I love character houses, locally made from scratch food, a room with a view and Mother Nature. I found the perfect combination in Reader’s Garden Cafe. The restaurant is located in the Reader Rock Garden, which is worth a visit on its own. We took some time to explore the garden before dinner. With the help of my friends, we managed to identify most of the veggies. They grew: purple kohlrabi, swiss chard, parsley, beets, tomatoes, rhubarb and kale. Also a few strawberries here and there. They also grow the flowers they serve in their dishes.
The grounds are popular with weddings; we saw a photo shoot while we were there. I love the narrow stone steps and footpaths. Certainly a place to linger for an afternoon of reading or quiet contemplation. We were seated in the front room which had spectacular views of downtown, the Saddledome, and the Stampede.
They’re only open seasonally from about mid-April to October.
The service was a bit slow, but attentive. They did mention that they have a small kitchen. Almost everything is made from scratch or grown on the property. The yogurt and grainy mustard that came with the charcuterie board was made in house. I also liked the pickled watermelon rind and homemade soda bread that came with the platter. All the flowers and some of the veggies are from their gardens. They were really good in accommodating my birthday cake. Which was a mango mousse cake from Yamato decorated with fresh fruit. The server had a sense of humor to go with the ones at our table.
This is a gem of a cafe and hopefully I will be back again before the season is over.