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Explore the Best Women-Led Restaurants in Canada for 2019

A photo of Red logo
by The OpenTable Team
Updated February 03, 2023

If you follow Canada's culinary scene, you're probably familiar with Chef Alida Solomon, Toronto restaurateur Jen Agg, and television star Ivana Raca. There are many more women in Canada's restaurant scene who are true culinary stars, and their fierce spirit and dedication to hospitality deserve recognition. In honor of International Women’s Day, OpenTable is celebrating the talented women on the front lines of the food scene. From Montreal to Toronto to Calgary, Canada's women deserve to take center stage. Diners are welcome to book a seat and experience for themselves why these female chefs, owners, and operators are rocking Canadian kitchens.

A photo of Tutti Matti restaurant
4.8
4.8 (1233)
CAN$51 and over
Italian
Entertainment District

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

About the restaurant
Traditional Tuscan cuisine is at the heart of Adelaide Street's Tutti Matti, where Chef Alida Solomon has been at the helm for over 17 years. Early in her career, Chef Solomon studied in Italy as a young apprentice who intended to only stay for six months, but instead remained for six and a half years. The Tuscan approach to food — local, seasonal, and screamingly fresh — was the inspiration for Tutti Matti's menu. House-made pastas and breads, and proteins like wild boar and rabbit are utilized when in season. Chef Solomon's approach to food at Tutti Matti is the same as what she witnessed in Tuscany: eat fresh, eat seasonally, and eat local not because it's trendy, but because that's what tastes best.
Top review
AldoCvip
Dined 5 days ago
The service, wine and food brings me back to Tuscany.
A photo of Grey Gardens restaurant
4.9
4.9 (1086)
CAN$51 and over
Contemporary American
Chinatown / Kensington Market

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

About the restaurant
Eclectic and funky Kensington Market is home to a variety of specialty grocery stores and vintage clothing shops all with an urban edge. Toronto restaurateur Jen Agg, whose other ventures notably include the Black Hoof, Cocktail Bar, and Rhum Corner, opened Grey Gardens in Kensington in 2017 after noticing a void in the city's dining scene: a wine bar with outstanding food. Agg carefully chose the interior decor to have stark contrasts between vintage and modern, and comfort and elegance, much like the dichotomy of the neighborhood itself. She has also entered the literary world with her novel, I Hear She's a Real Bitch, which tackles misogyny and sexism in the restaurant world.
Top review
ErinTvip
Dined 2 days ago
What a lovely night out! Grey Gardens was the best high end dining experience we've had in a year, at least. Excellent food, with several standout dishes -- I'm thinking here of the spicy beef tartare, green tomato salad, agnolloti and a delicious, nostalgic parfait dessert -- and the service was warm and attentive. Given the reputation for hip scenester clientele and a loud 70s soundtrack of Isley Brothers tunes, we expected to be a somewhat unusual or unwelcome presence -- an 18th pre-birthday party with two teenagers and a tween, and one of the adults a non-drinker. But they brought out a quiet celebratory dessert for the birthday girl, the mocktails were great and the lone drinker enjoyed her glass of wine very much. Bravo!
A photo of Graziella Restaurant restaurant
4.7
4.7 (1169)
CAN$51 and over
Italian
Old Montreal

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

About the restaurant
Chef Graziella Battista of eponymous restaurant Graziella credits her mother as the inspiration behind her restaurant. She recalls seeing her mother feed large groups of people, and the sense of gratitude and satisfaction of the people on the receiving end of her meals. The open kitchen at Graziella allows Chef Battista to experience the same view of her patrons as they enjoy what she's created. Dishes such as grilled octopus and squid ink brioche, lemon-basil ricotta gnocchi, and braised milk-fed veal shank highlight the chef's love of classic Italian cuisine while also showing a deft hand in the kitchen.
Top review
ALFONSOvip
Dined 5 days ago
Best pasta in Montreal ! This where the italians go!
A photo of Helena restaurant
4.7
4.7 (1723)
CAN$31 to CAN$50
Portuguese
Old Montreal

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

About the restaurant
Montreal's Old Neighborhood houses Helena, a love letter to the cuisine of Portugal. Chef and owner Helena Loureiro pays homage to her Portuguese upbringing with the restaurant that bears her name. A bright celebration of wines, small plates, meats, soups, and salads, Helena invites guests to share plates, conversation, and laughs. This aligns with Chef Helena's philosophy of food bringing people together in a warm environment. Priding herself on fresh ingredients, Chef Helena features daily catches from Portugal, as well as local meats such as a grilled Quebec rack of lamb.
Top review
neijix
Dined 3 days ago
The food and service was outstanding..... portions are smaller than expected
A photo of Île Flottante restaurant
4.5
4.5 (1888)
CAN$51 and over
International
Mile End

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

About the restaurant
The remodeled Ille Flottante, formerly Les Deux Singes de Montarvie, is one of the most prestigious and highly regarded restaurants in Montreal. This is thanks to chef and owner Nada Abou Younes' desire to put her own finishing touches on both the decor and the menu of the restaurant that she took over. The result? Ille Flottante, a restaurant with a three-, five-, or seven-course tasting menu complete with an expert wine pairing. The restaurant represents a dream come true for Chef Younes, whose strict father discouraged her foray into a professional kitchen. Young Younes began cooking at Les Deux, and when the opportunity arose, she was able to purchase the restaurant and change its name — with the help of her father, now her biggest supporter.
Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined 3 days ago
Cheap chairs ruined the experience. All I wanted is the evening to end.
A photo of CHARCUT restaurant
4.4
4.4 (4116)
CAN$30 and under
Contemporary Canadian
Downtown

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

About the restaurant
Chef and owner of Charcut, Connie DeSousa, was a contestant on Season One of Top Chef Canada, as well as Top Chef All-Stars. Her dedication to the precision and artistry of dance at a young age follows her in the kitchen, where her butchery skills are at the core of Charcut's meat-centric menu. Dubbed "the primal ballerina," Chef DeSousa was able to work under Alice Waters at Berkeley's Chez Panisse, which also influenced her style of cuisine. On the menu at Charcut, diners will find house-made sausages, poultry, and beef roasted in the restaurant's custom-built rotisserie, and a handcrafted charcuterie eating bar.
Top review
debg
Dined 4 days ago
Wonderful food and great service but should have more come with the mains for these prices!
A photo of Ten Foot Henry restaurant
4.8
4.8 (5717)
CAN$31 to CAN$50
Contemporary Canadian
Calgary

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

About the restaurant
One of Calgary's most popular casual eateries, Ten Foot Henry was launched by co-owners Aja Lapointe and Stephen Smee. A true neighborhood restaurant that is open all day, Lapointe wanted to create a space that was vegetable-heavy in a city that's surrounded by cattle country. The balance that was created by Lapoint and her chef-husband Smee is a menu that has dishes that are not only healthy, but also leave diners coming back for more. Chargrilled carrots with salsa verde and jerk spice cauliflower are a few of the options that Lapointe serves to Calgary guests to balance out the meat-centered offerings found across the city.
Top review
OpenTable Diner
Dined 2 days ago
Drink recommendations were great. Food was delicious. And all of the staff were pleasant and informative.
A photo of Yuwa Japanese Cuisine (fka Zest Restaurant) restaurant
4.8
4.8 (1192)
CAN$51 and over
Japanese
Kitsilano

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

About the restaurant
~ STORY OF YUWA JAPANESE CUISINE ~

Chef Masahiro Omori is the Executive Chef / Co-owner of Yuwa Japanese Cuisine who was born and raised in Chiba, Japan. His grandmother "YUWA" passionately owned a fish market in Chiba, Japan for over 50 years. Yuwa's dedication to her craft deeply touched Chef Omori and he lovingly brings her spirit forward with his professional experience at a well-known long-established Kaiseki restaurant in Tokyo, Japan.

Chef Masahiro Omori brings specialized regional dishes from across Japan taking advantage of the highest quality, freshest local BC ingredients. These can all be paired with our specialized selection of wines and sake.

Top review
TacomaLocalvip
Dined 1 day ago
Lovely and elegant dinner choosing a la carte items mostly from the specials and tapas. Highlights included gomae made with kale, sesame and nuts; the chef's sashimi selection; seasonal tempura with matcha salt; and Shima Abi Namero. Attentive service was helpful, friendly and not uptight. Such a wonderful evening!
A photo of Deane House restaurant
4.7
4.7 (1749)
CAN$31 to CAN$50
Canadian
Inglewood

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

About the restaurant
A collection of beautifully curated rooms, each with its own unique character, set the stage for a Canadian culinary journey at Deane House. In the dining room, library, bar and gardens, we guide guests on a seasonal, regional exploration. Enjoy dinner and weekend brunch in Inglewood, 5 minutes from Calgary's city centre.
Top review
GLCSIG
Dined 1 day ago
Food was amazing the decor is stunning drinks were great service was attentive but not overbearing . Highly recommend.
A photo of River Café restaurant
4.7
4.7 (4438)
CAN$31 to CAN$50
Canadian
Calgary

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

About the restaurant
An extraordinary dining experience is to embark on a journey. We have created a beautiful place in an extraordinary setting and have tended to the details that make you feel at home: staff who care, chefs who are passionate about quality and the regional seasonal ingredients that bring to your palate a taste of place.

Getting to River Cafe is just a walk in the park.

Access River Café on Prince's Island Park from:
1. North side crossing the Bow River and Memorial Drive at the Calgary Curling Club.
2. South East end of the island at the 2nd street SW bridge, directly East of Eau Claire Market.
3. South West end of the island at 6th Street SW and Eau Claire Way near the Peace Bridge.

Eau Claire Plaza is currently closed for construction.
Parking is available on the street in the Eau Claire area, underground at Eau Claire Market or North of Memorial Drive.

Thank you for choosing to dine with us.

Top review
HughE
Dined 3 days ago
Just brilliant. We had the a la carte. Recommend ribeye or bison. But really, it’s all good.
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