Stuck in An Airport on a Hockey Trip? Best Places to Eat (Eastern Canadian Airports)

Posted on May 3, 2024

If you play hockey on the east coast of Canada, chances are you’ve had a long layover at an airport. Inclement weather happens every other week in Eastern Canada – you’re bound to be staring at a restaurant saying “I definitely have time for a bite”. Here are some great picks from airports that you’re likely getting stuck at during a given winter…. or spring… (weather ain’t great)

*** Note – International Airports only in this article, if anyone wants to suggest some Regional Airport Eats, do so in the comments section of the social media app that it is posted on!

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St. John’s – YellowBelly Brewery

If you’re from St. John’s, getting a meal at the airport is pretty uncommon because departures are often very early morning (nothing is open), and arrivals are very late at night (nothing is open). But the odd time when you have a mid-day flight, I would suggest a visit to YellowBelly Brewery at the top of the stairs after the main security checkpoint.

You can’t go wrong with a YellowBelly burger, but if you feel like walking on the wild side, I’d pick up some Buffalo Chicken Nachos. These can get a little spicy – the salsa has a little kick and the dish comes standard with banana peppers – but ask for a couple extra napkins. Wipe that forehead and dig in!

Halifax – Firkin and Flyer

Head to the main terminal and plop your John Brown hind pots down on a comfy chair at the Firkin and Flyer. I usually go with the Chicken and Avocado Club with a house salad (comes with a vinaigrette), but you can pick tater tots (almost like the McCain bagged jobbies from the supermarket) or fries. The sides are nothing to get excited about, but the main courses are very good for airport dining. You’re getting chicken breast meat (no deli meat), generous pieces of bacon and mayo that compliments the entree. My runner-up pick would be the BBQ Chicken Flatbread – it’s essentially a flatbread pizza which hits the spot if you’re looking for something a little lighter (or lunch).

Montreal – Pork and Pickle

The P ‘n P is probably my all-time favourite airport restaurant. Located in the main terminal of Trudeau International (upstairs, turn right at the main security check-point and keep walking until you see it across from the Air Canada customer service counter) this is a must-visit if you are a lover of sandwiches with a smokey BBQ taste to them. My go-to is the Smoked Paprika Turkey Breast, and it is (expletive) delicious. The Pork and Pickle will not short change you on the meat, and the spicy avocado butter is the perfect compliment (it’s not a spicy condiment, even though it says it is). The fries here are excellent – they taste like a better version of the Cavendish fries you get at the supermarket, and go great with ketchup. If you want to mix it up, the smoked beef brisket is really good too. I find it a little heavier than the Turkey Breast Sandwich, so tread lightly if you have a longer flight and are scared of the mile-high porcelain pony.

a lot of happy customers – oui oui

Toronto Terminal 1 – Hearth

You need to be in Terminal 1 and need to be on the US flight side to access Hearth, but if the stars align for you, pick the Grilled Brick Chicken Sandwich (Sense a sandwich theme? Me too). The chicken is marinated and comes on the sandwich in a fall-off-the-bone manner. The chicken melts in your mouth (and not in your hand… remember those commercials? Me too). If you want something a little fancier and have the kahonas to order salmon at an airport, the runner-up here is the Maple Mustard Glazed Salmon. This one is best shared, because I find it really rich (almost like eating chocolate ice cream with lots of chocolate toppings). The salmon comes on a bed of pureed sweet potato; it’s not a big dish. You get the green light for lunch from me.

Toronto Terminal 3 – Fionn MacCool’s

Fin’s is located in Terminal 3 right next to the main security check-point (turn right once through security). Dive into some ‘Mini Yorkies’ as an appetizer; these are gravy-filled ‘pots’ almost like a Sheppard’s Pie.

It’s hard to beat Fish ‘n Chips at places like the Duke of Duckworth in St. John’s, but Fionn’s has good “mainland” fish ‘n chips if you’re hankering for a heavier meal.

Ottawa – Cork and Well

The only thing that I have had at this resto is the Jalapeno Crispy Chicken Wrap, and I was more than satisfied with my selection. The sauce has a little punch to it, the chicken is fried, and I’d pick the Caesar Salad even though the fries are of the Ziggy Peelgoods/homestyle variety. Just pack a toothbrush and hope that you don’t run into the woman of your dreams after you chow down on this sucker.

you’re hungry right now, aren’t you?

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