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Guide to Patios in Kingston 2010

Guide to Patios 2013

We published this Guide to Patios back in 2010. Looking for a more up to date guide? Check out the 2017 version of our Guide to Downtown Patios, complete with new listings.

At some point during the May long weekend, someone flicked a magical switch and awoke the sweaty beast known as summer.  Over the past few weeks, we’d been enjoying a long run of fantastic, nearly ideal weather, however the sweltering heat and unbearable humidity has finally arrived.  Thankfully, along with summer conditions come seasonal traditions such as swimming, walking around bare chested, indulging in frozen treats, and soaking it all in on a local patio.  Regarding the latter, we thought that it was high time to compile a complete list and photos of downtown Kingston’s street side, back-alley and courtyard patios to help you survive Summer 2010.

Coffee, Tea, Etc…

  • Coffee and Company (53 Princess St): a very small patio that’s presently engulfed by the Big Dig.
  • Coffeeco (344 Johnson St): with 10 seats outside, they serve the best locally roasted coffee.
  • Market Square (Brock and King): the new bistro seating area is hopefully just the start of things to come.
  • Pan Chancho (44 Princess St): not your average bakery, with a fantastic menu and a hidden patio to boot.
  • Sipps (33 Brock St): with approximately 16 seats, this quaint patio looks out onto Market Square.
  • Starbucks (121 Division St): a small(ish) patio within close proximity to Queen’s and the Student Village.
  • Starbucks (95 Princess St): a very small patio with about 8 seats, located on a busy downtown corner.
  • Tea Store (241 Princess St): 4 seats on the sidewalk and a window open to the world barely qualifies.
  • Wolfe Island Bakery (311 Queen St): 12 seats, and fresh baked goodness that’s sure to impress.

Bars

  • The Alehouse Canteen (393 Princess St): a prime stop in the Hub, with a deck-like patio that seats 30.
  • Fanatics (371 Princess St): tucked away and shaded, this patio seats 30 an has big screen TVs.
  • The Grad Club (162 Barrie St): with lots of seats on the porch and lawn, it’s a haven for those in the know.
  • The Iron Duke (207 Wellington St): this trendy haunt has a small patio for 20 that fills up fast.
  • Kingston Brewing Company (34 Clarence St): lots of seating for big crowds in the front and in the rear.
  • The Mansion (506 Princess St): one of largest, also boasts a beach volleyball court and outdoor bar.
  • The Merchant (6 Princess St): nestled at the foot of the Big Dig, it will be great patio once it re-opens.
  • Rhea’s (493 Princess St): this sketchy patio is home to an older crowd of regulars and bar flies.
  • Tir Na Nog (200 Ontario St): seating for 50 on the steps of City Hall, with the best view of our waterfront.
  • The Toucan (76 Princess St): heated, covered and tucked away from the street.  Easily seats over 50.

Restaurants

  • Amadeus (170 Princess St): our one and only Biergarten seats 65 and is tucked away in the rear.
  • Atomica (71 Brock St): 20 lucky souls can sit outside here and feast on the sun and gourmet pizza.
  • Brandees (178 Ontario St): stunning views of City Hall, and a larger patio that easily seats 40.
  • Casa Domenico (35 Brock St): fine Italian cuisine that’s served with a romantic view towards the Market.
  • Chez Piggy (68-Rear Princess St): hidden in a unique courtyard.  Seating under the shade or stars.
  • Le Chien Noir (69 Brock St): a true gem with an amazing local menu, and a patio for up to 20 people.
  • Dox Restaurant: (2 Princess Street): arguably the closest patio to our waterfront, with about 30 seats.
  • Forno (343 King St): yet another wood fired pizza restaurant with seating for about two dozen.
  • Franky Pesto’s (167 Ontario St): an old fave, with great Italian dishes. Franky’s covered patio seats 40.
  • The Grizzly Grill (395 Princess St): this patio seats 30 and has a prime view of the action in The Hub.
  • The Keg (300 King St): a covered patio with seating for 40, just around the corner from Market Square.
  • King Street Sizzle (285 King St): the Sheraton’s restaurant and patio have earned a solid reputation.
  • Lonestar (172 Ontario St): Margaritaville has temporarily relocated to the old site of Mexicali Rosas!
  • Lotus Heart Blossom (185 Sydenham St): amazing vegetarian cuisine on a quiet patio that seats 20.
  • Olivea (39 Brock St): with Mojito Mondays, amazing views of the Market,  and at least 30 seats.
  • The Pilot House (265 King St): sheltered from the elements of the high seas, with seating for 20.  Yarrrr!
  • The Queen’s Inn (125 Brock St): an unpretentious patio, with 30 places to park yourself for an afternoon.
  • The Raging Bull (189 Ontario St): formerly Stoney’s and now a chophouse with a patio that’s a cut above!
  • Stooley’s (118 Division St): 3 picnic tables hardly qualifies as a patio.  Good thing their fries are addictive.
  • Tango (331 King St): with seating for 20 this is a great spot to unwind or take an extended lunch break.
  • Woodenheads (192 Ontario St): lots of seating in the front, and out back. Reservations are a must!
  • Zappas (178 Ontario St): Joy is now Zappas, which has one of the best downtown patios.  60 plus seats.

In closing, downtown Kingston’s summer patio scene is still not complete as the Big Dig and unfortunate situation surrounding the Confederation Place Hotel have deterred and delayed some places from breaking out their patio furniture and related accessories.  Even so, there are presently lots of fantastic outdoor setups ready to receive and serve you well.  Please let us know what patio do you prefer by dropping a few comments off below.

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Harvey Kirkpatrick

Harvey Kirkpatrick is Kingstonist's Co-Founder. His features curiously explore urban planning, what if scenarios, the local food scene and notable Kingstonians. Loves playing tourist and listening to rap music. Learn more about Harvey...

16 thoughts on “Guide to Patios in Kingston 2010

  • June 1, 2010 at 11:06 am
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    I know it's on Wolfe Island, but how could the Island Grill not make this list? It's the best patio experience in town and an unbeatable view of the Kingston waterfront!

    Also, if the teeny Starbucks patio makes the cut, does the Sleepless Goat's bench count?

    • June 1, 2010 at 12:00 pm
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      The Wolfe Island Grill has an amazing patio, but the focus of this guide was the main land / downtown. As for the Goat, it is undoubtedly a great spot but I didn't consider the bench outside, usually used by smokers, as part of their establishment. Does the Goat actually own that bench or is it provided by the City?

      • June 1, 2010 at 4:31 pm
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        yeah, yeah, yeah – but the Wolfe Island Grill is still by far the best patio!

  • June 1, 2010 at 4:13 pm
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    My favorite would have to be Pan Chancho's patio for a weekend lunch; great food, pleasant surroundings and staff; a nice quiet place to drink some wine and read a good book in peace. The out of the way location also means no transit busses spouting diesel fumes in your face, and no obnoxious, mufferless, blattering motorcycles…
    I also enjoy the fact that it isn't scorching hot; as much as I enjoy going with friends to some of the patios on Ontario Street, such as Tir Nan Og, the heat can be quite unbearable in the afternoon.

    • June 1, 2010 at 9:04 pm
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      That's a great point regarding the heat along Ontario Street. On Canada Day a few years back, I recall our party moved from patio to patio simply because we were trying to follow the shade. From From Stoney's to Woodenheads, the Brew Pub and the Nog, it made for quite the eventful day.

  • June 2, 2010 at 9:37 am
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    I have to put in a good word for Cafe Amadeus. I have been several times, seated both on the patio and inside. Love the patio, secluded and charming, complete with polka music and great service. Nice selection of imports, and as a KW native (where Oktoberfest is king) with a german heritage, the food at Amadeus rivals some of the best I've tried at festhallen.

    • June 2, 2010 at 2:11 pm
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      I had heard tell of the Biergarten years ago, but I had not stepped foot on the patio or inside Cafe Amadeus until it came time to write this piece. I was instantly reminded of Le Sacrilège in Quebec City, which has a similar hidden backyard patio. I can see myself spending a lot of time at the Biergarten! It's definitely a great find that not too many people seem to know about.

  • June 5, 2010 at 11:18 am
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    Wonderful feature! Good work Kingstonist team.

    I'm going to toss my hat into the Wolfe Island Grill ring. Since there is no WolfIslandist, I say the ferry ride just makes it that much more attractive!

  • June 5, 2010 at 3:57 pm
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    This is fantastic. Could do you a brunch guide too? (Where can I get a vegan brunch besides Windmills and Lotus Heart Blossoms? Yes, the Goat, but it's too busy there.)

    • June 6, 2010 at 5:01 pm
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      Thanks for suggestion. We've reviewed a few brunch destinations, but a guide would be pretty cool. A bit more labour intensive but it's something we can chip away at.

      As for good vegan breakfast spots, I think you've mentioned them all. They're unfortunately few and far between in this city.

  • June 8, 2010 at 9:25 pm
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    I walk by Sima Sushi on a daily basis and just yesterday they had two small tables, two chairs per. Not worth including above, and sushi tends to be a lot more portable than other meals, which is great for taking down to the lake, park etc.

  • June 11, 2010 at 3:57 pm
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    Lotus Heart Blossoms also has a 16 seat patio!! It's a little out of the way but they have beautiful flower beds out now and umbrellas to keep things shady :)

  • June 24, 2010 at 12:29 pm
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    Yes, the Goat bench is the Goat’s bench. They take it inside every night and put it out every morning, and it can only sit on their part of the sidewalk.

    • July 9, 2010 at 1:45 pm
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      Thanks for the clarification Amanda. Although I love, love, LOVE the Goat, a single bench does not qualify as a patio. I am sure a lot of folks would agree that the woman who regularly panhandles out front is a bit of a detraction from sitting on that bench.

  • July 28, 2010 at 3:06 am
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    We have friends coming to Kingston this summer and they are bringing their Newfoundland dog with them . Their plan is to visit the market square and confederation park. They were inquiring if there are any restaurants along Ontario St. that allow customers with dogs entry to their patios.

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