"Where do you get your Asian food fix in Ottawa?" is one of the most-asked questions from my Vancouver friends. Sometimes they say it with a slight whisper, as if they're afraid of the answer for me. Granted, back home in Vancouver, I'm spoilt for choice whether its top-notch sushi or authentic Szechuan spicy chicken. It's true that O-town just doesn't measure up when compared to Vancouver (few cities do), but that doesn't mean there aren't some pretty great restaurants.
- Alirang Restaurant
Address: 134 Nelson St, Ottawa
If you've ever walked by this little house across from the Loblaws on Rideau street, you might've smelled the delicious aroma or seen a line of people patiently waiting to get into the door. This is arguably one of the best spots in town to get authentic Korean dishes. I recommend trying the bolgogi and the dolsot bibimbap, and getting the seafood pancake to share.
- Khao Thai
Address: 103 Murray St, Ottawa
Restaurants in Byward Market tend to be on the expensive side, but Khao Thai is an exception. Reasonably-priced with a nice interior design, this thai restaurant makes for a great date night. Their pad thai is pretty good but I recommend the massaman nua, a red curry beef with potatos that is mouth-wateringly delicious. Also, make sure to order the thai ice tea. You'll like it, I promise.
- My Sweet Tea Lounge
Cuisine: bubble tea
Address: 824 Somerset St W, Ottawa
Say goodbye to subpar bubble tea and hello to crazy variations. Whether it's an original milk tea with pearls or a massive oreo slush, My Sweet Tea has it all. The lounge also has wifi, which makes for some good studying times.
- Ginza Ramen
Address:832 Somerset St W, Ottawa & 280 Elgin St, Ottawa
Ginza Ramen has two locations in Ottawa and once you taste their ramen, you'll know why. I love the Chinatown location best because it's so cozily decorated. Try their chicken gyoza and their chicken karaage as well, and if they have it, complete your meal with a single ice cream mochi.
- Oriental Chu Shing Restaurant
Cuisine: Cantonese Chinese
Address: 691 Somerset St W, Ottawa
I wasn't too impressed by the dimsum offering but the items on the dinner menu tasted close to home. I find Chu Shing hilarious in its cultural mixing. While the walls are fitted with LCD screens streaming sports (not many traditional Chinese restaurants do this), the polite servers asked Bolu, my clearly non-Asian friend, if she would like a fork -- three times before we even got the food. Bolu's a pro with chopsticks by the way.
Now that I've shared my list, what are some of your favourite Asian restaurants in O-town? Let me know in the comments below and well, I'll go eat there. :P
Till next time,