I haven’t been to Fort Edmonton Park since I was just a teenager, which is something that I plan on rectifying this year once the weather gets a little nicer. Taking a step back in time and providing a living history experience is Fort Edmonton Park’s specialty—and nothing beats stopping in at The Midway for a selection of old fashioned sweets and treats.
I was lucky enough to be invited to try winter brunch at the Park recently, a weekly event held every Sunday in Johnson’s Café within Hotel Selkirk. Guests are required to pre-purchase tickets and reserve a place at each Sunday sitting, at which the hotel lays out the full gamut of delicious brunch offerings, from domestic and imported cheeses, to a full-service omelette station, regular brunch items like bacon and eggs, and a pork shoulder carving station complete with mustard, horseradish, and apple gravy sides (although I believe the carving station rotates its meat, since Linda had roast beef when she visited).
The charm and rustic interior of the café adds a unique touch to the brunch experience, with solid wooden tables and the 1920s style of Hotel Selkirk. The quiet and classic environment of Fort Edmonton Park is a nice change from the bustle of our city.
I was pleasantly impressed with the food, particularly the carvery pork shoulder. Among my favourites were the Guinness-braised beef ribs (not entirely gluten free but I couldn’t help myself), the selection of cheeses, and a salmon fillet in a creamy sauce. There were so many delicious things to choose from that I filled my plate the first time around, leaving no room for a custom omelette—on my plate or in my stomach. The next time I visit, I plan on making a beeline to the omelette station at once.
The dessert options were also endless. Fruit, homemade caramel fudge, cakes, mousse—everything looked amazing, with full bowls surrounding the hotel’s main dessert centrepiece: the chocolate fountain. What’s the perfect way to finish off a decadently indulgent brunch? Why, with freshly-made chocolate covered strawberries, of course. Of the dessert offerings, I thoroughly enjoyed the chocolate mousse and the orange rosemary and pernod shooter (I don’t usually like anise, but this was refreshing).
While some brunch buffets really fail to push the boundaries of imagination in their selection, Hotel Selkirk does quite the opposite, offering a little gourmet something for everyone. Chefs were constantly coming out from the kitchen with new platters to replace dishes that were only half empty. The attentiveness to items like the scrambled eggs and the fruit was impressive—everything was kept fresh and well-stocked, never left out long enough to grow even slightly stale.
The price is reasonable for an all-you-can-eat brunch buffet, as well. At $32.95 per person (adults), you get access to a delicious menu within a spacious and comfortable dining area—that’s significantly less costly than brunch at La Ronde, with more room and a fresh, modern selection of food. If you have a special occasion coming up or just fancy an outstanding Sunday brunch, then Hotel Selkirk is the place to be!
Make a Sunday brunch reservation here.
Johnson’s Café, Hotel Selkirk
Fort Edmonton Park
(780) 496-7227 ext. 1