NHL Stars Revealed Their Top Restaurants & A Canadian Team's Captain Loves Salt Bae

Here's where they like to eat on the road.

Brady Tkachuk of the Ottawa Senators. Right: Nusret Gokce aka Salt Bae.
Senior Editor

Brady Tkachuk of the Ottawa Senators. Right: Nusret Gokce aka Salt Bae.

NHL wedding season is over, hockey season is around the corner and with each team set to play 41 games away from home, there’s bound to be a few wild nights out at local restaurants across the U.S. and Canada.

But where do NHLers go for food when they’re visiting another city?

ESPN recently polled dozens of NHL players about their favourite restaurants ahead of the start of the season, and the hockey stars gave a bunch of great recommendations for various cities around North America.

The list is full of high-end restaurants in cities throughout Canada and the United States, and it'll also give you a glimpse into what a pro athlete eats to fuel up for a hockey game. (Spoiler: it's a lot of steak, seafood and pasta.)

New York City came up more than once, but the players also showed some love for a few spots in Canada, including a brunch place in Winnipeg and a seafood restaurant in Vancouver.

The list is filled with fancy and tasty restaurant options across the continent, although one recommendation definitely stands out. That shout-out came from Ottawa Senators captain Brady Tkachuk, who declared that his favourite road restaurant is Nusr-Et steakhouse in New York.

"It's the 'Salt Bae' guy," Tkachuk told ESPN.

Tkachuk isn't super active on Instagram so we're not sure how often he's been to Nusr-Et, or whether he's met Salt Bae himself, a.k.a. Nusret Gokce. However, if he had we're guessing there'd be a pic, as Salt Bae often poses for photos with athletes and actors who come through his doors. In 2019 for instance he showed goalie Ilya Samsonov how to do his signature salt move.

Salt Bae's also been known to share the eye-popping dinner bills that his famous visitors rack up, although with a salary of $8.2 million, we're guessing Tkachuk could afford a few gold-leaf steaks. And with several Nusr-Et locations across the U.S., Tkachuk could easily try them all in a single NHL season.

Regardless, Salt Bae's restaurant was just one of many spots that NHL stars shouted out in the poll. Here are the other restaurants that millionaire hockey players love to visit throughout an NHL season.

Brady Tkachuk, Ottawa Senators

Favourite Road Restaurant: Nusr-Et and Carbone

City: New York City

Address: 60 W 53rd St and 181 Thompson St

Price: 💸💸💸/💸💸💸

Cuisine: Steakhouse/Italian

In addition to Nusr-Et, Tkachuk shouted out Carbone in New York as being "always a good option." Carbone had a Michelin star for nearly a decade, though it lost that star in 2022.

Tkachuk has also shared a few of his other favourite road restaurants in the past. He told The Athletic in 2020 that likes Lee' Lounge in Toronto and Da Vinci Ristorante in Montreal. He also went on to list a few of his favourite spots in Ottawa including Giovanni's Restaurant, Mati and The Shore Club.

The guy's full of restaurant recommendations — especially if you like steak!

Nusr-Et Menu

Carbone Menu

Jacob Trouba, New York Rangers

Favourite Road Restaurant: Blue Water Cafe

City: Vancouver, B.C.

Address: 1095 Hamilton St.

Cuisine: Seafood

Price: 💸💸💸

New York Rangers captain Jacob Trouba hailed the seafood at Vancouver's Blue Water Cafe, adding that he tries to pay this restaurant a visit whenever he's in town to take on the Canucks.

John Tavares, Toronto Maple Leafs

Favourite Road Restaurant: Clementine Cafe

City: Winnipeg, Manitoba

Address: 123 Princess Street

Cuisine: North American

Price: 💸💸

The Toronto Maple Leafs' captain had nothing but good things to say about the brunch at Clementine Cafe, which is just a 10-minute walk from the hometown Winnipeg Jets' arena.

"It's really good," Tavares said, adding that he always tries to visit if he gets a chance.

Clementine Cafe is also easily the most affordable option on this list, so if you want to eat like a hockey player in Winnipeg, this is the place to do it!

Cole Caulfield, Montreal Canadiens

Favourite Road Restaurant: Nobu

City: Malibu, California

Address: 22706 Pacific Coast Hwy

Cuisine: Japanese/Peruvian

Price: 💸💸💸

The Montreal Canadiens star says he loves Nobu's Malibu location because it's on the water. He added that he's only been once and he's dying to go back, especially after missing out on a repeat visit last year.

Nobu Menu

Mario Ferraro, San Jose Sharks

Favourite Road Restaurant: Delilah

City: Las Vegas

Address: 3131 Las Vegas Blvd S (inside the Wynn Las Vegas hotel)

Cuisine: American

Price: 💸💸💸

It's easy to see why Toronto-born NHLer Mario Ferraro would fall for Delilah in Vegas. The restaurant is a stunning Art Deco spot designed with 1950s glamour in mind, and that's before you even get to the music or the menu. It's basically a supper club that'll take you back in time.

"I really, really like that restaurant and it has live jazz music," Ferraro told ESPN. "That's really cool."

Delilah Menu

Sidney Crosby, Pittsburgh Penguins

Favourite Road Restaurant: Quality Italian

City: New York City

Address: 57 W 57th St

Cuisine: Italian

Price: 💸💸💸

Penguins captain Sidney Crosby said New York is his favourite place for eating out.

"We got o Quality Italian a lot there," he said. "Good place. It's a heavy meal. You need a morning skate after that one."

Johnny Gaudreau, Columbus Blue Jackets

Favourite Road Restaurant: Maple & Ash

City: Chicago

Address: 8 W Maple St

Cuisine: Steakhouse

Price: 💸💸💸

Gaudreau says Maple & Ash in Chicago is his absolute favourite, and he tries to go at least once a year with fellow NHLer Erik Gudbranson.

Maple & Ash Menu

Nazem Kadri, Calgary Flames

Favourite Road Restaurant: Monarch

City: Dallas, Texas

Address: 1401 Elm St, 49th floor

Cuisine: Steakhouse

Price: 💸💸💸

Kadri clearly loves a restaurant with a view, because he gushed about the scenery at the Monarch steakhouse in Dallas. "It's up on the 60th floor," he said. "It's beautiful."

It's actually on the 49th floor but that doesn't make it any less stunning.

Monarch Menu

Clayton Keller, Arizona Coyotes

Favourite Road Restaurant: The Pink Door

City: Seattle, Washington

Address: 1919 Post Alley

Cuisine: Italian

Price: 💸💸💸

Keller struggled to recall the name of this spot but he did remember the "unbelievable" Italian food and steak. This choice should also be no surprise if you've made it this far down the list, because "Italian" and "steak" are basically the two food groups that NHL players enjoy.

The Pink Door Menu

Josh Elliott
Senior Editor
Josh Elliott is a Senior Editor for Narcity Media, leading the Food & Drink and Lifestyle teams with a focus on entertainment interviews. He is based in Toronto, Ontario.