Poutine. Said to be invented in Quebec in the 60s or 70s, it’s a quintessentially Canadian dish that’s gaining world-wide acceptance. Restaurants are taking it to new levels, giving the foundational french fries, cheese curds and gravy the deluxe treatment with surprisingly sophisticated accoutrements. Here are 12 try before you die versions available right here in Winnipeg:
Don’t be fooled by the straightforwardness of the name, the new Rudy’s Eat & Drink, opened in the Manitoba Hydro building this December, serves some sophisticated bites for lunch and dinner including this super-decadent Lobster and Bacon poutine with house-made cheese curds.
Rudy’s Eat and Drink
Manitoba Hydro Place
375 Graham Avenue
Manitoba oak smoked pulled pork tops a heaping helping of fresh cut fries and gets a hit of cheese curds and gravy at Lovey’s. It’s a meal unto itself, but that hasn’t stopped some of us (ahem) from eating it as a side to the terminator burger which is topped much the same way and crowned with Lovey’s awesome onion rings.
208 Marion Street
Lovey’s BBQ Express
405 Turenne Street
Back in November 2010, New York Fries began converting its St. Vital and Polo Park locations to Poutineries adding Butter Chicken and Braised Beef poutines to the menu. The former of the two boasts a delicious, mildly spiced butter chicken served over real Quebec cheese curd and fresh cut fries while its braised beef counterpart features slow cooked angus in a red wine reduction with carrots, mushrooms, onions and cheese curds.
New York Fries
1555 Regent Avenue
1485 Portage Avenue
1225 St. Mary’s Street
The White Star (formerly Albert Street Burgers) is an exchange district diner with a reputation for elevating humble dishes. Take their philly cheese steak burger, or the Mortimer, a classic cheese burger topped with house-made pulled pork. But the star of the menu in my mind is their bluetine, fresh cut fries topped with gravy and tangy blue cheese.
The White Star Diner
58 Albert Street
Leave it to the Peasant Cookery to out French everyone on this French classic. They take Quebec Oka cheese and serve it over sauced fries with an optional upgrade to chicken confit.
283 Bannytine Avenue
Okay, if Peasant Cookery can French it to the max, then Le Garage hit the French-Canadian limit by topping their poutine with tourtiere. You can also get black bean curry, pulled pork and sausage and mushroom pizza versions (how’s that last one work now?)
166 Provencher Blvd.
Smoke’s Poutinerie offers more than 20 core poutines and patrons have the opportunity to customize. Personally I’ve found the fries a little skinny and limp, the gravy too thin and the toppings used all too sparingly, but I had to list it simply because of the incredible selection.
131 Albert Street