209 Queen St.
Niagara-On-The-Lake, ON L0S 1J0Neighborhood:
Contemporary FrenchPrice: CAN$51 and over
- Dining Style: Fine Dining
- Website: http://www.niagarasfinest.com/properties/charlesre
- Phone: (905) 468-4588
- Hours of Operation:
Breakfast: Saturday - Sunday: 8:00 am - 11:00 am;
Lunch: Saturday - Sunday: 11:00 am - 5:00 pm;
Dinner: Monday - Friday: 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm, Saturday - Sunday: 5:00 pm - 8:30 pm
- Payment Options: AMEX,JCB,MasterCard,Visa
- Cuisine: Contemporary French
- Executive Chef: Steve Sperling
- Dress Code: Smart Casual
- Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
- Additional Details: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar Dining, Bar/Lounge, BYO Liquor, Fireplace, Full Bar, High Tea, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), View, Wine, Wine Bar
A word from Charles Inn
The Dining Room is located in the old parlour and still features its original crystal chandeliers. The room is now painted a warm persimmon colour and offers comfortable upholstered banquettes and wing back chairs along with the more traditional dining chair. Whether taking afternoon tea and scones or savouring a multi-course meal prepared by Chef de Cuisine Steve Sperling, dining at the Charles Inn Restaurant is always special. Our wine list features the best that Niagara has to offer including a wonderful selection of ice wines to accompany that special dessert. During the warmer months, a candle lit dinner can be enjoyed on the side verandah which overlooks the gardens as well as North America's oldest golf course. After dinner, guests are welcome to enjoy a glass of port or ice wine or perhaps a specialty coffee in the adjoining lounge or sit on the verandah to enjoy the evening sky. The dining room is open seven days a week.Continued
Foodspotting photosSee all photos
Awards voted by OpenTable diners
- Diners' Choice WinnerBest Overall
- Diners' Choice WinnerBest Food
- Diners' Choice WinnerSpecial Occasion
Charles Inn - Best Restaurants in Niagara-on-the-lake ›
Charles Inn reviews from OpenTable diners
138 reviews since July 26, 2014
- Ambiance4.2Noise LevelModerate
special occasion (93)romantic (78)fit for foodies (77)notable wine list (40)great for outdoor dining (31)neighborhood gem (29)great for lunch (23)scenic view (12)good for groups (11)great for brunch (8)hot spot (5)kid-friendly (4)late-night find (4)vibrant bar scene (2)Show More
- NOTL charmOpenTable Diner Since 2011Dined on 11/15/2014very good food, Canadian wine list, service was a bit slow, but that made for a nice night.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Excellent ServiceJenCDined on 11/15/2014The food was great, but the service was exceptional. Delicious dinner!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Delightful diningVGCLCDined on 11/14/2014The dining rooom of the Charles Inn serves excellent cuisine with good service. Their setting of a restored Niagara-on-the-Lake old house, now as an Inn, is attractive.Special Features:
- Charming and DeliciousGapgirlDined on 11/8/2014The food was perfectly prepared and perfectly delicious! The wait staff were knowledgeable on the wines and foods that were served and had a friendly smile the entire night. I felt like a special guest!!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Outstanding!OpenTable Diner Since 2010Dined on 11/1/2014We have dined at the Charles Inn many times over the past couple of decades, but our anniversary dinner this year was the best to date. The evening began with a lovely tribute to our anniversary: a complimentary glass of sparkling wine from a local winery. We opted for the chef's tasting menu as everything sounded delicious and innovative. Our amuse-bouche was a shot glass- sized portion of creamy gazpacho that packed a powerful and delicious flavour punch. The next course was an appetizer of seared scallop and pork belly...incredible. We swooned over fois gras done to perfection and duck unlike any I have enjoyed before. After a sample of wonderful local cheese, the dark chocolate pate sent us over the top!Special Features:
- ExcellentKevinDined on 10/28/2014Wanted a great food experience in Niagara for an anniversary dinner. Found it here. This is a place that takes creating dishes that have a sight twist to them. Every dish was an adventure in taste experiences. Service is above normal. Will return.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Salty, salty salty...!PikentaiDined on 10/27/2014We had great friendly service at the Charles Inn. The bread was VERY good! The little carrot ginger soup we had as a starter was very good as well! I took the Scallop appetizer and although the scallop was cooked to perfection, the scallop tartar was WAY too salty! I also found that the hole dish tasted too much like cilantro. My partner had the foie gras and thought it was too salty as well. Our main dish was the tenderloin. The presentation was great...but the meat lacked flavour and the hole dish was still too salty! We sat there joking that the chef had dropped the salt into our plates. We did not have our deserts there... It was a bit expensive for what we got...we felt we didn't get "fine dining" at it's best.Special Features:
- Enjoyable dinnerluv2eatDined on 10/23/2014Really appreciated the waiter explaining our dishes to us eg the different mushrooms on the salad plate. Will definitely return when we are visiting Niagara on the LakeSpecial Features:
- interestingfortyplusDined on 10/19/2014Enjoyed the ambiance and selections at the Charles Inn. Food was well prepared and presented. Portions were small but adequate when eating 3 or more courses. Pricing was comparable to similar eating establishments in the area.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Enjoyable Meal before the TheatreAT42Dined on 10/18/2014We have visited the Charles Inn several times before. The experience has always been enjoyable, and we look forward to our next visit. The service is always friendly and helpful, and the ambiance and noise level make it as great place to chat over good food.Special Features:
- The best food experience everAmazingDined on 10/18/2014We were not impressed with the table selection at first (next to the door at the patio) but the service from Gillian and the food taste has surpassed our wildest expectation. We ordered scalop and mashroom salad for the appertizers and the salmon and beef for main course and all of the dishes were out of this world! This was simply art and not just a meal! The combination of tastes and the presentation was amazing and worth every penny. Gillian also added to the entire experience being very informative about the dishes and the wine selection that could go with it. I would strongly recommend your restaurant as this was the best food experience ever!Special Features:
- halvalDined on 10/17/2014My wife look forward to coming to Niagara-On-The-Lake usually at least twice a year and this is the first time we've come to the Charles Inn. We were very disappointment with the service and unlikely we will be coming back.
- ExceptionalLMFGDined on 10/15/2014Our return visit to the Charles Inn Restaurant was exceptional! We were warmly welcomed and our previous visits were acknowledged by staff including our server, Alan. Alan is professional, knowledgeable and friendly... the food, wine and ambience were everything that one could want. The evening was perfect and we will be back !Special Features:
- WHAT A WONDERFUL INN AND RESTAURANTDIANERM48Dined on 10/14/2014This is our third time here and as usual it was WONDERFUL.... The gazpacho soup was very tasty and my pork was beyond tender!! next time we come to Niagara on the Lake we are staying here for at least 3 nights!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- lovely addition to the areatwofourtalkVIPDined on 10/13/2014and the food is excellent.But over-eager constant interruptions from the staff to ask how we were enjoying it!Special Features:
- Thanksgiving dinner24carrotsDined on 10/13/2014We booked a table at Charles Inn based on reviews, and are glad we did. It turned out we were there on Thanksgiving weekend and they gave us two menus - their normal dinner menu and special Thanksgiving menu - pre fix, which was what we opted for. We had choices on apps, entrée and dessert. Everything was wonderful, particularly the turkey which was very moist and tasty - wish I could make it like that. A good experience.Special Features:
- Mostly well worth a visit.LuvNOLDined on 10/12/2014The Charles is an ambient place to dine. I have dined here before however this time it was Thanksgiving weekend with a very limited menu. I would have preferred a la carte with a turkey special. The choices on all selections were grim and served very lukewarm twice. That said the service was very good and they were nice about reheating our meals even though it did not return any hotter. I would come back again but steer clear of holiday menus. The a la carte menu is delightful, the garden is lovely, the service excellent, and we did enjoy ourselves.Special Features:
- Wonderful dinner getawayCmatDined on 10/12/2014Charles Inn is a wonderful spot for a quiet dinner in a beautiful old inn. The food was fabulous. We went for a Thanksgiving dinner. They had a variety of choices in the fixed prix selection. We chose the turkey anyways but wow what a lovely meal. It was had a jus instead of amass of gravy, with lovely veggies of the season and a fab stuffing. We loved it. Go course the rest of the meal was also great. We have eaten here before and always have loved it.Special Features:
- We were seated in glaring sunlightFoodie2Dined on 10/11/2014There was a wedding going on, so the main dining room was occupied. We were seated instead, in a glassed-in outdoor patio, which was basically a hallway. The sunshine was beaming down, making the tiny space suffocating, even though it was a beautiful crisp Fall day outside. It was our wedding anniversary and I wanted a special experience. Instead my poor husband had to squint and shield his eyes the whole meal. It was extremely uncomfortable. The next table was 2 inches away from us, and I could hear every word of our fellow dinners conversation, as I'm sure they heard us. We might as well all been seated at the same table. So much for romance. The food was wonderful but it was not enough to salvage the dining experience.Special Features:
- IrkyODined on 10/7/2014It was a perfect evening because of our server,Jillian. She was so knowledgeable about the food and wine and was so upbeat. One of the best servers we ever had. The food was very good with a good selection. We were not familiar with Canadian wine and she made the choice easy.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- KlinkDined on 10/7/2014The food as usual was excellent. The atmosphere is also most pleasant - not noisy but comfortably subdued. Our one problem this time was that while the service was excellent, it was extremely slow. We had a theatre performance to attend after the meal and had to rush dessert and coffee which should not have been necessary. Our main course arrived 65 minutes after we had sat down.Special Features:
- Tasting MenuluvgoodfoodDined on 10/6/2014We chose The Charles Inn to experience their tasting/pairing menu. We had a table in front of the fireplace and although the restaurant was busy we did not find the noise level excessive and could carry on a conversation easily. The food was excellent. Each course and its paired wine was described and we were left to enjoy it without rushing us. The service was also top level. The staff was attentive but not hovering. Amanda, our server, made our dinner even more enjoyable with her friendly, outgoing manner.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Perfect in every wayOpenTable Diner Since 2012Dined on 10/5/2014The quality the service the quantity and the presentation were all outstanding. A great way to wind up a great vacation at Niagara!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- gem of a placebuckieDined on 10/3/2014what a fabulous place for a quiet dinner. We met friends from the southern US who travel a lot. They are going to go back next time they are in the area. The service was stellar. The food was outstanding and the ambiance was perfect to spend a few hours. The only problem, we drove from toronto to meet our friends for dinner. Next time we are going to stay at this Hotel.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- QuinnDined on 10/1/2014We had a delicious dinner and the service was great, especially service from our waiter Martin.Special Features:
- ServiceBestfoodDined on 9/29/2014Excellent food. Service was good but scripted. Two of us referred to as "everybody' "Did everybody enjoy the desert?" Very good waiter but needs to get off script and relax, be more natural! We will be back.Special Features:
- Small but do it rightPittsburgh412Dined on 9/26/2014Charles Inn is small but quaint. Menu changes regularly. Beef tenderloin was exquisite. there is a lot of charm to this old home turned inn. We would highly recommend!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Best restaurant in NiagaraFoodieDined on 9/26/2014Everything about the Charles Inn was fantastic, from the romantic ambiance to the delicious food and wine selection. Our server (Alan) was also quite pleasant and attentive. Will definitely recommend this to anyone visiting the area. I recommend making a reservation ahead of time!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Hit and MissAnnieroseDined on 9/26/2014We had a lovely evening at the Charles Inn. We requested a romantic table on Open Table and we got one! Our appetizer and salad were perfect. There was about a 45 wait from salad to the entree. Our waiter was no where to be seen. Twice we asked for water and we almost had to ask a third time when we looked at us and the light bulb went off. I think we both could overlook the inattentive service, that sometimes happens and we were in no hurry (just hungry). Everything was delicious. Then our entrees arrived. Mine was wonderful, my date's salmon was burnt. He asked for medium - the top looked like burnt toast. I would have sent it back but he didn't want to spoil a nice evening out. And he was starving at this point. For me a hit.Special Features:
- OpenTable Diner Since 2012Dined on 9/24/2014This is the third or fourth time we have eaten here over the years, and the food has always been very good, although the chicken serving this time seemed somewhat smaller than before. Wonderful foie gras. It's a very pretty white-tablecloth, high-ceilinged room in an old house. The service was professional, cheerful and supportive. In contrast with another review, there were no bugs! About half full when we arrived at 6:30 pm, all the seats were filled by the rime we left about 8:00, and the room was filled with laughs and joyful conversation.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Shunted off to the verandahdrkittyDined on 9/24/2014This was to be the best of 3 nights out in NOTL and Mum saved her most fancy outfit for the occasion only to find we were seated on an isolated porch. The dining room was filled with large groups. I made this reservation two months ago and cannot believe no warning was given that we would not be sitting in the main dining room. We had been anticipating the much lauded fine-dining and instead got a porch. Our server was super. The food was excellent except for a somewhat weird "scallop tartar". The charge for 2 glasses of wine was removed from the bill in amends for the seating issue, but I chose this spot for its ambience, so saving $20 did nothing for our disappointment. Four stars for food and service, 0 for consideration and planning.
- butterfly141Dined on 9/23/2014Excellent old Inn....lots of character....service has been impeccable every time I have gone there...food is delicious and served hot and in a timely manner.Special Features:
- Very impressedOpenTable Diner Since 2012Dined on 9/20/2014Food was excellent (breakfast); staff extremely accommodating, friendly and helpful. Our friends were so impressed they hope to return next fall for a long weekend stay. Would recommend highly.Special Features:
- tasting menu reviewFoodiefanDined on 9/17/2014Highlight was the halibut course. The scallop I received in the first course was on the edge of overcooked; it tasted unseasoned. Underwhelming. My husband's was slightly better, but tstill not up tot eh standard I expect from the Charles Inn. The tenderloin was beautifullly cooked - great sear. The short rib with it was disappointing in the extreme. if I had ordered that as a dish, i would have sent it back. No flavour, a lump of meat that tasted boiled. Shockingly bad on a plate with such beautifully cooked tenderloin. My husband's was the same. The chocolate course was great, but there was far too much choclate at that point in a tasting menu. Half the size would still have been more than enough. The wine pairings were excellent.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- A Gem in Niagara-on-the-LakeNewYorkersDined on 9/15/2014Great food, great presentation and atmosphere. We would highly recommend The Charles Inn for a special evening.Special Features:
- Enjoyed Charles InnDickBDined on 9/12/2014Dinner at the Charles Inn was a memorable experience in a town where great restaurants abound. The venue was extremely attractive; the food exquisite and the service impeccable. What's to complain about? Essentially nothing; the prices were somewhat high but that was of little consequence considering the grand evening we had. Would return in a minute!Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Good formal diningDavidDined on 9/12/2014I ate at the Charles twice this last trip. The restaurant was excellent and service superb. So why not five stars? The second time I dined I had the tasting menu, which was slightly disappointing. The halibut was served a tad too dry (pan seared rather than oven roasted-a tricky preparation even for those on the West Coast where halibut is a staple) and the wine pairing was nothing special. There are a few excellent wines in the Niagara region, but none were paired with the meal. But these are fairly small quibbles: the dinners were generally excellent. The rooms were kept quiet (thank you!!!). Both waiters were attentive but not bothersome and knew their menu and restaurant.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- We love this placeArtEVIPDined on 9/11/2014We were guests for five nights in this wonderful Inn but had not booked dinner here because one of is a vegetarian who has not had good experiences with French food. However, for our fourth night, we changed our minds and booked dinner and were VERY HAPPY with extraordinary delightful creative meals. To our observation, this is not an example of heavy sauce pretentious French but very creative modern tasty food. My veggie soup was outstanding as were everything else served. Definitely coming back next time we head to the Shaw Festival in NOTL.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.
- Excellent Meal at Charles InnOpenTable Diner Since 2006Dined on 9/10/2014I could not have been more pleased with my dinner at Charles Inn. The food, service, ambience (I sat outdoors on the verandah) were all excellent. The baby greens salad appetizer was delicious and was serviced with a local prosciutto and a tasty shaved cheese although I forget its name. My entree of sausage-wrapped pork tenderloin with bok choy was fantastic and paired well with a bottle of Southbrook cab-merlot. This is a great place for foodies and is conveniently located for the Shaw Festival theaters. I had avoided Charles Inn in the past because from the outside it looks a bit "stuffy", but it's not. I will definitely return here next time I am back in Niagara-on-the-Lake!Special Features:
- Showing some wearBCinDCVIPDined on 9/8/2014The best food in the region but the restaurant is showing some wear with stained and worn seat cushions and scuffed woodwork. Our service suffered due to another table enjoying a six-course sampling menu with wine pairings that the staff was just not able to manage. Still the best food in NOTL but service and ambiance has taken a hit.Special Features:I would recommend this to a friend.