There is not much to report regarding businesses opening or closing, so here’s another roundup post highlighting some of the places that make our neighbourhood so great.
For this round up, I want to focus on independent businesses that provide excellent lunch options. Since I wrote about coffee shops—including Oat Couture, Life of Pie, and Stella Luna—in an earlier BB, I will not include these here, even though many have excellent lunch options. I also won’t include the pubs that are open for lunch. I will save pubs for a future BB roundup. Lastly, I will also not include places that have more than one location in Ottawa − like Subway, DQ, Burrito Shack, etc. − in an effort to keep the length of this months BB in check.
So, let’s move up along Bank Street and down Sunnyside and review one’s lunch options.
Namaste India - 1300 Bank St.
Namaste India opened shortly after we arrived in Ottawa, and we continue to occasionally order food from them. We have only had lunch here once and that was quite some time ago. But when we ordered take out a few weeks ago, we were happy to see that they still provide decent Indian food for good value. All in all a very solid option to enjoy a slightly more elaborate lunch.
Cedars Shawarma - 1255 Bank St.
Cedars’ shawarma and falafel counter is always an excellent option at lunch time. You really can’t get much better value for money than a small shawarma or falafel sandwich. Ingredients are fresh and there are lots of options to dress your sandwich. And if you feel a bit more hungry you can always upgrade to a large sandwich and/or order some of the delicious sides.
Roost & Grills - 1202 Bank St.
When I wrote about the renovation at Roost & Grills last month, I had to admit that I hadn’t been able to try their food yet. And I also have to admit that part of the reason that I hadn’t was that I had falsely assumed that they were basically a pizza/fast food joint like their predecessors. But after last month’s BB, I received an email from Chris mentioning how much he and his wife Frida enjoy the food at R&G. So, last week my wife and I finally made it out to R&G for lunch. We ordered two types of chicken wings, a ¼ grilled chicken with lemon garlic potatoes, and a salad. And I am very glad we finally went, as the food was excellent. And as Chris had also pointed out in his email, service is really friendly and you can tell the owners take great pride in what they do and the food they serve. The menu is very interesting and diverse, with several grilled foods options, chicken wings, as well as several really interesting looking pizza options, including a pizza that uses butter chicken sauce as its base, and a vindaloo pizza. Based on the experience we had, we will definitely be back for lunch and/or order take-out (they offer free delivery for orders over $15).
Table Sodam - 1200 Bank St.
Since they have opened a few month ago, I have been to Table Sodam a few times for lunch now. And I have loved it every time. The food is absolutely delicious, and the presentation is amazing. You don’t just get your main choice of protein with some rice, you get a large tray full of little side dishes, including a soup and kimchi. Table Sodam is perhaps a little bit of an outlier in this list of lunch places, in that all the others have lunch options available that are under or around the $10 mark. Table Sodam’s lunch menu is more in the $15+ range.
Vietnamese Kitchen - 1098 Bank St.
Vietnamese Kitchen has been a staple in Old Ottawa South for some time and offers great comfort food at a great price. The menu is huge and has a large selection of Vietnamese and Chinese dishes. What’s great at lunch time is that there are always two lunch specials that make for even better value.
Mr. Poutine (AKA “the Chip Wagon”) - 1075A Bank St.
I am including Mr. Poutine here as they definitely offer lunch, and don’t fall under any exclusions mentioned above. Mr. Poutine is somewhat unique of course, in that on days that the weather doesn’t cooperate, there’s nowhere to eat your lunch. I also have to admit that poutine is not often my go-to option for lunch and I usually reserve it for late night snacking. That all said, Mr. Poutine serves up a decent poutine and if you’re in the mood, definitely a good option.
Siam Kitchen - 1050 Bank St.
Another institution in OOS, and deservedly so. Siam Kitchen serves delicious Thai food and you really can’t go wrong with any of their dishes (the Tamarind Beef is one of our absolute favourites, as are some of the Thai curries). Perhaps also not the most economical lunch option, but definitely worth the occasional treat.
Chez Ahn - 435 Sunnyside Ave.
I have written about Chez Ahn several times here before and they continue to be a great lunch option. The food is always delicious and great value for money. In addition to some of the familiar items like Pho and Bahn Mi, Chez Ahn has also been adding some new and temporary dishes, many of them vegan.
Originally published in the February 2019 OSCAR.
Erik van der Torre has lived in Old Ottawa South with his wife and three sons for over 9 years. He is a member of Hopewell Avenue PS’ Parent Council and OSCA’s Traffic & Safety Committee.