Arguably the best part of any road trip is discovering small-town, under-the-radar eateries to stop at along the way. We asked our AMA Contracted Roadside Assistance Operators, the kings of Alberta highways, to tell us the best restaurants to fuel hungry travellers.
BEACH CORNER RESTAURANT, BEACH CORNER
You’ll never fail your kids by stopping for a hot-dog stop at Beach Corner Restaurant, located about 10 kilometres west of Stony Plain. For just a few bucks, you’ll get a hot dog or smokie grilled on the patio barbecue. The buns are soft and the franks are huge, which means every bite has the proper sausage-to-bun ratio. Area residents have long been heading to Beach Corner Restaurant for hamburgers, but other standout items include back ribs and chicken fettuccine served with a house-made sauce.
Recommended by Kelly Cherewka, APL Towing
CROOKED CREEK GENERAL STORE, CROOKED CREEK
Small-town general stores are a road-trippers best friend: they’re there when you need milk, bacon, coffee, toilet paper, hardware supplies and even fishing bait. But don’t underestimate them as a foodie destination. Stop in at Crooked Creek General Store, east of Grande Prairie on Highway 43, for melt-in-your-mouth doughnuts. Plain glazed is the bestseller, but cinnamon sugar is everything you look for in a doughnut (when you’re not counting calories). The owners bake about 20 dozen every morning, and when they’re gone, they’re gone. Get there early, especially on Friday mornings when the lineup stretches out door.
Recommended by Don Getschel, Oil Country Towing
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COULEE BREW CO., LETHBRIDGE
If you’ve visited a brewery in Alberta recently, you probably found yourself in an industrial part of town. Breweries, sandwich shops and axe-throwing business—industrial parks are full of ’em. In Lethbridge, if you’re hankering for a cold brew and a decent meal that won’t let you down, head to Coulee Brew Co., located just across from WT Business Park. Start with tuna poke tacos, pork cracklins or butter bean hummus before moving on to heavier fare. Or try a burger like you’ve never known before: we’re talking Alberta ground chuck smothered in bacon jam, beer reduction and Saskatoon berry BBQ sauce.
Recommended by Jay Petri, TNT Towing
SKINNY’S SMOKE HOUSE, MEDICINE HAT
When the TransCanada Highway runs through a city, you can bet there are plenty of great food options. Pitmasters Todd Lindsay and Jeff Brewster smoke the meat at Skinny’s Smoke House all day long and you can taste the results when you order their enormous BBQ platters. Think mountains of succulent beef brisket and pulled pork accompanied by heaps of coleslaw, cornbread and baked beans. Hopefully, you’ve booked a local hotel room for the night, because you’re about to find out that meat sweats are real.
Recommended by Alicia Buziak, Autospa Towing
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