The Top 5 Unique Restaurants in Winnipeg
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The Top 5 Unique Restaurants in Winnipeg

While home cooking is undeniably delicious, there is a thrill and charm to dining out and savouring all sorts of dishes and refreshments.

Fortunately, Winnipeg is home to several eateries and fancy dining places that locals and tourists seem to can’t get enough of. And if you’re looking for unique restaurants to try, then this article is for you.

How much does it cost to dine in Winnipeg?

Dining out can range from affordable to expensive depending on where you’ll eat. In Winnipeg, the average cost of eating out ranges from $28 up to around $100 per person.

Prices also anchor on the location of the restaurant, the cuisine it serves, the team of chefs it employs, and the quirks that make the restaurant a must-visit spot.

Take a look at this table showcasing the average prices of some of the most common cuisines and food you’ll find in Winnipeg.

Average Prices of Different Cuisines in Winnipeg

CUISINEAVERAGE PRICE
Mexican$22
Asian$33
Japanese$37
Chinese$25
Italian$37
French$44

It is also worthy to note that prices also change depending on the type of meal. For example, breakfast food in Winnipeg costs $10 on average, while lunch costs $14 and dinner goes for around $20.

Restaurants specialising in fusion cuisine may also have different prices as the chefs may formulate their own recipes or add their unique twists to the dishes.

How did we select the most unique restaurants in Winnipeg?

We selected the restaurants that we think are quite unique based on these factors:

Menu – How interesting is the lineup? Is the food flavourful and made with fresh, but not so common ingredients?
Ambiance – Does the restaurant have quirky decor or furniture pieces that make it unique? Is it located in an area where diners get a glimpse of nature, history, and other famous spots?
Accessibility – Is the restaurant reachable via foot, commute, or car? If it is far, is it worth going to?
Overall Service Quality – Do the restaurant staff help foster a comfortable and relaxing atmosphere for the diners? Do they ensure food items are served fresh and delicious all the time so people will come back?

1: Peasant Cookery

Peasant Cookery
WHAT MAKES IT UNIQUEComfort food prepared and served in a historical hotspot
WEBSITEhttps://peasantcookery.ca/
CONTACT DETAILSPhone: +1 (204) 989-7700

Email: [email protected]

ADDRESS283 Bannatyne Avenue, Winnipeg, MB R3B 1M3, Canada
OPERATING HOURSMonday: Closed

Tuesday to Thursday: 11:30 AM – 10:00 PM

Friday: 11:30 AM – 11:00 PM

Saturday: 3:00 PM – 11:00 PM

CRITERIARATING
MENU★★★★★ 5/5
⮕Flavourful★★★★★ 5/5
⮕Diverse★★★★★ 5/5
AMBIANCE★★★★★ 5/5
⮕Clean, comforting, and well-decorated★★★★★ 5/5
⮕Has a unique location★★★★★ 5/5
ACCESSIBILITY★★★★★ 5/5
OVERALL SERVICE QUALITY★★★★☆ 4/5

The Peasant Cookery sits on a historical location in Winnipeg, which is what some of the customers love the most. In a way, dining here gives you a sense of how the people of that time lived, ate, and enjoyed others’ company.

From what we’ve heard, the restaurant also has patio areas for those who love outdoor dining. And if you prefer indoor dining but still want a glimpse of the outside view, we recommend reserving tables by the window. 

We were told that the large windows provide ample views of the outside, making your dining experience more romantic and unforgettable.

In terms of food, this restaurant specialises in home-cooked comfort food made with local ingredients. Upon checking, its menu seems to feature a mix of different cuisines made unique with the head chef’s personal interpretations of each dish.

Some fan favourites include fresh oysters, French-Canadian classic tourtière, charcuterie special, pasta, and New York-style pizza with a Canadian twist.

Despite the quirkiness of the menu, we were pleasantly surprised to know that dishes are affordably-priced, making it accessible to most diners.

The only thing about Peasant Cookery’s menu is that very few dishes are vegetarian- or vegan-friendly. 

Food portions are also said to be quite small compared to what is advertised on the menus and website. 

Pros

  • Local ingredients
  • Fusion food
  • Affordable prices
  • Historic location

Cons

  • Small servings
  • Vegan and vegetarian selections are quite limited

Customer Reviews

Phenomenal food and service

“My favourite restaurant in Winnipeg. it’s a chic place with fun decorations. The wait staff works tirelessly to provide you with a pleasant polite experience. The food is PHENOMENAL and doesn’t take long at all to receive once ordered. The homemade bread is to die for.

A great selection of appetizers. Make sure you call ahead for a reservation so you’re not disappointed!” – Vikki Pink

Feels like eating amid history

Relaxed atmosphere in the heart of Winnipeg (Old Market Square) where the history of the city was birthed. Great friendly service. A simplified menu with a concise selection of delectable choices. Tantalizing appetizers and a good selection of beverages. Really enjoyed dining here as we arrived early afternoon. By the time we left, a busy crowd had gathered and we got away in broad daylight satisfied with a full evening ahead of us. Thanks to all staff for making this birthday supper so memorable.” – Stan Stadnyk

2: The Merchant Kitchen

The Merchant Kitchen
WHAT MAKES IT UNIQUEElevated street food and fusion cuisine
WEBSITEhttps://themerchantkitchen.com/
CONTACT DETAILSPhone: +1 (204) 615-2278

Facebook: The Merchant Kitchen

Instagram: @themerchantkitchen

ADDRESS314 Donald Street, Winnipeg, MB, R3B 2H3, Canada
OPERATING HOURSMonday to Friday: 11:30 AM – 10:00 PM

Saturday: 4:00 PM – 10:00 PM

Sunday: Closed

CRITERIARATING
MENU★★★★★ 5/5
⮕Flavourful⮕Flavourful★★★★★ 5/5
⮕Diverse★★★★★ 5/5
AMBIANCE★★★★☆ 4/5
⮕Clean, comforting, and well-decorated★★★★☆ 4/5
⮕Has a unique location★★★★★ 5/5
ACCESSIBILITY★★★★★ 5/5
OVERALL SERVICE QUALITY★★★★☆ 4/5

If you’re into street food and a mix of different cuisines, then The Merchant Kitchen is a must-visit. Upon checking, it specialises in fusion cuisine and elevated street food.

Perhaps the fun part of this restaurant’s menu is you can mix and match dishes from different cuisines. Crowd pleasers include Nagoya-style wings, Yucca fries, tempura, Korean fried chicken, and Cuban sandwiches, paired with red wine, cocktails, or tequila.

Inside the restaurant, you’ll see long dining tables, hardwood floors, patterned seats, and a sports bar. From what previous diners have told us, the setting creates the right amount of comfort and relaxation, making dining more fun and satisfying.

Now, because it has a sports bar, the restaurant can be quite crowded during major sports events. Still, that doesn’t deter people from coming in and getting their fill of different cuisines mixed with local flavours.

What we like about The Merchant Kitchen is that it is pretty spacious, which is perfect for larger groups. We think this is the perfect spot for celebrating birthdays and anniversaries, as well as hosting business brunches or dinners.

We also found that this restaurant offers quite a selection of wines and cocktails, which means this is a suitable spot for night-outs or getting your favourite nightcap.

One downside, however, is that the beer choices are reportedly mediocre. This place might not be ideal for those who prefer ale or drinks on draught.

Another drawback we’ve heard of is that the flavour and quality of food can inconsistent. Some customers also say the same about their portions, as they find the serving size too small.

Pros

  • Offers dishes inspired by different foreign cuisines
  • Features elevated street food

Cons

  • Mentions of inconsistent food quality and small serving sizes

Customer Reviews

The food we ordered was phenomenal

“Great food, wonderful service. We had the roasted sweet potato, dan dan noodles and 5pc korean fried chicken. Everything was phenomenal and we will definitely be back again!” – hungryhungrykt

Excellent food, service, and ambiance

“Went with girls group to share 8 different dishes and 100% didn’t dissappoint. Everything was 10/10. Highly recommend and us ladies will certainly be back. We ever tried every dessert. Service was also amazing our waitress was so pleasant and friendly, knew her menu and all recommendations down to the tricks were spot on.” – Melissa Sharp

3: Cibo Waterfront Cafe

Cibo Waterfront Cafe
WHAT MAKES IT UNIQUERestaurant sits along the banks of the Red River
WEBSITEhttps://www.cibowaterfrontcafe.com/
CONTACT DETAILSPhone: +1 (204) 594-0339

Email: [email protected]

ADDRESS339 Waterfront Dr, Winnipeg, MB R3B 0G8, Canada
OPERATING HOURSMonday to Thursday: 11:30 AM – 10:00 PM

Friday: 11:30 AM – 11:00 PM

Saturday: 11:30 AM – 2:00 PM

Sunday: 11:30 AM – 10:00 PM

CRITERIARATING
MENU★★★★★ 5/5
⮕Flavourful★★★★★ 5/5
⮕Diverse★★★★★ 5/5
AMBIANCE★★★★★ 5/5
⮕Clean, comforting, and well-decorated★★★★★ 5/5
⮕Has a unique location★★★★★ 5/5
ACCESSIBILITY★★★★★ 5/5
OVERALL SERVICE QUALITY★★★☆☆ 3/5

The Cibo Waterfront Cafe is perhaps one of our favourites on this list, due to its charming location by the banks of the Red River. For that, this restaurant is a must-visit for tourists coming to Winnipeg.

We hear that the best spot to dine inside this restaurant is by the large glass window overlooking one of the historic rivers of Winnipeg. There, you’ll get spectacular views of the streets, buildings, foliage, and people passing by.

The food served here also seems to complement the picturesque view of the river. Some highly-recommended dishes include bruschetta, calamari, pepperoni pizza, the charcuterie board, and the Cibo Smash Burger.

Since the bustling and scenic view of the river highlights Cibo Waterfront Cafe as a unique dining place in Winnipeg, expect it to be fully booked or have long queues on the day of your visit.

From what we’ve found, the dining place is also a popular venue for private events like wedding receptions, corporate dinners, birthdays, and anniversaries. 

In fact, the restaurant is already fully booked for the whole year, so you might want to call them to make reservations for next year!

It goes without saying that booking slots early on is better than walking in. Previous diners mentioned that you’ll get the opportunity to reserve seats by the waterfront, as well as get first dibs on popular dishes and drinks.

However, we were a bit disappointed to hear that despite being a prime eatery in Winnipeg, the quality of its food has declined throughout the years. Hopefully, the team is already working on improvements in their menu to rake in more diners.

Pros

  • Offers scenic views of the Red River
  • Vegetarian options

Cons

  • Some reports on declining food quality

Customer Reviews

Servers were prompt and attentive

“Our dinner at Cibo was fantastic! The food was delicious and the atmosphere lovely. Our server was outstanding – he anticipated our every need and was simply delightful. I highly recommend this restaurant.” – Jennifer K

Love our view, food, and the servers

“We went for my daughter’s 18th birthday unsure of what to expect. Our experience was fantastic, from the view, our server Jeremy, the chill vibe, food, and Drinks! It was definitely a 5-star for us!” – Chiara V

4: Deer + Almond

Deer + Almond
WHAT MAKES IT UNIQUERustic and diner-like interiors with large windows; meals with deer meat
WEBSITEhttps://www.deerandalmond.com/
CONTACT DETAILSPhone: +1 (204) 504-8562

Email: [email protected]

ADDRESS85 Princess St, Winnipeg, MB R3B 1K4, Canada
OPERATING HOURSMonday: Closed

Tuesday to Thursday: 5:00 PM – 10:00 PM

Friday to Saturday: 5:00 PM – 11:00 PM

Sunday: Closed

CRITERIARATING
MENU★★★★★ 5/5
⮕Flavourful★★★★★ 5/5
⮕Diverse★★★★★ 5/5
AMBIANCE★★★★★ 5/5
⮕Clean, comforting, and well-decorated★★★★★ 5/5
⮕Has a unique location★★★★★ 5/5
ACCESSIBILITY★★★★★ 5/5
OVERALL SERVICE QUALITY★★★★☆ 4/5

If you’re after a diner-like eatery with rustic decor, then Deer + Almond is the right place for you. 

From what we were told, their meals are quite delicious and fresh, which is perhaps why many people come here to get their comfort food and drink fixes.

We also found that this restaurant’s uniqueness lies in the ingredients it serves. Upon checking its menu, some dishes feature venison, burdock root, French butter, black currant, pancetta, and other unique ingredients!

Besides gamey meats and wild herbs, Deer + Almond’s menu also seems to be a fusion of Western and Oriental flavours. These make for great gustatory adventures, not to mention amazing food content for Instagram.

Not to be missed are notable dishes such as risotto, gnocchi, scallop motoyaki, pork belly, and the restaurant’s iconic semifreddo. 

A great way to sample the restaurant’s offerings is through its tasting menu. You’ll be given six small portions of its most popular dishes, which is a delicious way to get introduced to the signature Deer + Almond experience.

A word of caution, though: some customers found their meats a bit tough and dry. Considering that not everyone is used to eating game, we think it’s best if gamey meals are served tender and well-cooked.

Pros

  • Excellent tasting menu
  • Unique ingredients

Cons

  • Some criticisms on the quality of meats

Customer Reviews

Dishes were exquisitely prepared

“Probably the best dining experience I’ve had in years! Wonderful simple menu. Very exquisitely prepared dishes. Great service and a superb bartender who knows exactly what he’s doing. A consummate professional I might add!!! Simple but very tasty decore, soft colours very relaxed atmosphere. Reservations required. I’m definitely going back and bringing friends along.” – Buddcar Cook

Best dining experience so far

“Was here for my birthday. They accommodated 7 of us and their service was the best! 6 course tasting menu was all very uniquely prepared by the chef with flavours I’ve never tasted before! X” – Simin Islam 

5: VJ’s Drive Inn

WHAT MAKES IT UNIQUERustic and diner-like interiors with large windows; meals with deer meat
WEBSITEhttps://restaurantwebx.com/VJsDriveInn/
CONTACT DETAILSPhone: +1 (204) 943-2655

Email: VJ’s Drive Inn

ADDRESS85 Princess St, Winnipeg, MB R3B 1K4, Canada
OPERATING HOURSMonday: Closed

Tuesday to Thursday: 5:00 PM – 10:00 PM

Friday to Saturday: 5:00 PM – 11:00 PM

Sunday: Closed

CRITERIARATING
MENU★★★★☆ 4/5
⮕Flavourful★★★★☆ 4/5
⮕Diverse★★★☆☆ 3/5
AMBIANCE★★★★☆ 4/5
⮕Clean, comforting, and well-decorated★★★★☆ 4/5
⮕Has a unique location★★★★★ 5/5
ACCESSIBILITY★★★★☆ 4/5
OVERALL SERVICE QUALITY★★★★★ 5/5

VJ’s Drive Inn is a family-owned restaurant that has been operating for many years now. Despite not having the typical restaurant set-up where you can sit down, relax, and enjoy your meal, the experience it offers is well-loved by many.

In fact, we hear that people from the other side of the city and outside drive all the way to the joint to order their usual burger fix.

Upon checking, its bestselling dish is its burger with a side of fries. And while its menu is limited to burgers and hotdogs, customers can order either a single- or double-patty burger, and add cheese, bacon, and vegetables to make their meal more filling.

Perhaps the thing that makes VJ’s Drive Inn unique is that it has a pit stop-like environment. You can order your favourite burgers and sides for take-out and eat them in your cars or at the picnic tables outside – talk about a refreshing way to do al fresco dining!

Of course, this restaurant isn’t perfect. We’ve heard reports of inconsistent food quality and mediocre customer service, with staff neglecting to replace subpar food.

However, this hasn’t stopped the community from raving about its delicious burgers. Perhaps a few improvements in food preparation and presentation can go a long way in attracting even more locals and tourists.

Pros

  • Known to offer some of the best burgers in Winnipeg

Cons

  • Some reports on inconsistent or subpar food quality

Customer Reviews

The best burger I’ve had

“Absolutely amazing, the best burger I’ve had in a long time and I consider myself somewhat of a burger expert. I’ve eaten here in the past and the quality from years ago to now has increased a ton. Would give it 10 stars if I could. Absolutely incredible and great prices & quantity.” – Josh Eldridge

A family-owned restaurant that serves the best burgers

“VJs what can I say, it’s a family-owned restaurant with honestly some of the best burgers in the city, it melted in my mouth and every bite was perfect, everything was properly cooked and tasted great, they gave me free water and I gave them a decent tip for their troubles. They are friendly the staff are nice and it really has a home cooking vibe. Great job and can’t wait to go back to try more I only had a chance to get a cheeseburger but it has been my favourite burger in a long time.” – Curtis Miller (Max)

FAQs About Unique Restaurants in Winnipeg


And that sums up our unbiased review of the top unique restaurants in Winnipeg! Take your time planning which restaurants you’re going to explore first.

Now, if you want to stay in shape while still trying out all sorts of grub, we recommend consulting the best dietitians and best personal trainers in Winnipeg.