The Boot Restaurant opened in 2016. It’s a cozy space with just 10 tables. The walls feature vintage posters with dreamy Italian locales like Milano, Capri, and Firenze. Bottles of wine, Campari and Aparo sit on the shelves. There is animated chatter between the servers, regulars and new customers alike. The eatery is designed to feel just like the Italian trattorias that line the ancient cobbled streets of almost every Italian city, town and village.
You will find a simple menu filled with rustic food that celebrates Italian roots, using both local and imported ingredients to create just the right flavours. Like any good Italian trattoria, the portion sizes are big, and the prices fair. Traditional family recipes are used. The lasagna is a point of pride (Italian diners have told them it’s better than what they can find in Italy), and that recipe was passed down through the generations. Other must-taste dishes are the Cacciucco Livornese – a traditional Tuscan seafood stew, and the Risotto Montanara – a rice dish with the dynamite flavour trio of speck prosciutto, Gorgonzola cheese, and delicate pears.
The Pizza at the Boot is pretty special too, and something you won’t find anywhere else in Cochrane. Pinsa Romana is a style of pizza that stems from an ancient recipe made by peasants in Rome. The dough is handmade in-house daily (they did reveal their secret ingredient, however this author has been sworn to secrecy). The result of this recipe is a lighter, crispier dough. They top the dough with the highest quality ingredients they can source. Imported Italian meats, fresh vegetables, and a sauce made with imported Italian tomatoes. From the most simple Margherita Pizza – just tomatoes, basil and mozzarella, to more creative combinations like the Romana – with mozzarella, roasted garlic caramelized onions, baked rosemary potato wedges and truffle oil, a food lover is never short of options here.
An insider tip – when you dine at The Boot, be sure to leave some space for dessert. The tiramisu here is positively addictive, with the perfect balance of the sweet creamy marscapone cheese, strong Italian espresso, soft biscotti layers, and just a hint of chocolate.
Don’t miss a chance to explore the flavours of Italy in the foothills of the Canadian Rockies. The cozy ambiance and home-made, authentic Italian cuisine make The Boot one of Cochrane’s culinary hidden gems!