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It’s a tall order: Send one writer on a month-long eating excursion right across the country.

Food panelists from coast to coast help us out by recommending the most interesting restaurant openings in their area. Based on their tips, we come up with a long list of addresses that make it onto the itinerary. (Restaurants that opened between June 2011 and July 2012 were considered for this year’s survey.)

Then it comes time to arrange flights, hotels and book the tables under a fake name (sorry, chefs, we change it every year). Our writer, Sarah Musgrave, travels to each restaurant, dining anonymously wherever she goes; enRoute pays for all restaurant bills.

The final Top 10 list is chosen independently by the writer, based purely on merit, irrespective of geography. We look for restaurants that advance the country’s culinary identity and where the overall dining experience will have an impact on Canada’s food culture.



Comments… or add another

Kathy Schleyer

Friday, October 26th 2012 14:28
Do you have a number of food panelists from each city? I read Andrew Morrisson's article in the Westender and he said that he was a panelist for Vancouver - but as an owner of Fable Restaurant in Vancouver (Vancouver's voters choice for best new restaurant this year!), I know that he has never dined at Fable. If he was an important contributor to your short list, I would have to say (based on the guest feedback that we get every day) he did Enroute a dis-service. We are ready to be on next year's list, since we only opened in May 2012. Looking forward to breaking Vancouver back on to your list!!

sid cross

Monday, October 29th 2012 12:03
Very exciting list for 2012 and wonderful write-ups with enticing photos. Look forward to trying many of them that I have not yet visited. However disappointing that only 3 cities across Canada are represented in your Top 10 with Toronto 6, Montreal 2, and Calgary 2.
Certainly strongly believe that other cities including the very cutting edge Vancouver culinary scene has a least one very worthy candidate that opened during the last year and that we have been overlooked. Nevertheless please keep up your good work with this excellent national spotlight for our outstanding restaurants!


Monday, November 5th 2012 10:09
I was surprised how many restaurants were from Toronto, but all it made me think was "Wow, Toronto has really stepped up its game." Because if you read this issue every year, as I do, you know that the list doesn't play favourites.


Monday, November 5th 2012 13:47
Am always excited about your list - but it sure is hard to see that Toronto is, once again, the centre of the universe. Really? So much is going on in the regions using locally produced foods...maybe it's time to venture off the beaten path?

Candace Webb

Thursday, March 14th 2013 17:58
Presentation is everything... from the moment you walk in the door... Lovely photos in the article... I'm really curious to know how much the tablewear is considered, meaning the pottery/ceramics that each restaurant uses to accessorize all the senses in the dinning room...
I'm a proffessional potter making high production pots and am always wondering how often the executive chefs/owners opt for authentic and original sources for their plating over the usual supplier options for china. I understand the breakage factor in this industry, however the details make award winning featured restaurants :)
Nice article - I will have to visit the establishments in my nieghbouring Calgary to enjoy!

-Candace, Canmore Alberta
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