Tide and joy: New Brunswick’s culinary delights 

From learning the secret of hand-dipping chocolate to dining on lobster aboard a cruise, New Brunswick’s growing food scene boasts plenty of new culinary experiences 

  • Apr 16, 2024
  • 622 words
  • 3 minutes
Shediac Bay Lobster Tales cruise. (Photo: Tourism New Brunswick/Matthew Hewitson)
Expand Image

New Brunswick has long enticed seafood lovers with its roadside clam shacks and bountiful lobster platters, which have buttered up the palates of many. But in recent years, culinary tourism in this easterly province has grown drastically (and deliciously), offering up myriad new adventures for the epicurean traveller that range from riverside coffee roasting to Indigenous medicine walks. Here’s a sampling of what’s on the menu.

Wabanaki Tree Spirit Tours’ three-sisters salad. (Photo: Gabby Peyton)
Expand Image

A forest buffet 

The old-growth forest in the centre of Fredericton is home to Odell Park and the city’s most interesting foraging tour. Take a medicine walk with Cecelia Brooks, a St. Mary’s First Nation (Sitansisk Wolastoqiyik) Elder, and her son, Anthony Brooks, who run Wabanaki Tree Spirit Tours. They guide you through the forest, teaching the history of local medicinal plants and trees along the way. Afterwards, they prepare wild rice and corn fritters, acorn cookies and three-sisters salad made with ingredients straight from Cecelia’s garden, all enjoyed in the park lodge.

Lobster Tales

Captain Ron starts the Shediac Bay Lobster Tales cruise with a joke and finishes with one too. What at first might seem like your typical three-hour tour is really a lesson in lobster basics; Captain Ron recounts life as a lobster fisher and the best cooking methods. But in between jokes and getting young passengers to clip a lobster claw, he makes time to convey a serious message about the importance of conservation and sustainability to a healthy Atlantic lobster fishery. The pinnacle of the tour is, of course, the food. Guests enjoy supper on board — a whole lobster you just learned to break down, served with potato salad and coleslaw.

King’s Head Inn. (Photo: Gabby Peyton)
Expand Image

Dine back in time

Stepping back in time is easy at Kings Landing near Fredericton. Strolling the open-air museum’s historic buildings and chatting with period clothing-clad interpreters about life in the Wolastoq (Saint John River) valley in the 19th century is an immersive cultural experience, but eating history is next level. Sip on an ale by candlelight on the first floor of the King’s Head Inn or savour a taste of the past in the upstairs dining room, which specializes in traditional pub fare like a ploughman’s lunch and Mrs. Long’s turkey pot pie served with a side of the dense brown bread the inn is famous for.

Riverside java

Paradise smells like roasting coffee blended with morning river mist. Fredericton-based Second Nature Outdoors offers a sunrise paddle tour on the Saint John River that starts with a canoe out to Hartt Island, where your paddling baristas and guides will explain how to roast coffee over a campfire. Sipping on maple lattes and munching on local pastries and cheese with river views is the perfect way to begin the day.

Chocolate dip

It’s all about dipping at Ganong’s factory in St. Stephen. The secret technique of hand-dipping the chocolates is so prized you aren’t allowed to take pictures of the live demonstration at the Ganong Chocolate Museum (but there are free samples). Founded in 1873, Ganong claims to have been the first to popularize the heart-shaped box for Valentine’s Day. As the scent of warm chocolate floats through the air, a museum tour includes everything from the early methods of chocolate making to the story behind the Ganong candy dynasty’s famous Pal-o-Mine bar.

The Garrison Night Market in Fredericton. (Photo: Fredericton Tourism)
Expand Image
Ganong’s chicken bones candies. (Photo courtesy Ganong)
Expand Image

Niche market

Every Thursday night in the summer, Fredericton’s historic downtown awakens as live music and delicious aromas emanate from the Garrison Night Market. Food is the main draw at this bustling market and a stroll down Food Alley is a global journey, with vendors serving up delectable dishes from Indonesia and the Philippines, Mexico and Senegal, El Salvador and Jamaica.


Are you passionate about Canadian geography?

You can support Canadian Geographic in 3 ways:

This story is from the March/April 2024 Issue

Related Content


10 things you absolutely must do in New Brunswick – according to my two-year-old

Discovering boats, buoys and deep-fried clams on an epic family road trip in the 2022 Chevrolet Traverse RS

  • 2330 words
  • 10 minutes


King tides: preparing Canada’s coastline for a future of flooding

King tides are the tipping point at which storms can become devastation — as well as a glimpse of Canada’s coastline 100 years from now. Can green infrastructure help weather the danger?

  • 1523 words
  • 7 minutes


Surrey’s Culinary Spice Trail turns up the heat

One of the fastest-growing cities in Canada is on its way to becoming a global foodie destination

  • 1284 words
  • 6 minutes


New Brunswick’s wildest adventure: Hiking the millennia-old Nepisiguit Mi’gmaq Trail

An ancient Mi’gmaq migration route that follows the Nepisiguit River’s winding route to the salt waters of Chaleur Bay, the Nepisiguit Mi’gmaq Trail is now one of the world’s best adventure trails

  • 2648 words
  • 11 minutes