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Fun fact – our first flight ever was from Hamilton, so it feels a little like a hometown for us. And in spending time in the community, what a great hometown it is. Hamilton is no sleepy suburb outside of Toronto. It’s got a culinary scene that rivals any major Canadian metropolis, sprawling waterfront access on Lake Ontario, close proximity to Ontario’s hottest wine country, and also manages to maintain a hint of small town charm that makes you feel at home. We asked our community to tell us about their favourite hometown hangouts, and here’s what was voted the best.
The Aberdeen Tavern is one of 3 amazing restaurants in the area and embodies the charm and quality that the city of Hamilton boasts. Working with local farmers and sustainable food imports, their comfort food menu ensures food quality is of the highest importance. The menu is a little limited right now, to their ‘Greatest Hits’ available for takeout, but once they’re open for brunch again, we cannot stress how good the eggs benny specials are.
Best hangout spot on the water
Centrally located in the city, on the coast of Lake Ontario, Confederation Beach Park has breathtaking views and a little something for everybody. For an action-packed afternoon, visitors can enjoy go-karts, batting cages, mini golf, volleyball and basketball courts, and a pool and splash pad. For those looking for a slower pace, you can hang out on the sandy beach and go for a swim on a hot day.
Best spot for a quick bite
There’s a lot to do in a city like Hamilton, so having options for quick, high quality bites is essential, and Shorty’s does not disappoint. This New York style eatery serves up classic pies with homemade ingredients, local craft beer and organic wines from the region. For a sweet and spicy slice, we recommend the Signature Sausage and Rapini pizza which features Shorty’s house made sausage and hot honey.
Best stop for a glass of wine
A quick 30 minute drive down the coast of Lake Ontario is the charming, winery-filled town of Beamsville, home to one of the most picturesque winery and restaurants in the region, Peninsula Ridge. Boasting views of the lake and the Toronto skyline, the patio at The Restaurant at Peninsula Ridge is undoubtedly one of the best places to enjoy a glass of wine at sunset. The wines themselves – phenomenal. The winery is home to 42 acres of grapes, producing Cab Sauv, Merlot, Syrah, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Sauv Blanc and Riesling… so basically they do it all.
Collective Arts Brewing is no new kid on the block. Founded in 2013, this local gem’s mandate is to combine "the craft of brewing with the inspired talents of emerging and seasoned artists, musicians, photographers and filmmakers”. Taking a quick look at their cans, you can easily see how this mandate comes to life. Not a fan of beer? No problem. Collective Arts is one of the few breweries in Ontario that truly does it all. In addition to a large and rotating beer menu, they’ve also got an impressive selection of ‘Ready to Drink’ canned cocktails, like sparkling hard teas, gin & sodas, and craft ciders.