— Feature —

2016 Best in the Core: Best in Business

Celebrating the shops, restaurants and bars we love

Courtesy: Red Star Pub / @redstaryeg

Source: Instagram / @redstaryeg

Best Place to Be a Regular

RED STAR PUB
It’s where locals come to wind down after work and run into familiar faces, neighbours and friendly staff who know them by name. This dimly lit, mellow pub has a comprehensive beer list, serving everything from low-brow Pabst to premium IPAs. Carefully made appetizers lead to long conversations and table-hopping as the evening progresses. 10534 Jasper Ave.

Runners-up

Credo
You’ll almost certainly bump into somebody from your business network and have a power meeting on top of your pre-scheduled coffee.  10134 104 St.

Chicken For Lunch
Visit “the Amazing Amy” Quon (of the Lingnan fame) enough times, and she’ll not only remember your name and have your order memorized, but she’ll move you through their winding line-up faster. 10060 Jasper Ave., 780-425-9614 —BN

Best Tailor (TIE)

OLIVER: MASTER TAILORS SEWING CENTRE
Luba Korsountseva has tailored and made custom pieces for over 35 years. She has a keen eye for fabrics and quality design—and never shies from giving her professional opinion, even if you don’t want to hear it—so your garment looks its finest. And if you have a special piece that you’re looking to revamp, Korsountseva is always up for a challenge.  10147 119 St., mastertailorsedmonton.com

DOWNTOWN: TONY THE TAILOR
Junko Daraseng, the owner of this 16-year old family business, has had one of the top Google ratings for tailors for five years. It’s easy to see why: atop excellent stitching, altering and hemming, you can just drop your garments of on the fly and someone will text you when they’re ready for pick up. The eco-friendly dry cleaning is a bonus.  10172 104 St. —BN

Best Signature Cocktail

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BLACK PEARL’S SNOW CRAB CAESAR
Craving a bit of Clamato with a side of the sea? Of course you are—you’re Albertan. This signature cocktail adds a fresh wave to the province’s favourite drink by swapping the rabbit food for a snow crab leg. Enjoy this $14.50 Caesar with some of the freshest seafood found in the city. 10132 104 St.

Runners-up

North 53’s Smoke & Oaked Fashioned
A truly multi-sensory experience, it’s served fumed with a slab of torched oak that’s flipped over as a coaster for this $15 cocktail with oaked gin, maple syrup and a lightly stirred orange oil 10240 124 St., north53.com

Woodwork House Sour
A variation on the classic whiskey sour, this signature cocktail is made with bourbon, lapsang tea-infused honey, lemon juice, egg white and an angostura bitter brûlée. 10132 100 St., woodworkyeg.com —BN

Best Place for Something Truly Unique

Source: Facebook / Swish Vintage

Source: Facebook / Swish Vintage

SWISH VINTAGE
This tiny boutique brims with everything a vintage-obsessed shopper could possibly want. Owner Angela Larson’s eclectic antique jewellery, statement hats, barely-worn designer shoes and walls upon walls of jaw-dropping party dresses pair beautifully with her curated housewares, including teak cabinets, vintage club chairs and mid-century modern dishware.  10180 101 St.

Runners-up

Dress to Suit
Boutique Dress your best without breaking the bank at Edmonton’s only all-men’s consignment store, with an exhaustive selection of lightly worn formal and business-casual attire.  12070 Jasper Ave.

Bloggers Armoire
A veritable treasure-trove for Instagram stylists, this hip consignment store carries the latest in trendy apparel and accessories, as well as brand-name fashions at a fraction of the usual cost. 11016 Jasper Ave. —JP

Best Liquor Store

JASPER LIQUOR MERCHANTS
It doesn’t look like much from outside, but this unassuming liquor store tucked beside a Husky might have the most bountiful booze offerings in the core. After a recent expansion, it has enough craft beer to keep any brew-head satisfied. And if beer’s not your thing, the chatty staff will guide you through their competitively priced wines and fine spirits from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m., seven days a week. 11607 Jasper Ave., 780-488-3464

Runners-up

deVine Wines and Spirits
You won’t find more knowledgeable staff than the employees in these aisles of carefully curated wines and spirits from the globe. Ask about deVine’s regular tastings. The only downside is early closing times. 10111 104 St.

City Cellars
This brightly lit, of-the-path store is massive and houses one of the core’s largest liquor selections at a variety of price points. 10505 123 St. —JP

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Best Breakfast on the Go

LOCK STOCK COFFEE’S BISCUIT SANDWICH
Its contents—gourmet cheese, meats and homemade mayo—may be a rotating special, but it’s all about that homemade biscuit. Baked from scratch daily, this flaky goodness melts in your mouth. 10534 Jasper Ave.

Runners-up

Burrow’s Breakfast Sandwich
Complete with savoury tomato jam, farm-fresh eggs, aioli, gruyere and (optional) farm bacon, this sandwich might actually make you enjoy getting lost in the pedway.  Central LRT Station

Careit’s Coffee & Pastry Combo
Add some sustenance to your morning cup of joe by adding a house-made “Careit cookie,” banana bread slice, or Portugese tart—all for just $3.  10226 104 St., 780-426-2429 —KH

Best Store to Shop for That Friend with a Kid

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Courtesy: Instagram / @shop.babyplum

BABY PLUM
An offshoot of Plum Home + Design on 124 St., this is the brainchild of mother-daughter duo Pamela Freeman and Jenna Pryor. The pair have stocked the e-commerce store (and the physical one) with the top baby brands from across Canada. Find quality clothes, toys, books and blankets—all given the slobbery stamp of approval by baby-sized judges.  12407 108 Ave.

Runners-up

Audrey’s Books
The Jasper Ave. institution boasts a children’s book selection worthy of a “please mom!” moment, or two, from little bookworms. 17002 Jasper Ave.

The Skinny in Vacancy Hall
Dress matchy-matchy with your kid before it becomes a fashion faux-pas. Shop for the super-cute and super-hip infants, toddlers, tweens and mommies in your life—online or of-the-rack—inside Mercer Warehouse’s Vacancy Hall. 10359 104 St. —NW

Best Place for Little Home Upgrades

Source: Facebook

Source: Facebook

THE PRINTS AND THE PAPER
Sandy Muldrew has created a destination graphic arts shop that’s wonderfully curated with gorgeous paper products, high-end prints, limited edition artwork, artful movie posters, illustrated books and eclectic stationary—plus framing services, because you might find something too precious to expose to the elements.  10725 124 St.

Runners-up

Alberta Craft Council
The ACC has advocated for the arts in Alberta since 1980 and there’s always something new at its gallery, shop or studio. Bring home some fine art creations made by local artisans to refine your style, whether its cutting edge and contemporary or timeless and traditional.  10186 106 St.

Hideout Local Distro
This garage is teeming with treasures, including crafty leather products, jewellery and ceramic décor from Canadian makers, as well as local records and fashion for a piece of true Edmontonia. Vacancy Hall, 10363 104 St. —KH

Best Place to Tinkle

ALBERTA HOTEL BAR + KITCHEN
Doc and Marty had the DeLorean, but for these diners the act of relieving themselves is all it takes to travel back in time. Antique marble tiles and gleaming fixtures harken to an age of glamour and opulence. But the real showstopper is reserved for the men: Standing proudly at almost five-feet tall and two-feet wide, the marble urinals are a sight to behold. 9802 Jasper Ave.

Runners-up

Cavern
With floor-to-ceiling Carrera marble and rich, dark wood accents, plus luxurious soaps and fresh-cut flowers filling them with soothing scents, these restrooms give even the chicest boutique hotels a run for their money. 10169 104 St.

Bar Clementine
The soft green walls, brass fixtures, Victorian-inspired details and classic audiobooks on the overhead speakers (think: Moby Dick) defy these restrooms’ 2016 craftsmanship.  11957 Jasper Ave. —JP

Best Place to Sweat

DON WHEATON FAMILY YMCA
Take advantage of the after-work deal. For only $30 a month, the “Y” offers express memberships, meaning you can use the health, fitness and aquatic facilities weekdays from 7:30 p.m. until 10 p.m. And, with a DECL membership, Sundays and holidays are free!  10211 102 Ave.

Runners-up

Hive Fit Co.
Perfect for the busy downtowner, this new workout hotspot offers 45-minute cycling, rowing and yoga classes in an on-trend environment you won’t want to leave.  10343 Jasper Ave.

Hotel Macdonald’s Fairmont Fitness Centre
It’s not just for guests. You too can be a member and feel like royalty in this newly renovated fitness centre featuring a saline pool, sauna, steam room, whirlpool squash, court and private sundeck.  10065 100 St. —KH


This entry was posted in 2016 Winter, Feature.


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