City Palate

City Palate - The Flavour of Calgary's Food Scene since 1993

THE HARVEST ISSUE - September October Issue 2018

Croatian Culinary Connections in Calgary


Find hot spirals of burek (stuffed with cheese, spinach, or ground meat), semolina soup-dumplings, or a side of delectable ajvar at Cozy Kitchen in the light-industrial district east of Chinook Mall. Since 2016, Emina Dedić Halilović and her Croatian-Serbian team (she herself is Bosnian-born) have been serving up the dishes common to all three countries to an appreciative crowd of nearby workers as well as expats from across Calgary. You’ll find Emina herself chatting with every guest, proffering samples from a menu that includes sarma (cabbage rolls), ćevapi u lepinji (beef and veal sausage with flatbread), goulash, sandwiches, and spaghetti bolognaise. You’ll want to take something home from the pastry case stocked with housemade čupavci (coconut-and-chocolatedipped cake), baklava, cannoli, and other treats.

5708 - 1 St. SE, Calgary. Open Mon-Thurs, 7am-8pm; Fri & Sat, 7am-9pm; Sun, 10am-8pm. Catering available.

At Niko’s Bistro, former Dubrovnikite, Niko Miletic, has focused on the Italian food of his Croatian childhood, with the likes of Calamari All’Inferno (a crowdfavourite), pasta, and plenty of seafood and olive oil.

But the kitchen of this Kensington mainstay prepares its crème caramel Dubrovnik-style and will make palačinke (Croatian crepes) to order. Customers in the know can get buzara (shrimp or mussel stew), crni rižot (black risotto), or pašticada (sweet and sour beef) by request. Great Croatian wines are difficult to source in Alberta, but Croatian beer is available from the bar – and you’re apt to find Niko sharing a šljivovica (plum brandy) or pelinkovac (wormwood liqueur) with guests as he makes his way among the tables.

1241 Kensington Rd. NW, Calgary. Open for lunch and dinner, Mon-Fri; Dinner only Sat & Sun.


Metro Liquor store (Skyview Ranch Rd. NE) offers a wide selection of Croatian liqueurs, beer, and some wines.

Sobey’s Liquor (Cranston) carries a bevy of Croatian liqueurs.

Olympia Liquor stores (especially the Evergreen and Westgate locations) sell several Croatian wines and beer.

• Look for other retailers of Croatian tipples at

Read entire article in the digital issue of City Palate.