Best of the West: Rodeo Week November 7-15

November 07, 2015

Dust off your cowboy hat and slip your feet into those cowboy boots - the Canadian Finals Rodeo is coming to town! Tying in with the CFR, Edmonton will be the home of rodeo week for the next 7 days.

Rodeo Week is here in Edmonton from November 7-15, and even if you aren't attending the main event there are plenty of events going on throughout the city, and 16 different restaurants are offering rodeo-inspired food and drink specials on their menus to celebrate.

Since the food scene is going Western for Rodeo Week, I had the opportunity to participate in a food crawl to check out some of the dishes offered by the featured restaurants. The first stop on our tour was at the Sherlock Holmes Pub on Rice Howard Way for their chili - an essential for every cowgirl or cowboy! The hearty Colleen's Amber Ale Chili ($14) was served in a sourdough bread bowl and topped with a generous helping of cheese. The chili itself had a great punch of heat, and the substantial portion warmed up our bellies before we headed to our next stop.

Next we found ourselves at the Fairmont Hotel MacDonald where the lobby was decked out in Western-inspired decor. One of the great things about Edmonton establishments is their willingness to participate in city-wide events. It really fosters a sense of community and keeps things interesting!

The Confederation Lounge at the Fairmont is offering two different dishes for Rodeo Week. First to the table was the Chorizo Sausage ($21) topped with beef chili, smoked cheddar, and a drizzle of mustard creme fraiche. The sausage was flavourful and had a spicy kick, which could be toned down by the side salad that was dressed with a honey vinaigrette.

The second dish was the Asian-inspired Wonton Nachos ($19) that used deep fried wonton wrappers to replace the corn chips typically found in nachos. The nachos were topped with chunks of braised pork cheek, scallions, tomatoes, pickled jalapenos, a generous helping a cheese, and a drizzle of wasabi aioli. The wonton crisps offered a lighter crunch than a chip, and when dipped into the accompanying salsa and guacamole, it didn't feel as heavy as a usual serving of nachos. You will want to eat these quick though - those wonton crisps can quickly become soggy as they soak up the moisture from the toppings.

We ended our food crawl with a trip to Woodwork for their Campfire Rambler Cocktail made with High West Campfire Whiskey, Vermouth, and Maraschino liqueur. The cocktail was served in a chilled glass, revealing a single cherry at the bottom of the glass. It was a treat to sip on the cocktail and watch the bartenders work their magic crafting drinks for all the other patrons in the restaurant!

Most of the restaurants participating in Rodeo Week are downtown, but some feature items can be found at establishments outside of the downtown core. There's a wide range of offerings from stews to sliders to ribs, so there's bound to be a feature that catches your eye!  Be sure to take a look at the foods that are the Best of the West and tap into your inner rodeo spirit. Yee-haw!

*Disclosure: I was invited to participate in a Rodeo Week food crawl hosted by Edmonton Tourism. Views expressed in this post are solely mine. This post is 100% my opinion, and as always, my priority is to you, the reader, to present an unbiased, thorough review.

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  1. OMG! That chili looks s amazing! Getting hungry just thinking about it!


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