Boasting two historic waterfront downtown areas—one within walking distance of our office—we consider ourselves pretty lucky to live in the BoQ.
Since we turned the page in the Discovery Guide earlier this week, we have been helping you get to know our team a bit better. We set aside some time this week to think about our favourite downtown spots to hang out, shop, catch a show or grab a bite.
Downtown Favourites: Bay of Quinte Staff Picks – Dug
Most people think of shopping when they think of downtown. I’m a parent of three, so shopping for myself tends to be at the bottom of my list, along with washing my car (or, just plain cleaning my car) and finally sitting down to map out my family tree (still in draft mode on a 3/5″ floppy disk). When I’m downtown in Belleville or Quinte West, it’s typically because I’m grabbing a bite or taking a meeting. Here are some of the spots you’d be more apt to find me:
L’Auberge de France – It’s one of the best places to go for a lunch meeting because it’s got a great mix of dishes regardless of dietary restriction. Plus, you can see the food in the display right in front of you, which just works better than a menu for us visual learners. Everything’s tasty – quiche, salads, sandwiches, soups and good coffee. Jean-Marc created a staple with those Saturday morning croissants and they really are worth showing up early to nab for the weekend. My hands-down fave is the almond.
The River Brake Cafe – Honestly, I passed this place by for years and didn’t even realize it was a restaurant. One day I wanted to eat somewhere new and Googled restaurants in the region and picked here – I’m sure glad I did. It’s got a great “down home” feeling – delicious homemade sandwiches and soups, and as you sit through the course of a meal, all sorts of regulars come in, receiving greetings from the staff: “Hey Jerry! How’s your leg?” or “How’s it going, Sue? Did you get to Warkworth on the weekend?” It’s neat to hang and watch the interactions of people who have obviously made this a big part of their every day lives.
The Brake Room – I used to work out of the office a lot more than I do now, and this was a terrific spot for it. Strong wifi + a good vibe + great coffee = stellar out-of-office experience. Adam’s always got solid tunes pumping and something interesting on the TV, plus there are great snacky foods to keep you going. I like lots of activity around me when I’m working, and the constant in/out action of people or the traffic out the window on Dundas both satisfy that need. Visit later in the day for what might be the biggest selection of craft beer of anyone around.
Trenton Delicatessen – I love me some cheese, bread and cured meats. This place has all of those—therefore, I love me some Trenton Deli. They always post their specials for the week on Facebook, which just makes the whole place even more appealing to me for some reason. Erin and Adam also do catering, which is, understandably, also pretty terrific (we’ve even used them for meetings in the past!).
(For dinner this time!)
Capers – Exposing the limestone along the entire north wall at Capers, along with Mel’s decision to do live music every weekend, has created such a terrific atmosphere. I typically default to the burger when I’m there, but everything I’ve tried on the menu so far has been awesome. It’s not often we get a babysitter and get out for a proper meal and a drink, but Capers is always a stellar choice when we do.
Tomasso’s – There was one time when my wife and I tried to make a reservation a week ahead, and it was booked solid. Now we know to book at least two weeks in advance. The patio is awesome because it’s right on the water and any of the pasta + cheese combos are off the hook. We’ve gone there for our staff party the past two years, and I do believe we’ll be going back for a third!
Do you share a favourite spot with any of the BoQ staff? Let us know in the comments or on our socials!