Last weekend I went to visit some family in Kingston, so I figured why not do a couple of reviews while I’m in town. It worked out really well, and I got to see a bunch of the city and enjoy some delicious eats at the same time.
A bit of background for those of you who are new to following me, I was born and raised in Kingston, and moved out to Whitby about 13 or so years ago. My family is out there, and my parents recently retired and made the move back. This city is a tourist spot for so many reasons. Not only is there always fun events going on downtown, but there is so much food to eat, and so many Gluten Free options.
I hope to cover them all here for you, as well as a few tourist things that are options. When it comes to Travelling, it is so important to find somewhere with plenty of entertainment and things to do, as well as have a variety of dining choices so no one gets bored. Kingston really delivers on the food front, when I started doing my research I found so many options, and was super impressed with the amount of places that knew what the word Celiac means, as well as understood it to the fullest extent.
One thing I do sadly regret is not stopping at The Big Apple located in Colborne, on my drive… I heard they have excellent pies and crumbles. Next time, thats for sure!
So fast forward the two hour drive from Whitby, to Kingston.
First stop was to head for brunch at Windmills Cafe & Catering.
Right downtown on Princess Street they even offer an outdoor patio to eat and watch the hustle and bustle of tourists and Kingstonian’s venture through the downtown core. I have eaten at Windmills last summer, and they are super careful with Cross Contamination. I suggest calling ahead, asking to speak to the manager in charge and advising of your requirements for eating. Making a reservation is good, as they are a very busy brunch spot. I ordered the French Toast and Eggs Benedict. The French Toast is actually a Cranberry/Raisin bread, which is made specifically for Windmills by a local bakery The Silly Yak (more on that bakery soon…..). I truly love that they all work together because its even more hometown friendly in my opinion. They use all separate toasters, pots & pans, etc. All of their sauces are Gluten Free, and their menu is very clearly marked with all kinds of options for Gluten Free. Overall this place is certainly Celiac Safe, just ensure to tell them your needs so they can properly take care of you.
THE SILLY YAK
Oh my goodness. The Silly Yak is the only 100% GF Bakery in Kingston. I popped in as its actually close to my parents house, which is great and super convenient. Located just off the 401 on Midland Ave, this small bakery boasts some of the best treats I’ve ever had. I got a Brownie with Vanilla Icing, probably one of the most moist (say that three times fast!) brownies I’ve ever had. It was so delicious, I definitely regret not buying more. I got a Nanaimo bar as well; something I love about this one is there is a small amount of coconut in the base, which is my kind of taste. I hate shredded coconut, but when it goes with a dish as long as it is in moderation I love it. So that was great. I also got some delicious peach tarts, and a regular butter tart. It was a great stop- worthwhile for anyone who is even travelling through to make a quick stop as it is in a convenient location.
Last stop on this trip was Aqua Terra. It is located in the Delta Hotel right downtown overlooking Confederation Park, and all the beautiful sights that Kingston offers. This place is a bit hard to find because it is right inside Delta Hotel so we had a bit of a hard time actually locating it, but after walking around we figured it out eventually.
I had pre-booked this one, and spoken to Rose ahead of time to notify of what I was hoping to do, and to give any information ahead of time. Upon getting there, there was a slight mixup in the reservation but that was quickly sorted out. Next up the chef came out, we spoke to him to figure out what was GF and not. I have to say most of the menu is safe, just inform them ahead of time of if you’re celiac or not. They do NOT have a dedicated fryer so keep that in mind my Celiac Friends. We were essentially brought out small tasters of the entire menu, all of which were phenomenal. Everything is so fresh, and you can taste just how high quality these ingredients are. The main course was a delicious Fresh Fish of the Day— Halibut with a Cabbage side. This was 100% the best fish I have ever eaten. I generally only like my fish in tuna form, or in sushi. But this piece was literally melt in your mouth, can’t get enough. It was so filling, nutritious, and that really was the cherry on top. It did not have a “fishy” taste, but yet just buttery, light, and airy. My cousin, who is NOT GF in any way, but is on the Weight Watchers plan was able to come dine with me, and she said it was mostly within per points. So thats really great as well for those on any diet essentially. The photos do not do this food justice. Scallops, Shrimps, and Duck Confit- this is on a much higher caliber than any of the other main stream Fine Dining experiences available.
Overall this was a fantastic trip. I will be back in a few weeks to try out a few other places (Atomica, Harpers Burger Bar, Chez Piggy, etc) and to take my nephew to Fort Fright for his 10th Birthday. Its always fun to go home and visit with family and take advantage of all that my hometown has to offer!
Info below for contacts at these places if you’d like to make a reservation and get information ahead of booking.
Windmills Cafe & Catering:
184 Princess St
Kingston, ON K7L 1B1
1 Johnson Street
P: 613- 549-6243
Reservations: Contact Ani Tuijtel firstname.lastname@example.org to advise her of your requirements and she can get you set up