The Saskatoon summer heat brings everyone into the sun for drinks with friends. The city has one of the largest rates of restaurants per capita in Canada, so rooftop patios are one way to stand out above the rest. Get a new perspective of the city, or choose a lesser-known gem for some downtime. This post focuses on the local patios that are hidden away, or up a flight of stairs.
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You’ll find a selection of hidden and rooftop patios throughout Saskatoon. Known as decks to most locals, these rooftop patios are available throughout the warm months of May through September. Most of these spots are very casual and affordable, so leave the “extra” to instagram and just relax.
10 Best Hidden & Rooftop Patios in Saskatoon
Known as one the best rooftop patios in Saskatoon, the Yard is an Irish Pub that serves up traditional fare and draft beer. The patio is multi-level, so watch your step after you’ve been sipping on day drinks.
Address: 718 Broadway Avenue
Phone: (306) 653-8883
Go all the way to the back right of the bar, then go a little further. Once you pass the washrooms, you’ll make a beeline to the patio doors. Enjoy one of over 76 craft beer on tap with your all day brekki – completely hidden from the public.
Address: 243 21st St E
Phone: (306) 374-7468
A new-er edition to the historic fire hall building, the patio is a large and welcoming space for your group. Sip a caesar by the fire pit and load up on signature “fire starter” appies like anojitos.
Address: 612 11th St E
Phone: (306) 477-3473
Fans of small plates rejoice! This west-coast inspired lounge is the perfect spot to watch the sunset while you share dinner with friends. Choose the side patio for a quick cocktail, or step up to the rooftop for a whimsical view with a balloon.
Address: 339 Ave A S
Phone: (306) 653-2256
IT’s a HOT ONE ☀️ but the misters are on, the beer is cold, and it’s WING WEDNESDAY !! $5 Pints🍻 and $15 Pitchers of GW Pilsner, $7.50 Big Coronas, and $5 House Cocktails 💦 #osheasyxe #coldbeer #wingnight #wingwednesday #rooftoppatio #bigcorona #gwpilsner #budlightfamily #greatservice #fivedollarcocktails
Get classic Irish pub fare at one of the most popular rooftops in the city. O’Shea’s steps up to summer with a heating and misting contraption to keep you comfy no matter the weather.
Address: 222 2 Ave S
Phone: (306) 384-7444
The downtown patio is home of the gringo! That may not mean much to outsiders, but the notorious cocktail is made with Churchill Blonde craft beer, tequila, triple sec and lime. Saskatoon’s younger crowd LOVES the stuff.
Address: 269 3 Ave S
Phone: (306) 975-1266
You won’t hear much about this low-profile patio in Sutherland, but it’s worth a try. This pub has insanely good feature drinks every night. In my opinion, the best day to go is Saturday – there aren’t huge line ups and you can get a decent date for cheap.
Address: 900 Central Ave
Phone: (306) 249-0900
Another Sutherland staple patio, Dino’s is a student bar that serves up Italian cuisine from the Venice House Traditional Grill kitchen downstairs. Get delicious food for a fraction of the cost with the daily special menu.
Address: 906 Central Ave
Phone: (306) 373-6666
This patio is located in an alcove next to the Broadway Theatre. You won’t necessarily feel off-the-beaten-path as Una is one of the most popular places to dine in Saskatoon. However it took me about 3 tries to figure out exactly where the patio was – so they’ve got that going for them!
Address: 707 Broadway Ave
Phone: (306) 978-0116
Every U of S student knows that Louis’ is a great place to wind down after a long day of studying. But did you know that their rooftop patio is open to everyone sans tuition payments? Combine student-friendly prices with a bird’s eye view of the gorgeous campus and you’ve got yourself a winner.
Address: 93 Campus Drive
Phone: (306) 966-7000
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Featured image: Una Pizza + Wine
Do you know everything there is to know about everything? Saskatoon pub trivia is happening in spots around the city throughout the week. This post gives an idea of where to go if you’ve got a whole lot of facts swirling around in your brain and no one to shout them at.
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Saskatoon pub trivia is better played as part of a well-rounded small team. Since you’re likely an expert on a few niche topics, feel free to coordinate with other experts to come out on top. Find them in the Do Sask closed Facebook group if you’re new to town, or your friends aren’t always game for a round. There are fun giveaways and food and drink specials waiting for the winning teams.
Active Saskatoon Pub Trivia Locations 2018
Where: The Hose & Hydrant Pub
When: Sundays at 8:00 PM
Where: Mana Bar
When: Thursdays at 7:00 PM
Where: Fionn MacCool’s
When: Wednesdays at 8:00 PM
Where: Thirsty Scholar
When: every second Tuesday at 7:00 PM
When: every other Tuesday at 7:30 PM
Where: The Woods Ale House
When: Wednesdays at 8:00 PM
Where: Hudsons Canada’s Pub
When: rotating Tuesdays at 7:30 PM
When: roughly 1x month
Where’s your favourite spot for Saskatoon pub trivia? Join the Do Sask Facebook group to have your say!
Do you organize Saskatoon pub trivia? Send in your schedule to be included on this free listing.
Saskatchewan isn’t necessarily known as the world’s most progressive place. With our biggest exports being grain and potash, the common stereotype is that we’re akin to America’s deep south – conservative, closed-minded farmers. And it doesn’t help that a once-frustrated hometown star, Joni Mitchell, labelled the entire community of Saskatoon as bigoted.
Gay Bars & Nightclubs in Saskatchewan
That’s why it’s impressive that we have a few dedicated spaces for the LGBTQ community. While there is no “gay district”, we’ve got gay-friendly locales that you can spread out to across the province.
Since Pride Month is in full swing, I thought I’d take some time to raise awareness for the gay nightclubs and bars in Saskatchewan that you can take advantage of all year. Because homosexuality should be accepted as a norm in society and we’ve still got a long way to go.
Enjoy a cocktail and meet up with other like-minded peeps. Between Regina and Saskatoon, there are three major nightclubs that serve gay clientele:
Opening nearly 40 years ago, Diva’s is a historic establishment that boasts itself as “Saskatoon’s Premier Gay Bar”. Come in through the back alley on an average weekend for laser lights, live DJs, and dancing. Save the date for special events like regular Ru Paul’s Drag Race viewing parties, drag queen contests, and eye-popping live entertainment.
With a multi-level interior design that changes almost as quickly as a chameleon, PiNK’s operators like to keep patrons on their toes. The last time I went, they had a giant raised pole in the middle of the dance floor – who knows what they’ll have next month! Plenty of inclusive events happen here regularly.
As one of the last community-owned gay bars in Canada, Q is a hub for Regina’s LGBTQ crowd. Feel connected and welcomed at weekly open mics, drag queen bingo, karaoke, trivia, and more! Q also hosts special events complete with go-go dancers.
Local Gay-Friendly Bars
The following Saskatoon* spots work with the LGBTQ community to create a gay-friendly space and regular themed events:
Guitar shop by day, inspiring event space by night. This one-of-a-kind venue is not a regular bar, but hosts many live music shows, weddings, fundraisers, and more throughout the year.
Capitol is a downtown spot with a full-menu and massive interior space for dancing, live music, and comedy nights. For something different, go during the afternoon to enjoy the hanging indoor plants and skylight.
They have signs placed all around the bar explaining what to avoid talking about while inside, including politics and religion.
One of Saskatoon’s biggest community-centred hubs, Amigos Cantina is a place where you’ll enjoy a wide variety of Mexican cuisine and pub classics. They host live musicians, improv comedy, karaoke, and themed dances – sometimes on the same night. Enjoy a cold cocktail on their patio after a long day.
Louis’ is a casual student hang-out that partners with the USSU Pride Centre to host LGBTQ events. Along with pub fare, you can find many different reasons to check out Louis’ for live shows and sporting events.
Whether you’re dropping in for a late brunch, or want spectacular twilight view of the riverbank, the whimsical Drift Sidewalk Cafe & Vista Lounge has some incredible options for you. Both their space and menu is dynamic, with seasonal eats, local craft beer, and cocktails that hit the spot.
Located on the corner of Spadina and 25th Street, Finn’s Irish Pub is a nice place to stop in for a cold brew while walking along the riverbank with your honey. They offer regular free live music, paint nites, and special holiday events. Check out their large patio in the summer time.
*At publishing, I couldn’t easily track down gay-friendly nightclubs or bars in other Saskatchewan cities. If you want to be included on this listing, please send a message to email@example.com.
Join the Do Sask Facebook group and sign up to the weekly newsletter to find gay-friendly events and more in Saskatoon.
Featured image: Diva’s Facebook Page
If your drink of choice is the Canadian-invented Caesar, you’ll love this new local spot dedicated to the spicy cocktail.
When you order a “mealzer” from The Caesar Mill in Martensville, you’ll get a glass loaded to the brim with flavour. Take a look at what’s been catching my attention:
You can bet they’ll whip up all the usual pub-grub staples every day of the week, but what’s caught my eye is the variety of enormous mason jar concoctions hitting the menu every Monday.
The mountainous mealzer is only $15 on Mondays which is a smoking hot deal if you ask me (it comes with a side of your choice). Make a date of it and hit the highway to the bedroom community of Martensville this week!
Address: 1-323 Centennial Dr.
Phone: (306) 249-1581
I want to send a shout out to all the new VIPs who participated in Do Sask’s pretzel necklace booth at Top of the Hops 2018. You helped make my first time at TOTHYXE a success!
And a special congratulations to Marya Bilkhu, the winner of the $120 How to Taste #1 Grand Prize! She was randomly drawn from over 80 entrants to win tickets for her and 3 friends to How to Taste #1 event with Churchill Brewing Co. on June 9 at Finn’s Irish Pub.
DETAILS ABOUT HOW TO TASTE #1
How to Taste #1: Churchill Brewing Company
Sip your way to becoming a local craft beer cicerone.
Local brewers will guide you along a tasting journey. You’ll learn their story, their process, and how to taste what makes their beer and liquor unique, while Finn’s Irish Pub supplies tapas.
Each ticket includes food pairings with 3 of the 5 flights of beer. Food pairings have been specially developed to complement each beer. Featuring chicken wings, yorkshire pudding, and mussels.
Tickets only $27 +GST. Seating is limited.
Register here: https://howtotaste1.eventbrite.ca
In celebration of Top of the Hops, happening this weekend at Prairieland Park, this post gives you the cream of the crop in the province’s craft brewing scene. Fill up your glass with something local! And don’t forget to visit me at the Do Sask booth to build your own pretzel necklace – good craft beer needs good craft snacks.
It’s technically spring, but the weather has been so hot it’s feeling like summer. Just as soon as the patios start bustling and the BBQs begin sizzling, people look for new ways to quench their thirst. One popular way to do that is to fill up a growler from a local microbrewer with the best craft beer in Saskatoon.
As the craft beer scene in Saskatchewan continues to grow, with each year it adds a new crop of beer lovers to the province. For example, there’s an active “Beer lovers of Saskatchewan” group on Facebook where people discuss the best (and worst) of our local brews.
Recently, a member asked where he should go to fill up his growlers for the weekend. Here’s a look at the recommendations for best craft beer in Saskatoon, as listed by active group members. I’ve also added in top-ranking brews from Saskatoon Brewery Tour attendees’ feedback.
Did I miss a good one? Get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
BEST CRAFT BEER SASKATOON
Most mentions goes to High Key Brewing Co. London Fog Porter, White Off the Hop White IPA, Jolly Roger Ale & Pomegranate Pale Ale
“I’m really loving High Key right now, especially their London fog porter.”
“Nope, the london fog is terrible. No one should drink it so there is more for me.”
21st Street Brewery Hoodless IPA & Sweet Lea Kettle Sour
9 Mile Brewing Co. No. 229 Pale Ale
Nokomis Craft Ales Brown
Black Bridge Brewery Double IPA
Paddock Wood Heartstopper Hot Chocolate Stout
Prairie Sun Brewery Prairie Lily Lager
Pile o’ Bones Brewing Co. Simcoe Smash “Get that in your face hole ASAP”
Patio season will soon be here! How do I know? It’s technically spring, it hasn’t snowed in 48 hours, and any moment now the temperature will rise above zero. I just know it! Get ready to release your shorts and flips flops from retirement.
Okay, maybe I’m jumping the gun. The thermometer is currently sitting at -16 as I type.
But I’m hoping that one of our city’s restaurant or pub managers will see this post and open up for patio season within the next few weeks. If you close your eyes, some local decks channel the quaint bistro cafe vibe of Europe. Let’s give people a reason to feel like Saskatoon really is the Paris of the Prairies.
9 surprising reasons to start patio season early:
Feel outdoorsy without getting eaten alive by mosquitos and hornets.
Last summer was really bad for bugs in the city of Saskatoon. Name any kind of annoying insect – flies, wasps, mosquitos – and my sweet nectar-filled pint glass attracted them. Get out there early to avoid the insects before they’re back in full-force.
Being the first to find a new, unknown patio is like winning a free mini-getaway with all your friends.
With one caveat: getting there before the masses find out about it.
The feeling of having an entire patio to yourself is quite liberating. You have the space to enjoy with friends… until someone says something and word spreads.
Make nice with the servers to potentially get top priority come summer.
Relationships are everything in the restaurant and bar industry. So treat your favourite patio bartenders and wait staff with the respect they deserve. They may remember you when the deck is packed this summer and it’s between you and that douche snapping their fingers.
Tips for bonding with industry peeps: ask about how their day is going and listen to the answer, give them genuine compliments when deserved, tip them a minimum 15% gratuity for a job well done, and avoid stereotypical asshole behaviour.
Start working on your tan before everyone else.
Okay, negative temperatures aren’t the best for sunbathing. But who says it won’t warm up in a fortnight? Once it gets above zero, the sleeveless tees are coming out! Make sure you bring layers to wear once the sun goes down. Remember: east-facing is better for morning brunch, and west-facing is better for sunsets.
People watch those unlucky souls who have to trudge through mud and slush.
Cheers to avoiding mud puddles and potholes for an hour or two!
Rooftop patios with their own bars are lit! (When I say ‘lit’ I mean usually heated.)
You won’t have to move a muscle ’cause the bartender keeps drinks flowing and the heater keeps you cozy. Sit, drink, repeat!
Day drinking begins every weekend at 11 AM!
Forget waiting around all day to head to a club at 11 PM. Seize the day and get home at a decent hour. (That’s the 30-year-old, getting-in-bed-before-10-PM, waking-up-without-a-hangover voice inside me talking.)
My favourite patio season day drinks include bulldogs, margaritas, sangrias, and gringos!
Have a sunny bunch on the patio complete with mimosas and chicken n’ waffles.
Anyone who doesn’t love chicken n’ waffles is no friend of mine.
Horseshoe, or corn-hole games don’t need green grass.
Set up some lawn games on a patio and you’ll have plenty of fun – mower/shovel not required!
Patio season should start refreshingly early, Saskatoon. There may be snow and ice on the ground, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try and convince your neighbourhood patio to open early for the season. Tell ’em it will make you feel better than putting on a new pair of socks. They won’t say no!
Saskatoon spots to inspire you this patio season:
Boffins Public House, University
Original Joe’s, 8th Street
Somewhere Else Pub & Grill, Avalon
Yard & Flagon, Broadway
The Hose & Hydrant Brew Pub, Broadway
PiNK Lounge & Nightclub, Downtown
Crazy Cactus, Downtown
O’Shea’s Irish Pub, Downtown
Cathedral Social Hall, Downtown
Una Pizza & Wine, Broadway
Las Palapas Resort Grill, Broadway
Amigos Cantina, Broadway
Finn’s Irish Pub, Downtown
Browns Socialhouse, Stonebridge
Shoeless Joe’s Sports Grill, Stonebridge
Shift Restaurant, Downtown
So, which patios are on the top of your list in saskatoon? JOIN THE DO SASK FACEBOOK GROUP TO HAVE YOUR SAY IN THE DISCUSSION.
Each Saskatoon Brewery Tour experience has three hours, a city of breweries, and a few dozen mouthfuls of microbrew to swallow.
When you REALLY love local drinks a Saskatoon Brewery Tour experience makes building memories of microbrew easy.
Brewery tours are gaining in popularity across North America. People want to support passionate local producers and get to know the makers behind them. They also want to taste different flavours that won’t necessarily come on tap at your run-of-the-mill pub.
Most folks mistakenly believe that their beloved drink of choice is craft beer when it’s more likely owned by “big beer” corporations. But this isn’t an article on big beer vs. craft beer. Stops on the Saskatoon Brewery Tour are classified as microbreweries.
Psst… You can look up your fav beer here to see if it’s actually craft brewed.
You also have bourbon and gin tasting options for added variety. So go ahead and argue about which local brewer or distiller makes the best micro-sip – you have a chance to sample and rate them all with the founders of each company guiding your tour. That’s something a lot of other big city brewery tours simply can’t offer. Saskatoon’s small brewery owners are a passionate bunch!
Taste your way through the unique flavours concocted right here in the Paris of the Prairies. This is what you can expect while on a Saskatoon Brewery Tour.
Your driver will either pick you up from your home (private), or you can meet them at the Saskatoon Farmers’ Market (public) at the start of your tour. From there you’ll head out to three different microbreweries in and around Saskatoon.
Here’s what you can expect as you ride along on a Saskatoon Brewery Tour experience:
9 Mile Legacy Brewing Co.
What began as a nanobrewhouse in 2015 has grown to a space five times as big with a huge heart for the community of Riversdale. Co-founders Garrett and Shawn got the name from their family farms being located about 9 miles apart. Expect the same small-town vibe while on tour and enjoy light fare from their menu.
Paddock Wood Brewing Co.
Award-winning head brewer and founder of Saskatchewan’s first microbrewery, Steve Cavan, fell into brewing after an early search produced no results for good craft beer in the early ‘90s. Paddock Wood eventually took off locally in 2004 after years of dabbling in mail-order grain and home brewing kit sales.
Currently, Paddock Wood’s “Heartstopper” chocolate stout is winning the best sample beer among Saskatoon Brewery Tour guests.
Crossmount Cider Co.
One sip and you’ll have a crush on dem apples! According to their website, Crossmount’s been supplying batches of Flatlander hard cider to Saskatchewan since 2016. They’re located just outside of town with enough room to grow into their own on-site apple orchard. For now, Crossmount gets all of their fruit from the Okanagan Valley in B.C., Canada. They wash, press, and ferment on site with many different flavours added for diversity.
Note: Crossmount is temporarily closed for tours due to increased production.
Steps Bourbon Lounge
While not a microbrewery, the folks at Steps Bourbon Lounge have over 30 kinds of American whiskey stocked and ready for tasting. Your bartender will walk you through how to sample straight liquor alongside a crafted cocktail. Plus, there’s plenty of smoked nuts to go around if you’re starting to feel peckish.
Prairie Sun Brewery
You might be greeted by a friendly golden retriever named Buddy as you walk through this stop. CEO and owner, Heather Williams, is originally from Colorado – a utopia for craft beer lovers. She joined forces with brew master, Cameron, who’s a born and raised Saskie (Humbolt) to start their own brewery in 2013. Prairie Sun has a full menu with pub fare.
High Key Brewing Co.
The newest stop on the Saskatoon Brewery Tour is already getting top grades from tour guests. High Key likes to talk about their notes of beers – get it? (I like puns.) Founder & President Madeline Conn was inspired by the Dallas craft beer scene. She and brewmaster Daniel Rommens moved back to their shared hometown of Saskatoon to build their dream together. They have plenty of games like giant Jenga and crokinole to play as you sip.
Black Fox Farm & Distillery
Home of the world’s best cask gin. Founders John and Barb are not only award-winning gin makers, but lifelong farmers. Black Fox Farm takes pride in growing over 90% of their ingredients on site. They have regular seasonal events where you can get hands-on with all that they grow.
Challenge: See if you can taste which one of three samples took home the top prize!
So, which three stops would you want to check out on your Saskatoon Brewery tour Experience?
Learn more about Saskatoon Brewery Tours and find out when the next public tour is booked. Sign up for the Do Sask newsletter to get updates sent to your inbox.