BEST OF OTTAWA: International Cuisine

With 20-years writing about Ottawa life we think we have
a pretty good idea of the best of what this city has to offer.
In this new weekly summer series we’ll share it with you.
From our top picks of hotels, live music venues, local brews,
bands and more, check, share and discuss
#OLMBest every Monday!

Das Lokal Kitchen + Bar (German)

This trendy downtown establishment serves delicious European dishes with a focus on German cuisine. They offer a great selection of deals, including happy hour specials, half priced wine on Tuesdays, and a Wednesday prix fixe. They’re also well-known for their Nachtmusik musical series and feature a biergarten on Sundays and Mondays. Try the spätzle or the schnitzel.

Coconut Lagoon (Indian)

Coconut Lagoon knows what’s up when it comes to South Indian food. Chef Joe Thottungal won Silver at this year’s Canadian Culinary Championships and the restaurant was featured in Anne DesBrisay’s “Ottawa Cooks”. Make sure to try the weekend brunch buffet and their take on turmeric milk, a recent Instagram sensation.

Ahora (Mexican)

Modeled after a traditional Mexican cantina, Ahora (fittingly meaning “now”) has perfected their modern spin on typical Mexican dishes. Supplement your tacos or Quesadillas with fresh juices, a Mexican soft drink or one of their giant frozen margaritas. They also feature a salsa bar.

Giovanni’s Restaurant (Italian)

Giovanni’s ristorante has been operating for more than 30 years. Founders Lisa and Guiseppe wanted to bring their love of Italy to Ottawa and did they ever succeed. Authentic Italian dishes made with fresh seafood and AAA meat are topped off with quality service that makes you feel like part of the family.

Kinki Lounge Kitchen (Asian Fusion)

A hot spot in the Byward Market, Kinki Lounge Kitchen serves up Asian cuisine with a soul food twist. Other drawing factors include fast service, weekend brunch and a social media famous neon sign saying “What you lookin’ at?”. They also frequently host festival events, after parties and local DJs.

Siam Bistro (Thai)

Montha McGinnis took over the Siam Bistro after teaching local Thai cooking classes for over 10 years. Located on Wellington Street, the restaurant is cozy and casual. Menu items are prepared by chefs from Thailand and are graded in stars based on their level of spicy.

Pilos Restaurant (Greek)

Located on Montreal Road in the city’s east end, Pilos is as authentic as it gets. Family owned, they have won seven Consumer’s Choice Awards over the years. The service is just as high quality as the food and there are dinner and lunch specials. Their chicken souvlaki is a must try.

Mandarin Ogilve (Chinese)

A notably wide range of traditional and more unique Chinese cuisine makes Mandarin Ogilvie stand out. Part of a larger group of award winning restaurants, they serve dinner specials, combo plates and all day dim sum. The relaxed atmosphere and quality service only add to the appeal.

Tomo (Japanese)

The goal at Tomo (meaning long time friend) is to make everyone who enters feel like just that. They use only the freshest seasonal seafood to create the finest quality sushi. The chic décor and vibe escalate when the sun goes down with the addition of bottle service. They’re also the only restaurant in the city to showcase their legendary Sapporo beer towers.

Ozzy Food Market (Lebanese)

Ottawa loves their shawarma and Ozzy Food Market has the best in the city. They make their own kibee and kafta and provide free delivery, as well as deals on specials and platters. Plus, everything is halal. They also have a bakery that creates decadent traditional middle eastern desserts.