Five Warming Dishes to Dispel The Winter Woes

The Calypso Oxtail Stew from The Reef. Photo by Ellie Shortt

The weather outside has truly been frightful. While December in Victoria was rather mild, the New Year has brought an unexpected snowfall and some sub zero temperatures that many Islanders aren’t accustomed to. And although the white stuff seems to have subsided (for now), many might still feel a chill in their bones that just won’t go away. Piling on layers of sweaters, toques and scarves may help for a bit, but here at EAT Magazine we feel the ultimate cure comes from within. These are our suggestions for delicious and nutritious meals that warm from the belly out…


The Reef: Calypso Oxtail Stew


This hearty meal is almost big enough for two with a generous serving of tender bone-in beef, soft carrots and potatoes on a delicious blend of fragrant rice, beans and peas. And if the stew isn’t enough to warm you up, The Reef’s Caribbean beats, bright decor and cheery staff will certainly take you to a sunnier place.


533 Yates St Victoria, BC (250) 388-5375 Website


The Irish Times: Original Irish Stew


A combination of braised lamb, Yukon gold potatoes, onions and carrots in a rich demi with crispy rosemary dumplings, The Irish Times’ Original Irish Stew is one of many items this well-loved pub offers that exemplifies “comfort food”. Bonus: comfort comes cheap – the dish is only $9.99 on Tuesdays between 11am and 2pm. For another stick-to-your-ribs option, try their Shepherd’s Pie made from ground lamb and beef, sweet peas, carrots, onion gravy and whipped Yukon gold potatoes.


1200 Government St Victoria, BC (250) 383-7775 Website


Bon Rouge: Shepherd’s Pie


Another Victoria staple that offers shepherd’s pie is French bistro Bon Rouge, where you can enjoy this warming dish for $25 as part of a 3 course prix-fixe menu on Tuesdays before 4pm. Or if you’re looking for an equally satisfying option, try their Bistro Onion Soup, which is available all day, any day.


611 Courtney St Victoria, BC (250) 220-8008 Website


Souped Up: Chili Con Carne


Soup is definitely a staple when trying to warm from within, but sometimes we need that heated hit on the go. For a speedy serving of soup check out Souped Up, located in St. Andrew’s Square. Each day they offer a different selection of soups, chilis and stews for a variety of tastes and dietary needs. We suggest their favourite, Chili con Carne, with minced beef, onions, garlic, corn, celery, tomatoes, carrots, kidney beans, garbanzo beans, jalapeno peppers, cilantro, spices and seasonings.


736 View St Victoria, BC (250) 380-0856 Website


J and J’s Wonton Noodle House: Hot and Sour Soup


For something that will really get you sweating, try a bowl of J and J’s Hot and Sour Soup for just $6.50. Not only will the kick give you an instantaneous hot flash, but the abundance of vegetables will provide necessary nutrients during this rather dull time of year.


1012 Fort St Victoria, BC (250) 383-0680 Website







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