Head to City Roast Coffee (4940 Ross St., 403/347-0893, Mon.–Sat. 7:30 a.m.–6 p.m.) for a caffeine fix in a city-style coffeehouse. Around the corner, a very different type of eatery, the Jerry Can (5005 50th Ave., 403/347-9417, open daily for breakfast and lunch), attracts a strange collection of locals who come for the inexpensive meals and to catch up on gossip.
Fast-food and family-style restaurants line 50th (Gaetz) Avenue north and south of downtown, but for Red Deer ’s most distinguished dining experience plan on eating at the Rusty Pelican (2079 50th Ave., 403/347-1414, daily 11 a.m.–10 p.m., $14–29). Mains range from the semi-exotic (Cajun-style red snapper) to the traditional (prime rib of beef with Yorkshire pudding). A menu filled with seafood starters, a sensibly priced wine list, and melt-in-your-mouth strawberry cheesecake round out this top pick.