Benny's Bistro has been a hidden gem in Ottawa's Byward Market for years. It's a restaurant I recommend to visitors (and many unknowing locals) that want to have REAL food - not the mainly disappointing fare to be found in the Market these days.
Benny is the name of the original owners' daschund, who was known to show up in the bakery from time to time. Tucked inside The French Baker (119 Murray Street), you follow a long corridor into a cozy room with a black and white checkerboard floor, filled with colourful walls and photos - a perfect spot for an overcast or chilly day.
Besides the wonderful pastries that you can order from the bakery up front, Benny's has a consistently strong seasonal brunch/lunch menu that always leaves me reading and rereading the list of options (never mind the specials!), agonizing on having to select one lovely meal over another. Chef Scott Adams is a master at complex combinations of flavours that burst onto your taste buds - it's difficult not to savour each mouthful as you sadly get nearer to that last bite... thank goodness for the never ending bread to soak up every last drop!
Winter menu 2013
I also love the gravlax and pickerel dishes on this winter's menu - something for everyone! Great wine list, no nonsense service, fantastic food - what more could you ask for?!?!