Benchmark
Benchmark
  • Address:
    135 Taylor Rd
    Niagara-On-The-Lake, ON L0S1J0
    Neighborhood:
    Niagara-on-the-lake
  • Cuisine:
    Contemporary American
    Price: CAN$31 to CAN$50

Benchmark

  • Dining Style: Casual Dining
  • Website: http://www.niagaracollege.ca/dining
  • Phone: 9056412252x4619
  • Hours of Operation:
    Lunch: Tuesday - Saturday: 11:30 am - 2:00 pm;

    Dinner: Wednesday -Friday: 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm;

    Saturday: 5:00 pm to 9:30 pm
    Our dining room is closed on Sunday and Monday.
  • Payment Options: AMEX,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Contemporary American
  • Executive Chef: Bruce Worden C.C.C.
  • Dress Code: Business Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Beer, Farm to Table, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking Area, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Private Room, Smoking Area, View, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Catering: Let us help make your day a success by catering your special event. We can accommodate 80 Guests for a sit down dinner in our dining room, 16 Guests in our private dining room and up to 200 guests with a stand up cocktail reception overlooking our greenhouse, winery & spectacular vineyard setting.
    We use top quality, often locally sourced ingredients to make simple, delicious and affordable food showcasing the talents of the Canadian Food and Wine Institute. Please contact Sarah Scott to discuss a custom made menu for your special event.
  • Private Party Contact: Sarah Scott 9056412252x4618

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Glendale Road
  • Parking: Public Lot
A word from Benchmark
The Canadian Food and Wine Institute's state of the art facilities are nestled into 114 acres of abundant Niagara land.
Benchmark is the next evolution of the hands-on learning process. Students begin their careers in the culinary and hospitality industry at this unique teaching restaurant.
Benchmark has been created to offer local, fresh food options for college students, staff and the external community at affordable prices.

Features of Benchmark include a focus on fresh, local and Canadian cuisine, an educational kitchen and food, wine and beer pairings. We welcome all students, staff and members of the community to experience Benchmark.
Continued
Foodspotting photos
See all photos
Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerFit for Foodies
  • Diners' Choice WinnerGreat for Lunch
  • Diners' Choice WinnerNeigborhood Gem
Benchmark reviews from OpenTable diners
183 reviews since June 22, 2014
Overall Rating4.4
  • Food4.4
    Service4.2
  • Ambiance4.3
    Noise LevelModerate
96% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (126)special occasion (98)great for lunch (98)scenic view (79)good for groups (75)neighborhood gem (64)notable wine list (51)great for outdoor dining (45)romantic (41)great for brunch (25)kid-friendly (10)hot spot (9)vibrant bar scene (2)late-night find (2)Show More
  • fred
    Dined on 10/17/2014
    Fantastic. A little noisy. But the food and service was excellent. Jackie. Will return.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Bravo students!
    gld1
    Dined on 10/17/2014
    Our dinner at Benchmark, the restaurant of the Niagara College Culinary Institute, was remarkable for it's innovative menu, excellent service and lovely ambiance. The students are to be commended for the expertise they showed in preparing a dinner worthy of our friends' anniversary. The young people who served us were professional, cheerful, attentive, and well versed in the details of the food preparations. The portions were generous and plated beautifully. Restaurant was a bit difficult to locate in the dark from the parking lot. Wonderful evening!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, hot spot, notable wine list, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • will visit again
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 10/16/2014
    Great food, selection of vine and location. Had a great lunch.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for lunch, notable wine list, romantic, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Experience
    OpenTable Diner Since 2009VIP
    Dined on 10/16/2014
    Menu choice was unique and varied. Staff were pleasant and accommodating. Will certainly return.
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Pricing
    OpenTable Diner Since 2004
    Dined on 10/16/2014
    Shouldn't be priced as a five star with culinary students in learning mode. As good as the food was, pricing isn't accurate.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, great for outdoor dining
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • A gem
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 10/15/2014
    This restaurant can be easily forgotten as it is at Niagara College but it is not to be missed. The food is delicious, the service amazing and it is a gem!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Vacation lunch visit...romantic!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 10/15/2014
    My girlfriend and i recently visited for lunch...what a gorgeous restaurant! Great service, view, ambiance and FOOD! Would definitely like to visit for a dinner experience, really enjoyed the lunch! Glad we had reservations as it did get full fast. We would go back in a heartbeat to experience this wonderful dining again!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Checkmark for Benchmark Oct. 11/14
    RedPen
    Dined on 10/11/2014
    Great food overall and good service. Disappointed that Black Forest dessert was not served with cherries as described in menu but raspberries instead; did not have any roasted beets in salad as described in menu. Bread was fresh and delicious, but a choice would be nice. Apple dessert was frozen when it arrived at table and difficult to eat with a hard crust and crumbly cheese filling. Steak arrived medium rare and was sent back. Medium steak arrived promptly. Meat portions were generous. Surprised that on Thanksgiving weekend, no turkey options on menu. Appetizer freebie a nice touch. Excellent welcome upon arrival and very friendly staff. I would definitely return.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Excellent!
    Teas
    Dined on 10/11/2014
    My family thoroughly enjoyed each dish and the presentation was lovely. Benchmark was recommended by a client who enjoys the dinner series all winter long. i would recommend it to any one. Keep up the great work.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, kid-friendly, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Great experience
    goodeats
    Dined on 10/11/2014
    Had dinner for 2 on Saturday. Pleasant service and great, fresh food. Excellent local wine list. Always pleased with the idea that Benchmark supports student learning, hospitality training and success and sources locally-grown products.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • The best of wine country
    moerzedong
    Dined on 10/10/2014
    Supporting local industry of all kinds by eating at benchmark the niagara college enterprise is worth every penny. Five star food at ridiculously good prices, plus great vieW's and service. Eat at least once before you die.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for brunch, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, hot spot, late-night find, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • My mom loved it!
    SawABlackSquirrel
    Dined on 10/8/2014
    This restaurant was recommended by a local. You have to make reservations ASAP because dinner is booked at least a week in advance. I was able to get a lunch reservation on the second day of my visit from the US. My mom didn't like her first dish but she totally loved the pasta with beef dish. The Cobb Salad was delicious but small and overpriced but I enjoyed my entree. Our waitress was great but I didn't like the fact that I paid her in US dollars and was told they only give change in Canadian, which not correct after using the conversion rate on my phone.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Birthday celebration
    luv2celebrate
    Dined on 10/8/2014
    My husband and I were at the Benchmark for lunch on October 8 on the occasion of his 67th. (you don't need to tell him I put his age down) Birthday. We loved the food, our attentive waiter. I enjoyed my glass of wine and Jim enjoyed his craft beer which you didn't have the last time we were there. It was such an overall wonderful experience and made his birthday so special and because of that we have decided to make this a new tradition - for our birthdays we will drive to your restaurant (about 1 1/2 hours each way) to celebrate. So, we will see you in June when I will celebrate my birthday. We both think the is is a perfect way to celebrate the special occasions.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 10/7/2014
    My mother and I lunched at Benchmark as she had never been to the restaurant. We were seated promptly and water was served immediately. However, we waited for 10 minutes without any attention from a server and finally had to flag someone. This was surprising since there were very few diners at that time. The server who attended us was not the usual server for our table but he quickly took our orders and was very attentive throughout the meal. The soup was delicious and my mother , who is a light eater, ate her entire pizza. Overall it was a very pleasant experience with a tasty meal and only the hiccup at the beginning. I would certainly return to Benchmark. Also, the wine from your cellar was very good.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for brunch, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 10/4/2014
    We had a wonderful time/ meal even though the birthday guests desserts got mixed up! Will definitely be back 😋 Will recommend to family and friends.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Substance without flash
    krs10
    Dined on 10/3/2014
    Our dinner here was solid; nothing too flashy but enjoyable meals. Adequate but not passionate serving combined with small details not executed perfectly kept the meal from being entirely memorable. Bitter greens salad a bit plain & skimpy on some elements. Bread was served once asked for, but both the cold cheese bread and butter could've benefitted from a quick warmup. Organic chicken got lots of compliments for pureness of flavour and the added fun of the poutine bed. Fish was nicely prepared and the herbed orzo had good flavour. Greens still a bit too bitter and the BEURRE (spelled wrong on the online menu) blanc sauce a bit heavy. Glassed in circular setup of the restaurant kept the ambiance fun and intimate.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • no complaints
    quiche1956
    Dined on 10/3/2014
    On a recent visit to Niagara-on-the-Lake, a friend recommended we eat at Benchmark in the Niagara College. What a fabulous place. The service was spot on and the food was delicious and presented so artistically. I had the pork tenderloin and it literally melted in my mouth. The desserts were wonderful as well. I cannot say enough good things about this restaurant. Do yourself a favor and enjoy for yourself.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Fine dining at Niagara College
    AlFromOttawa
    Dined on 10/3/2014
    We try to have dinner at the Benchmark restaurant whenever we are in the Niagara region. Consistently good food with interesting new menu choices each visit. A good selection of local wines, many of them from the college's own teaching winery. Attractive modern room.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Mixed results
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 10/3/2014
    Five of our party of 9 had a wonderful meal -- every course delicious. The other four were disappointed. The three who ordered pasta were very disappointed -- chewy tepid noodles, insufficient sauce.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Burgerdelux
    Dined on 10/1/2014
    What a great experience; food, ambience were terrific. It made me want to go back to College!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • A Niagara gem
    1212
    Dined on 10/1/2014
    Wonderful experience. A Niagara gem. We had lunch with a friend and the food was excellent. The wait staff were delightfully enthusiastic but a little rough at the edges which is completely forgivable given this is a teaching experience for them.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelCannot Recall
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • menu choises
    NAOTL
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    There were five people in our party each ordering separate entres. I enjoyed the arctic char and another person liked the vegetarian dish. All enjoyed the Benchmark.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, notable wine list, scenic view, special occasion, vibrant bar scene
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food and location
    Wday
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    Our group was looking forward to an amazing experience at Benchmark; we were not disappointed! The menu offered many local options and the Chef's plate exceeded the value.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Group of Twelve
    12togo
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    We had a group of 12, and the food very good, I have already told a few that I have been talk since Saturday what a great place it was. I personally had the 4 course meal, I found the soup lukewarm. We were able to talk with out being bother to much. I don't know how you kept track of confirmation the reservations. I got an email from Open table and then got a phone call on Friday early afternoon to confirm my reservation, which I did. Then I got another call the evening for the same thing.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Great food in Niagara region
    EnroutetoNiagaraFalls
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    Fantastic food, environment and service. This is the best stop when travelling through to niagara falls to enjoy real food and wine/beer at very reasonable prices. Tried the "trust us" 3 course meal (app, main, dessert), very impressed with freshness of ingredients, quantity and quality of food and taste.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Niagara College Gem
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/27/2014
    Try a flight of local beers or wines. Excellent menu choices. Emphasis on locally sourced ingredients. Desserts were excellent. A great spot for a relaxing dining experience.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    Choices on the menu were varied and delicious.....prepared and presented perfectly......wine selection complimented our meals....a definite return visit!
    Special Features:
    good for groups, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • great meal!
    CanadianEh
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    Chose Benchmark for a meal during the Wine Festival. We arrived early and were met with cheery greeting and prompt seating. Amuse bouche of goat cheese and salmon rolled in zucchini strip was tasty (perhaps a little too much goat cheese overpowering the salmon). Hubby loved his Potato leek soup - thick and flavourful, and smoked chicken fettuccine. I had the bitter greens salad (lovely contrast of bitter/sweet with candied pecans)and pork tenderloin with root vegetables. All were all well-presented and tasty. Niagara College oaked Chardonnay complimented well. Our student server was pleasant and efficient and manager/teacher also checked that we were satisfied. We will return!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Always Great Experience
    Brian
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    Benchmark does it right and never fails on delivering great food at reasonable prices. The service is top draw too. Been back 3 times in 2 months and will continue to make it a stop for lunch or dinner anytime we are in the Niagara wine region.
    Special Features:
    great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Great dining experience
    3wine6dine
    Dined on 9/26/2014
    Excellent value Great food Would recommend to others and would return myself. Culinary students, waitresses and waiters did an amazing job, were knowledgable and informative. Wine and beer also very good
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for brunch, great for lunch, late-night find, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Best kept secret
    igee
    Dined on 9/20/2014
    Benchmark is a quiet little gem well tucked away amidst the beautiful NC campus. Food is excellent and compares to any of the best restaurants in downtown Toronto. Service is very attentive though it could get quite busy. Good for any occasion, whether a romantic twosome or in a group. Don't forget to visit the wine centre after.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, notable wine list, scenic view, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    Went for our anniversary dinner. Food was excellent- fresh tasting and wonderful presentation of it. Server was fantastic. Thanks for a great night!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Wonderful Meal
    SusanV
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    Our food was delicious and the presentation was beautiful. Enjoyed a lovely glass of wine from the college vineyards. Our server was friendly and attentive. This was as good a meal as any I've had at more costly, upscale restaurants. Bravo!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for lunch, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Benchmark
    luv2dine
    Dined on 9/19/2014
    We enjoyed our lunch at Benchmark and would certainly return another time.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Trust Me!
    Joan
    Dined on 9/16/2014
    Second visit - just as wonderful! The Trust Me menu is my new favorite entertainment! Exceptional dining experience for someone on a tight budget.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Hidden find
    niagara
    Dined on 9/13/2014
    Benchmark restaurant is a great Niagara find with excellent food and service by the students of Niagara College. Well priced and interesting menu and very good wine and beer from the College program as well.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Excellent Experience
    Londoner
    Dined on 9/12/2014
    We have visited Benchmark a number of times and never come away disappointed with the dinner or lunch meal. The presentation is great and always very pleasing. The meals are prepared as requested. It is easy to spend a couple of hours enjoying the experience. People need to understand that this is a learning experience for a number of the people working there so sometimes patience is required. However, the meal is well worth the time. We always recommend Benchmark to friends and acquaintances who come to the Niagara Region. Just as good as any other restaurant in the region.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Concept
    Canadian
    Dined on 9/12/2014
    We loved this experience. The students were extremely proud of what they had accomplished in this very professionally run restaurant in a beautiful setting.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • very good if you choose right
    martin
    Dined on 9/12/2014
    I love the setting, large, open, windows all round. Staff are all very friendly and having the chef explain his meal when you are served is a nice touch and informative. Two of us had the "trust us" set lunch (excellent). The salad with bits of goat cheese was very good. The duck along with all the accompanying vegetables was absolutely delicious, the peach mouse desert was very tasty and could be served in the best pastry shops of France. My ale was delicious and the cappuccino was very good. Now for the not so good. The white wine was served at room temperature. The red Cab. Franc was rough, acidic and is barely worthy of a cooking wine. Pizza was dry and tasteless. Black Forest cake was bland. Choose right and you will love it.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, great for lunch, great for outdoor dining, scenic view
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Best Food Anywhere at the Price!
    BCinDCVIP
    Dined on 9/11/2014
    If you are anywhere near the Niagara Falls area, don't deny yourself this incredible treat, whether for lunch or dinner. Flawless food, wonderfully presented by a charming student staff.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, notable wine list, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.