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Best Restaurants in Belleville, ON by Cuisine

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After living in Belleville for over 4 years now, my partner and I have explored the community and its surroundings and over time, put together this guide to highlight our favourite places to eat and go-to dine-in, takeout and patio restaurants.

Belleville has at least 1 really good independent (non-chain) restaurant option for most categories, including authentic Mexican, Italian/pizza, Greek, Indian and Jamaican, among others:

Best coffee shop – The Brake Room

Part coffee shop, part bicycle repair shop, located in an old service station, The Brake Room is a great place to grab a tasty latte or pastry to fuel (or refuel) before (or after) a bike ride, walk, run or other outdoor activity. Their coffee is made with beans from Pilot Coffee Roasters in Toronto. Friendly service combined with a great atmosphere, they are both child and dog friendly. They also support other local businesses.

Book an appointment to drop off your bike to get a repair diagnosis and quote, simply get a flat tired fixed or book a consult to get their thoughts on what the best bike for you would be from their knowledgeable and informative staff.

Parking (for cars) can be a bit tight as there are only 4 to 6 spots total at any given time and it can get busy at times.

Best breakfast – Eggsquis

2 eggs, 3 meats

It may be a small chain of 40 or so breakfast restaurants instead of a locally owned option, but the quality and freshness of the food they serve is the most consistent, portion sizes are satisfying and the efficiency with which they move the line up during peak brunch hours is impressive – all for a mid-range price.

I recommend the Eggs Benedict or the Bit of Both (BoB) section where you can choose a waffle/crepe and bacon/sausage, with your eggs, fruit and toast.

Alternative breakfast – KK’s Diner

For an affordable indepedent option, I recommend KK’s Diner for their 2 egg breakfast for $5.95.

Best subs – Farmer’s Daughters Sub Shoppe

1830 without additional toppings

Need to grab a filling, and healthy bite to eat for lunch that keeps your taste buds interested? This is the best sub I’ve had in a long time – possibly ever.

Founded by Melissa Strecker – the daughter of a fourth generation turkey farmer in the Niagara region – with the intent of capturing the feeling of having a wholesome, homemade, farm-grown meal made for you as she had growing up, this artisanal sub shop crafts artisanal sandwiches using fresh, locally-sourced ingredients.

They have the typical favorites such as meatball, corned beef and egg salad, but their Signature subs are where they really shine.

Their #1 seller since day 1 has been the 1830 (AAA wood-fired beef, caramelized onions, and caramelized onion cheese from Empire Cheese Co-op) – named after the tractor Melissa drove on the farm she grew up on – which was delicious and unlike other sub shops, something I couldn’t easily make at home in addition to being fast and convenient. I will be returning to try their namesake The Farmer’s Daughter (turkey, apple, brie, cranberry salsa).

Cutting down on carbs? Any sub can be made into a wrap or salad.

Best burgers – Burger Revolution

The Rebel

Their premium mouth-watering burgers are slowly flame cooked and garnished with the finest locally grown produce and cheese in the region and are stacked high with classic, unique (potato chips, fried egg, spam) and premium (goat cheese, deep fried pickle, caramelized onions) toppings and with a side of crispy, lightly-seasoned fries (tip: they are even better when dipped in sweet chili thai sauce instead of ketchup). You’ll leave with your stomach satisfied and taste buds planning your next visit.

The Rebel (Roasted Garlic Mayo, Potato Chips, Tomato, Lettuce, Cheddar, Jalapeno Slices, Avocado Spread) is both my partner and my go-to burger of choice (and reportedly their most popular along with The Propaganda). All burgers are available with either a local & sustainable grain-fed premium beef or veggie patty on a Toasted Pretzel Bun, Potato Roll, Gluten Free Kaiser Bun or Lettuce Wrap.

Every month there is a new Signature Burger which you can find announced on their website and social media:

The Rising (August Burger of the Month): Beef Burger, Spiced Cream Cheese, Bacon Mayo, Grilled Jalapeño, Crispy Fried Onions (G.F.), Roasted Corn Salsa

Best patio – The Pier Patio Bar and Grill

The Titanic Burger

The atmosphere here is amazing – a breeze from across the Bay of Quinte, some live music in the background, and the best views in town: of the Bay Bridge, boats coming and going from the harbour, and sunsets behind the bridge in the evenings.

They have a good selection of really good specialty and frozen cocktails as well as beer wine and cider – with a mix of both local and popular go-tos. They are pricey for the volume you receive. All the place settings are disposable: the drinks come in plastic cups, the food in plastic baskets and condiments in packets.

The menu has a variety of typical pub options to choose from. While not super unique or exciting, you really can’t go wrong as they are all tasty and filling for a decent price. The shareables are usually the focus and are very well deep fried and delicious – particularly the battered cauliflower, onion rings and island coconut shrimp which all come with a tasty sweet chili dipping sauce.

They don’t take reservations or have a waitlist management system, so you’ll have to show up, give your name and stand on the pier until a table is ready if you show up at peak times. They have a hard time giving accurate wait time estimates since people tend to linger here to soak up the ambiance, so be sure to get here before (or after) the dinner rush or you could be waiting a while for a table.

Best brewery – Signal Brewery

Located in Corbyville a few minutes north of Belleville, Signal has brought the historic location of the Alma Mills distillery back to life with beautiful restorations while keeping an industrial vibe. The distillery was founded in 1859 by businessman and former Mayor of Belleville Henry Corby and run for 132 years.

Their beer is great with constantly rotating options. Fire Wire New England style IPA (6.8%) – otherworldly conceptual illustration by artist @carlwiens. The atmosphere on the very spacious patio is one of the best in Belleville and it has a great view overlooking the Moira River. This is definitely the place to go to have a drink and a bite to eat with friends on a summer evening. The service is friendly, casual and chatty, but a little inattentive and disorganized.

The menu is quite limited – fewer than 10 items to choose from – and the food is quite expensive for what you get. That said, the options change frequently and we did enjoy their flatbreads – especially the vegetarian spicy cauliflower.

Best pizza – Little Italy on 62

Cannoli

Don’t let the unassuming outside fool you. This takeout only restaurant serves up the best pizza in town as well as paninis, calzones and homemade cannoli.

They provide an authentic Italian experience by using high quality, fresh, never frozen, premium ingredients – most of which are imported from Italy – and unique toppings such as scamorza cheese, squash velvet pureé, prosciutto and water buffalo salami. The crust is thin and crisp and cooked to perfection with just the right amount of char. This results in a pizza that will delight your senses – the smell, the taste and the texture.

Their prices are definitely higher for the volume of food you receive compared to the typical pizza place. While other places satisfy by filling you up with lots of fluffy crust and plenty of cheap cheese stuffed with fillers and preservatives, they do little to amaze taste buds aside from being salty. A 12″ personal pizza from Little Italy on 62 is more than enough to fill you up and leave you satisfied, but you probably won’t have any leftovers.

One critique I think is fair is that while each pizza is homemade and unique, the toppings are not usually evenly distributed across the pizza or between the slices, which turns sharing a pizza into a competition/negotiation.

One of the owners’ culinary certificate is proudly displayed on the wall – all in Italian of course – so you know they’re the real deal. And the plexiglass at the front allows you to see the entire kitchen and how spotless and organized it is.

Alternative pizza – Bourbon Street Pizza Company

BBQ Chicken Fiesta. Credit: Tan

Consistently ranked, voted and mentioned by many residents as the best pizza in Belleville. Locally owned and operated by the Juby family since 2013, they specialize in pizza, but have a sizable menu that includes a variety of pasta, salads and sandwiches – the majority of which are made with a simple, back-to-basics approach to comfort food.

The dough is made fresh and all the meat and vegetables are cut on-site. The crust is fluffy, soft and chewy, plenty of toppings, the cheese is the gooey, stringy kind and the prices are reasonable. Service is quick and consistent, but delivery can be varied as they use their own drivers rather than a service like Skip the Dishes.

Best Italian – Linguine’s Italian Restaurant

Crème Brûlée Cheesecake. Credit: JoyDetlor

All of their sauces are rich, thick and plentiful with excellent depth of flavour (“saporito” as they would say in Italian – or “full of flavour”). The portions are generous and coupled with how rich the food is, you’ll likely have food left over to take home that can be even better tasting the next day. The quality and quantity you get for a similar price to those charged at chain restaurants gives you no reason to go anywhere else.

Even though it recently changed ownership after the previous owners served Belleville for over 20 years, the menu options and quality, service and taste has remained consistent – like thanks to the kitchen staff reportedly staying on under the new owners. Service is attentive, efficient and classy.

While you really can’t go wrong with their menu, our go-to is a cesare salad to start with penne arrabiata which comes with a heaping portion in a hot and spicy tomato sauce with garlic and chili peppers, the very rich and creamy fettuccini alfredo or the chicken fiorina which is a chicken breast coated in a creamy white wine sauce with roasted veggies and potatoes. And try their crème brûlée cheesecake to top it all off.

They have a small patio out front (nicer) and a larger one out back which are both first come, first served. If you’re ordering takeout, get your order in before the dinner rush as on busy nights they will stop answering the phone once they’ve reached capacity for the night.

Best sushi – Toro Sushi

Chicken Teriyaki & Tempura Bento Box
Sushi platter

Toro Sushi offers dine in or takeout of a solid variety of Japanese and Korean dishes including a wide variety of maki, nigiri and sashimi sushi such as the Sky Dome Roll (avocado, crab meat, cucumber, picked radish, tamago, shrimp tempura) and my personal favorite the Seattle Roll (salmon, cream cheese, avocado – baked spicy salmon on top) and Korean staples like bi bim Bab, Bulgogi and Chicken Katsu.

The best option for a dinner out are the Bento Boxes as they provide a great sampling of what Toro has to offer – particularly the Maki & Teriyaki if you’re a fan of teriyaki. If you’re taking out the yaki soba stir fried noodles are great comfort food and reheat really well.

Best bar & grill – The Dugout

Tasty, satisfying pub food with healthy portions at an affordable price. The Dugout’s thai wrap hits the spot with its breaded chicken strips and sweet chili sauce. The sweet potato fries are very good – perfectly crisp on the outside and soft on the inside and served with a chipotle mayo dip. Their wings are big, meaty (“biggest wings in town” according to them) and come in a variety of sauces including curry sunrise, jerk and garlic parmesan – some of the best I’ve ever had. Vegetables are always fresh and crisp.

The inside isn’t much to look at, but it is spacious with a number of large TVs with lots of sports on. The restaurant is kept very clean and the friendly staff and patrons create a great atmosphere.

Best Indian – Tanjore North Indian Cuisine

Vegetarian Biryani, Chicken Jalfraize, Tandoori Chicken
Sampling of the tandoori chicken, samosa, onion bajji, garlic naan and paneer makhni

Mouth-watering smells and satisfying flavours. Their entrées cost 30% to 40% less than the competition, but don’t come with rice, which costs $6 – so it depends on how badly you want rice with your meal.

Their flavours are on the milder and richer end – sweeter, creamier and 1-dimensional than sharper, well-spiced and hotter, which is how I prefer my Indian food. You can request that your food be spicy or mild, but these requests have been met with mixed results as their food starts on the very mild side.

The Chicken Tikka and Tandoori Chicken were well-marinated, very tasty and tender. The tandoori chicken which comes with a heap of their flavour-packed onions that are marinated in a secret sauce. The garlic naan is also very good and was well seasoned and had identifiable pieces of garlic. Their tomato and cream based Paneer Makhni and Butter Chicken are very, very mild and heavy on the cream with minimal depth of flavour, but I couldn’t stop eating it.

Alternative Indian restaurant – Royal Haveli

For a fine-dining experience and north Indian-style cooking,

Best halal – Cedar Nights

Beef donair dinner

Cedar Nights is a family owned and operated by Victor & Maha Hriech who grew up in Lebanon and Jordan, respectively and moved to Canada after finding each other. Victor spent 26 years in the Canadian Armed forces and after retiring, he and Maha became the owners. They serve up authentic and handmade Middle Eastern food.

Their chicken shawarma, beef donair and falafel are all excellent and you can tell the food is made fresh and in-house. Their pita wraps make a great lunch and are big and filling with your choice of peppers, hot peppers, cucumbers, olives, onion, hummus and garlic spread/sauce. The dinners are served with Garlic Potatoes, Rice, Salad, Pita, Garlic & Hummus dip.

Belleville is lucky to have Cedar Nights!

Best seafood – The Boathouse Seafood Restaurant & Waterfront Patio

Situated on the scenic Victoria Harbour, they have a great patio that looks out over the mouth of the Moira River as it flows into the Bay of Quinte so you can watch the boats go by. They frequently win Reader’s Choice and Trip Advisor awards and are a favourite amongst the locals and visitors alike.

They have an extensive menu with something for every eater – whether you’re a seafood lover or being dragged here by one. Seafood soups, salads, tacos, sandwiches, wraps, pasta and fried options – including scallops, crab, calamari, escargot, salmon and lobster. The food is enjoyable and consistent across the options, but stick to the mains as the sides are not up to the same standard. The portions are decent for the price, which is on the mid-high end.

Wait times can be long. Be sure to make a reservation in advance if you want to sit on the patio.

Best BBQ – Smokin’ Carnivore food truck

Beef brisket and fries

Kevin and Whitney enjoy raising four children on their 175 acre 3rd generation farm and have found a new love by providing quick service meals with fresh high-quality products. Signature dishes include slow-smoked beef brisket, smoked pulled pork, gourmet beef burgers and a fantastically popular poutine selection.

They make their speckle park burger from start to finish on their own farm – raise the calf, tend to the animal, work with our local butcher, form the patty, charbroil and dress it up the way you want for the fresh and great tasting burger.

Best Mexican – Chilangos Mexican Restaurant

Back patio. Credit: John Strang

Chilango’s is owned and operated by sister and brother duo Marlem Power and Abraham Ramos who were both born and raised in Mexico City – in fact, that’s what the term “Chilango” means – it’s slang for someone from Mexico City.

They dole out truly authentic Mexican cuisine. such as enchiladas verdes, enmolades, and carne a la tampiqueña, desserts such as tres leches cake and deep fried cheesecake and the classic imported Jarritos to drink. The salsa, guacamole and chips are flavourful and clearly freshly homemade.

Portions are on the smaller side, but enjoyable and filling enough for the price. The chips and guacamole appetizer wasn’t really worth it as their chips came as a side with our meals anyway.

They have a small, but intimate and charming riverside patio at the back (where you want to be) looking out over the Moira River as well as a patio at the front during the summer months. The inside is clean, welcoming and has plenty of space if you can’t get a patio spot.

Best fine(r) dining – Capers

Pan Seared Black Cod on a bed of couscous salad with tomatoes, cucumber, olives and served with a red pepper coulis.

A downtown staple since 1999, Caper’s offers a casual fine dining experience (dress up as much as you want!) for when you want to have a nice dinner out. They create their food fresh from scratch, using local ingredients whenever possible. These dishes are well-prepared and well-presented in a warm and comfortable atmosphere that features live music on the patio on Friday or Saturday evenings. Great craft The service is excellent – professional and courteous.

Best Greek – Greek Oasis Take Out

Chicken Souvlaki Dinner (Single) (to go)

A very popular family owned and operated takeout counter serving authentic, hot and fresh home cooked Greek food in a fast and efficient way. The souvlaki is tasty and you get plenty of rice and tender potatoes and the tzatziki is thick and tangy. The Greek salad, while made with iceberg lettuce, is fresh and their dressing is excellent.

The owners admit that there are businesses that make better Greek fare – particularly in cities like Toronto or Montreal, but if you’re in Belleville, this will nix your craving for Greek food.

Best Caribbean – Caribbean Jerk Spot

Their traditional Jamaican food is tasty, the meat is tender and the portions are good for an affordable price. The jerk flavour is strong and rich and has the expected spicy kick. The oxtail, curry goat and jerk chicken are all popular options.

The food had been on the saltier side, but was adjusted recently to have less salt and more seasoning. Most of the entrées are lacking vegetables, which can be purchased separately.

Service is friendly and it is often the owner and chef himself that serves you at the counter.

Best Vietnamese – Pho Viet

#15 – Pho – egg noodles in chicken stock with chicken, shrimp and pork
#74 – Shrimp Lo Mein

The only restaurant serving pho in town, Pho Viet offers Vietnamese and Chinese staples including pho, vermicelli, fried rice, chow mein and sweet and sour chicken balls. Pho broth is good, but beef can be a bit tough/chewy.

Their dishes are cheap and have good portions, but their dishes are a little high on the noodle/broth to meat/veggies ratio and could use more toppings and less filler. Overall quite tasty, satisfying and filling (for a while) – a great lunch option for the price.

Best cocktails – The Lark

Blood Orange Paloma – Tequila Altos, Salt, Lime, Blood Orange, Soda, Dried Citrus and seltzer. (co-owner Alex’s favourite)

The Lark is a truly one-of-a-kind restaurant in downtown Belleville that is great for a memorable couple’s date night, getting drinks with friends after work or ending up after a night on the town.

Co-owned by Alex Bruce – a Certified Sommelier who has won awards for his cocktails – and his wife Celine Bruce Lepage, they offer a considerable wine selection, and over 2 dozen cocktails – unique creations and classics with a twist – to sip as you unwind and socialize.

Their menu offers a ever-changing selection of local and seasonally-focused items such as the addictive Brown Butter Gnocchi (Ricotta, sun-dried tomato, spinach, parm) and deceptively complex Cherry + Feta Cheesecake (deconstructed feta cheesecake, brown butter graham crumble, Basil Cherry coolis). The portions may be small, but they are memorable.

They have a dining room, as well as a small patio out front. The staff are very attentive, thoughtful and pleasant.

Best pastries – L’Auberge de France

Step into a slice of France at this a great spot to have a coffee and pastry or a croque monsieur sandwich for lunch on their patio with soft French music playing the background.

Fans of L’Auberge know that every Saturday morning, Chef Jean-Marc Salvagno removes over 700 exquisite hand-rolled croissants from the oven. Made with 100% butter, these rich and flaky pastries are available starting at 9AM. These authentic fresh croissants are on the doughier and less flaky side than you might get from a frozen, grocery store croissant, but are made with the taste and texture of a homemade croissant that Chef Jean-Marc enjoyed while living in Avignon, France for 30 years.

Choose from butter croissants, pain au chocolate, almond croissants, and raisin rolls, but make sure you arrive early or call to reserve, as these delicious treats sell fast!

Best bakery – Small Scale Bread

Specializes in making small batches of organic whole grain sourdough bread using organic flour and wild yeast and fermented for 36 hours which gives it subtle tang, but does not overpower the taste of the grains used and is not overly sour. Their loaves are baked so the crust is think, dark, hard and crackly and the crumb is soft and moist inside.

I’ve found that the slices are excellent for making appetizers or dipping in soup and you don’t need to toast them. Simply make your sandwich, or add your spread and the crust will provide the crunch.

White and whole wheat loaves are available every day, but specialty options (toasted sesame, olive loaf and personal favourite super seedy) are only made on one day of the week.

They sell out quickly most days, so be sure to DM them to reserve a loaf!

Best ice cream – Reid’s Dairy

Cookies & Cream and Maple Walnut ice cream. Credit: Allysson

Get an affordable and generous scoop (which is more like 2 scoops) of strawberry, chocolate chip cookie dough, cookies and cream, maple walnut ice cream, cherry cheese cake, salted caramel and more to choose from. Their soft serve and milkshakes are good too. Going to Reid’s Dairy is pretty much a rite of passage for every visitor to Belleville and its only a minute or two off the 401. You won’t find better tasting ice cream at these prices anywhere else.

The recognizable “fairy tale castle” run by the Quickert family has been locally owned and operated since 1910. They have a little playground area on the premises and children love to push the button to make the cow on the wall “moo”. They produce high quality ice cream, milk and cream on-site from 100% Canadian Milk – two-thirds of which is from local dairy farms which they distribute from Hamilton to Ottawa.

Best sweets – Sugar Mama’s Bake Shoppe Inc.

Selection of cupcakes. Credit: Grace Agosta
Fun and colourful murals on the outside of their shop

Their delicious cupcakes are moist, not too sweet, beautifully crafted and make a great treat or dessert after a meal. They have a wide selection made fresh every day and have 6-packs of day-olds available at a reduced price.

Their banana chocolate chip cupcake has a chocolate base, banana-flavoured icing and is topped with chocolate chips and a banana chip. The s’mores cupcake has a chocolate base, with buttercream and chocolate icing and is topped with marshmellows and a graham cracker.

Their squares and mini cheesecakes are great too.

Food trucks in Belleville

Mark’s Food Truck at Rossmore

Gator’s Fries

Credit: Anh Lam

Herbert’s Incredible Fries

In Riverside Park on the east side of the Moira River (across from the CAA Arena), they’re serving up hot dogs, burgers and deep fried pickles, but their specialties are their poutines.

Pro Tip: Right next to Herbert’s there is a platform for the dam – just to the left of that there is a path down to a clear, flat shelf of rock next to the river where you can sit, enjoy your fries and take in the sights and sounds of the river rushing past. Bonus points if you think ahead and bring a folding/camping chair with you for added comfort.

Sources

Over to you

What do you think of these restaurants? Did we miss one you love? Let us know what your favourites are by leaving a comment below!

About the author

Alex Wideman

Founder of Cansumer. Consumer rights advocate, serial entrepreneur and educator. Read more

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