THRIVING BUSINESS - Cilantro and Chive Owner Riley Kay and Restaurant Manager Jason Burns were pleased to accept the 2018 Alberta Beer Award for Best Pub/Restaurant. Todd Colin Vaughan/Red Deer Express

THRIVING BUSINESS - Cilantro and Chive Owner Riley Kay and Restaurant Manager Jason Burns were pleased to accept the 2018 Alberta Beer Award for Best Pub/Restaurant. Todd Colin Vaughan/Red Deer Express

Lacombe’s Cilantro and Chive wins big at 2018 Alberta Beer Awards

Lacombe business takes home top honours for Pub/Restaurant of the Year

Cilantro and Chive in Lacombe recently was awarded the Pub/Restaurant of Year Award at the first annual 2018 Alberta Beer Awards.

The restaurant was nominated alongside 35 other restaurants across the province that specialize in providing Alberta craft beers along with their menu.

“In our fridge we carry 135 different beers and the majority are from Alberta,” Cilantro and Chive Restaurant Manager Jason Burns said. “It keeps growing because the demand is there from our guests. There are new breweries opening up all the time that we want to support.”

Burns said winning the award was unbelievable and humbling, adding they were happy to just be nominated.

“We got into this business of hospitality to take care of people,” he said. “This is our house and we do our best to take care of people using local suppliers. The craft beer has naturally been local suppliers that we want to contribute to and support.”

Cilantro and Chive supports many different brewers, including brewers close to home like Troubled Monk in Red Deer and Blind Man Brewing in Lacombe.

“We have inadvertently become a hub for the craft beer scene here in Central Alberta,” Burns said.

Being a hub means that Burns and his team at Cilantro and Chive have been able to meet people from across the province and beyond who have stopped into Lacombe to try it out.

“It blows us away anytime we hear that and it adds fuel to the fire to be that much better,” he said. “We have a reputation to uphold and we try to always get better as the years go on. “

Getting better, according to Burns, is made easier by the burgeoning Alberta craft beer market.

“Craft beer is so diverse and even for myself, I was in the restaurant scene for a long time but didn’t understand craft beer. I really thought beer was one colour and it was pretty standard,” Burns said. “When you understand how beer was originally made hundreds of years ago, you understand that the diversity in it gives it amazing food pairings.”

Having relationships with brewers and understanding the science and history of beer has allowed Cilantro to cater their meals, too.

“The thing I love about craft beer so much is that everyone has a certain style and everybody really tries to get out of their comfort zones and try new things,” he said.

When it comes to the future of Cilantro and Chive, Burns said they are only as good as their last guest.

“We keep reinvesting into the business,” he said. “People say you should expand or get bigger, but we still want to make the environment here better. We want to become more efficient and hold ourselves up to high standards because people put us on the same level as corporate restaurants.

“We need to be at that level in every aspect.”

He added the future of Cilantro and Chive goes hand and hand with other businesses in Lacombe.

“We are so intertwined with the community and other businesses. We will go naturally with where they take us.”

He added, “It has been a whole week of good feels. We are so grateful to the Alberta craft beer scene and we will continue to be at the leading edge…hopefully.”



Send your news tips

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

As of Friday, Alberta has under 10,000 active COVID-19 cases. (Image courtesy CDC)
Three new COVID-19 deaths in Central zone, Alberta under 10,000 active cases

The Central zone sits at 849 active cases, with 52 people in hospital and 10 in the ICU.

Black Press File Photo
Maskwacis RCMP lay charges for attempted murder, kidnapping, and flight from police

Female victim remains in hospital in serious condition.

(File photo)
After several years in limbo, Parkland Manor to be torn down

Rimoka Housing Foundation has received funding and approval for the demolition

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health Dr. Deena Hinshaw announced 16 additional deaths Thursday. (Photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
No easing of Alberta’s COVID-19 measures Thursday, 678 new COVID-19 cases

The province also hit 1,500 COVID-19 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic

Lucas Berg, left, with the backpacks filled with essential items he donated to the Red Deer Mustard Seed Jan. 19, 2021. (Photo submitted)
Ponoka youth fills backpacks for less fortunate

Lucas Berg, 14, of Ponoka County, donated 20 backpacks he filled with necessities

Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, updates media on the COVID-19 situation in Edmonton, Friday, March 20, 2020. Hinshaw says residents in long-term care and supportive living facilities will remain the priority as the province grapples with a looming slowdown in COVID-19 vaccine supply. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta long-term care residents remain priority in looming slowdown of COVID vaccine

There are 119 patients in intensive care and 1,463 people have died

In this Dec. 18, 2020 photo, pipes to be used for the Keystone XL pipeline are stored in a field near Dorchester, Neb.  THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Chris Machian /Omaha World-Herald via AP
‘Gut punch’: Alberta Premier Jason Kenney blasts Biden on revoked Keystone XL permit

Kenney said he was upset the U.S. wouldn’t consult with Canada first before acting

Joe Biden, then the U.S. vice-president, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau take their seats at the start of the First Ministers and National Indigenous Leaders meeting in Ottawa, Friday, Dec. 9, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau, Biden to talk today as death of Keystone XL reverberates in Canada

President Joe Biden opposed the Keystone XL expansion as vice-president under Barack Obama

Prince Edward Island’s provincial flag flies on a flag pole in Ottawa, Friday July 3, 2020. A lozenge plant in Prince Edward Island has laid off 30 workers, citing an “almost non-existent” cold and cough season amid COVID-19 restrictions. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
‘Almost non-existent’ cold and cough season: P.E.I. lozenge plant lays off 30 workers

The apparent drop in winter colds across the country seems to have weakened demand for medicine and natural remedies

Gov. Gen. Julie Payette takes the royal salute from the Guard of Honour as she makes her way deliver the the throne speech, Wednesday, September 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand
Gov. Gen. Julie Payette resigns, apologizes for ‘tensions’ at Rideau Hall

Payette, who is the Queen’s representative in Canada, has been the governor general since 2017

Grounded WestJet Boeing 737 Max aircraft are shown at the airline’s facilities in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, May 7, 2019. WestJet will operate the first commercial Boeing 737 Max flight in Canada today since the aircraft was grounded in 2019 following two deadly crashes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Passengers unfazed as WestJet returns Boeing 737 Max to service on Calgary flight

After a lengthy review process, Transport Canada cleared the plane to return to Canadian airspace

(Photo submitted)
Community Futures brings back Social Media Challenge for 2021

This time the challenge is for non-profits and community groups

A conveyor belt transports coal at the Westmoreland Coal Co.’s Sheerness mine near Hanna, Alta., on Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2016. Coal mining impacts are already occurring in Alberta’s Rocky Mountains even as debate intensifies over the industry’s presence in one of the province’s most beloved landscapes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
As Alberta debates coal mining, industry already affecting once-protected Rockies

UCP revoked a policy that had protected eastern slopes of the Rockies from open-pit coal mining since 1976

Most Read