Halifax, Nova Scotia is a maritime city with a lot going for it – breath-taking scenery, a lively cultural scene, and fresh food that’s always made with love. There’s something for everyone in Nova Scotia’s capital city, and since Haligonians are known for being some of the friendliest people on earth, tourists can count on being well taken care of.
Visitors to this charming city will also be well fed as this is one of the country’s best cities for high-quality seafood as well as an amazing mix of food businesses bringing a new twist to Halifax’s ever-growing restaurant industry.
Below you’ll find a list of Black-owned restaurants and local Halifax favourites who are combining East Coast hospitality with local produce and innovative techniques. Read on and take notes for your next trip!
Evan’s Fresh Seafoods – 2 Ochterloney St.
Just steps away from the Alderney ferry terminal in Dartmouth is a hidden gem doing magical things with locally caught fish. Evan’s Fresh Seafoods is known for classic seafood dishes using fresh fish caught off the coast of Nova Scotia.
The light, crispy batter of their fish and chips and their generously filled lobster rolls have helped this fish joint earn a stellar reputation among locals and tourists alike. Most of their menu items are gluten-free, and they also have fresh raw fish for sale on site. Best of all? You can enjoy all they have to offer in their outdoor seating area overlooking the harbour. Seafood by the sea – could it get any better than that?
R&B Kitchen – 760A Main St.
R&B Kitchen is a Black-owned, family-owned business in Dartmouth that serves up the very best of Nova Scotian soul food with a Caribbean twist. The restaurant is a small take-out spot that takes orders and promotes its menu through Instagram where the chefs switch things up and offer a new menu every week.
This is the spot for a delicious take on comfort food like creamy rasta pasta served with jerk chicken and fried chicken with cornbread. All of their options pack a flavour punch and are as delicious as they look on the ‘gram, but their oxtail, which is available every Friday, is a dish their regular customers can’t get enough of.
Mary’s African Cuisine – 1701 Barrington St.
In the heart of downtown Halifax, Mary’s African Cuisine serves Haligonians delicious dishes from across the African continent in a warm and inviting atmosphere. Owner and Chef Mary Nkrumah, who is originally from Ghana, comes from a long line of cooks and is continuing her time-honoured family tradition of sharing food through her restaurant.
If you’re looking for traditional West African fare in the city, you won’t be disappointed by this Black-owned spot. Mary’s lunch/dinner menu lists wonderful classics like chicken yassa and groundnut soup with rice balls alongside hearty all-day breakfast options like eggs, bacon and toast as well as felafel omelettes. Chef Mary also has a fabulous selection of house-made juices – her sobolo — a traditional Ghanaian juice made with hibiscus and pineapple — is second to none!
Sea Smoke – 1477 Lower Water St.
A food trip to Halifax should feature seafood, and Sea Smoke has some of the best that can be found on the waterfront. Sea Smoke delivers a combination of local seafood favourites and Asian fusion with an elevated ambiance to match. Their staff are attentive and whether you choose to dine inside or outside on their beautiful patio your meal will be accompanied by a stunning view of the harbour.
This chic restaurant on Bishop’s Landing offers a raw bar with a variety of sushi, sashimi, and locally sourced oysters, all of which are fresh and delicious. Other menu items feature a great mix of creative Asian-inspired dishes. Those who aren’t too fond of seafood can also indulge in Sea Smoke’s Japanese-inspired cuisine including chicken yakitori and jasmine-smoked ribs.
Field Guide – 2076 Gottingen St.
In the city’s North end is a local favourite that’s been promoting Nova Scotia through food since 2013. As the name suggests, Field Guide aims to give its guests a guide to all the incredible ingredients that Nova Scotia has to offer. Most of their ingredients are sourced within the province, with an emphasis on supporting local farmers to keep their offerings sustainable. Best of all, the menu changes often, showcasing seasonal ingredients as they become available, like the radish & cucumber salad in this article’s feature image.
Simply put, this co-Black-owned restaurant is a gem thanks to its cozy high-end feel, relaxed vibe, and top-notch service makes it very popular with the locals. It’s an excellent spot for an evening get-together with friends.
To experience Halifax cuisine is to experience a taste of the Maritimes, with a range of flavours to please every palate. This world-class city has a small-town feel but so much to offer, and the opportunities are endless for visiting foodies. Whether you stay for weeks or a weekend, there’s always a seat at the table for you in Canada’s ocean playground.