Culture
Mark Rendell

Restaurant Round-Up: April 20

Tasty news about Elke's Table, Coyotes Bistro, Luluz' new chef, Fatburger's opening and more

Elke’s Table soft-opens

After a year of renovation and development, the old Gallery on 47th space has been re-opened as Elke’s Table, a German/Mediterranean restaurant. A lunchtime visit from EDGE during their second week of operation found a bustling, homey little establishment with 20 seats, featuring high-energy Eurodisco pumping over the soundsystem. The arrival of a basket of warm, fresh-baked bread was a much-welcomed sight in a town where such niceties are rare (and a possible legacy of owner Elke Richter’s time at Bullocks Bistro). The current lunch menu is small, and portions were not large, but the juicy, home-style schnitzel was flavorful, while the fish and chips, veggie casserole and mixed salad also consumed were all respectable, if not spectacular, examples of Mom’s Kitchen-style cooking. We’ll hold off any real judgement until we’ve made a few more visits and tried out the dinner menu. In the meantime, we welcome Richter to an increasingly crowded and competitive restaurant scene and wish her the best of luck. Elke’s Table on Facebook. 4911-47th St. 873-3489.

Bullock’s Bistro changes hands

As has been widely reported, Old Town’s long-running fish and chips shop has changed hands after 24 years of operation by owners Sam and Renata Bullock. New owners Mark Elson and Jo-Anne Martin have no plans to change the restaurant’s formula of local meals, iconic sauces and dressings and tourist-friendly, hectic atmosphere. Bullocks on Facebook. 3534 Weaver Dr, 873-3474.

New chef at Luluz

Luluz, Yellowknife’s most aspirational market and oft-overlooked lunchtime spot, has been upping its gourmet offerings lately, courtesy of new chef Jason Kirby. Originally from Australia, and coming North via the fine dining scenes in Vancouver and Toronto, Kirby has already shaken things up after less than two months on the job. Sunday is now 'Crepe Day' at Luluz, with apple-and-raisin or vanilla-almond crepes for those with a sweet tooth, and salt-and-pepper smoked trout with dill and garlic confit crepes for those looking for savory flavours. Throughout the rest of the week, Kirby’s offerings take a more epicurean turn: smoked trout gravlax, with beet puree; confit duck with braised french lentils, and so on. Kirby says he’s keen on, “simplifying things and doing things properly,” with a focus on “light, local and sustainable cuisine.” While Luluz will likely stay focused on lunch fare, Kirby says they might try opening one night a week for a kind of “casual fine dining” experience a la Thorton’s. Luluz Market on Facebook. 480 Range Lake Rd. 873-2003.

A new plan for Kilt and Castle

Several months after a short-lived attempt to open up a fine dining establishment above the Kilt and Castle, the pub’s owner is now looking to rent out the upstairs to another restaurateur. The downstairs operation will stay open, for now. But as there’s only one kitchen in the building, and it’s upstairs, the move marks an end to the gastro side of the would-be gastropub, which has stopped ordering in new food, though owner Bob Stewart says they’re still serving food from a limited menu.

“We’re just focusing on the pub right now,” he says, noting his beer is likely the cheapest in town, with a 20oz Keith’s setting you back only $7.25. “We’re letting people bring in outside food or order in from other restaurants.”

If another restaurateur can be convinced to rent the upstairs, Stewart is hoping his customers in the bar downstairs would be able to order food from the kitchen upstairs, a novel business model to say the least. In the meantime, the pub has shortened its hours of operations, from 4:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m.  

“It’s just a cost savings. For most of the day you don’t have anyone in here and lunch wasn’t worth keeping the kitchen staff on for,” say Stewart. Though he added that despite the changes the Kilt is “still a great place to go after work.” Kilt and Castle on Facebook. 5019-49th St. 766-5458.

Fat Fox on the verge

Last week, the Fat Fox hosted a well-attended evening event for It Gets Better Yellowknife, replete with food and a temporary pop-up bar. The cafe proper, however, still isn’t open. Though co-owner Jeremy Flatt expects to be up and running “literally any day now”—he’s just waiting for his espresso machine to arrive. Flatt says people can check for updates on The Fat Fox’s facebook page. While we wait, EDGE took a sneak peak at the cafe’s stylish interior. Here’s a look: 

Coyote’s staying downtown?

With Coyote’s settling into its post-fire location on Franklin Ave, there are rumours that owner Ed But is looking to revamp the old Prestige Nightclub that once occupied the building. Nothing’s been confirmed, though But told EDGE he’s considering a “potential development of the main floor.”

On Tuesday, he posted this on his Facebook page: “Facebook poll. Rebuild Coyote's Steakhouse and Lounge Bigger and Better or invest in a Nightclub Downstairs on the Coyote's Bistro.”

Of the 119 comments on his post, the “rebuild” camp was clearly dominant, with a number of people chipping in that a patio would be a nice addition.

“Either way,” But continued in his Facebook post, “The Bistro will stay Downtown.” Coyotes Bistro, Coyotes on Facebook. 4511 Franklin Ave. 873-8880 and 873-8881

Fatburger takes shape

Local burger aficionados are facing a surfeit of choice, what with Lennyburger on the way, Twin Pine Diner serving up an all-star selection of Robin Wasicuna’s quirky tweaks, and now a quality burger chain, Fatburger, arising at Stanton Plaza. This latest addition to the buns-and-meat scene is set to open around June 1, says owner Brad Anstey.

“I just thought the community needs a more of a family-oriented place where they can come and enjoy a quality meal at a good price,” says Anstey, who also owns the Subway next door. The restaurant will be a mix of dine-in and take-away, with around 70 seats. “It’s cook to order, so everything is fresh, nothing frozen, good quality. You place your order, take a seat, and we’ll deliver it.”  

The burger joint will have liquor license and will be serving “some choices of draft beer, cocktails and margaritas.” For those inclined towards more family-friendly beverages, expect a wide variety of milkshakes—mocha, Oreo, chocolate, strawberry, banana, blue raspberry, etc.—that Anstey assures us will be the best in town. Fatburger. Stanton Plaza, 100 Borden Dr.


- with files from Matthew Mallon