Here’s the second installment of recommendations for enjoying Kingston in its most beautiful season.
1) Best summer eats
I’m a huge fan of the Chez Piggy patio. The restaurant is hidden off the main street in what’s called Rocheleau Court. There are two ways in—off of Princess and off of King. Sitting in the courtyard underneath full trees lit up with strands of lights, totally screened from traffic is a great treat. Here’s a review from the Kingstonist. It’s certainly not inexpensive, but you’ll find unique menu items, happy hour wine and cocktail specials, and some of the best bread I’ve ever had, at least, which is supplied by the Pig’s sister business and dedicated bakery, Pan Chancho.
2) Best ice cream place
Lest I lead you astray with an unqualified recommendation, I should mention that I don’t eat much ice cream. I tried White Mountain the other day for the first time and I was pleased with their homemade ice cream—between my peanut butter crunch and my friends’ mint chocolate, pralines & cream, and caramel swirl, I got a good sample—but almost thwarted by the fact that they took cash only. What’s probably most worth mentioning here has nothing to do with the ice cream shop itself, but a kindly young man who overheard and offered to get our ice cream! (Unfortunately, as if to make sure the man would never inclined to be so kind to strangers in the future, one of us [not me] hugged him out of sheer gratitude and smushed his ice cream on the back of the guy’s shirt.)
3) Best spot for drinks
Well, if Prince Edward County—our own local wine country—is too distant to count, then I guess I find myself mostly at Red House, but that doesn’t seem like a recommendation that’s likely to be new to you. Find a way to take a country drive, hop on the ferry, and explore the acres and acres of wineries in the county. The county is known for a terroir that supports the pinot noir varietal, in particular, but some wineries have experimented with grapes less usual to the area.
4) Best summer locations
I had a hard time answering this one. Rather than suggesting a particular location, what I want to do is draw your attention to how many green spaces Kingston has for you to enjoy in the summer. Look at this map of all the parks! The city is lousy with ‘em! City Park is wonderful, of course, because it’s at the water. Skeleton Park is a hub for little arts festivals. Victoria Park is big enough for some team sports. The landscaping in Churchill Park is charming as heck. If you click the link above and zoom in, you’ll see even more than appear on the map at this resolution.
5) Best summer festivals
There are two things happening this week—not exactly festivals, but public events. One is the BioBlitz on Wolfe Island where Kingstonians of all ages are invited to identify as many plants and animals as we can from 2pm on Friday June 13th to 2pm on Saturday June 14th in an effort to document the area’s biodiversity.
The other is on Friday, too, and it’s a free concert by Kingston’s own Sarah Harmer. It’s at 8pm in Market Square and kicks off a summer concert series. There are lots more Market Square events, too, like movie screenings. Keep wandering around downtown Kingston and you’ll find lots to do, but stay tuned for Rachel’s summer recommendations and Atif’s, too, for some suggestions you might not just stumble onto yourself.