We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Your thoughts on these dining venues

Danbury, Connecticut
Level Contributor
5,673 posts
81 reviews
Save Topic
Your thoughts on these dining venues

With our trip to Niagara Falls and Niagara on the Lake drawing closer I am now researching restaurants.

My husband and I are staying in NOTL for two nights only. Our first night we will be arriving after a seven-hour car trip. I am thinking we will stay close to NOTL that day, maybe take in a winery if lucky, walk around the area, and have dinner. I'm thinking we will also have dinner in NOTL for the second night as well.

I like what I have read about the Niagara Culinary Institute Dining Room, Grill on King (although I can't find an online menu), Stone Road Grill and The Old Winery. Rack of lamb is one of my husband's favorite dishes and since he is driving I think it would be nice to take him to a place one of those nights that has it. Several of those restaurants seem to have it on their menus , at least seasonally.

I did look at Peller Estates and Hillebrand, but the menus are more formal than what I like.

What are your thoughts?

St. Catharines...
Level Contributor
160 posts
16 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Your thoughts on these dining venues

I have heard mixed reviews about the Culinary Institute Restaurant. Some have raved about it, others have found it overpriced and just "ok". It is also about a 15-20 minute drive from Old Town, so that may influence your decision on whether or not to go there. I personally haven't eaten there.

I also haven't tried the Grill on King.

Stone Road Grille (aka REST) is one of my favourite NOTL restaurants. I have never been disappointed there. The quality of the food and service is always good and they have an extensive local wine list. Good atmosphere. I would recommend it.

The Old Winery Restaurant is good if you stick with the starters and pizzas/salads. I have found that once you get to the entrees they tend to be inconsistent and sometimes just not good at all. I recommend it for a lighter meal. The restaurant is very casual and they do have a great patio.

Waterloo, Canada
Level Contributor
256 posts
42 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Your thoughts on these dining venues

We were in NOTL this weekend (I'm about to post a trip review!) and ate at Stone Road and at The Old Winery. Had good meals at both.

The menu at Stone Road was NOT the one currently on their website. It did feature some of those dishes, as well as some more seasonal far (lots of asparagus, both green and white--although the season for that is almost over, so it may change again very soon). It was delicious, and we enjoyed it thoroughly! It was not winery-formal, but it is fine dining, so you may prefer that on your second day if you're tired on your first night.

The Old Winery has a new wine bar (I don't know if the wine bar area itself is new, but they're adding a new wine bar menu that I think starts next week? I saw it on their website and it looks good for more casual fare--more choices of pizzas, for one thing). We ate in the wine bar (with a live jazz trio), but ate off the regular menu as the new menu wasn't available yet. We each had a started (salad for me, soup for him) and then shared a pizza. We had had a heavy lunch & been wine tasting much of the day, so it was the perfect light meal for us. The pizza was really excellent, I imagine that's the best thing to get there, although I can't say for sure.

We didn't eat at the other restaurants you mention, so I can't comment. But we had a lovely weekend, and I hope you have a great trip, too!

London, Canada
Level Contributor
3,759 posts
69 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Your thoughts on these dining venues

Stone Road Grille is a definite "yes" any time of the day. We were underwhelmed by Peller (considering the cost) but have had good experiences at Hillebrand.

One dining room we also enjoy is at the Riverbend Inn, overlooking vineyards, which does list a lamb dish----- for your husband.

www.riverbendinn.ca/dining/#dinnerentree

Oakville, Canada
Level Contributor
1,254 posts
100 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Your thoughts on these dining venues

Hillebrand and Stone Road Grille are also my current top two - both are great dining experiences.

Brampton, Canada
Level Contributor
4,560 posts
Save Reply
5. Re: Your thoughts on these dining venues

We also enjoyed the Stone Road Grill.

Ottawa, Canada
Level Contributor
13,856 posts
47 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Your thoughts on these dining venues

Hi Voyagereuse,

Welcome to the NIAGARA-ON-THE-LAKE TRAVEL FORUM.

Agree Peller & Hillebrand can "appear" a tad fussy... less so though for lunch... still the best meal I've ever had in my life (2x now) has been at Hillebrand's Restaurant... we did lunch both times. Expensive, YES but soooo worth it !

Cheers!

Wine-4-2

London, Canada
Level Contributor
3,759 posts
69 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Your thoughts on these dining venues

The Toronto Star had an article in the Saturday issue about great dining experiences in Niagara on the Lake......the link will only be good for a week so I thought I would post some of it here, as well as a synopsis.

The Stone Road Grille gets top marks, as does Zees Grill for it's location and patio. Also included is a new spot.....The Ravine Vineyard Estate Winery which is a 20 minute drive south to St. David. The Epicurean and De Luca's Wine Country Restaurant get mentions.

But top marks go to the Charles Inn.

"Not only does this restaurant boast one of the most elegant venues in the area, inside a lovingly restored 1832 building, but in Chef William Brunyansky it has a local treasure. He’s always known how to get the most from the high-quality ingredients he uses, but his current tasting menu (which includes perfectly seared foie gras, crisp-skinned pickerel, meltingly luscious lamb and a superb strawberry rhubarb cheesecake) is, in my opinion, the best dining option in Niagara-on-the-Lake. Sophisticated service and a smartly selected regional wine list round out the picture to perfection."

So you have a few more choices to consider. :)

Danbury, Connecticut
Level Contributor
5,673 posts
81 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Your thoughts on these dining venues

You all are making me think, and I mean that in a good way.

This talk about Hillebrand is making me think maybe we could leave our house at 3 a.m. and factoring in a few brief stops and a border stop, we could make it to The Shaw Club by lunchtime. In which case, we could have lunch at Hillebrand.

The main problem for me though is the menu. The one online doesn't wow me. Since it might be seasonal, I have sent an e-mail to the chef asking if he can tell me the summer lunch menu.

Fingers crossed.

ALSO, I almost forgot. If you could tour just one winery which one would it be? My wine preferences are crisp white and sparkling, my husband likes reds. So there you are. We both are curious to try icewine. Thanks!

Danbury, Connecticut
Level Contributor
5,673 posts
81 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Your thoughts on these dining venues

Based on your recommendations, I made a lunch reservation at Hillebrand. It looks lovely! On their Web site they have several interesting sounding tours and activities including a Sparkling Wine tasting which appeals to me in particular....

Would you recommend we tour Hillebrand or participate in an activity there after lunch? Or is there another winery you would recommend? I am also leaning towards utilizing The Shaw Club's shuttle service because I think we will be tired of driving.

Thanks!

St. Catharines...
Level Contributor
160 posts
16 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Your thoughts on these dining venues

Hillebrand would be a good choice for you because they have wines suited to both of your tastes. The restaurant is very good and the grounds are nice to walk around. I have been to a few different events there and have always enjoyed it.

Since you like sparkling wine, Hillebrand makes the Trius Brut rose that is very good. I don't usually enjoy sparkling myself but I really liked it and would recommend trying it.

Get answers to your questions about Niagara-on-the-Lake