BAY OF QUINTE WINTER WARMERS
I’m deep into winter hibernation mode and lately, this cold weather has me craving all sorts of soups, hot drinks and comfort foods. Basically, I want anything that’s going to feel like a nice, toasty hug for my soul. Is this a familiar feeling for you? Turn to these tasty offerings around the Bay of Quinte region to warm you up on the chilliest days.
Written by Anna Fraiberg
Read time: 2 min
Benji’s Coffee Bar is the newest addition to the cafe scene in Belleville, located right across from Market Square. Their rustic and cozy seating area with floor-to-ceiling windows make it the perfect spot to watch the snow fall while staying snug inside sipping on one of their latest menu items, La Framboise: a raspberry chocolate steamer with a dusting of dark cocoa on top.
I’m all about soups in the winter and The Soup Can in Greater Napanee is my go-to when I’m in the area. Their menu features over a dozen types of soup and you can add things on the side like a hot, buttery pretzel. Pictured are the coconut curry and potato, leek and bacon soups with a pretzel for dipping.
The "b" word
Capers has been a longtime favourite for high-quality dining in an inviting atmosphere in the Belleville Downtown District. I’m going to mention a pretty polarizing food, but hear me out, okay? These aren’t the Brussels sprouts you ate/detested growing up. When you add bacon lardon, shallot honey Dijon vinaigrette, cheddar cheese and fried potato hay you get a magical winter comfort food. Trust me, you’ll be glad you ordered these.
Flavours of Mexico
A trip to the sunny south isn’t in the cards for me this winter and maybe it isn’t for you either. Lucky for us, Chilangos Mexican Restaurant in Belleville serves up traditional Mexican dishes, made with family recipes that owners Marlem and Abraham brought here with them. When I eat here in the winter I always have to get the Tortilla Soup or Consome de Pollo to warm up.
One of my favourite comfort foods—year-round actually—is a classic diner breakfast. There’s something about a hot breakfast plate of eggs, bacon, home fries and toast being cooked for you that just makes it so much better. If it’s an extra special day, I’ll opt for the Red’s Diner breakfast poutine: a dish of home fries topped with bacon, ham, sausage, hollandaise and cheddar cheese.
Coffee, Skate and Wellness
Wavy, a coffee, skate and wellness shop in Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory, just dropped their updated winter menu. I normally go for a simple coffee with milk and honey, but I love to get a specialty seasonal coffee beverage every once in a while, especially as a treat after spending some time hiking in the snow. Pictured is their brown sugar white mocha—just look at that topping (drools).
A cozy cold beverage
Yes, you read that right. Perhaps this one’s a bit misleading in a feature for all things warm and cozy, but winter is prime stout season after all! Wild Card Brewing’s Mocha Stout is a smooth, thick stout with notes of vanilla, coffee and chocolate, which sounds exactly like my kind of winter beer. Dare I say, stout is a cozy beer?
Cuddle up in the tea room at Special Effects Lifestyle Boutique, located in a century home on Brighton’s Main Street. Sit and stay a while and take your pick from their extensive list of teas. The curated seasonal menu goes beyond tea with other hot beverages, soups, salads, sandwiches and treats. When you’re done warming up, browse around their boutique before stepping back out into the cold.