The ballots are in, and three Ottawa restaurants plus two hotels win CAA/AAA’s Four Diamond Awards.
The annual awards are sought by the most renowned fine dining restaurants and upscale hotels across Canada, the United States, Mexico and the Caribbean. CAA/AAA awards them based upon service, exceptional experience, creativity and cleanliness.
Anonymous inspectors visit the locations to evaluate using a comprehensive rating system guided by member priorities.
“The restaurants and hotels named to the 2022 Four Diamond Awards are amongst the most distinctive in North America and truly showcase Ottawa as an international city,” said Jeff Walker, President and CEO of CAA North & East Ontario.
“The incredible standards that must be met to earn these awards is an outstanding achievement that deserves our support and recognition, especially after the past few years. We are proud to recognize these establishments as amongst the best of the best in North America,” he added.
One of the winners is Atelier at 540 Rochester Street. The inspector states “prepare for a multi-course culinary journey through a wonderland of edible creations masterminded by this eatery.”
But don’t look for a sign; they add, “don’t be alarmed by lack of signage on the building. It’s all part of the ambience. Inside, your every need will be catered to and you will enjoy surprise dishes beyond your wildest dreams. A wine pairing is optional. Plan for around four hours of dining time.”
Beckta Dining & Wine Bar
Additionally, the inspector notes that Ottawa’s Beckta Dining & Wine Bar at 150 Elgin Street is “set in a grand, historic building in the heart of downtown, this restaurant welcomes visitors into its warm interior for a refined, chic dining experience. The decor is reminiscent of a former time mixed with touches of modern elegance. Guests to the formal dining room are invited to enjoy the à la carte menu or five-course tasting menu with optional wine pairing for dinner.”
“Dishes are handsomely plated and prepared with fine ingredients. Guests looking for a more casual yet still refined experience are welcomed into the wine bar,” they add.
Another Ottawa restaurant to win is e18hteen at 18 York Street. The inspector praises the 18th-century heritage building for having “exposed gray stone walls, flowing draperies and contemporary art creates an inviting atmosphere in which to dine. The service staff is both astute and polished in the table service.”
“Remember, the menu changes with the season as the chef wants to present the freshest and highest-quality ingredients. I recommend the tasting menu, which will enable you to experience a larger variety of the food the chef so capably prepares.”
Fairmont Chateau Laurier
Two notable Ottawa hotels also gained Four Diamond status in 2022. The first is Fairmont Chateau Laurier at 1 Rideau Street. It is described by the inspector as a “grand, circa 1912 hotel features a permanent photography exhibit in the lobby.”
“The guest rooms vary in size, but all feature elegant beds and gorgeous headboards with convenient reading lights. In a distinctive location immediately beside the locks of the Rideau Canal, the landmark hotel exudes Canadian historical ambience. The lobby and other common areas display Old World detail and charm.”
Hotel Le Germain
The final winner is the Hotel Le Germain at 30 Daly Avenue. The inspector says it is a “new addition to the downtown area has a ‘light and shadows’ theme to the decor. Guest rooms are stylish and offer outstanding bedding. Heated bathroom floors will keep your toes warm in winter.”