You either adapt, or you die. It’s that simple.

Rostizado occupies a prime piece of real estate in downtown Edmonton anchoring the north end of 104 street kitty corner to the new arena. This is Edmonton’s hot new Ice District; the place where all the action is happening…but, with all that action comes a downside, like parking bans when events are on at the arena meaning no parking anywhere near Rostizado, or inflated parking prices during game and concert nights. Who is going to pay $30 for parking to come for a $75-food-and-drink night out? To make matters worse, construction issues and detours have caused vehicle and foot traffic to their doorstep to almost cease entirely on occasion. That hurts.

Customers have gotten tired of dealing with that stuff and have turned to other restaurants that are more accessible. They’ve done it because choosing the path of least resistance (and lower parking rates) is a human thing to do.

So, in hopes of enticing people back to the fold, Rostizado is amending their “roasting house” concept by giving the people what they’ve been asking for: tacos, burritos, burgers, and more plant-based options. Now, 15% of the new lunch menu is vegan. (That number increases to 30% for the dinner menu.)  What you’ll see now is a more approachable lunch menu with more affordable options. Also, these items have a fairly quick turnaround time from when the order goes in to when the food gets to your table, so for those on a one hour lunch should be able to get in, eat, and get back to the office with no worries.

Grilled romaine topped with crispy tortilla strips, fried capers, coco nibs and house-made dressing (Anchovies in dressing). Photo credit: Dong Kim

Warm kale salad: Kale, roasted poblano rajas, garlic, pumpkin seeds, nutritional yeast, olive oil & apple cider vinaigrette. (Vegan) Photo credit: Dong Kim

I was thrilled when Rostizado opened, but, disappointed when they didn’t put tacos on the menu. Being these were the owners of Tres Carnales, many of us expected tacos would be an option—even though Rostizado was a different concept from the taqueria. It’s just that their tacos were so delicious, we wanted more, and, I know I wasn’t alone in feeling that way. Needless to say, having fish and pork tacos on the lunch menu now, makes many of us very, very happy.

Fish tacos: battered and fried cod served on our house-made carrot infused corn tortillas. Topped with cabbage, Serrano chiles, tomatillo and a coconut salsa.

Pork taco (carnitas): pork shoulder on our house-made cilantro and chile poblano corn tortilla. Topped w/ onions, Serrano chiles, radish, cilantro and poblano sauce.

I was also thrilled when they introduced their Mission burritos last year during game nights but disappointed it was a short-lived offering. Those were some damn good burritos and I’m excited to see them included as full-time lunch options, now.

The new lunch menu features 4 burritos: pork, chicken, steak and vegan.

The burger that Edgar has created needs to get in your belly, stat. He grinds three cuts: ribeye, chuck, and brisket. What you get is a 1/2 lb juicy, glorious, all-meat (no filler) patty, with cheddar cheese, poblano rajas, blue cheese chipotle ketchup, tomato, spinach, red onion, chipotle mayo and azafran pickles on a brioche bun. This is one big-ass, beautiful burger.

La Hamburguesa

I appreciate owners and chefs who sit down and say, “Hey, this isn’t working. We need to listen  to our client base. What is it that they want?” Because even if you have what you think is the coolest concept, you’ve got nothing if the people aren’t buying it.

Rostizado has a beautiful room, and a trio of cool owners who have been very generous to the community. Let’s reciprocate by giving them a little love in return.

The tres carnales: Edgar, Dani and Chris.