My blog posts likely contain affiliate links, including for the Amazon Associates program.
If you look on a map, it’s pretty obvious: Dawson City is far from, well, everything. There are only two roads that reach Dawson, the Top of the World Highway (which connects to Alaska) and the Klondike Highway from Whitehorse. You might well assume then that the food in Dawson City is lacking, and restaurant options are few and far between.
Okay, you’re not wrong – there aren’t a ton of restaurants in Dawson City, but there are good options depending on your dining style and budget.
I most recently visited Dawson City in June 2023, and made sure to do one of the things I do best: eat way too much in the short amount of time I had to visit. Over the course of the ~36 hours I had in Dawson City, I was well-fed and well-fueled, and am ready to share my suggestions for where to eat in Dawson City.
Below you’ll find a list of the restaurants in Dawson City that I recommend; this is not an exhaustive list as I wasn’t able to eat everywhere, and I don’t list everywhere I ate if it isn’t up to snuff. So this is a guide to what I consider the best, and you might deviate and discover great experiences elsewhere. But I think if you follow this list, you really can’t go wrong. Ready to dig in?
(P.S. My cringe-y face in the photo above is because of what I’m about to drink… read on for all the details!)
In this post, I promote travel to a destination that is the traditional lands of the Hän and Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in peoples. With respect, I make a formal land acknowledgment, extending my appreciation and respect to the past and present people of these lands. To learn more about the peoples who call these lands home, I invite you to explore Native Land.
BonTon & Company – Best in Show
In all of my restaurant guides, I like to mention one place I think stands above all others; I call it the “Best in Show” for that particular destination, and for Dawson City, the choice is obvious: BonTon & Company.
BonTon & Company opened in 2021 and began making headlines right away: it was named one of Canada’s best new restaurants by Air Canada and OpenTable that same year. I knew I needed to dine there during my trip, and was definitely blown away by everything I tried. They’re known for their “plates,” the most popular of which is the charcuterie plate; the rest of their entrees are smaller and shareable, but as I was dining alone, I opted for a single plate to follow my charcuterie.
The menu changes regularly based on available produce and ingredients; that’s part of what makes this restaurant unique and so delicious. Reservations are typically required for evening dining during the summer season but are well worth it, so plan ahead to make this your must-eat if you only have time for one dinner/meal in Dawson. (During the day, they offer coffee, pastries, and daily specials and don’t require reservations.)
Annabelle’s Noodle House – Best Foreign Flavors
I’m always on the lookout for local flavors, but I also love foreign ones; some of my favorite ethnic foods come from far from Dawson City, and I was delighted to find a restaurant that serves my needs in town. Annabelle’s Noodle House is a relative newcomer to the scene, having only opened post-pandemic – but they’re popular enough to have staying power.
Their menu has evolved since opening, but now features noodle bowls and soups inspired by Vietnamese and Thai dishes, as well as other options like wonton nachos (which I had) and Asian-inspired peanut chili ribs.
Runner Up: The Drunken Goat Taverna
For a completely different option that offers flavors far from this remote corner of northwestern Canada, The Drunken Goat Taverna is a “Greek Couzina” with a wide variety of delicious Mediterranean flavors to choose from.
On the entree menu, you’ll find ribs, chicken, gyros, and souvlaki, but the starters are more interesting: dolmades (stuffed grape leaves, much like Syrian dolmas), spanakopita, and a Greek meze platter with these and more plus tzatziki and pita.
Pan of Gold Pizza Shop – Best Quick Bite
Looking for a quick, tasty bite after a long day of driving to reach Dawson City (or riding, if you’re on a cruise-tour)? Pan of Gold Pizza Shop is a great option, as they offer pizza pies and by-the-slice which you can take away if you’re just wiped – or you can sit down in the restaurant/bar side for a delicious meal.
And lest you think that this is a standard pizza shop, the various types and toppings will convince you otherwise: try the Great Canadian Miner (pepperoni, mushrooms, green peppers, and bacon), strike it rich on the Meat Bonanza (pep, sausage, salami, bacon, and ham), or indulge in the Gold Pan (sausage, pep, banana peppers, green peppers, feta, onions, and tomatoes). For you non-meat-eaters, the “Cheese-chako” is a great vegetarian option with mozzarella, parmesan, feta, and garlic butter (that’s what I had!).
Cheechako’s Bake Shop – Best Bakery
I’ll be honest here: I didn’t get to eat at Cheechako’s Bake Shop during my visit; they were unexpectedly closed on the one day I had time for breakfast during my Klondike-Kluane road trip. This means I missed out on all the delicious baked goods they typically offer, including berry scones, muffins, brownies, and sticky buns. Pre-pandemic they also offered other foods, including tacos and sushi – but I haven’t seen that on their menu since, unfortunately!
Be sure to check their Facebook page (linked above) to ensure they’re open when you’re in town, so you don’t face the disappointment I did!
Riverwest Bistro – Best Easy Breakfast/Lunch
Looking for another great option to start the day, maybe with a bit more protein or veggies involved? I love a balanced breakfast but when I’m traveling I’m always keen to get a bite quickly – and Riverwest Bistro fits the bill.
Their menu isn’t extensive, but it includes good make-and-take breakfast and lunch options (think sandwiches, burritos, wraps, etc.). When I discovered Cheechako Bake Shop was closed on the one morning I had in town, I popped next door to Riverwest for a breakfast bagel and green smoothie. They also have a fantastic coffee bar if you need a fix before your day of adventure or continuing on your travels.
Sourdough Saloon – Best Local Watering Hole
I’ll be honest: Sourdough Saloon is a tourist trap. But if we’re being completely honest, all of Dawson City is a tourist trap; it’s only open in the summer season and is primarily aimed at visitors. That doesn’t diminish the town’s historical importance and interest, so why can’t a tourist trap like the Sourdough Saloon hold a similarly dichotomous but still valuable spot on a list of where to eat in Dawson City – or drink, as the case may be here.
Anyway, Sourdough Saloon makes my list because it’s the home of the Sourtoe Cocktail Club, where you can drink a shot of Yukon Jack whiskey with a real human toe in it. Yep, it’s gross – but it’s also an essential experience you won’t find anywhere else in the world, and the story behind it – and the cheers behind you when you do it – are well worth the queasy feeling you might have.
Runner Up: The PIT
Okay, you know me: if there is a great local dive, I’m going to know about it. And the place I heard recommended most for locals – both year-round residents and seasonal workers who spend far more time in Dawson City than you or I ever will – is the PIT.
Located in the historic Westminster Hotel, The PIT, also called The Tavern or Snake Pit, is the kind of place you can imagine Anthony Bourdain drinking in; it’s quirky, has good booze and beer on tap, and plays host to live music that can help you while away an evening.
Klondyke Cream & Candy – Best Sweets
If you’re visiting the Yukon Territory as part of a larger Alaska itinerary, you’ve probably noticed – or will soon learn – that people in the far north love ice cream. Don’t ask me why, I don’t get it – but I definitely agree with it as a philosophy of life! (Maybe it’s like how in Jordan, they drink hot things on hot days…)
In any case, Dawson City naturally has an ice cream spot, and it’s a perfect place to visit if you’ve got a sweet tooth. Klondyke Cream & Candy is located right on Front Street (facing the Yukon River) in a line of colorful modern buildings with historic motifs; it’s right near Cheechako’s Bake Shop, so a good spot for starting and ending the day.
They offer dozens of flavors of ice cream, plus ways to enjoy it: cones or cups, of course, as well as milkshakes, sundaes, and blizzards – and lots of other options too. And yes, they have lots of candy and sweets if you want to grab something to enjoy later in your trip.
Have any questions about where to eat in Dawson City – either places I recommend on my list or other places you’ve heard about? Let me know in the comments below!