About Social - Ottawa

537 Sussex Drive
Ottawa, ON K1N 6Z6
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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.

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

Private Party Facilities:
The lower lounge is a private area that can accommodate up to 18 people for dinner. The S-Lounge - a private dining room for groups of 28 or combined with the adjacent room can seat up to 50 guests. There is also the upper lounge area that can host up to 24 people for a sit down dinner. Last but not least there is the front dining room. This area has an open feel and can accommodate up to 28 people for a dinner. There are many options which can accommodate anything from large business meetings to intimate parties.

Private Party Contact:
Eleanor Quesnel: 613-789-7355x

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.

Restaurant Photos

  • Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
  • Pasta - Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
  • Creme Brulee - Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
  • Burger - Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
  • Steak - Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
  • The Social Plate - Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
  • Ling Cod With Clam Risotto - Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
  • Duck Confit - Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
Pasta - Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
Creme Brulee - Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
Burger - Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
Steak - Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
The Social Plate - Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
Ling Cod With Clam Risotto - Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON
Duck Confit - Social - Ottawa, Ottawa, ON

Social - Ottawa Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.3

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.1

service

4.4

ambience

4.2

value

3.8

noise

Moderate

95% would recommend it to a friend

Special Occasion (15)
Good for a Date (15)
Fit for Foodies (12)
See All
Romantic (10)
Modern Decor (10)
Creative Cuisine (9)
Good for Groups (8)
Great for Outdoor Dining (8)
Hot Spot (8)
Happy Hour (7)
Good for Anniversaries (6)
Neighborhood Gem (6)
Business Meals (6)
Casual (6)
Handcrafted Cocktails (5)
Private Room (5)
Quiet Conversation (5)
Great for Lunch (5)
Cozy (5)
Bar Seating (4)
Good for Birthdays (4)
Fun (4)
Pre/post Theatre (4)
Local Ingredients (4)
Late-night Find (4)
Authentic (3)
Historic (3)
Vibrant Bar Scene (2)
Worth the Drive (2)
Great for Brunch (2)
Outstanding Value (2)
Notable Wine List (2)
Gluten Free Options (1)
People Watching (1)
Sunday Lunch (1)
Live Music (1)
Scenic View (1)
Paleo Friendly (1)
Organic (1)
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484 reviews
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Had heard mostly great things about this ...

 
 (Phoenix)·Dined 3 days ago

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

Impeccable service; great attention to d ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined 5 days ago

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

Tags: Historic, Authentic, Quiet Conversation
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food5
ambience5
service5
value4

What an awesome evening. Great food, ser ...

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on November 27, 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, Modern Decor
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food5
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value5

We have been to Social many times and we ...

 
 (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
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VERY loud on Friday and Saturday nights. ...

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

Celebrated our sons engagement . We were ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on November 13, 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, Modern Decor, Private Room
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food4
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value4

overall the experience was awesome. the ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on November 12, 2016

overall the experience was awesome. the atmosphere was very upbeat and unique. service was very good staff was knowledgeable and very accommodating. prices were a touch on the high side which was expected. overall 5 stars and will go again.

Tags: Authentic, Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies, Hot Spot, Fun
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food5
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value2

We were 2 people and out table was right ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on November 11, 2016

We were 2 people and out table was right next to the window. I can tell you that it was a very cold windy night and that made sitting by the window very uncomfortable.

I asked for my steak to be cooked medium and it was over done.

My glass of wine from the bar had some of the top metal cover from the wine glass in the glass. As it was red wine I only found out towards my last sip of the glass.

The server was very gracious and instead of coming back with another glass of wine she arrived with 2 shots. I don't think the resto understands that should I have not noticed the piece of metal wrapper in the glass and I consumed it could have led to a serious law suit.

Overall felt cramped and uncomfortable at our seat. My steak was over cooked and I was still charged the full price of the steak

Tags: Good for a Date
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food3
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service4
value2

We went there for a dinner for two on a ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on October 30, 2016

We went there for a dinner for two on a Sunday evening. The waitress was very polite and attentive. The Oysters were some of the best we've ever had, the cheese board was incredible, the seasonal pasta was fresh and al dente, and the rabbit dish was delicious. We will definitely be returning to order the oysters and try the other menu options.

Tags: Local Ingredients, Outstanding Value, Happy Hour, Authentic, Quiet Conversation, Late-night Find, Special Occasion, Handcrafted Cocktails, Good for a Date, Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups
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food5
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Good food. Nice selection. Great servic ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on October 29, 2016

Good food. Nice selection. Great service. ............

Tags: Casual, Pre/post Theatre
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food4
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service4
value4

Well located, in Byward Market. Food was ...

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on October 28, 2016

Well located, in Byward Market. Food was very good, especially liked the beet salad and kale salad . The oysters were also very good. We were in a large group and everyone enjoyed the mains that they ordered. We had a variety of dishes eg duck, rabbit, steak and frites, I had the ling cod which was perfectly cooked, delicate, with large flakes that were delicious.

Tags: Romantic, Historic, Special Occasion
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food4
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Lovely decor. Comfortable booths and uph ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on October 20, 2016

Lovely decor. Comfortable booths and upholstered chairs. Quiet. Has an intimate feel.

Interesting menu. Duck confit very good. Attentive service.

Tags: Casual, Great for Lunch, Special Occasion, Good for a Date
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food4
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Amazing service, great food and relaxed ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on October 15, 2016

Amazing service, great food and relaxed atmosphere made our special occasion even more so.

Tags: Romantic, Bar Seating, Happy Hour, Cozy, Neighborhood Gem, Good for a Date, Good for Birthdays, Private Room, Special Occasion, Good for Groups, Outstanding Value, Modern Decor, Local Ingredients, Good for Anniversaries
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food5
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my personal taste you should always have ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on October 11, 2016

my personal taste you should always have crème brûlé on the dessert menu.

Tags: Great for Lunch
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food4
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As always it was fun and the food great ...

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on October 8, 2016

As always it was fun and the food great :) Lovely staff too! They made my birthday feel special.

Tags: Romantic, Creative Cuisine, Bar Seating, Late-night Find, Great for Outdoor Dining, Good for Groups, Sunday Lunch, Casual, Cozy, Modern Decor, Good for a Date, Neighborhood Gem, Great for Lunch, Fun, Business Meals
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food4
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The sea urchin bernaise sauce could have ...

vip
 (Chicago)·Dined on September 28, 2016

The sea urchin bernaise sauce could have been a starter/soup... it was great! All the meals at the table were well-enjoyed, and the environment was great for good conversation.

Tags: Modern Decor, Organic, Special Occasion, Neighborhood Gem, Worth the Drive, Fit for Foodies, Pre/post Theatre, Great for Outdoor Dining, Quiet Conversation
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food4
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We had a good meal at Social - was brunc ...

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on September 24, 2016

We had a good meal at Social - was brunch on the weekend; friendly staff, very good food, though the service was a bit slow, nothing to complain about. It's in a great location in the Market and great for people watching. Good place to have a social gathering too.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem, Good for a Date, Modern Decor, Great for Brunch, Special Occasion, Hot Spot, Vibrant Bar Scene, Bar Seating
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food4
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Service was slow waitress wasn't friendl ...

 
 (Washington DC)·Dined on September 24, 2016

Service was slow waitress wasn't friendly. Didn't meet expectations.

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food4
ambience3
service2

Service was attentive and unobtrusive. H ...

 
 (Las Vegas)·Dined on September 20, 2016

Service was attentive and unobtrusive. Have dined here numeorous times and although the food was good on this occasion the main meals were not hot when they arrived. Both the beet and the kale salads were delicious while both the salmon and the steak frites were disappointing as they were lukewarm. We did not mention to the wait staff as we were pressed for time.

Tags: Good for Groups, Fit for Foodies
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food3
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We met friends for lunch a few days ago. ...

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on September 15, 2016

We met friends for lunch a few days ago. We liked the decor and atmosphere but frankly, the food was a disappointment. The burger in the daily special kept popping out of the bun and was messy. The kale Caesar was not a hit but our friend liked the dressing. The fish and chips were also less than anticipated. The fish servings were small, the fries greasy, and there was no side of cole slaw or other vegetable which is customary. And for $18, I would have expected to have halibut or haddock rather than cod. My wife would have loved to order a cocktail but at $12-$15 each, they are just too expensive. The table was a bit large for us but private and the service was good.

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food3
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I had the luch box - a smoke meat sandwi ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on September 14, 2016

I had the luch box - a smoke meat sandwich

the meat was too fat - maybe offer lean or...

Tags: Great for Lunch, Business Meals
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food2
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value2

We like this restaurant. We got the serv ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on September 10, 2016

We like this restaurant.

We got the service in French & in English!

We appreciate it a lot!!

The food was good & our waiter was excellent!

I recommend this place!

Thanks

Tags: Good for a Date, Romantic, Special Occasion, Happy Hour, Cozy
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food4
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value2

I have been to Social at least a dozen t ...

vip
 (Ottawa)·Dined on September 4, 2016

I have been to Social at least a dozen times over the years. Food is fairly consistent. Had the duck confit which was very nice. Good sized duck leg with decent portion of veggies and potatoes. It came with a 'basil pea puree', unfortunately the basil was overpowering and could not really taste the pea. They also appeared to use a basil that has a strong minty flavor associated with it on top of that! On a positive note, they've improved their bread, now 2 types of baguette: white and multigrain with raisins.

Desert selection very limited - basically 4 items and most of which are very unorthodox. Not one chocolate selection. Don't come here with big hopes on dessert.

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining, People Watching, Fit for Foodies, Fun, Handcrafted Cocktails, Historic, Romantic
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food4
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As always, it was excellent. The wait s ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on September 2, 2016

As always, it was excellent. The wait staff is always good at informing about the ingredients used and the courtyard is always nice to enjoy during nice weather evenings. This is one of the restaurants I know will be consistently good as far as food, service, and atmosphere is concerned.

Tags: Special Occasion, Local Ingredients
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food5
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service5
value5

My friends and I went to Social to celeb ...

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on August 25, 2016

My friends and I went to Social to celebrate a special occasion and we were very well taken care of by the staff while we were there! Our bartender Tanya was incredible! She made sure that we enjoyed all our drinks and the food we ordered (and even went out of her way to make custom drinks for us)! It was a wonderful night, and the staff made it even more wonderful! I can't say enough good things about our experience at Social!

Tags: Good for a Date, Bar Seating, Good for Groups, Hot Spot, Happy Hour, Late-night Find, Handcrafted Cocktails, Romantic, Modern Decor
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food4
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Pureed yam with coconut served with the ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on August 25, 2016

Pureed yam with coconut served with the wild salmon was not well-balanced.... very little taste of the coconut .

Wine was overpriced.

Presentation of the Kaffir lime pie with meringue topping was disappointing.

Balsamic coulis on the brownie with blue cheese was messy rather than decorative. However, the brownie was excellent.

Tags: Good for a Date
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food3
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value3

Limited menu and food very pricey. Wine ...

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on August 22, 2016

Limited menu and food very pricey. Wine mark-ups ridiculously high. $60 for a so-so Chardonnay, and that was the least expensive. By-the-glass selections and prices also unimpressive. Have been to Social several times in the past and had very good dining experiences ... this time was more than a disappointment and we won't go back or recommend it.

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food2
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The fish and chips was very good but I w ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on August 22, 2016

The fish and chips was very good but I was disappointed with the laksa. The kaffir lime pie dessert was satisfactory.

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining, Great for Lunch, Quiet Conversation
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It was my birthday and I wanted duck con ...

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on August 15, 2016

It was my birthday and I wanted duck confit. I researched and found that Social's confit was supposed to be wonderful - and it was! I ordered PEI oysters with a martini and loved it! My husband enjoyed the warm mushroom salad and the duck confit. The service was extraordinary. Thanks for a great birthday meal.

Tags: Good for Groups, Romantic, Notable Wine List, Great for Outdoor Dining, Great for Brunch, Special Occasion, Fit for Foodies
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food5
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Great meal and great service. Knowledgea ...

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on July 16, 2016

Great meal and great service. Knowledgeable and competent server. Excellent Steak Frites. Code was awesome. But music was overpowering.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups, Great for Outdoor Dining, Hot Spot, Late-night Find, Notable Wine List, Vibrant Bar Scene
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We found Social to exceed our expectatio ...

 
 (Vancouver)·Dined on July 14, 2016

We found Social to exceed our expectations related to the space, food, drinks and staff friendliness .

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We opted for a tapas style ordering of m ...

 
 (London)·Dined on July 4, 2016

We opted for a tapas style ordering of most of the appetisers. Although the food was not exceptional, there were some high notes (the mushroom on toast, the octopus, the pork belly) and the service was truly noteworthy - our waitress knew her role, knew the menu instinctively and was great at explaining and selling it. My friend and I were reunited after several years not seeing each other and it was a perfect setting. We would definitely come back and I would recommend it, absolutely.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Great for Brunch, Great for Outdoor Dining, Neighborhood Gem, Notable Wine List, Romantic, Special Occasion, Vibrant Bar Scene
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Very disappointing. Wine selection was u ...

vip
 (Montreal)·Dined on June 25, 2016

Very disappointing. Wine selection was unimaginative, limited and of poor value. More disappointing and somewhat shocking was getting served HALF a small Cornish hen as my main course.

Who does this and why? The Market is a tourist trap and Social appears to be taking advantage. It's too bad because the food is pretty good but the value is horrendous. Charging $18 for a large pour of mediocre wine and serving customers small portions is insulting. Finally, the coffee, both decaf and regular is amazingly horrible and should be avoided. There are many better options in Ottawa and in the Market for dinner.

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food2
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I requested the room with the window ove ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on June 23, 2016

I requested the room with the window overlooking the courtyard - it was more private and suited our business appreciation dinner. We enjoyed before dinner drinks, appetizers and wine with our mains - our server was pleasant and didn't rush us but tended to our needs.

Social is an upscale restaurant that I would recommend to our friends and business associates.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups, Great for Lunch, Great for Outdoor Dining, Late-night Find, Notable Wine List, Romantic, Scenic View, Special Occasion
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food4
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The coffee was terrible! Couldn't drink ...

 
 (London)·Dined on June 18, 2016

The coffee was terrible! Couldn't drink it. Restaurant of this caliber must have better coffee.

Tags: Good for Groups
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The food is ok, but very expensive for ...

 
 (Toronto)·Dined on June 17, 2016

The food is ok, but very expensive for the quality (e.g. Fries are 8$, and the pork belly, while delicious, was $17 for an appetizer

The service left much to be desired, for starters they didn't bother to clarify whether I wanted at 5 or 8 oz. glass of wine; they simply brought me an 8 oz and charged $20 to the bill. 5 is standard - they should have asked instead of assuming. The server was very imposing and our group felt like we were constantly being interrupted by the server.

Overall, the atmosphere is nice, the food is ok, but it is all very overpriced (even by Byward market standards).

Tags: Good for Groups
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food3
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Of the four times we have been to this r ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on June 17, 2016

Of the four times we have been to this restaurant, this is the first time we encountered an issue with the service. Simply a missed order. Otherwise, this is a great restaurant with excellent staff. We will definitely be returning.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Great for Outdoor Dining, Notable Wine List
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Men's washroom was out of soap. Informed ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on June 11, 2016

Men's washroom was out of soap. Informed server and bar staff three times. No one refilled

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups, Great for Outdoor Dining, Special Occasion
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My wife and I had a lovely time at Socia ...

 
 (Ottawa)·Dined on June 10, 2016

My wife and I had a lovely time at Social on Friday night. First, the staff was excellent, so accommodating and friendly. Second, the food was tasty and fresh with innovative combinations. We especially loved the mushroom pasta dish, light sauce, beautifully cooked pasta...yummy! Also, the fresh bread with truffle butter was exceptional.

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Great for Outdoor Dining, Romantic, Special Occasion
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food5
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An ideal evening in an Ottawa Courtyard.

vip
 (Chicago)·Dined on June 1, 2016

Don't go to social if you are in a hurry- but the pacing of the meal, given that we had the time, was very nicely relaxed.

The charcuterie plate was really nicely varied, and the fish of the day served with a large-grain cous cous, was perfectly prepared.

I would return (and will)!

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups, Great for Outdoor Dining
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