Best of Winnipeg 2016 Results


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Best of Winnipeg 2016 Results

Canstar's Best of Winnipeg 2016!

What you're holding in your hands is the end result of the fourth annual readers' survey conducted by Canstar Community News.

It's a continuation of the Best of Winnipeg survey that ran for years in Uptown Magazine but we've brought a community oriented twist to the questionnaire which ran in The Headliner, The Herald, The Lance, The Metro, The Sou'wester, The Times and online at
In addition to asking readers to name their favourite restaurants, shops and services, people and places, we also added categories such as favourite schools, favourite corner stores and favourite local parks and playgrounds.
The results we got were lively and surprising — evidence that readers of this city's community papers really do love the areas they live in and also take a broader interest in the city as a whole.
The survey was conducted in February, March and April. The hundreds of ballots were tabulated late last month, after which our editorial team of Danielle Da Silva, Simon Fuller, Andrea Geary, John Kendle, Alana Trachenko, Darren Ridgley, Jared Story and Tony Zerucha composed the brief summaries of each category winner. The whole package was laid out by Debbie Wilson.

We hope you enjoy our Best of Winnipeg readers' survey results. If you have any feedback on the survey process or suggestions for categories we could use in next year's survey, we'd love to hear from you.

Send your feedback to:
John Kendle, Managing Editor
Canstar Community News
1355 Mountain Ave.,
Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6


THE BEST New Restaurant

  1. Blind Tiger Coffee Co.
    725 Osborne St., 204-691-9939

    Don't be misled by the 'coffee' in Blind Tiger's name — the South Osborne hotspot is one of the city's first prohibition-themed restaurants and while it runs as a coffee shop by day, at night the restaurant turns back the clock and becomes a speakeasy. The exposed brick and rough-hewn décor calls to mind a time when alcohol was illegal but Blind Tiger goes a step further and requires a password to the "secret" back area of the restaurant. Winnipeggers love the theme and the menu, which features a seafood-focused starter selection, a brief and distinctive entrée menu and classic desserts to finish off the night. And of course, there's no shortage of craft cocktails and beverages.

  2. 925 Bistro & Lounge
    9-925 Headmaster Row, 204-691-9250
  3. Black Rabbit Bistro Lounge
    135 Osborne St., 204-615-1130

Best Local Breakfast/Brunch

  1. Stella's
    Several Winnipeg locations

    When it comes to a delicious and affordable meal, Stella's is sure to please. Whether you're grabbing a solo breakfast or meeting up with friends and family on a weekend afternoon, Stella's cozy atmosphere and consistently fresh food make it a staple. Breakfast is available all day, which features classics such as bacon and egg croissants and tofu scramble and the all-time favourite Mexican breakfast. A full café menu features iced coffee, lattes and cappuccinos.

  2. The Nook
    43 Sherbrook St., 204-774-0818
  3. Luda's Diner
    410 Aberdeen Ave., 204-589-2583

Best Local Burger Restaurant

  1. Boon Burger
    79 Sherbrook St., 204-415-1391;
    141 Bannatyne Ave., 204-504-5394

    Winnipeg's favourite burger place is vegan, and it's only surprising if you've never been to Boon Burger before. Boon offers a variety of vegan burgers for every taste, such as the Jalapeno Chedda, the Thanksgiving and the Vegan Cowboy burgers, as well as fresh tangy salads, crispy sesame fries and even coconut milk soft serve ice-cream for your sweet tooth. Served on homemade whole-wheat hamburger buns, it's no wonder this burger joint has hit the top of the list.

  2. Mrs. Mikes
    286 Tache Ave., 204-237-3977
  3. George's Burgers & Subs
    Several Winnipeg locations

Best Local Chinese Restaurant

  1. North Garden
    33 University Cres., 204-275-2591

    Although it's tucked away in the South end of the city, North Garden is a take-out favourite for all Winnipeggers — so much so that the website's 'menu' button takes you directly to Skip the Dishes. Did you need much encouragement? The restaurant offers award-winning dim sum whether you're enjoying the authentic décor in-house or eating straight out of the box at home. A 'Chef's Suggestions' section offers options for those of us who are intimidated by extensive Chinese food menus.

  2. Wok House
    1029 McGregor St., 204-339-2644
  3. Golden Loong
    2237 Pembina Hwy., 204-504-6766

Best Local Deli

  1. Oscar's Deli
    75 Hargrave St., 204-947-0314

    Oscar's Deli's daily specials include a stacked reuben, rich chili and toast and a savoury clubhouse sandwich, which make a perfect lunch. However Oscar's also serves breakfast, with everything from omelettes to corned beef hash. The best deli on the prairies also offers platters to make entertaining easy and delicious, with a mouth-watering hot brisket or non-meat platter options.

  2. Bernstein's Deli
    1-1700 Corydon Ave., 204-488-4552
  3. Ira's Deli
    111 Lombard Ave., 204-949-1116

Best Local Desserts

  1. Baked Expectations
    161 Osborne St., 204-452-5176

    Baked Expectations is once again No. 1 in the dessert game, thanks to its delicious variety of sweet creations. All made in-house, Baked's selections include a choice of cheesecakes, pies and tortes, all served in tall, satisfying portions. Enjoy the busy Osborne atmosphere in the retro-esque diner, or pick up a full cake, made-to-order, for a birthday or special occasion.

  2. Maxim Bakery
    285 Alexander Ave., 204-774-8452
  3. Goodies Bake Shop
    1124 Ellice Ave., 204-949-2480

Best Local Coffee Shop

  1. Parlour Coffee
    468 Main St.

    Great coffee and even better ambience — Parlour Coffee is a quiet sanctuary in the midst of busy downtown Winnipeg. The shop, located inside a beautiful heritage building, offers a small menu of expertly made beverages and an extensive selection of coffees, most of it roasted locally in Manitoba or else imported from throughout Canada. Coffee is ground to order, and the shop "unapologetically" does not offer wi-fi. As their website says, "We believe physical experience is tantamount to coffee quality."

  2. Mountain Bean
    2001 Henderson Hwy., 204-334-6959
  3. Little Sister Coffee Maker
    A-470 River Ave.

Best Local Greek Restaurant

  1. Homers Restaurant
    520 Ellice Ave., 204-788-4858

    Located in the heart of Winnipeg's West End, Homers tops the list for its delicious and authentically made Greek food as well as their beautiful and atmospheric décor, replete with statues and "marble" finishes. Lunch, dinner and catering options are available, all made with a true Greek touch. Try the savoury dolmathes (vine leaves stuffed with rice), a tender rack of lamb or Homers own Greek lasagna. Vegetarian and gluten free options available.

  2. Nikos Restaurant
    740 Corydon Ave., 204-478-1144
  3. Loona Rossa Restaurant
    460 St. Mary's Rd., 204-235-1289

Best Local Ice Cream/Gelato

  1. Banana Boat
    390 Osborne St., 204-475-4610

    Come summer, a never-ending line forms at Banana Boat that lasts until the very last warm day. The ice cream shop is a favourite thanks to its beachy atmosphere and central location. Not to mention the mountainous sundaes and ice cream cones. The shop offers hard ice cream, soft serve, milk shakes, and a variety of Banana Boat concoctions that are sure to give you a sugar rush.

  2. Sargent Sundae
    2053 Portage Ave., 204-832-5021
  3. Nucci's Gelati
    643 Corydon Ave., 204-475-8765

Best Local Indian/South Asian Restaurant

  1. Tandoor House
    1–998 Keewatin St., 204-779-6666
    1-675 Weatherdon Ave., 204-615-0156

    Tandoor House is a family-owned business that started in 2006 serving high-quality East Indian cuisine with an authentic taste, aroma and flavour. The menus at both locations include appetizers, tandoori chicken, shrimp and other traditional entrees, including goat curry, and 11 types of naan and other breads. Diners can finish their meals with a refreshing glass of Punjabi lassi or chai, pistachio or mango ice cream or a variety of sweets. If you can't decide, you and your group can try a value meal for two, three, four or eight.

  2. Charisma of India
    83 Sherbrook St., 204-222-7878
  3. The Great Maharaja Restaurant
    510 Sargent Ave., 204-505-4229

Best Local Italian Restaurant

  1. Mona Lisa Ristorante Italiano
    1697 Corydon Ave., 204-488-3684

    Mona Lisa Ristorante Italiano owners Joe and Alfina Grande have made diners feel at home with delicious food and friendly service for over 28 years. They are joined by other family members in cooking and serving southern Italian dishes including a variety of pizzas and entrees featuring pollo (chicken), pesce (fish) and vitello (veal). Gluten-free and whole-wheat pastas are available, along with a range of vegetarian options. For the more adventurous, try mezzo-mezzo which blends Italian flavours with Japanese sushi to produce tasty results. The restaurant's lunch menu features salads, pasta, paninis and pizza.

  2. Tre Visi Café
    926 Grosvenor Ave., 204-475-4447
  3. Nicolino's Restaurant
    2077 Pembina Hwy., 204-269-5004

Best Local Japanese/Sushi Restaurant

  1. Sushi Ai
    680 St. Anne's Rd., 204-415-5445

    Sushi lovers have spoken and selected Sushi Ai in south St. Vital as this year's top choice. The menu lists 176 items including vegetable rolls, hand and special rolls and many seafood specialties. Bowls with fish, chicken, pork and beef are available, served over rice with miso soup. The restaurant is closed on Sundays and is open from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. and to 10 p.m. on Fridays.

  2. Wasabi
    Three Winnipeg locations
  3. Yujiro Japanese Restaurant
    1822 Grant Ave., 204-489-9254

Best Local Latin American Restaurant

  1. BMC Market-Taqueria
    722 Osborne St., 204-415-5192

    Great value, authentic food – what's not to love? This restaurant is located on south Osborne's ever-increasing stretch of small locally-owned restaurants and lounges. Diners rave about the delicious tacos that come with a variety of fillings in handmade tortillas. The restaurant is open 11:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Saturday and from noon to 6 p.m. on Sunday. Look for the bright blue exterior and the Mexican flag in the window.

  2. Casa Burrito
    520 Portage Ave., 204-774-2272
  3. Hermanos Restaurant & Wine Bar
    179 Bannatyne Ave., 204-947-5434

Best Local Pizza Restaurant

  1. Santa Lucia Pizza
    Seven Winnipeg locations

    Perennial winner Santa Lucia is once again Winnipeg's best pizza. After opening a takeout pizza business in Thompson in 1971, owner George Simeonidis and his family moved to Winnipeg in 1974 and promptly started a pizzeria at Waterloo and Corydon. Over 40 years later, Winnipeggers keep on flocking to enjoy Santa Lucia's homemade pizza and other menu items, including pasta, steak and seafood entrees, Greek dinners and appetizers range from chicken wings to escargot to spanakopita. Santa Lucia's lunch menu features pizza, sandwiches, and Italian and Greek specialties.

  2. Juliana Pizza
    678 Ellice Ave., 204-775-2925
  3. Slice's Pizza
    401 Stafford St., 204-475-3443;
    1329 Portage Ave., 204-786-3434

Best Local Steak House

  1. Rae & Jerry's Steak House
    1405 Portage Ave., 204-783-6155

    Rae and Jerry's Steak House is a Winnipeg institution with a history that dates back almost 60 years. Whether you are a regular customer or this is your first time dining at Rae & Jerry's, you will enjoy its relaxed yet classic ambiance and old-school favourites on the menu, such as chicken pot pie for lunch and a veal cutlet or calf's liver for dinner. Of course, there's plenty of beef to choose from served in a variety of cuts and prepared just the way you like it. The restaurant offers a variety of platters, sandwiches and appetizers as part of its catering menu as well.

  2. Hermanos Restaurant & Wine Bar
    179 Bannatyne Ave., 204-947-5434
  3. Beaujena's French Table
    302 Hamel Ave., 204-233-4841

Best Local Thai Restaurant

  1. Thai Bochi
    870 Logan Ave., 204-832-7192

    Thai Bochi delivers a mix of Thai and Cambodian cuisine. The extensive menu includes a variety of noodle soups, pad thai and curry dishes, egg noodles, chow mein noodles and fried rice mixes. There are vegetarian options and house specials such as thai chicken or pork green and red curry soups with rice and Cambodian grilled chicken or pork.

  2. Pad Thai Restaurant
    2655 Portage Ave., 204-888-9656
  3. Thida's Thai Restaurant
    78 Donald St., 204-942-2639

Best Local Vietnamese Restaurant

  1. Pho Hoang Restaurant
    794 Sargent Ave., 204-415-6893

    Pho Hoang has a quiet elegance but what's more important is its delicious Vietnamese cuisine. The menu lists a unique lotus root salad as an appetizer along with a sweet-potato-and-shrimp crepe and salad rolls that come with a variety of fillings. Pho is prepared using beef and chicken. The wrap-your-own-rolls menu option allows diners to use freshly-prepared ingredients to create their own tasty treats. Coconut sticky rice comes with pork, chicken or beef. You should plan to leave room for a unique dessert like fried banana with coconut milk and peanuts.

  2. Pho No. 1
    81 Isabel St., 204-943-7449
  3. Kim Thanh Restaurant
    888 Notre Dame Ave., 204-779-2970

Best Local Butcher Shop

  1. Miller's Super Valu Meats
    Three Winnipeg locations

    Local meat lovers and barbecue fans should take note of Miller's Super Valu Meats, as the company prides itself on sourcing locally produced meat and offers full service butchers at its three locations. Bacon can be purchased according to thickness of slice and you can call ahead for special orders. All smoked products, deli meats and fresh, gluten-free sausage with no preservatives.

  2. Tenderloin Meat & Sausage
    1483 Main St., 204-582-2280
  3. The Carver's Knife
    29-1530 Regent Ave. West, 204-663-6771

Best Local Natural/Health/
Organic Food Store

  1. Vita Health Fresh Market
    Six locations across Winnipeg

    Founded right here in Manitoba, Vita Health Fresh Market has half a dozen locations across Winnipeg to help its customers practise healthy living. Vita Health carries minerals, supplements, natural health products, and more with the goal of providing alternative health choices based in traditional European natural therapies. This family owned business practices what it preaches and all store managers are certified Natural Product Advisors while employees attend regular product education seminars.

  2. The Fresh Carrot
    2-230 Osborne St., 204-489-3737
  3. Organic Planet Worker Co-op
    877 Westminster Ave., 204-772 -8771

Best Local Fine Dining Restaurant

  1. Deseo Bistro
    696 Osborne St., 204-452-2561

    With a trained eye for quality and detail, the chefs at Deseo Bistro in South Osborne have satisfied the taste buds of Canstar Community News readers. Led by head chef Scott Bagshaw, Deseo specializes in finely crafted small plates of Latin American-inspired cuisine. A dinner of bean fritters, tuna tostad, and grilled skirt steak is sure to please. Since opening Deseo in 2010, Bagshaw has also expanded his portfolio to include River Height's dining favourites Enoteca and Máquè.

  2. Fusion Grill
    550 Academy Rd., 204-489-6963
  3. Resto Gare
    630 Des Meurons St., 204-237-7072

Best Local Late-Night Dining 

  1. The Cornerstone Bar & Restaurant
    93 Osborne St., 204-505-7772

    The Cornerstone has become a favourite late-night dining spot in Osborne Village with its cheap beer and appetizers to satisfy midnight cravings. Coming out of the kitchen, homestyle dishes such as chickpea soup and KFC Banh Mi will quell your hunger while the Cornerstone's laid-back atmosphere, friendly staff and a rotating selection of contemporary art and specialty beers make it easy to hunker down in the dining room on a Friday night.

  2. Ken's Restaurant
    333 Ellice Ave., 204-943-1062
  3. Johnny G's Restaurant
    172 Main St. and 177 McDermot Ave.,

Best Local Food Cart/Wagon

  1. The Red Ember

    It's no surprise that handcrafted, wood-fired pizza served from bright red truck has appealed to Winnipeggers' sensitivities. The Red Ember has been serving up pizza with fresh, in season ingredients since 2013 and the popular food truck is regularly parked on Broadway feeding the downtown lunch crowd, at the St. Norbert Farmers' Market and at festivals across Manitoba. Next time you're burning with hunger, give the Red Ember's Classic pizza with free range Zinn Farms Berkshire pepperoni a try.

  2. Habanero Sombrero
  3. Stuff It Foods

Best Place to Take a Date for Dinner

  1. Peasant Cookery
    283 Bannatyne Ave., 204-989-7700

    They say oysters are an aphrodisiac and on Wednesday at Peasant Cookery, they're just a buck a shuck. This French restaurant is a part of the WOW Hospitality family and is a popular spot in The Exchange District for fancy cocktails, charcuterie, and wholesome meals. The intimate dining room and soft lighting make it a favourite place to mark an important anniversary or create memories with a new flame.

  2. Prairie 360
    83 Garry St., 204-505-2681
  3. Smith Restaurant
    75 Forks Market Rd., 204-944-2445

Best Patio  

  1. Cibo Waterfront Café
    339 Waterfront Dr., 204-594-0339

    A new arrival on this list, Cibo has earned a spot in Winnipeggers' good books with its relaxed patio overlooking the Red River. The former pump and screen house, which historically provided water to Winnipeg's downtown steam heating plant, makes for a beautiful dining setting and a great place to indulge with a bottle of wine and cheeseboard. Summer is short in Manitoba and those looking to make the most of the fleeting warmth have found a haven in Cibo.

  2. Black Rabbit Bistro Lounge
    135 Osborne St., 204-615-1130
  3. Tavern United MTS Centre
    260 Hargrave St., 204-944-0022

Best Place to Eat Alone

  1. Pho Hoang Restaurant
    794 Sargent Ave., 204-415-6893
    See best Local Vietnamese restaurant.

  2. King + Bannatyne
    100 King St., 204-691-9757
  3. Smoke's Poutinerie
    131 Albert St., 204-253-2873;
    855 Regent Ave. W., 204-255-2873

Best Neighbourhood Pub

  1. The Grove Pub & Restaurant
    164 Stafford St., 204-415-3262

    A pub exists to serve the community and Winnipeg has chosen The Grove as a local with its neighbourhood at heart. Owner Miles Gould opened The Grove in 2010 and since then it has developed a loyal following with the pub often overflowing and windows fogged on a Friday evening. To accompany the 16 types of beers on tap (and 30 bottled), The Grove serves up traditional English cuisine such as fish and chips, shepherd's pie, and bangers and mash, all prepared by chef Norman Pastorin. Cheers!

  2. Yellow Dog Tavern
    386 Donald St., 204-775-6676
  3. King's Head Pub & Eatery
    120 King St., 204-957-7710

Best Nightclub

  1. The Grove Pub & Restaurant
    164 Stafford St., 204-415-3262
    See Best Neighbourhood Pub.

  2. The Good Will Social Club
    625 Portage Ave., 204-221-1577
  3. Times Change(d) High & Lonesome Club
    234 Main St., 204-957-0982

Best Beer Selection

  1. Barley Brothers
    655 Empress St., 204-772-2337;
    2005 Pembina Hwy., 204-691-3300

    Barley Brothers got its start on Empress Avenue but its newer location on Pembina Highway is the record-setter, boasting the most taps in the country. The original location is no slouch, either, and regardless of which you visit, you'll be sure to find something to suit your palate, whether you're up for a filling oatmeal stout or simply want a reliable pale ale to wash down the pub grub. In addition to the long list of domestic and imported beers, Barley Brothers offers its own signature brand, including "Bad Batch" German pilsner and "Roadtrip" American pale ale.

  2. The Hub Social Club
    University Centre, 66 Chancellors Cir.,
  3. King's Head Pub and Eatery
    120 King St., 204-957-7710

Best Wine Selection

  1. 529 Wellington
    529 Wellington Cres., 204-487-8325

    529 is well-known for its quality dining but every entrée has a soulmate meant to rest nearby in a glass — after it's been given time to breathe, that is. The wine program at 529 is overseen by sommelier Christopher Sprague, to award-winning results, for more than a decade.

  2. 295 York
    295 York Ave., 204-896-7275
  3. Blaze Bistro & Lounge
    350 St. Mary Ave., 204-944-7259



Best New Local Store (any category)

  1. Perogy Planet
    1411 Main St.

    Perogies are near and dear to the hearts of many Winnipeggers, and Perogy Planet is shaking things up with its own twists on the classic formula. If baba hasn't made a batch in a while, your appetite will be sated with the shop's many varieties, including sweet potato brie, reuben, and cheesecake. There are, of course, plenty of cheddar cheese and potato perogies — it's a mainstay for a reason. Having enjoyed a successful launch at its Main Street location, plans for expansion into St. Vital are currently in the works.

  2. G is for Glasses
    3-1176 Taylor Ave., 204-452-7737
  3. Modern Supply Co.
    250 Kennedy St., 204-615-6997

Best Local Vintage Clothing Store

  1. Vintage Glory
    380 Donald St., 204-942-7186

    Vintage Glory offers an interesting mix of hand-picked items from its Exchange District Shop. Owner Doug Shand has been collecting vintage wares for more than three decades, and has developed an eye for the eclectic. Whether one is in the market for a beaded purse or a bolo tie, a top hat or a leather jacket, Vintage Glory surely has something for all personalities.

  2. The Foxy Shoppe
    87 King St., 204-338-3699
  3. The Ruby Slipper Vintage Shoppe
    307 St. Anne's Rd., 204-257-3949

Best Local Men's Clothing Store

  1. Hanford Drewitt
    354 Broadway, 204-957-1640

    If you want to look your best, buy from the best. Broadway shop Hanford Drewitt is there for all your tailoring needs, in addition to boasting a well-curated selection of sportswear and footwear. Need a suit that fits just right? They've got you covered. Need a pair of great jeans? They've got that covered, too.

  2. EPH Apparel
    291 Garry St., 1-888-343-6117
  3. Danali Men's & Women's Clothing
    100-530 Kenaston Blvd., 204-489-0577

Best Local Women's Clothing Store

  1. Luxe & Charm
    109 Osborne St., 204-415-1734

    Located in the heart of Osborne Village, Luxe & Charm is there to help you fill your wardrobe for whatever you need. Focused on all that's chic and trendy, the boutique can find the perfect fit for formal occasions, a night on the town or a day at the beach.

  2. Lorenza Fashion
    1260-1120 Grant Ave., 204-415-6270
  3. Hush Clothing & Accessories
    99 Osborne St #101, 204-474-1208

Best Local Place to Buy a Fancy Dress

  1. Bellissima Fashions
    1120 Grant Ave., 204-475-5174

    Everyone likes to feel glamorous now and then, and when it's time to get decked out for an upcoming cotillion, banquet, wedding or awards program, Bellissima Fashion is the place to go. Their selection is replete with splashes of colour, as well as little black dresses every gal needs at least one of.

  2. Mad About Style
    538 Academy Rd., 204-489-1151
  3. Lorenza Fashion
    1260-1120 Grant Ave., 204-415-6270

Best Local Bridal/Tuxedo Store

  1. 7th Avenue Fashions
    546 Academy Rd., 204 488-0660

    7th Avenue claims to be Winnipeg's premier bridal salon, and it looks like readers agree. The Academy Road boutique runs on a simple philosophy, according to its website — superior styling, and great customer service with a personal touch. Offering designs by Sottero & Midgley, Venus, Angelina Faccenda and more, brides to be all over the city can rejoice.

  2. Say Yes Bridal263 Vaughan St., (204) 943-6500
  3. Jessica's Bridal
    633 Portage Ave., (204) 786-6302

Best Local Place to Buy Jeans

  1. Sargent Blue Jeans
    1136 Sargent Ave. (204) 772-8145

    This isn't the first time Sargent Blue Jeans has made the top of this list, and there's a clear reason why. Their selection of dynamite denim covers all the brands people have come to associate with great jeans, and the shop's offer of free alterations to guarantee a perfect fit is icing on the cake.

  2. Silver Jeans
    Various locations
  3. Nygard Slims
    Various locations

Best Local Shoe Store

  1. Canadian Footwear
    Multiple locations

    Canadian Footwear has the shoe for you. This Winnipeg institution is all about the fitting, offering a large range of sizing, including multiple widths, to match any size or shape of feet. The store's knowledgeable staff will measure your foot every which way to ensure you walk out with comfortable kicks. Canadian Footwear also offers a foot health centre, where certified pedorthists will come up with the right sneaker and orthotic combo to calm your barking dogs.

  2. Shoe Doctor
    893 Westminster Ave., 204-779-7463
  3. The Bay Downtown
    450 Portage Ave., 204-783-2112

Best Local Bicycle Shop

  1. Bikes & Beyond
    233 Henderson Hwy., 204-669-5590

    Whether your path is a street, a trail, a track or a half pipe, Bikes & Beyond has a bicycle for you. The Henderson Highway shop sells a large selection of road, city, mountain and BMX bikes, as well as cycling accessories such as helmets, clothes and shoes. In addition to bikes, the store also specializes in cross-country skiing equipment and clothing and offers skate sharpening.

  2. Alter Ego Sports
    1605 Pembina Hwy., 204-475-4908
  3. Gooch's Bicycle & Hobby Shops
    1046 Portage Ave., 204-956-6570

Best Local Independent
Music Store

  1. Into the Music
    245 McDermot Ave., 204-287-8279

    There's no such thing as a quick stop at Into the Music. Seriously, you'll walk in looking for Revolver and walk out with the Beatles entire discography. A music nerd's utopia, the Exchange District shop offers an abundance of new and used vinyl in every genre imaginable, with special sections for styles such as psych garage and krautrock. Into the Music also carries new and used CDs, DVDs, as well as turntable and vinyl care supplies.

  2. Music Trader
    97 Osborne St., 204-477-5566
  3. Vinyl Revival
    6-10 McGillivray Pl., 204-615-8886

Best Local Used Bookstore

  1. Dog-Eared Books
    1157 Henderson Hwy., 204-338-7042

    Dog-Eared Books is the place for passed down paperbacks. The Henderson Highway book store sells a large selection of secondhand softcovers. Whether you're looking for hand-me-down horror, gently worn westerns or recycled romance, Dog-Eared Books has you covered.

  2. Burton Lysecki Books
    527 Osborne St., 204-284-4546
  3. Red River Book Store
    92 Arthur St., 204-943-9788

Best Local Bookstore

  1. McNally Robinson Booksellers
    1120 Grant Ave., 204-475-0483

    Businesses everywhere would be smart to take a page from McNally Robinson's book. Since opening in Grant Park Shopping Centre in 1996, the independent bookseller has successfully connected authors with readers, focusing on works by Canadian and prairie writers. An "eventful" bookstore, McNally hosts launch events for local authors, brings national and international writers to Winnipeg and offers a monthly book club. The store also has a self-publishing service, so, who knows, maybe you could be the next Miriam Toews or David Bergen.

  2. Prairie Sky Books
    871 Westminster Ave., 204-774-6152
  3. Zed Books
    80 Sherbrook St., 204-772-1007

Best Local Music Equipment Store

  1. Long & McQuade
    661 Wall St., 204-783-6045;
    651 Stafford St., 204-284-8992

    Whether you're looking for a starter acoustic guitar for little Jimi or a Fender Stratocaster for big Jimi, Long & McQuade has you covered. Canada's largest music instrument chain has two locations in Winnipeg and offers every axe imaginable, as well as amps, effects, strings, straps and other accessories, and drums, keyboards, audio and recording equipment, music software and orchestral instruments too.

  2. Quest Musique
    1308 Portage Ave., 233-4151;
    150-166 Meadowood Dr., 204-231-1677
  3. Whyte Ridge Music Centre
    103 Scurfield Blvd., 204-489-1200

Best Local Antiques Shop

  1. Antiques & Funk
    474 Main St., 204-943-4782

    Antiques & Funk is a one of a kind one-stop shop. The Exchange District store contains cool collectibles, china, furniture, lighting, home décor, books and music instruments. Also, the owners are always on the hunt for more memorabilia and antiques, looking for anything "old and unusual." No, they will not take your Uncle Frank.

  2. The Old House Revival Company
    324 Young St., 204-477-4286
  3. Antique Exchange and Warehouse
    41 Princess St., 204-942-1315

Best Local Tailor

  1. Central Tailor
    477 Henderson Hwy., 204-667-1704

    Whether your dress needs taken in or let out, Central Tailor can get your clothes fitting perfectly. The Henderson Highway tailor offers a wide range of clothing repair and alteration services. So, if your sewing is only so-so, take it to Central Tailor.

  2. Orlando's Tailoring
    284 Marion St., 204-233-7872
  3. Wing or Shanghai Custom Tailors
    1575 St. Mary's Rd., 204-255-0608

Best Local Laundromat

  1. The Washeteria Laundromat
    556 Keenleyside St., 204-667-0839

    The Washeteria Laundromat boasts the largest machines in the city, including the "monster", which can handle eight loads at a time. The big boy can handle comforters, sleeping bags, duvets and small cars with ease. The East Kildonan establishment also sports a colour scheme inspired by De Stijl, or neo-plasticism, a Dutch artistic movement, meaning you can mention Piet Mondrian while washing your unmentionables.

  2. Village Laundry
    213 Osborne St., 204-997-7839
  3. Marion Plaza Laundry
    208 Marion St., 204-237-7223

Best Local Gym/Workout Studio

  1. Anytime Fitness
    Various locations

    Anytime Fitness lives up to its name. With various locations across the city that have varying staffed hours, members can workout 24 hours a day, seven days a week. According to, membership includes "a free, no pressure fitness consultation, global access to more than 3,000 gyms, and always open 24/7 convenience." Facilities include treadmills, ellipticals, exercise cycles, stair climbers, rowing machines, free weights and more. Lifestyle components include personal training, tanning, adaptive motion trainers, spinning cycles and classes, Zumba classes, and cardio classes.

  2. Reh-Fit Centre
    1390 Taylor Ave., 204-488-8023
  3. Innovative Martial Arts
    558 Keenleyside St., 204-505-2787

Best Local Yoga Studio

  1. Moksha Yoga
    7-2 Donald St., 204-452-5535;
    100-1090 Waverley St., 204-415-6804

    The team at Moksha Yoga Winnipeg prides itself on combining a love of yoga with a passion for community outreach and environmental awareness. According to, its studios are "built on the foundation of clean, green, conscious construction that is designed to create a calm and healthy environment for your practice." Each of its studios is guided and inspired by seven philosophical pillars — be healthy; be accessible; live green; community support; reach out; live to learn; and be peace. Each class takes place in a specially-heated room and has cardiovascular benefits, as well as strengthening, loosening and toning the muscles.

  2. Yoga Public
    280 Fort St., 204-947-9642
  3. Studio 26 Hot Yoga
    1-1763 Pembina Hwy., 204-275-1185

Best Local tattoo/Piercing Parlour

  1. Kapala Tattoo
    71 St. Anne's Rd., 204-255-8897

    Kapala Tattoo is a custom tattoo shop owned by artist Rich Handford, which has been in business since 200The business also showcases the talents of tattoo artists Dan Fletcher, Sean Cushnie, Reuben Todd, and Tyler Alderson. Kapala prides itself on its work ethic and craftsmanship and its intention is to provide world-class tattooing in a clean, comfortable environment.

  2. Living Canvas Tattoo
    1328 St. James St., 204-255-4465
  3. Phase ll Tattoo & Body Piercing
    894 Portage Ave., 204-774-8282; 371 Henderson Hwy., 204-475-8282,

Best Local Spa/Esthetics Shop

  1. Ten Spa
    222 Broadway, 204-946-6520

    When it comes to pampering, Ten Spa scores a perfect 10. The luxury spa, located on the 10th floor of the Fort Garry Hotel, specializes in rest, relaxation and refreshment, offering facials, body scrubs, massages and pedicures/manicures. Try the hamam, where one, surrounded by heated marble and steam, is led through a cleansing and rejuvenating ritual that dates back to the Turkish Empire. Or, go for a body cocoon, a revitalizing, full-body skin treatment that will transform you from bug to butterfly.

  2. Thermea
    775 Crescent Dr., 204-284-6868
  3. Riverstone Spa
    75 Forks Market Rd., 204-944-2444

Best Local Car Wash

  1. The Chamois
    Several locations

    Let's face it. Your car was a slush and salt-stained mess all winter. Now that summer's finally here, give your vehicle a little TLC and take it down to The Chamois. Locally owned and operated, The Chamois' various Winnipeg locations — 850 Waverley St., 85 Reenders Dr., and 1285 St. James St. — clean your car outside and in. While you're waiting for your detailing package of choice to be completed, take a load off on one of The Chamois' comfortable couches, browse some reading material or check the hot display car in the lobby.

  2. Rainbow Car Wash
    3460 Portage Ave., 204-885-1433
  3. Midtown Car Wash
     344 Gertrude Ave., 204-453-5344

Best Local Manicure/Pedicure

  1. Tiber River Naturals
    408 Academy Rd., 204-474-2333;
    1650 Kenaston Blvd., 204-284-4247

    According to the company's website, the mission at Tiber River is simple — to have fun, be unique, and rise above what drags you down. Tiber River is a Winnipeg-based business, which was founded in 1999 by Adriana De Luca, who started by selling homemade soaps at parties. De Luca partnered with Michelle Lalonde in 2005 and the pair opened its shop on Academy Road, selling a wide range of beauty products and became a hit with newbies and regulars alike.

  2. Urban Oasis Mineral Spa
    1445 Portage Ave., 204-783-8131
  3. City Nails & Beauty Salon
    1822 Main St., 204-339-6108

Best Local Hair Salon

  1. Society The Salon
    7-120 Donald St., 204-947-3766

    Known for creative and progressive hairdressing, the stylists and technicians at Society are specialists on the cutting edge of their profession. The Donald Street salon offers complimentary consultations and invites you to talk with a stylist about your hair and the look you would ultimately like to achieve.
    Society's services also include makeup, nails and waxing.

  2. Prep Hair
    701 Corydon Ave., 204-421-3860
  3. Oxfords Salon
    196 Osborne St., 204-287-8939,

Best Local Barber

  1. Hunter & Gunn Quality Hair and Barbershop
    567 Broadway

    Manscaping has gone mainstream in recent years (of course, so have beards) and so, too, has the notion of the updated twist on the barbershop experience. Hunter & Gunn is one of those places, offering traditional and highly fashionable haircuts, straight-razor shaves and the kind of pampering the average guy doesn't get at a $12 place. Consult the website for phone numbers, as each of the shop's five employees has his or her own number to call. Bookings are also available online, and walk-ins are also welcome.

  2. Mike's Place Hairstyling
    1867 Portage Ave., 204-832-2698
  3. Hair Force Barbers
    90 Whytewold Rd., 204-832-5581

Best Local Pet Supplies Store

  1. Pet Traders
    1333 Portage Ave., 204-477-1616

    Pet Traders specializes in both new and used pet supplies, as well as all kinds of live critters and fish, and prides itself on its customer service and competitive pricing. Pet Traders is independently owned and opened its doors in 1997 at the corner of Morley Avenue and Osborne Street and moved to its current location on Portage Avenue in 2001. The current owners bought the store in 2015.

  2. Hip Pooch
    807 Corydon Ave., 204-284-6964
  3. It's Raining Cats & Dogs
    620-B Academy Rd., 204-489-0120



Best Free Event

  1. Winnipeg International Jazz Festival
    Old Market Square
    7-100 Arthur St., 204-989-4656

    Stately architecture and an eclectic mix of restaurants and clubs serve as the perfect backdrop for the free stage of the Winnipeg International Jazz Fest. The Cube in Old Market Square is ground zero for the festival, allowing festival goers to take in music at lunchtime or to whet their musical appetites before they hit the festival's many club and concert venues.

  2. Canada Day at The Forks
    1 Forks Market Rd., 204-943-6302
  3. Manyfest
    Broadway, 204-958-4640

Best Place to People-watch

  1. The Forks
    1 Forks Market Rd., 204-943-6302

    Offer a variety of attractions that draw an eclectic mix of people. That is the perfect recipe for a great place to people watch and no one does it better than the Forks, with its great blend of vendors, restaurants and entertainment.

  2. Assiniboine Park
  3. Osborne Village

Best Place to Go on a Date

  1. The Forks
    1 Forks Market Rd., 204-943-6302

    A romantic river walk in the summertime or a brisk skate in the winter. Fine dining that's sure to please any palate. Being just two in a crowd of thousands enjoying a concert. Whichever atmosphere you want to create when with that special someone, The Forks has what you are looking for.

  2. Assiniboine Park
  3. Landmark Cinemas at Grant Park Shopping Centre
    127-1120 Grant Ave., 204-453-4536

Best Festival

  1. Winnipeg Folk Festival

    Each July people from across North America and beyond flock to Birds Hill Provincial Park to listen to their favourite acts and discover new ones from a globe-spanning musical roster. Much of the fun comes away from the stages as festival goers mingle at the workshops, campgrounds and beaches. No matter the weather, everyone enjoys themselves.

  2. Winnipeg Fringe Theatre Festival
  3. Festival du Voyageur

Best Building

  1. Canadian Museum for Human Rights
    85 Israel Asper Way, 204-289-2000

    This architectural marvel is the latest addition to the Forks and the first national museum built outside the capital region. Its large open spaces and extensive ramp system are designed to provide guests the time to contemplate the lessons of history as they transition between exhibitions. A highlight is the garden of contemplation on a sunny day.

  2. Manitoba Legislative Building
    450 Broadway, 204-945-5813
  3. Manitoba Hydro Place
    360 Portage Ave., 204-480-5900



Best Neighbourhood to Live In

  1. River Park South

    Families are flocking to this thriving community of more than 8,000 homes and businesses just south of St. Vital Centre between St. Mary's and St. Anne's Roads. Perhaps River Park South's popularity is due to the convenience of having everything one needs nearby, including the Dakota Community Centre, River Park Village Shopping Centre, eight schools, a library and more than 150 acres of parks and playgrounds.

  2. Wolseley
  3. Riverview

Best City High School

  1. Dakota Collegiate
    661 Dakota St., 204-256-4366

    Variety is indeed the spice of life at Dakota Collegiate, a 9-12 school near St. Vital Centre. With close to 100 elective courses and more than 60 extra-curricular groups, the home of the Lancers has something to offer every one of its 1,100 students.

  2. River East Collegiate
    295 Sutton Ave., 204-338-4611
  3. Vincent Massey Collegiate
    975 Dowker Ave., 204-453-8023

Best Community Centre

  1. Dakota Community Centre
    1188 Dakota St., 204-254-1010

    First things first, after several years of confusion created by an over-exuberant former mayor, Dakota moved in 2014 to reclaim its name. Dakota is once again officially Dakota Community Centre, and this south St. Vital community club's sports complex is officially known as the Jonathan Toews Sportsplex, after the Chicago Blackhawks captain and three-time Stanley Cup winner who grew up playing at Dakota. One of the most modern and fully equipped community centres in the city, Dakota is home to just about every sport you can name, and its facilities are busy year-round.

  2. Whyte Ridge Community Centre
    179 Fleetwood Rd., 204-487-3042
  3. Corydon Community Centre
    Crescentwood site, 1170 Corydon Ave; River Heights site, 1070 Grosvenor Ave.; Sir John Franklin site, 1 Sir John Franklin Rd.; 204-488-7000

Best Local Library

  1. St. Vital Library
    6 Fermor Ave., 204-986-5625

    Opened in 1963, across the street from Glenlawn Collegiate and the YM-YWCA, St. Vital Library features a unique, circular design, plenty of natural light from skylights and a collection that's well-stocked. It's about to get an upgrade, too, intended to modernize its heating and ventilation systems, buff up its exterior and ensure that it remains a hub of activity for years to come.

  2. Henderson Library
    1050 Henderson Hwy., 204-986-4314
  3. Cornish Library
    20 West Gate, 204-986-4679

Best Local Rink

  1. River Heights site of Corydon Community Centre
    1070 Grosvenor Ave., 204-488-7000

    Two outdoor rinks flank the beautiful old River Heights Arena but it's the east rink that seems to see most of the shinny action at River Heights, attracting skaters and hockey players of both sexes and all ages throughout the winter season. On a Saturday afternoon in December, January or February, when the temperature's -12 or so, the ice surface can be packed and the indoor canteen always seems to be busy.

  2. Robert A. Steen Community Centre
    980 Palmerston Ave., 204-783-5616
  3. Gateway Recreation Centre
    1717 Gateway Rd., 204-982-1234

Best Local Park

  1. Assiniboine Park

    Assiniboine Park has been a jewel in the city's crown since it was officially opened in 1909 (some locals still refer to it as 'City Park', its original name) and its 400-acres are a year-round hive of activity, attracting people with all sorts of destinations, from its conservatory to its restaurants, the Leo Mol Sculpture Garden, the English Garden, a miniature railway and, of course, the Assiniboine Park Zoo and its still relatively new Journey to Churchill polar bear exhibit.

  2. St. Vital Park
  3. Clara Hughes Recreation Park

Best Local Swimming Pool

  1. Pan Am Pool
    25 Poseidon Bay, 204-986-5890

    Built for the 1967 Pan-American Games, Winnipeg's best aquatic facility features Olympic-calibre diving and swimming tanks, a warm-up pool and a kiddies' area. While it is still used for competitive aquatic events, Pan Am is also home to a full slate of swimming lessons, recreational programs and public swim times.

  2. North Centennial Pool
    90 Sinclair St., 204-986-6528
  3. Seven Oaks Swimming Pool
    444 Adsum Dr., 204-986-6521

Best Local Dog Park

  1. Kilcona Regional Park

    Originally a landfill, Kilcona Park is home to Harbourview Recreation Centre, which includes aquatic features and a golf course but its great attraction for many area dog owners is as a dog park, as much of the west portion of the park (near the McIvor Avenue entrance) offers a great place for dogs and their humans to walk, run, relax and mix and mingle. The Kilcona Park Dog Club is an active users' group which has been lobbying for improvements to the dog park portion but its plans are currently caught up in political, bureaucratic and jurisdictional mire. We'll have to see what happens.

  2. Kings Park
  3. Charleswood Dog Park

Best Local Bike Trail

  1. Harte Trail

    According to Trails Manitoba, the Harte Trail is "a 6.5 kilometre recreational trail running from Shaftesbury Boulevard on the east to the Perimeter Highway on the west, built on the bed of the historic Grand Trunk Railway, which later became the Canadian National Railway." It's looked after by a group called Friends of Hart Trail and its surfaces are gravel, grass, dirt and pavement.

  2. Churchill Drive
  3. FortWhyte Alive

Best Local Toboggan Hill

  1. FortWhyte Alive

    We live in the flatlands. Hills are few and far-between, so we take our tobogganing where we can get it. If that means tobogganing down river banks on to frozen rivers, we'll do it. If it means tobogganing down old landfills, we'll do it. If it means literally building the city's highest toboggan run out of timber and metal and plastic, as at FortWhyte Alive, then we'll do it. Look out below!

  2. Westview Park (Garbage Hill)
  3. Kimberly Hill

Best Local Place to Go for a Walk

  1. St. Vital Park

    Walkers and joggers love St. Vital Park. Not just because it boasts a fitness trail (and let's face it, only really active people go for a run on a fitness trail) but because its network of circular roadways and pathways make going for a stroll that will finish where you started a really easy and convenient thing to do.

  2. The Forks
  3. Assiniboine Park



Favourite Winnipegger

  1. Brian Bowman

    He's endured a couple of bumps along the way but, well into the second year of his term as mayor, Brian Bowman is still a popular guy. He's not going to solve the city's funding and infrastructure problems on his own but he's been honest about that fact while at the same time playing a long game that involves joining other Canadian mayors and municipal politicians in their demands for a new deal from the federal government. It'll be interesting to see how that one plays out, and if Bowman can sustain his popularity while still unravelling the messes of previous administrations.

  2. Ace Burpee
  3. Fred Penner

Favourite Winnipeg Politician

  1. Brian Bowman
    See above.

  2. Brian Pallister
  3. Robert Falcon-Ouellette

Favourite Winnipeg Sports Personality

  1. Dustin Byfuglien

    The Winnipeg Jets made a big choice last season. With both Dustin Byfuglien and then-captain Andrew Ladd headed for unrestricted free agency this summer, they chose to trade away Ladd and to sign Big Buff to a five-year contract extension with an average annual value of $7.6 million. The move proved hugely popular with fans, who have fallen in love with Byfuglien's dynamic game, which can often involve a huge hit, a scintillating rush and a sizzling shot, all in the same shift.

  2. Doug Brown
  3. Drew Willy

Favourite Winnipeg Media Personality

  1. Ace Burpee

    It's obvious that Winnipeggers believe that Virgin Radio's morning show host and man-about-town is simply awesome. Need we say more?

  2. Ismaila Alfa
  3. Bob Irving

Favourite Professional Sports Team

  1. Winnipeg Jets

    We should probably retire this category. Since the NHL returned to this city in 2011, the Jets have been the No. 1 game in a town that is obsessed with hockey. Even though the team on the ice has only qualified for the Stanley Cup playoffs once, fans are excited by the potential of its young stars and the years to come.

  2. Winnipeg Blue Bombers
  3. Winnipeg Goldeyes