Travel

Inside Saskatoon's world famous drive-thru perogy restaurant

Editor Aaron Kylie gets a taste of classic Ukrainian fare at Baba's Homestyle Perogies
  • Mar 07, 2017
  • 257 words
  • 2 minutes
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“Perogies and Riders football are Saskatchewan,” says Rob Engel, who, along with his wife Chelsey and their family, owns Baba’s Homestyle Perogies in Saskatoon. The diner-style restaurant in the city’s north end industrial area is world famous, not only for its sumptuous homemade Ukranian fare, but as what may be the only drive-thru perogy restaurant on the planet. As such, it’s a must-stop eatery for visitors to the city. 

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(Photo: Aaron Kylie)

“It’s part of Saskatchewan culture,” says Engel, who’s been at the helm of the nearly 40-year-old Baba’s since 2006. Locals, particularly those of Ukrainian descent (at 16.5 per cent Saskatoon is home to Canada’s largest percentage of Ukrainian Canadians per capita within a major city) see the restaurant produce as many as 10,000 perogies, 120 litres of borscht and 3,000 cabbage rolls a day. And they’re all handmade daily by a largely Ukrainian staff who bustle in the kitchen that takes up about three quarters of the restaurant (which also sells pre-packaged frozen items). Where better to get a taste of Saskatoon’s Ukrainian flavour?

The most popular menu item is the Super Combo (five perogies, two cabbage rolls and one smokie — a steamed sausage), with “BOS” (ground bacon, onions and sour cream). Many of Baba’s customers are regulars, drawn by the authentic home-style cuisine.

“They feel like they connect with the food almost on an emotional level,” says Engel. “People tell us stories of how they ate perogies when they were young.” 

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(Photo: Aaron Kylie)
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