Niagara-on-the-Lake’s top takeout spots

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Cooler mornings and crisp evenings can only mean one thing: hard to believe it, but yes, summer is almost over. It feels like just yesterday we were stocking up on toilet paper and Lysol wipes, and now here we are, five months later. Time sure flies when you’re having…fun, is it? Savour the last of the season with a day trip filled with fantastic food in Niagara-on-the-Lake. The region may be best known for its wine scene, but it has some pretty great restaurants, too. Here, our top 10 picks for takeout in Niagara-on-the-Lake.

Cow’s

This PEI transplant specializes in the quintessential summertime treat: ice cream. Try a freshly baked waffle cone dunked in chocolate and doused in sprinkles, then stuffed with a scoop (or two). There are over 30 flavours to choose from, including the punnily named Moonicorn and Nanaimoo Bar, but we like the Gooey Mooey—burnt sugar caramel ice cream littered with English toffee, chocolate-caramel cups and (also chocolate) flakes. Pro-tip: if you can, go during the week to avoid long lines. 44 Queen St., Niagara-on-the-Lake, 905-468-2100, cows.ca
 

Gyros On The Lake

This family-run operation makes juicy gyros: squishy pitas crammed with shaved beef or lamb and topped with tzatziki and paprika-dusted onions, lettuce and tomatoes. The pita and dip platter—greek salad, spanakopita stuffed with spinach and feta, and cheesy tiropita—makes for the perfect picnic spread. And don’t forget about their homemade baklava, a dessert staple. Call to order. 12 Queen St., Niagara-on-the-Lake, 289-868-9688, gyrosonthelake.business.site
 

Tide and Vine Oyster House

The takeout menu at this popular seafood spot in the Falls (it started as a mobile shuck truck) lists the kitchen’s greatest hits. Consider their chilled seafood box chock full of snow crab, tuna tataki, lobster claws and more, or a dozen shucked-to-order PEI oysters. Hot mains include creamy seafood chowder and shrimp nachos. For an over-the-top indulgence, there’s the lobster picnic spread: four hefty crustaceans, potato salad, seasonal greens, fluffy rolls and strawberry-rhubarb crisp. Call to order. 3491 Portage Rd., Niagara Falls, 905-356-5782, tideandvine.com
 

Counterpart Brewing

This almost-two-year-old brewery in Niagara is good for more than just beer. Don’t get us wrong, the beer is out of this world, but what’s coming out of the kitchen is just as delicious. You basically can’t go wrong, but anything that involves fried chicken is a must-try, as is whatever iteration of mussels is on the menu—and if you’re not into meat, the fried cauliflower plate is a winner. And oh gosh, the bread. The bread. A serving of their sourdough with cultured butter (and if you’re lucky, some chili oil) is worth the trip alone. Call to order but be patient, there’s only one phone line and the place is popular. 3659 Stanley Ave., Niagara Falls, 905-354-2739, counterpartbrewing.com
 

The Ice House Winery

The retail store of this NOTL winery is unfortunately a Covid casualty—but you still have until October 20 to visit and order one of their grown-up slushies made with ice wine. There are two kinds to choose from: the Vidal with rich honey, peach and apricot top notes, or their Cabernet with its dark fruit notes of plum, cherry, blackberry and blackcurrant. Tasting notes aside, though, they’re just plain fun and refreshing as heck. 14778 Niagara Pkwy, Niagara-on-the-Lake, 905-262-6161, theicehousewinery.com
 

Garrison House

Celebrating Canadian ingredients, this self-titled gastro tavern is offering 10 per cent off on all takeout orders. Snacks and sharing plates include red pepper hummus and panko-crusted calamari. For something more substantial, there’s the Ontario flat iron steak, a beef brisket burger, or pan-seared halibut—but we suggest heading there on a Friday for their famous fish and chips. Bonus: a substantial selection of cider, beer, wine and pre-made cocktails is now available to go. Takeout available from 1 p.m.-7:30 p.m. Call to order. 111C Garrison Village Drive, Unit 2, Niagara-on-the Lake, 905-468-4000, thegarrisonhouse.ca
 

The Grove Niagara Farm Shop

Owned by couple Steve and Charlie Wharton, this farm shop sells groceries and fresh produce, a collection of locally made curios and housewares, beauty products and baked goodies. They also offer fresh salad bowls, sandwiches and snacks for takeaway. Don’t leave without stocking up on house-made butter tarts, colourful grandma squares or lemony Sunshine Baby Bars. Order online or by phone for curbside pick-up. 1267 Niagara Stone Rd., Niagara-on-the-Lake, 905-468-9821, market.thegroveniagara.com
 

Treadwell Farm to Table

Chef and owner Stephen Treadwell and his team are now offering a takeout menu of their kitchen’s rustic fare, made with ingredients and products from local suppliers and artisans. Recent features included potato and chive gnocchi with summer truffles, a duck fat–fried lobster club sandwich with crispy bacon and goat’s cheese, and pan-seared salmon with confit garlic. If it’s a special occasion, the Dinner for Two includes bread, tomato salad, prosciutto salad, a choice of two entrees (beef/chicken/salmon), a dessert and a sommelier-selected bottle of wine. Place orders in advance by emailing james@treadwellcuisine.com. 114 Queen St., Niagara-on-the-Lake, 905-934-9797, treadwellcuisine.com
 

Ruffino’s

Ruffino is the Italian reincarnation of chef Ryan Crawford’s Backhouse Restaurant. The strip-mall spot serves up saucy meatballs, house-cured prosciutto, wood-fired sourdough pizza (the Ruffino with fennel, salami and pomodoro sauce is a must) and lasagna with Berkshire pork ragu. For dessert: refreshing Sicillian granita and daily gelato creations. Order by phone. 242 Mary St., Niagara-On-The-Lake, 289-819-0179, ruffinosnotl.ca
 

The Pie Plate

This beloved kitchen was started by Ruth Anne Schriefer nearly 20 years ago. Today, her daughter Maddy is in charge of the changing plates and cocktails. But her breads and pastries are the main attractions here, often selling out within an hour of opening (and even earlier on the weekends). Best bets include the pizza topped with blue cheese, pear, and locally made Pingue prosciutto, porchetta and brie on house-made baguette slathered with honey-mustard butter, and whatever pie is in season. 1516 Niagara Stone Rd., Virgil, 905-468-9743, thepieplate.com