{Weekend recap: Burgers at Dairy Lane Cafe and a hike to Tower/Rockbound Lake}

Hi all,

This post is a little late, but I thought I’d do a recap of some of the highlights from this past weekend.

Friday afternoon, me and my coworkers got to skip work and spend the sunny day mingling and watching the rodeo at the Stampede. After the show, we headed to the giant beer tent at Nashville North where I stuck around for one drink then headed home to have my weekly Friday date night with the boy.

We made a last-minute decision to go and try out a place that has been on our to-try list for a while, the Dairy Lane Cafe in the Hillhurst area. We took a chance and arrived with no reservations and it was packed! But somehow we lucked out and managed to nab the only available table with no wait…score.

A quick scan of the menu and we were drooling already. The hot day called for some cold beverages, so I cooled down with a Grizzly Paw Ginger Beer – a fizzy soda made right in Canmore, the flavour was VERY gingery which I loved. The boy went with a strawberry milkshake – pretty pale pink goodness served up in a tall frosty glass – creamy, thick and fruity. Everything a milkshake should be.

For our entrees, we both went with the signature Dairy Lane Burger ($11) – Crystal Creek 28 day aged Angus beef, lettuce, tomato and DL burger mayo. We both added on some smoked bacon ($2) and I had the Sylvan Star peppered gouda while the boy had the Aged Cheddar ($2.50) .

My choice of sides: a generous serving of crispy golden yam fries with a chipotle mayo dipping sauce..

Verdict: This burger was AWESOME!!

Me and the boy both agreed this is one of the best burgers we’ve had in the city (possibly beating out our previous favourite – the burger at Laurier Lounge). A nice juicy thick patty elevated with all the delicious toppings all sandwiched between a fluffy grilled onion poppyseed bun. The fries were perfectly golden, crispy with a slight caramel like sweetness.

The boy went with the feature soup for his side, a black bean cilantro soup. The server assured us he would not be able to taste the cilantro (one of the ONLY things the boy refuses to eat), and he was right! Thick and hearty and really flavourful.

Overall, a perfect dining experience. Great food, reasonable prices and attentive & friendly service. We will definitely be coming back here when the burger craving hits.

Not in the mood for a burger? They serve brunch 7 days of the week too (which we’ve heard rave reviews about). But be prepared for a wait, the space is tiny and this place is constantly busy.

Dairy Lane Cafe – 319 19th Street NW |  tel: 403 283 2497 (Open for dinner on Wed to Sun with seatings at 5:30pm and 8pm)


To escape the last day of the Stampede, we planned a long hike out in the mountains in Banff National Park on Sunday.

We grabbed a quick lunch at our usual pre-hike stop (the Lazy Loaf and Kettle). I went with a bowl of their roasted red pepper soup – bold and tangy flavours, almost reminded me of a thick tomato soup. On the side was a simple spinach salad with an oil vinegar dressing.

For dessert, a moist and tender oatmeal peach muffin studded with chunks of fruit and topped with a sweet streusel. Deelish. The boy had a unpictured raisin bran muffin and a his usual half sandwich.

After fuelling up, we were off!

The start of the hike is about 22km past Banff towards Castle Junction.

This hike was a lot tougher than our last hike, pretty steep dirt trail for the most part with few flat areas. We encountered a lot of muddy spots, but that didn’t slow us down 🙂

Over an hour of hiking through the trees and we were rewarded with this gorgeous view of the mountains.

Then it was back into the thick forest we went..

At last, at about 7.5km in, we arrived at Tower Lake

A beautiful emerald coloured lake contrasted with the pretty copper tinted rocks at the edge.

After a quick walk around the lake, we carried on to our final destination.

A couple of hikers coming back warned us that the rest of the way was a very steep climb, but worth it in the end. So we trucked on..

By this point, my quads were screaming at me, still tired from my 16km run the day before…Yooowch…

When we reached the top, we had finally arrived to our last stop, Rockbound Lake.

Lucky us, we had the whole place to ourselves.

After our seemingly endless two hour climb, we sat down to enjoy the views with some snacks. Juicy sweet strawberries, plump cherries and crunchy batons of mini cucumbers.

Some fig and olive spread from the Farmers Market. A creamy combo of salty and sweet.

Perfect for spreading on toasted triangles of flaxseed pita with a chunk of Sylvan Star Herbed Gouda.

After we finished our meal, we were ready to head back down to finish off the easier half of the hike (downhill all the way, woohoo!). One last view from the top, looking down at Tower Lake.

Not including our half an hour break at the top, the hike took us 4hrs and 2 minutes (according to my handy dandy trail GPS on my Iphone, LOVE this app) for a total of 16.4km.

From the bottom, its hard to believe we were all the way on the other side of the mountain.

Another hike in the books.

6 Responses to “{Weekend recap: Burgers at Dairy Lane Cafe and a hike to Tower/Rockbound Lake}”
  1. Sasha says:

    I live in the Calgary and love that you post about hikes as I am sometimes unfamiliar where to go. How do I get too and find this location to start the hike?


  2. Kara says:

    What is a good book that you would reccomend or website that has day hikes for the area listed?

  3. Amanda says:

    Looking at your Dairy Lane pics, I noticed the table placard advertising Blue Star Diner. I guess the folks at Dairy Lane took over the old Avenue Diner space (Bridgeland). Another breakfast joint to add to the plethora we have already near Edmonton Trail… good thing I love breakfast! The Tower lake pics are gorgeous!

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