NEW* Excerpt from Banff & Lake Louise, Alberta By Jeff Greif · in Canada, Destinations ·
"Back in the Banff on the last night, we took a seat near the rooftop patio overlooking the mountains at the Elk & Oarsman, a casual pub on Banff Avenue perched on the second floor above a ski shop. This was our last dinner in Banff and a sports bar was giving us a chance to try … what else? Some elk, of course, which tastes just like you’d expect – wild! Along with some baby back ribs and a drunk roast chicken, it was all great washed down with one of the incredible Canadian draft beers. That night was a festive scene with a local band playing raucous music and people dancing. How many sports bars do you know have live music? We spoke for a bit with Dave the owner, who said that most nights there’s a band playing and everyone is there to have a good time. And so were we. It was a fun way to end our stay in Banff.
Banff certainly wasn’t what I remembered from my teen tour, a simple place where dinner cost $5.00. With age comes sophistication, and that goes for me, too. The mountains and the nature seemed to have aged with time, like wine, and for me were bigger, bolder and better, even if I was a little older."
Right in the heart of the Banff Avenue bar and restaurant strip, the Elk and Oarsmen is an airy, open-beam, second-floor space with its own cozy fireplace. Built around a slate-topped central bar, the restaurant offers an extensive menu that allows you jazz up après basics like nachos and potato skins with braised elk. There’s an extensive beer menu, a whiskey menu and a list of “thirsty desserts” like the lip-smacking Snowy Lane — hot chocolate spiked with Kahlua and vodka and topped with whipped cream. The pub often hosts live music, including a Sunday jam night, which is a good bet if you’re wanting to mingle with the locals.
Excerpt from the New York Times article (Jan 04, 2009):
"But I didn’t come to Banff for cuisine. And I didn’t need visions of Carmen Creek bison tenderloin dancing before my goggles as I braved black diamonds. I needed sustenance, and I found it at the Elk & Oarsman, a pub with a wood-beamed ceiling where everyone seems to gather. Seth Rogen look-alikes swilled the crisp house lager, and hardcore snowboard girls cheered hockey games on TV. Jean and I ate elk burgers, Tuscan-sausage pizzas and chicken wings — it was the kind of place I would go if I lived there." ~ Matt Gross, New York Times News Correspondent
SBC Ski and Snowboard Resort Guide 2007 edition.
Banff and Jasper Locals Top Picks “Long time local and SBC staffer Allison Thompson is all about he Elk and Oarsman Pub.”
“It’s an awesome pub with great après food and drink specials,” Thompson says.
Just wanted to thank you for a great evening for our group. Everyone loved the steak special. Sorry I didn't get to meet you. Your staff was wonderful to us. Thanks again for a great group dinner at the Elk.
~Linda Fogle - Ski Club of Lockport