Windmills – Casual Fine Dining

Today, after a busy morning at church, K and I decided to head to Windmills for some lunch. Though we’ve been here before, we haven’t visited in quite a while. Interesting side note: Windmills was the first restaurant I ate in when I arrived in Kingston after I got my acceptance to Queen’s. I was in town with my family for SOAR, and we decided to come here for a quick bite.

atmosphere

Despite being close to 2 pm, the place was still bustling. Windmills has a very lively atmosphere in general. It’s a nice place for lunch or brunch, but we haven’t been for dinner because it always seems uncharacteristically expensive for what you’re really getting. For those of you who need (or just enjoy) alternative eating options, Windmills is a very accommodating place. There are vegetarian and gluten-free options. In fact, back in September when K and I decided to try out a holistic diet stint, we definitely contemplated stopping in for some gluten-free pasta.

The restaurant itself is somewhat awkwardly arranged, with bankettes, regular tables, booths, bar stools, and a whole assortment of seating options. It is also nice that they put up local art, which they do change every so often. I asked K if he thought anyone actually bought the art, and he said he would if he had $350 lying around. Unfortunately, we do not, so the pieces continue to hang artistically on the walls.

Also, for those of you who are interested, Windmills has a different deal every day. K and I aren’t really the wine-drinking types, so many of these deals don’t have much of a draw for us, but it’s worth a look!

what we ordered

In the past, we’ve given their breakfasts a try. They are generally quite tasty, though a little pricy for what you’re getting. The burgers also are not bad. Today, K got the Curried Chicken Wrap (9.95) and I opted for the Cajun Chicken Wrap (9.75). Both come with either a soup, salad, or fries. A solid deal for a filling meal.

This is the Cajun Chicken Wrap. The soup of the day was a cream soup with potatoes, broccoli, spinach, and some other veggies. It was nice and hot, with lots in it, but it fell flat in flavour. The wrap, on the other hand, was quite flavourful. However, as someone who eats her wraps by biting one side, then the other, I found it awkward to alternate between wet and dry sides of the wrap. I would definitely recommend trying to get a whole bite of the wrap to lessen the strange oscillation in texture.

This is K’s Curried Chicken Wrap. The flavour was good, but it lacked a bit of chicken. The fruit in the wrap (particularly the grapes and the apples) added a nice crispness to the wrap, which K really liked. I tried a bit of it, but my bias still leaned towards the delicious curried chicken wrap at Aquaterra. The two really are not comparable. The fries were alright, and we appreciated that they retained their potato-y goodness despite being fried.

overall

3 (out of 5) for food

3.5 (out of 5) for atmosphere

Windmills isn’t somewhere we would go regularly, but it isn’t all that bad either. We gave the joint a 3 for food, taking into consideration what we know of the place from our visits in the past. Try it out for yourselves when you get a chance. Windmills is located at the corner of Montreal and Princess (184 Princess Street).

Windmills Cafe on Urbanspoon

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thank you!

To all of you who read our blog, we just want to say a huge thank youfor your comments and thoughts. K mentioned earlier this week that we’ve managed to clinch a top 5 spot on the Ontario blog leaderboard for Urbanspoon, and it blew our minds!

This is definitely an encouragement to us, and we will try to post more regularly. We’ve been visiting Sima Sushi downtown a lot, and every so often we snap a picture or two, but we keep putting off the actual writing of the post! Perhaps next time we go, we’ll actually get down to it.

Keep checking back for other posts, and feel free to share our blog with your friends!! If there are any restaurants you guys think we should try out, send us a message!

C

 

Five Guys Burgers and Fries – Real Idaho Potatoes

Today, K and I ventured downtown to check out a burger joint that we have been meaning to review for a while. He had been to the one in Kingston once before, but had also tried out the chain elsewhere in the States. I, on the other hand, was a Five Guys virgin.

atmosphere

Despite it being a cold and snowy night, the place was hopping with people. It was a pleasantly diverse crowd, with locals, families, young couples, and even some military folk dressed in their garb. As you walk in, you head straight for the cash, where they take your order. The menu is very simple, with four regular burgers to choose from (hamburger, cheeseburger, bacon burger, or bacon cheeseburger) and four little burgers (with the same variety). The regular burgers use two patties, while the little burgers use one. You can also get one of two sizes of soft drinks (which you fill up on your own – and refills are free), and one of two sizes of fries. The fries can be seasoned either Five Guys style (just salt) or Cajun style. The kitchen is entirely open for all to see, and it is impeccably clean and efficient. The eating area, on the other hand, though bright, was in need of a cleaning. This probably had to do with the weather outside, and the fact that everyone is welcome to munch on some free peanuts while they wait. I definitely spotted some peanut shell families gathering underneath the tables.

what we ordered

A word of caution: don’t throw out your receipts too quickly! I am a person who does not hang onto receipts, so in my haste, I threw it out before I got my order. Luckily, I remembered the order number, and I got my order just the same. However, if you are not inclined to remember your order number, make sure you keep your receipt!

Before we start talking about the food, note the picture above – a number two sticker is on my burger. This is a testament to the true efficiency of the joint. Every order is accompanied by a receipt number, and within that order, each burger is numbered so you know whose is whose!! This is especially helpful if you are ordering burgers for a whole bunch of people, or if people get the same burger, but with different toppings. Now, on to the good stuff…

This is the Little Cheeseburger, with ketchup, lettuce, grilled onions, and grilled mushrooms (4.79). Oh! I forgot to mention that all the toppings come free of charge – you just tell them what you want! K enjoyed his burger, but he says that if he were to do it again, he would just go for the regular burgers.

This is the Little Bacon Burger, with lettuce, ketchup, mustard, grilled onions, and grilled mushrooms (4.79). I definitely thought I ordered a Little Bacon Cheeseburger instead, but alas, the receipt (and my sandwich) told me otherwise. The burger was okay, but I didn’t find anything spectacular to rave about. The grilled mushrooms are a nice addition, and they do toast the buns, but I found that the bottom bun almost disappeared amidst the rest of the burger. K has much better burger-eating technique than I do, so I found myself wiping my fingers after almost every bite.

We cannot have burgers without fries! So, we ordered a portion of Five Guys style large fries (2.29). By the cash, they have a whiteboard where they write down where the potatoes are from for the day. Today, they were from Place Farms in Idaho Falls, Idaho. The fries were delicious, and they tasted oh so potato-ey. I definitely enjoyed them.

We also ordered a drink, a large drink (2.29), but you could technically order a regular drink, since you get free refills. It’s up to you! The selection of soft drinks is nothing to rave about either, but again, it is part of a complete burger combo.

After eating all this, I was still a little bit hungry, so we decided to order a Regular Hamburger (6.29). If you are someone with a medium to large appetite, I would  definitely suggest getting the Regular burgers instead.

This is our Regular Hamburger, with grilled onions, regular onions, grilled mushrooms, ketchup, and lettuce. Note the two patties. This burger was much better than the other two. It was juicier, had a fuller flavour, and just generally more enjoyable. With the two patties together, you could really taste that the patties were homemade – the ground beef flavour was much more distinct. I would definitely recommend you give this one a try. As we finished up, we felt much more satisfied, and it was a great way to end the meal.

overall

3 (out of 5) for food

1.5 (out of 5) for atmosphere

Disclaimer: The reason we gave Five Guys such a low mark for atmosphere was because of the nature of the place. At its heart, Five Guys is a fast food joint, and not a place you would go for a sit-down dinner (this is not to say that only fancy places will get a good rating for atmosphere).

That being said, Five Guys is a nice alternative to the otherwise unhealthy fast food options that we are given in today’s world. We will probably be back sometime (or at least, K will, in the spring time, once softball season begins).

Check it out for yourself at 185 Princess Street (Bagot and Princess)!

C

Five Guys Burgers and Fries on Urbanspoon