For my money, the best standard regular everyday meal in Charlottetown — call it “comfort food” if you like — is the Boca Burger with vegetarian rice at Cedar’s. Cedar’s manages to achieve what few other restaurants do: they make good vegetable sides. The “vegetarian rice” is, in fact, plain rice with a vegetable side, the vegetables being a tasty melange of brocolli, carrots, and turnip. And they’re not mushy overboiled vegetables: they’re perfectly cooked, and hot. Excellent.
If you’re looking for soup to take the edge off a cold day, though, you cannot go wrong with the homemade chicken and rice soup at the Town and Country. Made famous by Campbell Webster, this soup is amazing, and will knock the wind back into your sails.
Up the road, at the corner of Queen and Chestnut, is the new Cool Dog Deli (thanks to A. for the pointer). This is a Cindy Burton project, and is, as the cashier told me when I asked, “just a simple little grocery store.” They sell fresh vegetables (organic garlic included), Karin La Ronde meals and sides, fresh bread, and various sundries. They also appear to sell some sort of homebrew dog biscuit. It’s brightly painted inside, and looks to be likely to develop into a solid almost-downtown food destination. They need to fill up the shelves a little more, get a better beverage selection, and finish off the decorating, but I’m hopeful.
There are a couple of new places to eat in town that I haven’t explored yet. Apparently there’s some sort of new waffle/pancake place at 92 Trans-Canada Highway, which I think is the plaze where Tweel’s decamped to out by Robin’s Donuts. And the space formerly occupied by the Anne of Green Gables Tea Room, and then by Manhattan’s, on Queen St. near Richmond, looks to be occupied by a new place. Details on either from readers with experience are welcome.
One more, so far uncorroborated, food note from a correspondent: “The Root Cellar has completely given up and will no longer sell food. They are just going to sell pills. I’ll miss the spices and the cheese.” Can anyone confirm that?
I’m corroborating my own note — we got a flyer saying that because of competition from Bulk Barn and the natural foods sections in the grocery stores, they couldn’t compete on the food front. It seems to me that they never really tried We continued to try to shop faithfully until they almost gave up stocking food. Plus all the pills gave it a sterile, unfriendly and most un-foodlike feel. I hope Cool Dog starts selling spices and cheese.
I think you’ll find that the veggie rice doesn’t include the side veg you describe — they’re part of the Boca Burger platter. If you get veg rice with your falafel say, it’s just the rice. I shouldn’t be writing this on an empty stomach.