion, and tomato? They got that, too. How about chicken Caesar poutine with crispy breast meat, salad dressing, parmesan cheese, lettuce, and bacon? Check and double check. From barbecued pork to pickled jalapeno, the Mess Hall has your back.
Poutine is great, but sometimes you need something a bit fancier. For formal events and romantic dates, you can’t do better than Pasqualino in downtown Milton. Offering an elegant fine dining experience without sacrificing casual atmosphere, this restaurant is known for its award-winning wine selection and made-from-scratch meals masterminded by namesake chef Domenic Pasqualino.
Menu highlights include homemade gnocchi with pancetta in vodka rose sauce, duck breast pan-seared in Amarena cherry wine sauce, and casarecce with king oyster mushrooms and sweet corn in truffled parmigiana cream sauce. Each dish is exactly as expensive as it sounds, but your taste buds know they’re worth every penny.
The Hungry Dragon
You gotta eat here. Don’t believe me? Then take it from the experts. The Hungry Dragon is something of a local celebrity, having been featured on one of Food Network Canada’s most popular programs. The title of the show in question? “You Gotta Eat Here.” That says it all.
Formerly known as Mickey’s Pizza, The Hungry Dragon in Oakville specializes in, well, pizza (duh!). This ain’t your grandpappy’s pizzeria, though. Some of The Hungry Dragon’s decadent, high-quality, one-of-a-kind pies include the Mango Tango (topped with chicken, mango, hot peppers, and garam masala), the Whole Hog (topped with pulled pork, strip bacon, smoked mozzarella, and barbecue sauce), and many more.