Situated in the Silver Creek Hotel at 1818 Mountain Ave, the Wild Orchid Restaurant & Sake Bar offers a unique dining experience in the heart of Canmore, Alberta. Next door to Bodhi Wellness, its convenient location makes it a common spot for patrons to enjoy a relaxing massage, facial, or chiropractic treatment before or after their visit to the restaurant.
We arrived at 1pm on a Sunday afternoon to a quiet setting with only one other occupied table on arrival. The ambiance was nice and relaxing with suitable background music, and the first thing that caught my eye was the floor to ceiling windows with a full view of the surrounding Canmore mountain ranges – the Three Sisters and Rundle. Across from the kitchen, a well-stocked bar with an array of traditional and Japanese-inspired drinks was on display.
According to our server, Wild Orchid has the largest variety of Sake in Bow Valley, and this is clear from their extensive alcohol menu with strong Japanese influence. They also informed us that the best selling tapas options were the crispy ginger bites, Asian street fries, and pork salad rolls.
While Wild Orchid tends to be busier during dinner time on weekends, our midday visit was a more intimate dining experience. The restaurant offers monthly specials, with January featuring a bottle of sake and sashimi + sushi platter package at $225 + tax (for 2) or $265 + tax (for 4). Their special offer for 2024 is a Tanaka 1789 x Chartier Blend 002 vintage 2018, which is a rare find. A big selling point is the fact everything on the menu is gluten-free catering to a wide range of dietary preferences.
Our order consisted of a variety of dishes.
The Asian street fries 2.0 were a standout with its generous portion size. They were drizzled with teriyaki sauce and spicy aioli giving them a sweet and savoury flavour.
The shrimp tempura was different to what we were expecting with a thinner batter. I personally prefer a thicker coating and more bite to shrimp.
The chicken karaage was perfectly moist while crispy on the outside and it was served with a dijon aioli. The portion size compared to the price was also very reasonable.
Although the presentation wasn’t amazing, the classic spicy salmon roll was still very tasty at $14.
The beef tataki stole the show. It was tender and was complemented by a Japanese steak sauce and crispy onions.
They have a range of dairy-based in-house sauces that are delicious including the dijon aioli. Honey ginger and miso mustard.
I would describe it as an upscale, trendy Asian-fusion restaurant with pricing on the more expensive side. Having said that, the overall experience lives up to the hype and cost. The food for the most part was delicious and the general atmosphere was a delight. We were impressed with the overall dining experience, calming ambiance, portion sizes and excellent service.
Their food and drinks menu caters to a more refined dining experience, and if this is what you’re looking for, I would highly recommend it.