Feast on these Kingston restaurants

By Visit Kingston

These restaurants earned Feast-On certification for their commitment to local food and drink

What is Canadian cuisine? Maple syrup? Ketchup chips? Canada’s diverse population ensures that our food scene is not only eclectic, but delicious.

Ontario alone has 49,000 farms, more than 140 of which are in Kingston. The province has four unique wine regions, more than 250 craft breweries, and plenty of unique cider and spirit production facilities. Ontario classics are bountiful — peaches, apples, sweet corn on the cob, and many more.

Feast On® is a certification program from the Culinary Tourism Alliance, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to supporting food tourism that honours local economies. The Feast On® mission is simple — to recognize businesses committed to sourcing food and beverages from Ontario. When dining at a Feast On® restaurant, you’ll know that provincial flavours will be brought to your table – and that you’ll be helping contribute to local food identity, put dollars back into communities, and reduce environmental impacts in the dining industry.

How does the process work? To get a Feast On® certification a restaurant needs 25% of its total annual food receipts to reflect Ontario food purchases, and 25% of its total annual beverage receipts to reflect Ontario beverage purchases. Finally, restaurants need to agree to the Feast On® manifesto: seek Ontario food/drink whenever possible, identify Ontario produce on menus, track and trace Ontario food and drink purchases, educate consumers about the region’s offerings, and champion local seasonal products.

Now it’s time to get to the good stuff — where to find the food. Head to one (or all) of these Kingston Feast On® certified restaurants to experience our province at its finest.

Toast & Jam Cafe

1530 Bath Road

Toast & Jam Café’s founding company, aptly named after another beloved food pairing, Bread & Butter, teased their customers for 18 years at their bakery before opening this cafe next door. Using their delicious breads and baked goods (savoury items included) as the foundation of their menu, the café uses local ingredients to make fresh salads, yummy sandwiches (the vegan chickpea is a favourite), mac and cheese, and unique breakfast options like apple caramel French toast. And yes, toast and jam is an item on the menu (served with house-made jam and butter).

Taste Ontario: Try Ceci’s chicken sandwich (chicken breast, roasted red pepper, Empire smoked gouda cheese, arugula, and house-made roasted garlic aioli on Italian bread). Pair that with their roasted beet salad with mixed greens, house-made blueberry jam vinaigrette, roasted beets, goat cheese, spiced candied pecans, and spiralized beets.

Harper’s Burger Bar

93 Princess Street

Burgers, beer floats, poutine — oh my! Get your appetite ready for upscale comfort food at Harper’s. There’s something for everyone here where you can create your own burger combo. Choose from sustainably raised Enright Cattle Co. beef, natural chicken, salmon, or vegetarian options. Go beyond the bun with pulled pork tacos or loaded cheese fries. This place is so good that it was featured on Food Network’s “You Gotta Eat Here”

Taste of Ontario: Dive into the Pig in the Orchard 2.0 Burger (havarti, bacon, apple slices, arugula, maple syrup drizzle, garlic-rosemary mayo) with an Enright Cattle Co. beef patty on a pretzel bun. To drink, try the MacKinnon Brothers Brewing Co. Red Fox ale.


71 Brock Street

Atomica fuses flavours from Spain and the Middle East to create innovative pizza and pasta dishes. This upscale yet casual restaurant also serves some of the city’s greatest cocktails. The north-side deep dish pizza is a can’t-miss. Little known fact: Atomica has an amazing plant-based menu with a hummus bar and harissa-cauliflower popcorn.

Taste Ontario: Try the Caprese mac & cheese (cavatappi, cashew “mozzarella,” diced tomato, gremolata, panko, pistachios, and balsamic reduction). To drink, enjoy the strawberry-rhubarb margarita (Cazadores tequila, Giffard’s rhubarb liqueur, Cointreau, lime, simple syrup, and strawberries).

Black Dog Tavern

69 Brock Street

This upscale pub has consistently focused on bringing local ingredients to Kingston since it opened, and their more-than-satisfied customers are the proof. You can enjoy a variety of classics from mussels to soft pretzels. You’ll also appreciate the atmosphere, featuring a sleek zinc bar, chandeliers, whimsical paintings, and exposed brick for a chic feel. You can also dine on their shady courtyard terrace.

Taste Ontario: Start your meal with fire-roasted eggplant dip made with tahini, fresh parsley and mint, pomegranate seeds, and served with za’atar grilled pita. Enjoy steak frites for your meal with AAA Ontario prime, 28-day aged beef served with fries and garlic aioli, sautéed mushrooms, and Béarnaise butter or green peppercorn sauce. Choose from an eight-ounce flank steak, 12-ounce New York striploin, or 16-ounce ribeye. Complete the experience by sipping on their Manhattan (cherry- and vanilla-infused Lot 40 rye, sweet vermouth, Angostura bitters, and orange bitters).

Dianne’s Fish Shack & Smokehouse

195 Ontario Street

East Coast and Mexico meet on Ontario Street at Dianne’s. If the sound of buttery lobster rolls, fresh tacos, and blackened shrimp have you salivating, it’s time for you to visit this downtown gem. It’s surf and turf featuring local ingredients; need we say more?

Taste Ontario: Sip on the Brickworks rosé cider or, if you’re looking for a non-alcoholic beverage, try some craft soda from The County Soda Company.


1 Johnson Street

If dining with a view is one of your favourite things, you can’t beat the waterfront view from AquaTerra’s dining room. AquaTerra’s casual fine dining menu uses locally sourced ingredients to make mouthwatering plates all day long. The restaurant has been mentioned in “Where to Eat in Canada” (an independent guide to Canadian restaurants) numerous times. AquaTerra also offers a frequently rotating menu that highlights seasonal ingredients.

Taste Ontario: Order the Aqua benedict for brunch (smoked salmon, potato rosti, Hollandaise, local mustard greens, tomato, pickled onion, and honey lemon vinaigrette) or the cavatelli pasta for dinner (white miso, cashew cheese, local mushrooms from The Fungi Connection, butternut squash, and preserved lemon).

Wharf and Feather Restaurant and Patio

2 Princess Street

Wharf & Feather elevates pub-style gastronomy. The contemporary and welcoming space draws in the local community as well as tourists wanting to enjoy the city’s largest waterfront patio or glass-enclosed dining room above the harbour. Start your day with fluffy vanilla pancakes topped with seasonal berries and fresh cream or indulge in a late-night snack with their signature chicken wings. Wharf & Feather serves incredible, locally sourced cuisine.

Taste Ontario: Start your meal with a selection of Kingston’s best charcuterie meats, local artisan cheeses, house infused olives, pickles, dips, and chips. Make it a meal by ordering the Atlantic salmon (seared Atlantic salmon, vine-ripened smoked tomato cream, shallots, baby spinach and roasted vegetable orzo).

Otter Creek Kitchen

2792 Princess Street

Otter Creek Farms offers world-class, Wagyu beef right here in Kingston. They use 100% full-blood Wagyu beef born and raised on their family farm. Their beef is organic and hormone- and antibiotic-free. Even the grain the cows eat is sourced locally. With their state-of-the-art animal husbandry tools that allow them to predict marbling, tenderness, fat melting point, and flavour, you can rest assured you’re getting the highest quality Wagyu beef available.

Otter Creek Farms opened Otter Creek Kitchen to encompass their catering services, food truck operations, and upcoming brick- and- mortar location at 2792 Princess Street. While they intend to open their storefront in early May, you can keep up with updates on their Facebook page.

Otter Creek Kitchen’s catering services include truck-catered events and catered buffets. While Wagyu beef is the star of the show at weddings, birthdays, and other celebrations, chefs Francois Drolet and William Arnaud ensure their beef is paired with other local ingredients and products from regional businesses. Everything – spicy polenta bites, glazed carrots, and Wagyu sliders – is made from scratch. The chefs also ensure vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free selections are available. You can take a look at some catered buffet and food truck sample menus.

Taste Ontario: Try the classic Otter Creek Farms Wagyu burger (five-ounce Wagyu patty, your choice of toppings, and a brioche bun). Add some other local toppings such as Wilton Cheese Factory cheddar cheese or Fungi Connection mushrooms. Don’t forget their fresh, hand-punched fries!

All of these restaurants are committed to improving Ontario’s food identity by supporting local. In 2019, the average Feast On® restaurant menu was 54% local food. Dining local supports the regional economy, while also being environmentally friendly. In the words of Feast On®, “You’re fighting the good fight.” Helping the movement is as easy as filling your plate at these locations — so use this list to pick where you’ll start your Ontario culinary experience. It’s never felt — or tasted — so good.

If you’re looking to elevate your dining experience, be sure to visit these top dining destinations in Kingston, Ontario. 

This article was updated April 2022 to reflect changes in menus and venues, using previous content by another writer.