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Home Story Fall in Love with Food in the NWT

A Taste of the Northwest Territories

We all love to eat, and in the Northwest Territories, great food experiences can be found just about everywhere. Wild or mild, from timelessly traditional to modern fine dining,  there are dishes that take you out of this world, or remind you of real home cooking long ago.

a feast is shared

Start your culinary tour with a stop at a community feast. Here in the Western Arctic you can try maktak (beluga), reindeer, dry fish and even muskrat, a local delicacy. Everywhere you go, bannock – a kind of tea biscuit- might be spiced with delicious local berries and baked over a wood fire.

fish is always on the menu

The Northwest Territories is famed for its fish. You can try our fresh northern fish at a unique heritage restaurant on the shore of Great Slave Lake. Out fishing? Savour a “shorelunch” – Northern Pike, Pickerel, or Grayling fresh from the lake and cooked over a campfire by your guide. Arctic Char is a specialty of the northern coast. Lake Trout from Great Bear and Great Slave Lakes is often on the menu.

Food treats at local markets

If you thought local vegetables are out of the question in the Northwest Territories, think again. Greenhouses and small farms are springing up in almost every community. Fresh vegetables, home baked breads and even home grown potatoes are on offer, in season, at local markets.

welcome to the whitefish capital

At Hay River, try fish fresh from the lake at the summertime Fisherman’s wharf. In town, pick up a dozen or more fresh eggs grown locally and then pick your own berries on a small farm nestled in a little valley by the Hay River. At a local restaurant, try Whitefish, Ling Cod or Pickerel served homestyle.

Adding local flavours

On the land, your meal of muskox or moose steak might be cooked to order on a wood stove the traditional way, and served in a canvas tent. Chefs in several communities are creating delicious meals with wild harvested ingredients. Adventurous eaters can sample a roast flavoured with spruce buds, or with locally sourced morels.

from our tradition to yours

From traditional northern foods, flavoured with wild berries or birch syrup, to the traditions of southern Asia, Europe and north Africa, our restaurants and street food cater to all tastes. Custom burgers and wraps, unique teas, and fresh roasted coffee are widely available. And a pint or two from the NWT’s favorite brewery will ensure a pleasant evening.

The Northwest Territories is made spectacular by the thriving cultures, deep histories, and rich traditions of the people who call it home. Don’t miss your opportunity to experience the authentic art and culture of the NWT on your visit through the North.

Every community across the NWT has its own timeless history of storytelling through art. Read more to learn what makes each practice unique and where you can find authentic Indigenous art from artists across the territory.