Upcoming Restaurants in #HamOnt

Hamilton is now a foodie city. There’s no denying it. There’s an awesome food joint on every corner and there are new ones opening each day.  With the recent sneak peek of the new Nellie James Too we attended – blog post coming soon – (officially opened Thursday Oct 15th!), along with the grand opening of Serve Ping Pong, we thought we would compile a list of soon-to-be eateries in Hamilton. We’re excited for what’s on the horizon for #HamOnt. We want you to be excited too!

49 King William Street
Hamilton, Ontario, L8R 1A2

3 Hambrgr

“People are going to spell our name wrong and they’re definitely going to question the choice. Our response will be simple. Simplicity applies to all things and burgers are most definitely not an exception. We get right to the point at HAMBRGR, giving our guests the perfect combination of fresh ingredients, locally brewed and new to market craft beer, culinary artistry and of course, one of the most memorable experiences one can possibly muster in the enriching restaurant culture sweeping over downtown Hamilton. We have all of the elements we need to keep true to our name, now all we need is you. We’ll see you soon, Hamilton.”

Estimate Opening Date: Monday October 26th, 2015.

Follow them on Social Media:
Instagram: @hambrgrhamilton
Twitter: @hambrgrhamilton
Facebook: /hambrgrhamilton
Website: No website as of yet.

Located in the Hamilton Farmer’s Market  (lower level west corner next to Eat Industries, Naked Lunch, Henry Browns Ice Cream – turning into the food corner!)

5 Pokeh

From the people who brought us MeatVentures; “Pokeh is going to be Canada’s first Poké bar, serving fresh and healthy Poké bowls with a selection of our signature combinations or the option to build a totally custom bowl just the way you like it. A Poké bowl is a combination of raw ahi tuna or other seafood, soy sauce, sesame oil, green and white onions, and more, over top of rice.  That’s the classic version, and we’ll have a lot of different options and twists that use traditional ingredients as well as seasonal local produce from the Farmer’s market.  We’ll have vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options available.”

Estimated Opening Date: Early November 2015 (no firm date yet)

Follow them on Social Media:
Instagram: @pokehbar
Twitter: @pokehbar
Facebook: /pokehbar
Website: pokeh.ca

Jonny Blonde Kitchen (Brick and Mortar)
664 Concession Street
Hamilton, Ontario

2 JonnyBlonde

Jonny Blonde food truck is now expanding into a brick and mortar!

“Jonny and Layal, the worker bees behind Jonny Blonde, are currently planning the opening of Jonny Blonde Kitchen at 664 Concession St., a new take out spot, which will also operate as their catering kitchen. They are starting with serving lunch from Tuesday to Friday 11-3pm, eventually extending the hours to serve dinner and open on Saturdays. Stay tuned to social media for October’s schedule – Jonny Blonde food truck will be serving a limited curbside menu for lunch from 11-3pm on select weekdays throughout October and November until the storefront is open. Including some familiar favourites (aka. the Peachy Blonde), the menu will offer a selection of salads, soups and sandwiches on Jonny’s homemade breads, as well as handmade pasta features.”

Estimate Opening Date: Mid November 2015

Follow them on Social Media:
Instagram: @jonnyblondefoodtruck
Twitter: @jonnyblonde
Facebook: /JonnyBlondeFoodTruck
Website:  JonnyBlonde.com

255 James Street North

Hamilton, ON

1 Mesa

When Mex-I-Can closed their doors on James St N, a collective groan was heard across the #HamOnt art district. Luckily for all of us, they’re launching a new venture on the street with ‘Mesa’! Mesa’s menu offerings will be similar to the old favourites at Mex-I-Can, but with a few tweaks. They chose the name Mesa – which means table in Spanish – because they’re all about welcoming everyone to the table. They plan to be gluten free friendly, as well as vegan, vegetarian and halal. Now that’s something we can get behind!

Estimate Opening Date: To be announced
Follow them on Social Media:
Instagram: @mesahamont
Twitter: @mesahamont
Facebook: /MesaHamilton
Website: None as of yet

Born + Raised
244 James Street N

Hamilton, ON
4 BornAndRaised

More information coming soon!

Estimate Opening Date: Opening 2016. Official date to be announced
Follow them on Social Media:
Instagram: None as of yet
Twitter: None as of yet
Facebook: Born and Raised Restaurant, Hamilton
Website: http://www.bornandraised.restaurant/

Do you know of any restaurants opening in the Hamilton area that we didn’t mention? Share them in the comments below!

Which restaurant are you most excited for?

Butcher and the Vegan

Butcher and the Vegan

61 Barton Street E

Hamilton, ON 

Butcher and the Vegan | Hamilton, Ontario | hamilton small fries Food Reviews | Picture 1

After visiting Butcher and the Vegan on our first Hamilton Food Tour, we couldn’t stop thinking about and planning our next visit. Shout out to their Beet Fries and their Mushroom Crostinis! We were impressed and ready for more. Lindsay was all about celebrating Friendship Day with her besties, so three of us (Small Fries + Brittany) ended up celebrating the day foodie-style at Butcher and the Vegan.


Butcher and the Vegan has two different forms of their logo. The ‘B&V’ seen outside and the written out version. They mesh well – black on white, bold fonts.

B&V is making an impact on their neighbourhood. It only makes sense that their logo would be impactful as well.

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Food & Reviews

For the table we chose:

Lindsay’s go-to, Beet Salad. She is crazy about Beet Salad and orders it at almost every restaurant. Seriously, tweet her for the best Beet Salads in Hamilton. She will eat all of them. And she’ll post about them. You won’t be disappointed. Anyways, we digress.

This beet salad was definitely up there in the ‘best of’ list. But really, we would have ordered it just for the food porn. Look at how colourful this freakin’ plate is!
Butcher and the Vegan | Hamilton, Ontario | hamilton small fries Food Reviews | Picture 6

Steak Frites with Asparagus. Lindsay ordered this main. The steak was slightly overdone for her taste, but it was still amazing nonetheless. She didn’t complain, but we’re 100% positive they would have given her a new one if she had. But the flavours were mouth-watering. Just writing this makes her want to get it again. Like .. right now…

Anywho, her only complaint was that there was too much (yes, we said too much) food on the plate. It was hard to cut the steak because it was piled on the fries.

Butcher and the Vegan | Hamilton, Ontario | hamilton small fries Food Reviews | Picture 7

Fig, Duck and Arugula Flatbread Pizza. Brittany had this butcher’s pizza. I mean – look at it. That’s what we really love about B&V – the food not only tastes amazing, it looks amazing. It had this delicious sweet taste to it. It was also really good cold the next day.

Butcher and the Vegan | Hamilton, Ontario | hamilton small fries Food Reviews | Picture 8

Wild Mushroom Risotto – Our fabulous waiter suggested we order the risotto, which was his personal fave that week. We went with the non-vegan version – you can get it made either way – which was made with cream and some sort of cheese. We were so happy we went with this suggestion.

Risotto is often hit and miss, and often will be crazy strong with wine or cheese. This one had a perfect balance. It was rich and creamy. With the earthy flavour of the wild mushrooms and the sweet crunch of the carrot (?) topping, this was a perfect dish.

Butcher and the Vegan | Hamilton, Ontario | hamilton small fries Food Reviews | Picture 9

Watermelon Sorbet – While we were there we also heard that one of the kitchen staff had been working hard on perfecting his Sorbet recipe. Of course, this meant we had to get dessert. (Right….that’s the reason..;)…)

Yum. This sorbet was like eating a frozen watermelon. Only way classier. Heather ordered it, but being friendship day, shared with Lindsay and Brittany as well.

Butcher and the Vegan | Hamilton, Ontario | hamilton small fries Food Reviews | Picture 10


When you think of where to find higher-end, local culinary gems – Barton and John isn’t exactly the first place that comes to mind.  (Though a renaissance is beginning!)

In our minds, Butcher and the Vegan is not the norm for when you think of Barton street. It’s a cute little space decorated in bright colours. With mismatched chairs, mahogany wood and blackboard signs, it’s lowkey and comfortable. B&V is a diamond in the rough.

Butcher and the Vegan | Hamilton, Ontario | hamilton small fries Food Reviews | Picture 5


Butcher and the Vegan has a strong focus on bringing all ingredients in from a 100 mile radius. This means you may pay a bit more for your meal, but we promise – it’s worth it. You’re eating fresh, you’re eating local, and you can feel good about it.

B&V’s aim is to make a space that is meatatarian, vegetarian and vegan friendly. If you bring a group to this resto, you’re going to be able to order a proper meal for everyone.

Oh, and they try to make you really feel at home. Which is why you can find action-figures and other toys on every table. Check out Brittany and cold Spidey!

Butcher and the Vegan | Hamilton, Ontario | hamilton small fries Food Reviews | Picture 4

Social Media Campaign

Facebook – Butcher and the Vegan

Twitter – BandtheV

Instagram – butcherandthevegan

Butcher and the Vegan | Hamilton, Ontario | hamilton small fries Food Reviews | Picture 2

No complaints on the social media front. Whoever manages the B&V social media accounts, they’re doing a great job. They have enough posts to be engaging, without overwhelming their online community. Plus there’s tons of menu info and some great food porn!


We don’t have many suggestions for Butcher and the Vegan, to be honest! If they keep doing what they’re doing – ROCKIN’ IT – we foresee that word of mouth will get them far!

Have you been to Butcher and the Vegan? Review it with us in the comments below!
Butcher and the Vegan Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

The Burnt Tongue

The Burnt Tongue 

10 Cannon Street East, 

Hamilton, Ontario

hamilton small fries | The Burnt Tongue | Picture 8

We all know that the second you take a big gulp of that too-hot soup, coffee, tea, whatever … you are in for a burnt tongue – which might be one of the worst things ever, maybe only second to brain freeze. But don’t let this soup restaurant’s name fool you; ‘Burnt Tongue’ will be the best thing that has happened to your mouth in a while.

We’ve both been huge fans of this place since it first opened and are excited to finally share a blog post with you! Meaning, we finally put down our spoons and started typing.

Using our normal template, let’s take a look!

hamilton small fries | The Burnt Tongue | Picture 7


We absolutely love the logo. We don’t know if this was intentional or not, but to us it totally looks like a burnt stovetop! The design works really with their concept.

The name is cheeky and fun and is definitely a name restaurant-goers will remember.

hamilton small fries | The Burnt Tongue | Picture 1


The Burnt Tongue reminds us so much of Seinfeld’s ‘Soup Nazi’. (Don’t worry, the folks at B.T. are a lot friendlier!) Burnt Tongue offers 6 soups daily and it’s first come first-serve. And with the downtown core swarming with workers at lunchtime, the chances of nabbing your favourite soup at dinner might be slim. But that is all the fun!

You walk in and are greeted with friendly faces and an array of delicious soup. Burnt Tongue’s menu also offers Belgian Fries (our favourite) and burgers. But for any newcomer to the resto, we definitely suggest sampling the soup.

hamilton small fries | The Burnt Tongue | Picture 3

The place is dimly lit, with rustic features such as barn board walls and mason jar lighting and with your soup in hand, you feel warm and comforted.


Lindsay – I got a super secret soup that wasn’t on the menu! It was a Jamaican Pumpkin soup and it was fantastically delicious.

hamilton small fries | The Burnt Tongue | Picture 5

When you order a soup you also get the choice of a side – apple, bun or veggies. This time I opted for the delicious bun and of course, a side of small fries. They have an array of drinks to choose from and also offer free self-serve water.

I can honestly say that Burnt Tongue has the best soup I have EVER tasted. Sorry Grandma…

hamilton small fries | The Burnt Tongue | Picture 6

Heather – This visit at Burnt Tongue (there has been many, many times before for both Lindsay and I. Haha.), I tried their Chili Con Carne with Sour Cream and Cheddar. It was the perfect thickness I like in a chili and – of course – absolutely delicious! If I ever get a chance to try this specialty again, I definitely will. I also got the Belgian fries as a side… we’re the Hamilton Small Fries – did you expect any less?!

hamilton small fries | The Burnt Tongue | Picture 4

Their fries remind me of my favourite fry truck at the Christmas tree farm where I go every year, only even better if you can believe it. Absolutely amazing!

After all that spicy, yummy chili, I cooled my tongue down with a Rudy’s paleta. I tried the vanilla coconut paleta with chocolate fudge throughout. Can’t go wrong with Rudy’s.


#SoupOnt #HamOnt

Their brand is clear; it really is all about soup.

Co-owners Leo Tsangarakis and Daniel Robinson set out for an industrial style soup kitchen that will appeal to the professional and creative crowds of the James St N area.

Eat-in or take it in a coffee cup to go, they take comfort food to the next level.

With mouth-watering options, fresh local ingredients and a kick ass attitude – Burnt Tongue will become your favourite stop! (Ask Leo – we have visited 4 times in a one week time span!)

They also offer Rudy’s Paletas that work perfectly into their Burnt Tongue brand. They suggest Rudy’s for dessert to cool your Burnt Tongue. Again, cheeky advertising that we love.

hamilton small fries | The Burnt Tongue | Picture 9

We think it was time Hamilton got a good soup place and with it’s recent success we see other restos really trying to ride the Burnt Tongue soup wave. Bravo Burnt Tongue!

Social Media

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/theburnttongue
Twitter: @Theburnttongue
Instagram: @theburnttongue
Website: None that we could find.

We love Burnt Tongue’s use of Twitter and Facebook!

Looking to check out their menu for the day? Facebook or Instagram is the place to go.

Want to chat with Leo and Dan about your Burnt Tongue experience? Check them out on Twitter! They are awesome to chat with and we love the use of #SoupOnt and #HamOnt.

We definitely suggest setting up a website – wordpress is really easy! Give a brief description of your place, where to find you, a section on Rudy’s and link to your Facebook and Twitter to keep up with your ever changing menu and great community chats!

We do think Facebook pages are beginning to replace websites for the younger crowds, but having a website with your general information is a huge must for when people google you.

hamilton small fries | The Burnt Tongue | Picture 2


I think this is one of the first places where really … we don’t have one! We think Burnt Tongue is doing everything right and is succeeding at becoming the best soup place in #HamOnt.

If we’d have to say anything we would suggest getting a website up and running. Other than that, keep doing what you’re doing Leo and Dan!

As a side note: It’s also Leo’s birthday this weekend! Be sure to message him with some well wishes. Happy Birthday, Leo!

Have you been to Burnt Tongue? Review it with us!

The Burnt Tongue on Urbanspoon

Eat, Drink and BATTLE!

Eat, Drink and BATTLE! – Battledish 2013 Hamilton

Yes, that’s right. @Dishcrawlyhm switched it up this month from a fantastic crawl to a heart-pounding battle.

About Battledish

Hamilton has been entered in an international Battledish: a competition between chefs around the world.

Eight chefs have been chosen to compete in Battledish: Hamilton this October in conjunction with the 60 other chefs competing in North America for King of Battledish.

hamilton small fries | Battledish Hamilton 2013 | Tickets

Meet the Competitors:

NaROMA Pizza Bar – Mario Spina
Cheese Shoppe on Locke – Tor Krueger
West Town Bar & Grill – Walter Roper
Democracy – Erin McGuffin
The Courtyard – Zelco Grahovac
Earth to Table Bread Bar – Manny Ferreira
Ole Gourmet –  Mike Tofano
Cake & Loaf – Josie Rudderham and Nicole Miller

Kudos to Hamilton DishCrawl Ambassador Dave Hanley and Hamilton Magazine for coordinating this amazing event!

NaROMA Pizza Bar

Dish 1: Schiacciata con l’uva. Served with Abruzzo red wine

hamilton small fries | Battledish Hamilton 2013 | NaROMA Dish

A sweet & savoury grape pizza topped with brie from the Cheese Shoppe on Locke. Despite not knowing how to pronounce the food (we keep trying with no luck), we loved it! Serious melt in your mouth good. And how could you not love red wine? It was Lindsay’s favourite dish of the day.

Cheese Shoppe on Locke

Dish 2: Zucchini Cream Soup with gorgonzola pear, a side of truffled cheese macaroni and chicken liver pate on a bread crisp. Served with a Sparkling Grape Beverage.

hamilton small fries | Battledish Hamilton 2013 | Cheese Shoppe Drink

All we have to say is cheesy goodness. Their Zucchini Cream Soup was entered into the competition but it was the cheese macaroni that stole our hearts (and palates)! We left the Shoppe close to full, uttering a vow to return for the Mac n Cheese.

hamilton small fries | Battledish Hamilton 2013 | Cheese Shoppe Dish

West Town Bar & Grill

Dish 3: Pork Tenderloin marinated in citrus, wrapped in puff pastry and peppercorn sauce. Served with Joe Coffee (or a Caesar if you preferred).

hamilton small fries | Battledish Hamilton 2013 | West Town Caesar Drink

After watching Steel and the City/Dishcrawl’s videos introducing the chefs to the community, we were especially excited about West Town because Walter Roper was the only Red Seal Chef on the Battledish trail. Unfortunately, Lindsay didn’t try the dish at this location due to her veggie morals, but Heather was not disappointed by this carnivore’s dream.

hamilton small fries | Battledish Hamilton 2013 | West Town Dish


Dish 4: Democracy Trio of a Savoury Broccoli Cheddar Mini-Muffin, Lemon Loaf and a Hello Sailor. Served with Peppermint Mocha.

hamilton small fries | Battledish Hamilton 2013 | Democracy Dish

After West Town we headed to new-on-the-scene Democracy. This one was especially interesting for us as neither of us had been to Democracy yet and weren’t sure what we were in for. We were pleased! It was a nice sweet change for our palate.

The Courtyard

Dish 5: Rosemary Quail with pear cider, smoked paprika and sweet potato, stilton polenta with baby bok choy. Served with Courtyard Cocktail.

hamilton small fries | Battledish Hamilton 2013 | Courtyard Dish

Lindsay tapped out of this dish but tried the Courtyard Cocktail which was described as a lychee lover’s heaven. Heather loved the Quail but passed on the polenta.

Earth to Table Bread Bar

Dish 6: Beer-battered Brie with maple-apple puree, bacon jam, spiced walnuts and fried bread. Served with Apple Rosemary Collins.

hamilton small fries | Battledish Hamilton 2013 | Earth to Table Bread Bar Dish

We both loved this dish (Lindsay opted out of the bacon jam) and enjoyed the sweet and savory flavours. We both described it as an adult grilled cheese.This was Heather’s favourite of the day!

hamilton small fries | Battledish Hamilton 2013 | Earth to Table Bread Bar Drink

The Apple Rosemary Collins hit the spot and was made with Dillion’s Unfiltered Gin 22. And you know how we feel about local! Huge plus.

Cake & Loaf Bakery

Dish 7: Apple Cinnamon Dumpling, Pumpkin Harvest Cheesecake and Salted Caramel Chocolate Macaron. Served with a Drunken Spiced Chai.

hamilton small fries | Battledish Hamilton 2013 | Cake & Loaf Bakery Dish

The perfect dessert for an afternoon that certainly filled our tummies! We also enjoyed the Drunken Spiced Chai – perfect warm cocktail for a cool day. We mean, you can never go wrong with Cake & Loaf.

Ole Gourmet

Dish 8: Taco Sample – Pulled Pork taco with sauteed onions, cilantro, mayo and lettuce. Lime Chicken Taco with pica de gallo and spicy salsa with local toppings. Served with Mexican cerveza – dos equis.

We are so sorry Ole Gourmet! Lindsay had to opt out because her no-meat pledge and Heather was just much too full by this point. We promise a future blog post!

The Awards

Lindsay’s Votes

Most Delicious – NaROMA
Most Creative – Earth to Table Bread Bar
Most Modern – Earth to Table Bread Bar
Most Authentic – NaROMA
Best Cocktail – Cake & Loaf Bakery

Special Shout-Out – Cheese Shoppe on Locke’s DELICIOUS Mac N Cheese

Heather’s Votes

Most Delicious – Earth to Table Bread Bar
Most Creative – Earth to Table Bread Bar
Most Modern – Cheese Shoppe on Locke
Most Authentic – NaROMA
Best Cocktail – Cake & Loaf Bakery

Special Shout-Out – Great pork tenderloin in the puff pastry at West Town! It was full-flavoured and you could definitely tell this one was created by a Red Seal chef.

Did you attend Battledish 2013 in #HamOnt? Review it with us!