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Nearby points of interest

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About Social - Ottawa

Opened in the summer of 1999, SOCIAL was conceived as the perfect blend of restaurant and bar. It was envisioned as a place where guests could enjoy an evening drink without feeling obligated to order dinner too, but where a sizzling menu meant that food was always an excellent option. When its doors first opened, SOCIAL was the first restaurant in the capital to regularly feature a live DJ, which instantly gave it a reputation for innovation. Ten years later, SOCIAL continues to deliver, known in the capital city for its imagination and its chic, modern vibe. With fifteen-foot ceilings, ultramodern decor and gorgeous exposed stone walls, the space offers an unparalleled atmosphere for a sit-down dinner or some after-work cocktails. Guests can expect high-quality professional service and a menu to match, proving that SOCIAL is truly a downtown destination that has it all.

537 Sussex Drive
Ottawa, ON K1N 6Z6
View Larger Map

Dining Style:
Casual Elegant

Cuisines:
Bistro, French / Canadian

Hours of Operation:
Lunch: Mon-Fri.: 11:30am - 3:00pm; Dinner: Nightly: 5:00pm - Close.

Cross Street:
George / York

Dress Code:
Business Casual

Price Range:
CAN$31 to CAN$50

Payment Options
AMEX, Diners Club, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(613) 789-7355

Website:
http://www.social.ca/

Entertainment:
Live music can be heard every Wednesday night in the summer on the Courtyard - a mix of jazz, acid jazz and blues. An assortment of DJs are spinning on Friday and Saturday nights all year round.

Catering:
Let us host your next corporate dinner or special occasion. We love to celebrate! Please call for details.

Parking Details:
We are located between George St. and York St. on Sussex Drive. You can find meter parking and 2 parking garages on York Street. Parking is also available across the street at 700 Sussex Drive and around the market area.

Public Transit:
There are public transit stops on Rideau street and at the Rideau Center (which is within walking distance).

Executive Chef:
Jeff Bradfield

Additional:
Banquet, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, Beer, Cocktails, Entertainment, Full Bar, Happy Hour, Late Night, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, Weekend Brunch, Wine

Special Events & Promotions:
Happy Hour weekdays from 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM.

Private Dining

SOCIAL has a variety of private and semi private dining rooms and lounges to suit your event needs. We have dining rooms that are a perfect choice for small weddings, rehearsal dinners, client appreciation dinners, pharmaceutical presentations, special family occasions, networking events and more!

Social - Ottawa Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.3

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

3.8

service

4.3

ambience

4.4

value

3.7

noise

Moderate

88% would recommend it to a friend

Romantic (6)
Special Occasion (5)
Casual (5)
See All
Good for a Date (5)
Fun (4)
Good for Groups (4)
Happy Hour (4)
Great for Outdoor Dining (4)
Creative Cuisine (4)
Good for Birthdays (4)
Notable Wine List (3)
Fit for Foodies (3)
Neighborhood Gem (3)
Business Meals (3)
Pre/post Theatre (3)
Handcrafted Cocktails (2)
Bar Seating (2)
Great for Brunch (2)
Modern Decor (2)
Hot Spot (2)
Local Ingredients (2)
Good for Anniversaries (2)
Cozy (1)
Quiet Conversation (1)
Private Room (1)
Healthy (1)
Tapas (1)
Afternoon Coffee (1)
Sunday Lunch (1)
Worth the Drive (1)
Great for Lunch (1)
Seasonal (1)
People Watching (1)
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535 reviews
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 (Montreal)·Dined 3 days ago

Went to this place again after a review in the newspaper about a new menu and reno. We tried the oysters ($1 each !!!) frog legs and squid from the "Happy Hour" snack menu - oysters were from PEI & excellent. The squid was a bit tough and the battered & fried frog legs were wet/soggy when they arrived. Both had the same dipping sauce that was pretty bland. the server was very pleasant and gave us the wine "no charge" due to a long wait for food despite a near-empty dining room & ordering before 6. Overall - I was expecting a better meal & experience. My 1st visit here was much better so may try this again .....

Tags: People Watching, Happy Hour
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food2
ambience4
service2
value2

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on July 8, 2017

Eating on the patio on a nice July evening was a good experience, although it was somewhat of a challenge for my wife with a walker to access. She especially liked her carrot ginger soup. Otherwise the food was good but not outstanding.

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining, Special Occasion, Romantic, Fun
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food3
ambience5
service4
value3

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on July 8, 2017

Brought friends here for brunch for the second time and it was as amazing as the first. Great service from Dewey, the eggs benedict and mimosas are classic satisfiers! Will be back!

Tags: Hot Spot, Romantic, Good for a Date, Fun, Local Ingredients, Neighborhood Gem, Seasonal, Great for Outdoor Dining, Great for Brunch
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on July 2, 2017

Loved the decor of the restaurant. Our server was outstanding, very friendly and knowledgeable of the menu. Only one problem. My sister ordered the shrimp ravioli. It was tiny. She went home hungry. My brother in law and husband has the seasonal pasta and I had the hen. All were excellent. We didn't go home hungry.

Tags: Special Occasion, Good for Anniversaries
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food3
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on June 30, 2017

Nice atmosphere, pleasant service. Duck confit was good, but accompanying dishes were somewhat bland and uninspired.

Tags: Good for Groups, Good for a Date, Good for Anniversaries
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food3
ambience4
service4
value3

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on June 25, 2017

A very pleasant dining experience. We were celebrating a special occasion and all of our expectations were met. Our server was especially helpful.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Afternoon Coffee, Pre/post Theatre, Sunday Lunch, Good for Birthdays, Business Meals, Worth the Drive
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food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on June 22, 2017

Steak Salad with to mush dressing. Club House with little chicken. Very small Cobb Salad. Staff are nice but this restaurant got big competition from others restaurants in Old Ottawa. The food at Black Tomato next door look better.

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food1
ambience3
service2
value1

 
 (Manitoba)·Dined on June 14, 2017

Excellent food, fresh take on great ingredients! Nice patio, good background live jazz music

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, Healthy, Local Ingredients, Neighborhood Gem, Notable Wine List
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on June 7, 2017

I was appalled with the poor quality of food. The burger buns were rock solid, there was little to no dressings in the burger, and the lettuce looked like a leaf that the Chef picked off of the tree on the patio. My date's meal was also quite disappointing in terms of how it tasted. The fumes from the cheeses were quite putrid.

Tags: Fun
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food1
ambience4
service1
value1

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on May 27, 2017

I realy like It...we had a realy good service, the price was good to, realy Hot in tere because the candle But Amazing restaurant

Tags: Casual, Happy Hour, Cozy
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food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on May 20, 2017

My girlfriend and I both enjoyed the food and the style and look of the restaurant was wondwrful

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on May 20, 2017

Lovely meal, excellent service wonderful place to dine! Thanks

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Casual, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Pre/post Theatre, Great for Outdoor Dining
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on May 14, 2017

Excellent food and great service. Waitress suggested a good wine at a reasonable price

Tags: Good for Groups, Creative Cuisine, Hot Spot, Good for Birthdays, Special Occasion
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Louisville)·Dined on May 14, 2017

The ambiance was amazing and the service was very attentive. We love the main dining room on a nice day. Oh we really wanted to like it!!! The appetizer was awesome and it was creative and beautiful and very unique (land and asparagus) and the dessert was incredible (gellato and chocolate cake) but our main course was awful. We all 3 ordered the eggs benny and the eggs were all overcooked, the mushrooms were rubbery, the english muffin was on some kind of horrible gluten free looking piece of cardboard and this was all accompanied by a sad stack of spinach leaves and some overcooked diced potatoes. I wish we had ordered SOMETHING else between the 3 of us just to see what else there was to offer. Also the wait between courses was incredibly long.

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food2
ambience5
service5
value3

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on May 14, 2017

Awesome Mother's Day brunch thank you!!
Complementary mimosas and great attention to detail by our server even though he was very busy.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on May 6, 2017

My fiance and I went to Social on a date night. It had a nice atmosphere and the servers were quite friendly. They got our order wrong and noticed almost immediately and fixed things. I would say it's a fun modern restaurant in downtown Ottawa. However it is nothing to special. I would go back but I am not in a rush.

Tags: Happy Hour, Tapas
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food3
ambience4
service3
value3

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on April 14, 2017

Food was excellent here! We ordered the scallop to start and it was amazing. Would recommend the scallops for all to try! The servers were all very attentive. Overall good dining experience.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Casual
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food4
ambience4
service4
value5

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on March 25, 2017

Very good food and drink, delivered promptly, ample portions. The rabbit was probably the best I've ever had.

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food4
ambience3
service4
value4

vip
 (Vancouver)·Dined on March 20, 2017

Been going to Social for years...always delicious and friendly service.

Tags: Special Occasion, Local Ingredients, Good for Groups
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (Ottawa)·Dined on March 15, 2017

The restaurant is ok, starts aging! Food is good, but not extraordinary, dishes small, my daughter had Lamb ribs , that was really good. For the prices they charge , they definitely must do a little effort, service just ok.

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food3
ambience3
service2

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on March 4, 2017

Social is always enjoyable. The only "sort of" issue is it's too bloody dark. It's hard to appreciate the presentation of food when you can barely see it !

Tags: Hot Spot, Happy Hour, Bar Seating, Vibrant Bar Scene, Special Occasion
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food4
ambience4
service5
value3

 
 (Vancouver)·Dined on February 27, 2017

Excellent service. Great entrees, nicely plated, well seasoned, well prepared. Good wine list but limited in the $50-75 range (I only looked at the reds).

Tags: Local Ingredients, Business Meals, Great for Lunch, Good for Anniversaries, Good for Groups
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on February 21, 2017

Nice ambiance. Great service. Food well prepared.

Tags: Good for Groups, People Watching, Vibrant Bar Scene
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on February 18, 2017

Excellent service. Great food. Fun place with great vibe.

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food5
ambience4
service5

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on February 4, 2017

We had a lovely dinner at Social--a very short walk from our hotel. My husband and I both had a very tasty roasted tomato soup to start--we then had a great pasta special and the burger as main dishes. The burger is made in house and is fresh, meaty and rich. It comes with an abundance of fries and a fabulous aioli sauce. The waiter was friendly, attentive and very eager to answer our questions about menu selections. The decor is lovely and tables are spaced well.

The only issue we have with Social is the very loud music played by a DJ (we were there on a Saturday night ). Most of the diners had in fact come for the food, although there were a few enjoying drinks at the bar. The patrons ranged in age from 20-60--average age being in the higher range (40s-50s). It was not easy to have a conversation with the dance/house music. If the crowd later in the evening is more interested in a bar/club experience, then why not let the diners eat and talk, and bring in the wine drinking Dj later on in the evening ( after 10:30). I have been to hundreds of restaurants in the past few years in many cities around the world, and have not ever encountered a DJ playing such loud thumping music in a 'Fine dining' setting.

Tags: Notable Wine List, Neighborhood Gem
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food5
ambience3
service5
value4

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on February 3, 2017

I really like Social restaurant, but I was desapointed in my meal, my rabbit was very dry :( But overall I still like my experience andI would recommand. Thank you!

Tags: Neighborhood Gem
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food3
ambience4
service4
value3

vip
 (Chicago)·Dined on February 1, 2017

This was not my first trip to Social. The service is always impeccable, and Giuseppe's pronunciation of the Italian dishes were almost enough reason to return. The drinks were excellent, as were the meals. I had the lamb, which was done really nicely, and the pea mash with it was of a perfect texture. We shared a nice dessert of Stilton chocolate cake that used the Stilton to perfection to keep the chocolate from being overly sweet.

The after-dinner drink was especially a nice touch. I'll go back to Social anytime.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Quiet Conversation, Pre/post Theatre
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on January 25, 2017

Above all the service was incredible. I dined across from the bar area with 2 out of town colleagues. We were immersed in great conversation + impeccable service + food from start to finish.

Tags: Handcrafted Cocktails, Fit for Foodies, Good for Anniversaries, Neighborhood Gem, Business Meals
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food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on January 13, 2017

Both my wife and I frequent Social every 3 months or so and I look forward to it every time I make a reservation. I always start with a "Peartini" which are amazing (sometimes I go crazy and have 2!). My wife had the Kale salad to start which was hearty and tasty. Each time I go, I switch between the ribeye steak which is "so flavourful" and the tender rack of lamb with mushy peas - very interesting and tasty combination. The creme brule was excellent! But most of all, we are always served by one of two servers who we now know and enjoy seeing. We feel very welcomed when we go there. I encourage you to try Social, which is a key place to dine in Ottawa!
Keep up the good work,
Rick

Tags: Great for Lunch, Romantic, Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (New York Area)·Dined on December 31, 2016

A fantastic three course meal with wine pairings for New Year's Eve. My wife began with the seared scallops and I had the duck carpaccio: both were fantastic! Next came my wife's beef tenderloin and I had the bouillabaisse which was not only memorable but well executed and flavourful. The banana cake putting dessert and my wife's chocolate boost cake were an indulgent end to a stellar meal.

The wine pairings were perfect. This is in Ottawa gem, though pricey, it is certainly worth it.

I have eaten at a many fantastic restaurants in Toronto, Montreal, Paris, Las Vegas, and this one competes with all of them.

Well done.

Tags: Good for Anniversaries, Good for a Date, Good for Groups, Romantic, Seasonal
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food5
ambience5
service4
value4

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on December 30, 2016

It was a first time at Social for most of our group. Amazing and very friendly service, great ambiance, and my medium rare steak was done to perfection.

Tags: Comfort Food, Outstanding Value, Special Occasion, Good for Groups, Cozy, Good for a Date, Notable Wine List, Good for Birthdays, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on December 18, 2016

Hi, we have been to your restaurant many times, this summer we were there 3 times and it was great, we were just there this past Sunday, it was horrible I hate to say. We had the cod and it was inedible. The chef tried it and actually said yes it's probably not that fresh, we thought we were going to be sick so we stopped eating it. Then they compt , we had the chocolate cake and apple crumble, again both terrible the cake was so dry, any way we do love your place, like I said we e been there often, maybe Sunday's are not a good night to go. ? I'm glad you gave us (4) in total the chance to comment,, good luck moving forward on your Sunday night meals!!!

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining
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food1
ambience5
service3
value1

vip
 (Charleston)·Dined on December 10, 2016

Great food and excellent service. The Brick Chicken was superb!

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food5
ambience4
service5

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on December 10, 2016

Ambience at social was amazing - very cozy setting for brunch. The brunch itself was a total let down. Somehow they could not poach eggs to the requested level. Had to send back my plate once for a re-do - gave up after the second error and stuck to coffee and juice (which also had to be re-done, first serving of juice was more pulp smoothie)

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food1
ambience4
service2
value2

 
 (Phoenix)·Dined on December 3, 2016

Had heard mostly great things about this restaurant but with a few caveats since their renovation. We were first timers so nothing to compare to, but overall the decor and noise level (it is the busy Christmas season I know) almost made the experience a writeoff - thankfully the food more than compensated. Also the wait staff seemed very rushed and not overly friendly. Not sure I'd rush back - I suspect there are other places I'd try first.

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food4
ambience2
service3
value3

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on December 1, 2016

Impeccable service; great attention to detail. Very welcoming atmosphere. Great for any occasion!

Tags: Authentic, Quiet Conversation
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on November 26, 2016

What an awesome evening. Great food, service, and atmosphere. Will definitely return!

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Romantic, Good for Birthdays, Good for a Date
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on November 18, 2016

We have been to Social many times and we always have an excellent meal. In the past, I had enjoyed their peartini, and even though it was no longer on the menu, they made me one. Thanks! I started with the scallops which were very tasty and tender. I really enjoyed the collard greens and the crunchiness of a few pieces of popcorn in the dish. For my main, I had the rack of lamb, which came with a tasty gramola (spelling?), fingerling potatoes and mushy peas. What an interesting melange and the rack of lamb was the most tender I have ever had. I will order it again the next time I go, which will be soon. My wife had the beet salad and the always excellent burger. If we had one minor concern, the beets were very undercooked, almost raw and difficult to cut.
Well done Social!

Tags: Good for a Date, Handcrafted Cocktails
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Toronto)·Dined on November 17, 2016

VERY loud on Friday and Saturday nights. Conversation impossible. Good quality of meat.

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food3
ambience2
service4
value2

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on November 12, 2016

Celebrated our sons engagement . We were given a beautiful table in front of the window . Once seated they brought flutes of Prosecco which was totally unexpected but definitely set the tone for the evening . Our server was attentive and knowledgable . I had the ling cod which was grilled to perfection . The decor is refined without being stuffy . Thank you Social for a wonderful night to remember !

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Hot Spot, Good for Anniversaries
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

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