Social - Ottawa

4.2
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727 reviews
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CAN$31 to CAN$50
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Bistro
Who We Are
SOCIAL is focussing on progressive Canadian cuisine with diverse & innovative wine selections and craft cocktail offerings. Live Jazz in the courtyard & weekend DJs set the vibe, making SOCIAL one of Ottawa’s most vibrant & creative restaurants.

Located in the historic Byward Market in the heart of downtown Ottawa, SOCIAL offers a sumptuous and elegant atmosphere while indulging in our Canadian freestyle cuisine.
What 727 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.2based on recent ratings
4.1
food
4.2
service
4.5
ambience
3.8
value
Noise · Moderate
73% of people would recommend it to a friend
5
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KG
Montreal
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 3

The seafood pastas tasted nothing , had to order extra sauce.
The lamb wasn't tender and the plate was ok, not worth the price.
The califlower steak was really basic, not much flavour in it.
Overall, the service was good.
We had good wine and oysters.
Way too expensive for the food quality, would not recommand.

AO
1 review
Dined on 4 October 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 5

Social was recommended to me to bring my work team to by a friend. We had been at a conference all day and we were starving. We would have otherwise complained of our food if we weren’t so hungry. Although edible it did not match the price point of the menu. For example, I had the salmon and it was extremely dry with very little flavour. Definitely was not fresh salmon. Others ordered the daily pasta and the pasta was not cooked enough and I’m not saying it was cooked el dente, it could have been cooked more. Was really looking forward to good food!! The atmosphere was really great though!

RA
3 reviews
Dined on 28 September 2019
Overall 3food 2service 2ambience 4

We go to the Social for dinner every time we’re in Ottawa which is 2-3 times a year. This occasion was very disappointing; the service was unbelievably slow, the soup was under seasoned, the lamb over cooked and the salmon was over cooked on the first order and then the replacement was almost completely raw. On top of that, our bread order was given to someone else. The manager was concerned about the salmon order but didn’t seem interested in hearing the other issues. He sent shots to each of us at the end of our meals but none of us wanted a shot of liquor. Maybe taking one of our drinks off the bill would be more appropriate. The staff were all very friendly but I’m not sure that will be enough to make us come back. Overall, very disappointing night.

AM
1 review
Dined on 28 September 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Service was excellent and enjoyed the food and atmosphere.

MG
Toronto
2 reviews
Dined on 20 September 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Very cool atmosphere. Servers were so accommodating and went far above what was expected. Food was delicious and as promised.

C
1 review
Dined on 13 September 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 3

Our waiter was incredible!!! Even served both couples a glass of Champaign when he heard we were double dating for our 11th wedding anniversaries. Amazing service.

W
New York Area
53 reviews
Dined on 12 September 2019
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 5

We heard a lot about the restaurant. Service was great. Location was great. Food was ok. Nothing special. We had the seafood linguine & duck confit. I really expected more on the food.

Would go back to try something else.

AD
1 review
Dined on 5 September 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

I have been at Social many times; Though the food always good the level of noise was very unbearable. The last time We noticed changes on the decoration and the music level was bearable. We certainly will come back.

OC
1 review
Dined on 24 August 2019
Overall 2food 3service 2ambience 3

At the table for 30 minutes with family of 6 celebrating a birthday before being served a drink. 6:45 pm scheduled dinned appointment on a Saturday. Understaffed. Way overpriced for quality off food and service.

OT
Ottawa
1 review
Dined on 18 August 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Came to Social for our first wedding anniversary dinner. We were so pleased with the drinks, food and service! I had the seafood linguine which was amazing. Portions were very good. Also had the crème brûlée for dessert, amazing! Would highly recommend, we will be back.

JP
1 review
Dined on 10 August 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 3

I was very excited to try the social as I had heard from friends that is was very good, however when I ordered my meal I was very disappointed that the food was boring and not very tasty. I ordered the chicken and there was nothing great about it at all. Also my husband ordered the steak and for $48 it was definitely nothing to write home about. Also the steak did not come with a side which was quite disappointing. I would not recommend this restaurant as it was definitely very expensive for the quality you got. Also our drinks were not great. I ordered a spicy bloody mary and it was very watered down with hardly any taste.

D
1 review
Dined on 27 July 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 4

Location and Ambiance is very good ! Had been here before and was always quite satisfied however this time was disappointed with food quality and quantity.

RS
1 review
Dined on 27 July 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Waiter was great, funny and provided wonderful service. He really made our visit special. Both the waiter & the chef easily accommodated my (less common) food intolerance with a slight dish modification which made my dining experience wonderful! Great ambience on the patio for all 4 of us!

LB
Toronto
1 review
Dined on 25 July 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 3

Food was not good.... salmon dry and no flavour at all. Lamb was tough and fatty. Service was even worse that then food. Water served warm and no offer of more water for the rest of our meal. Server was not good for this type of dining. Name??? We went using our gift card. Son was very disappointed as he had bought 2 each for $100.00

Linda

RB
Hamburg Area
1 review
Dined on 25 July 2019
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 3

Salmon under heating lamps for a long time - completely dry. Seafood pasta with canteen type sauce. Poor wine list. Service good. Over-hyped and pretentious, but very nice courtyard (in summer).

Social - Ottawa
Responded on 31 July 2019

Hi RichardB, Please contact me directly at travis@social.ca, as I would very much like to discuss your concerns so that we may address any issues that you had. We have a professional staff that takes these reviews to heart and want to ensure that you, and all guests do not have an experience like you described. I look forward to the opportunity to speak with you.

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LG
1 review
Dined on 23 July 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We went for our anniversary. Initially we were sat outside (our request) but as the evening progressed and temperatures dropped a little we asked to be moved inside and this was no trouble at all. Todd was our waiter and he was amazing. His breadth of knowledge of various gins and wines to accompany our meal was impressive. Nothing was too much for him. We thoroughly enjoyed our evening with incredible food. We had the wild boar, lamb, duck and cheese board. Absolutely devine. Thank you !

Social - Ottawa
Responded on 31 July 2019

Hi LeenaG, Thank you so much for your kind words, and congratulations again on your anniversary! Todd and all of us at Social look forward to hosting you again and wish you all the best!

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c
1 review
Dined on 23 July 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 3

Unfortunately I ordered the salmon and it came very overdone. The waiter acknowledged the issue and spoke with the chef and then apologized but was still charged for the total plate, when more than half was not eaten.

DM
1 review
Dined on 20 July 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Food was great, Todd our server was very knowledgeable and very nice, atmosphere was great. Would definitely recommend.

PB
1 review
Dined on 20 July 2019
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 4

Food was great but took extremely long to arrive, they later told us that there was a mix up in the kitchen and our food was just cooking.

CL
Ottawa
2 reviews
Dined on 19 July 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great location, yummy food and a beautiful patio and décor.

OT
1 review
Dined on 18 July 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

10/10 would recommend!

LB
Ottawa
1 review
Dined on 18 July 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

The patrio at Social is lovely. It's very cozy with the couches and trees overhead. The happy hour specials are excellent. The sliders are delicious and so are the squash croquettes. I would definitely recommend for the patio and happy hour. The service on the patio is excellent as well.

V
New York Area
22 reviews
Dined on 12 July 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

Food was great - Moroccan Lamb and a burger - both were very good. Our server was super sweet. The wine was delicious. But the service was extremely slow - and I mean it. We got bread with an apology - at the same time as our entres and waited for over 30 min for a standard dessert. For a restaurant of this caliber it is unacceptable.

LJ
Ottawa
1 review
Dined on 12 July 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

The appetizers were ok but main meals were wonderful

Social - Ottawa
Responded on 17 July 2019

Thank you so much for your visit Linda! We are very happy you enjoyed your dinner, and we will up our appetizer game for you next visit!

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OT
1 review
Dined on 4 July 2019
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 3

Great food although a bit of a slow wait and th a/c didn't appear to be working on the hot day we visited.

CJ
Toronto
14 reviews
Dined on 30 June 2019
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 5

Went for Sunday Brunch. Restaurant was quite empty but service was very slow. Food was good. Overall ambience was good.

C
1 review
Dined on 28 June 2019
Overall 3food 4service 1ambience 3

While the food was good, the service was horrible. The server was slow, did not come back and we were unable to order a second round of drinks because we couldn’t find her.

AE
Montreal
12 reviews
Dined on 25 June 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great for all occasions. Dinner dates, business dinners and celebrations.

Excellent service and menu.

Very professional service.

OT
London
1 review
Dined on 24 June 2019
Overall 4food 4service 2ambience 4

Food was great and it was very nice to sit outside in the courtyard. Although the waitress was knowledgeable, she wasn’t particularly friendly. It took quite a while to be served our initial drinks. Overall recommended.

EM
Los Angeles
1 review
Dined on 22 June 2019
Overall 5food 4service 4ambience 5

Great ambiance, loved the music and the vibe in this establishment was perfect for date night.

PS
Toronto
11 reviews
Dined on 21 June 2019
Overall 3food 3service 1ambience 4

Decent enough food but an unexplained 50-minute wait for food. Waiters were apologetic but management was indifferent. Our tough luck I guess.

HG
1 review
Dined on 21 June 2019
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 5

It is probably the 50th or 60th visit there. It has always been consistent, this is why I go back.

W
Ottawa
1 review
Dined on 15 June 2019
Overall 2food 5service 3ambience 2

We had to wait an hour past our reservation time for a table. The staff were extremely kind and apologetic about the delay. Food and drinks were good too!

IZ
1 review
Dined on 14 June 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

It's simply an amazing culinary experience, from the decor and ambiance right to the food and desserts.

G
Greensboro
56 reviews
Dined on 13 June 2019
Overall 2food 1service 4ambience 3

Disappointing food. I invited a client to Social based on good review scores from OpenTable. However, the experience was disappointing. We both made the mistake of ordering salmon, and neither of us liked it and I couldn't eat but a few bites. The salmon was very "fishy" smelling and tasting.

JY
Montreal
6 reviews
Dined on 5 June 2019
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

It's well situated and the cocktails were competent, but the service was slow at first then improved and the food was 'ok/good' not necessarily the level you would expect. The sockeye salmon was well presented but dry. That said, the French 75 cocktail was well balanced, so the place does merit another go.

RD
1 review
Dined on 4 June 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

My guests from Seattle and Texas were surprised at the alfredo sauce. Also stated the prawns were a bit to cool for their liking. Overall satisfactory but not as stellar as I was hoping it might be. Think I'd try another spot before going back.

PC
Washington DC
2 reviews
Dined on 30 May 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Beautiful restaurant in great neighborhood.. A good selection on menu and very good wine list. Took them awhile to get our wine order, but that may have been them just not being pushy. Once we got our wine, service was exceptional. Delicious entree and salad. Really a very delightful evening experience.

OT
Toronto
2 reviews
Dined on 24 May 2019
Overall 1food 2service 1ambience 5

Service was slow, food was average, white wine was room temperature

D
Atlanta
1 review
Dined on 20 May 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We loved the atmosphere and the wait staff was great. Our waitress suggested perfect wines for each of our entrees. Really enjoyed the evening.

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