As Felipe Gomes's new restaurant was being built, he happened across a boarded-up room downstairs. Though the 600-square-foot room, dusty with a half-century of disuse, contained only boxes of aged financial records, Felipe instantly saw the space's potential. The drywall and plaster were torn down to reveal yellow-brick walls and walnut beams, which became the foundation for Aroma Mediterranean Restaurant's wine cellar. Now the space is fully remodelled; beyond a doorway entangled with grapevines, a vault built into the floor displays 220 bottles of wine visible through heavy-tempered glass. Nearly 100 more bottles of wine shelved along the walls vie for tasters' attentions with flashy magic tricks and labels boasting various international origins.
Diners sift through a menu equally inspired by international flavours. Portuguese and Spanish recipes transform fresh seafood, duck, and steak into entrees steeped in inventive sauces, such as the chef's favourite—calamari stuffed with chorizo and breadcrumbs in an Andalusian-style sauce. Servers can deliver meals in a courtyard-esque dining room or a private room where video conferencing enables patrons to dine with family or etiquette instructors halfway around the world. Guests can also learn to re-create their meal at home by visiting the eatery's on-site cooking studio, whose classes demonstrate the art of the four-course meal.
After pleasant days spent perusing the cute boutiques and high-end shops of Richmond Row, visitors often stroll over to Winks Eatery to wind down with juicy burgers and frosty brews. In the summer, they bask in the warm sun out on the front patio as servers bring forth pitchers and crispy wings. Others head inside—where fireplaces flicker in cold months—and perch along the wooden bar to watch sports games on the glimmering flat screens. Throughout the week, the casual space plays host to live music and karaoke nights.
As guests relax, chefs are hard at work in the kitchen, carving up steaks and grilling paninis. They fold premium toppings into a sweeping variety of specialty burgers, from a Jerk burger topped with jerk sauce and a grilled pineapple ring to the USA burger with barbecue sauce, bacon, and mushrooms that can be used interchangeably with US nickels. Come breakfast time, cooks turn their attention to breakfast pizzas, omelettes, fluffy pancakes, and egg wink muffins stacked with bacon or ham, cheddar cheese, and a fried egg.
Upon wandering into The Koffee House, the aroma of percolating coffee greets noses a second before the smiling staff offers its own cheerful greetings. Bustling behind the counter whilst chatting with patrons, the staff deploys fair-trade and organic coffee beans in the creation of their caffeine-laden drinks. As baristas artfully top off lattes with dollops of foam, a crew of culinary wizards whips up wholesome breakfast and lunch dishes using high-quality ingredients such as fresh grilled chicken breast, seasonal fruits, and peameal bacon. The dining room?s exposed-brick walls and bright red decor bolsters The Koffee House?s warm, friendly ambiance, and free WiFi invites guests in for study sessions or work dates amid cozy booths. While eager for their guests to sit down and eat, the staff also hands off orders through their newly installed drive-thru window to facilitate on-the-go noshing and highway food fights.
The Marble Slab Creamery sensory experience begins by just walking past the storefront, where the buttery scent of fresh-baked waffle cones drifts out into the air. Gourmet ice creams are freshly crafted on site from Marble Slab?s original recipe, enticing customer's eyes with a rainbow of colors. Once clients have made a flavor selection, they choose from a smorgasbord of mix-ins, from fresh fruit to nuts to candy and crumbled cookies, which an ice cream chef then hand-folds in atop a frosty marble slab before packing the finished custom-designed flavor masterpiece into a house-made waffle cone.
In addition to procuring hand-held treats, Marble Slab Creamery can send creations home in a variety of other formats, such as ice cream cakes, cupcakes, and hand-packed quarts, or in the capable hands of a catering team for sprucing up special events such a corporate get-togethers or school functions with portable marble slabs or sundae bars in tow.
A mere sandwich throw from Niagara Falls, East Side Mario's is found within the Four Points by Sheraton Niagara Fallsview Hotel, directly across the street from Fallsview Casino. Below elegant chandeliers, Mario's red and white checked tablecloths support grilled salmon, juicy steak, and Italian-imported pastas slathered in spicy arrabbiata or pesto alfredo. The doors of the kitchen part as servers emerge bearing Sicilian-style pizzas fresh from the sweltering interior of a stone oven.
Through the steam rising from Mario's all-you-can-eat garlic homeloaf, diners can peer at the framed mirrors hanging on gold walls. After enjoying wine or cocktails at Mario's polished wooden bar, guests can question servers about Four Points hotel accommodations or the strength needed to hurl a pizza across Niagara Falls and into the mouth of a waiting American.
The owners of Friday Knight Lights put food first in their efforts to create a complete dining experience for their guests. However, as the name suggests, their love of local sports could not be denied, so they filled their 6,050-square-foot venue with 30 big-screen TVs showing everything from London Knights hockey to soccer, baseball, basketball, and football. The sporting foodies also have designs to broadcast Knights games on a 300-square-foot screen mounted on the west wall of the seven-storey market tower facing the John Labatt Centre. Creating a soundtrack for their carefully chosen menu and sporty vibe are two baby grand pianos, whose ivories are regularly tickled by maestros eager to help them develop into adult grand pianos. To keep its patrons' whistles wet, the eatery also boasts a 74-foot bar stocked with spirits and brews to complement the burgers, wings, ribs, and steaks.