Relaxing weekends in Canada’s capital aren’t complete without brunch – the irresistible combination of breakfast, lunch and drinks. Eateries throughout the city are packed on weekends (and sometimes weekdays) with foodies looking for some sweet, salty, greasy or healthy eats. When brunch beckons, try these sizzling Ottawa restaurants!
Wilf & Adas
Locals love Wilf & Adas, a warm and welcoming spot with exposed brick, an open kitchen and friendly staff. The cozy restaurant, which is located in the Bank Street neighbourhood near the Canadian Museum of Nature, makes almost everything from scratch (including fresh-squeezed juices and house-smoked bacon) and sources it as locally as possible. Sink your teeth into a classic greasy breakfast, vegetarian frittata or poached eggs in an avocado. Don’t eat eggs? Order lunch fare like the meatloaf burger or poutine galvaude. If you have to wait for a table, go relax at the Arlington Five café next door, or sip a beer at Flora Hall Brewing just a block away.
This snug, underground hidden gem located on vibrant Elgin Street downtown is proudly “TV-free since ‘93”, which means the focus is on homemade food, quality beverages and community love. All weekend long, The Manx pub serves long time favourites like classic egg breakfasts, huevos rancheros and a curried vegan tofu scramble. Lunch-like options are also popular, including the Manx BLT (with maple glazed bacon) and grilled cheese.
Walk inside the French Baker in the ByWard Market neighbourhood and choose your culinary adventure: order fresh pastries from the bakery counter, or dine at Benny’s Bistro, the cozy restaurant hidden in the back. The colourful French-inspired space serves breakfast and lunch Monday to Friday, and brunch on weekends. The pared-down menu lists dishes such as salmon gravlax with sunnyside egg, roasted wild mushrooms with potato dumplings and pesto, and savoury buckwheat crêpes. Complement your meal with kir mimosas, wines and craft beers.
A self-professed “not so greasy spoon”, Chesterfield’s serves brunch every day they’re open. Although menu items at the trendy Wellington West eatery are healthier than your average diner—including several vegetarian options—you’ll still find the flavours and textures you crave. Go for classics such as the two-egg breakfast or frittata, or try the Jamaican benny or chicken and waffles (or pancakes). Your tastebuds won’t miss the grease!
This gathering place in the Hintonburg area of the Wellington West neighbourhood serves lunch each day they’re open, plus breakfast on weekends. Food at The Third is simple and affordable, yet satisfying. Options include breakfast nachos, potato hash, French Toast and special brunch tarts. The full bar is stocked with local beer, mimosas, Caesars and more for all your day drinking needs.
Brunch with a Mediterranean twist is the focus at Mazarine in downtown Ottawa. Enjoy a fusion of flavours like avocado toast with za’atar, spicy shakshuka, pancakes with sweet cardamom, and beef kofta sandwich with tahini. Beverages include mimosas, Caesars and local Happy Goat Coffee.
One of Ottawa’s hottest foodie spots is a bakery-turned-restaurant located in a converted warehouse between downtown and trendy Wellington West. Breakfast and lunch options at Art-Is-In include their famed gourmet baked goods (such as the O-Towner cronut—a combination of croissant and doughnut stuffed and topped with goodness), egg dishes, and specialty sandwiches. Need some serious sustenance? Try the fried crispy pickle melt sandwich, the Big ‘K’ Burger, or the hot honey crispy chicken burger. Add a coffee, local beer or rich hot chocolate (made with 64% melted chocolate). Order online or at the counter for eat-in or take-out.
When life calls for an upscale brunch, Wilfrid’s Restaurant at the historic Fairmont Château Laurier in the Downtown Rideau area is the perfect choice. Meals are served in the elegant dining room overlooking the Parliament buildings and the Rideau Canal Locks. In addition to the daily à la carte breakfast, their family style weekend brunch on Saturdays and Sundays features an appetizer tower, main dishes (ranging from egg dishes to roasted lamb), and sweet treats. Reservations for brunch are recommended.
Ottawa’s culinary scene goes beyond brunch. Check out other great Ottawa restaurants that will have you drooling.