Why can't all patios be like this? The Black Rock Kitchen and Bar (BRKB) has created an urban escape like no other - or at least since the days of Rendezvous on Niagara. The Goldmans have outdone themselves with this outdoor Amherst Street getaway. While I was expecting the new addition to be nice, I was totally taken with the chill surroundings.
Built off of what was once just a simple garage-looking addition, the transformation is more along the lines of something that you might see at Niagara on the Lake. Owner Mark Goldman said of the rustic oasis, "We have created and built at the Black Rock Kitchen and Bar what I believe is the most attractive and most interesting outdoor garden dining areas in the city. Combining a bit of Provence and a bit of Tuscany, the Garden at Black Rock embodies rustic calm rarely found in the city.
There is direct entrance into the courtyard by simply walking down a quaint alleyway where a hostess station is set up. A wheelbarrow filled with flowers is a welcoming touch. Other touches include a covered pergola, trained ivy along along a wooden wall, rustic garage doors and candelabras, colorful flowers and brick, wood, iron and glass accents - even the telephone pole plays a part in the attractive design.
Once we sat down at the community table we were immediately relaxed and ready to enjoy some food and drinks. While the service was excellent, we didn't even think about time, as we were content to just sit and talk. Even though I don't eat meat, a friend of mine said that he had the best steak sandwich of his life at BRKB... this menu item came highly recommended from our waiter (see menu below). My other friend was duly impressed with the beer selection and sampled a variety of beers that all looked tasty and refreshing - there are also a number of summer cocktails available.
Although this is not the biggest patio around, it is spacious enough. There are plenty of different seating options too. We're heading back again next week to meet up with more friends who have heard us talk about the patio for a few days now. I'm always looking for beautiful and relaxing patios in the city, and this one is definitely at the top of the list.
491 Amherst Street