Benchmark

4.5
1185 reviews
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CAN$30 and under
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Contemporary American
Top Tags:
  • Local Ingredients
  • Special Occasion
  • Creative Cuisine
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.
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
Contemporary American
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Hours of operation
Lunch: Tuesday - Saturday: 11:30 am - 2:00 pm;

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

Saturday: 5:00 pm to 9:30 pm
Our dining room is closed on Sunday and Monday.
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Phone number
(905) 641-2252 ext. 4619
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Payment options
AMEX, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Business Casual
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Executive chef
Alex White
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Private party contact
Sarah Scott: (905) 641-2252 ext. 4623
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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 120 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.
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Cross street
Glendale Road
Additional
Banquet, Beer, Farm to Table, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking, Outdoor dining, Private Room, View, Wheelchair Access, Wine
What 1185 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.5based on recent ratings
4.5
food
4.5
service
4.4
ambience
4.3
value
Noise · Quiet
95% of people would recommend it to a friend
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KT
Cleveland
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Been here before loved it! Told friends about it, they loved it. came back for another meal and will be back again!

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OT
Toronto
1 review
Dined on September 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Awesome meal and great service!

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L
Toronto
1 review
Dined on September 15, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 5ambience 4

Food was decent but Small portions. Over priced. Wouldn't go back if what I pay in Toronto for better presented food and portions are wither the same price or cheaper.

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D
New York Area
5 reviews
Dined on September 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Wonderful food artfully prepared and presented and at a very good price. Plus you are helping students.

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MB
Toronto
2 reviews
Dined on September 13, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food and service from the students at Niagara College

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R
1 review
Dined on September 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 3

Definately have to go back, this was a birthday dinner with my better half of 11 years, she was surprised and enjoyed the meal, i think next time we're gonna have to plan for a bunch of people since not many of our friends has heard of it.

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OT
1 review
Dined on September 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our server was fabulous along with the NC Balance Rose!!! The Scallops and Peppercorn Steak was amazing and our cheesecake with Latte and coffee was delicious!!! Everything was excellent!!! Can’t wait to come back!!!

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OT
1 review
Dined on September 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 3

We were really impressed with our food and service. Took a while to get our bill but overall a good experience! Food was delicious

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DS
London
1 review
Dined on September 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This restaurant is part of the college with ingredients grown with the beer and wine all made on campus. Food is cooked and served by the students and I must say the whole experience was excellent in every way. The food was really tasty well presented and really outstanding. Price was really good value for the standard of food. I recently left a review on this site for the CN Tower in Toronto where the food was really poor relying on the view and charging the earth. They should take a look at Benchmark to see how cooking should be done. Only open a few evenings but well worth going.

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CD
1 review
Dined on September 7, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 3ambience 3

It was our first time there for a party of four. We found the setup to be nice but lights were too bright for an evening setting. Very quiet, Friday evening at 7:30 there were only 5 other tables. Service was OK, though it was obvious that these were not “professional” servers. Our server was pleasant but had a somewhat difficult time communicating in English. Once the app arrived which was a charcuterie board (very small for $20 FYI) she names all the cheese and meat cuts on it. That was nice though as she was naming them she used her finger to point them out and was just about touching it as she did it.
We were all pleased with our main meals, in taste but size could be bigger. One app, four main courses and four desserts with two drinks each cost us $240. Not bad, I would suggest to give it a try at least once. We will wait a while before we go back.

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IH
1 review
Dined on September 7, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Enjoyed outdoor dining experience with a lovely view. Wait staff was knowledgeable and our menu choices were tasty. Will return as there were many other dishes on the menu that also sounded good.

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JM
Vancouver
2 reviews
Dined on September 6, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Comfortable, relaxed atmosphere with tasty comfort food and friendly staff and service.

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e
Toronto
27 reviews
Dined on September 2, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our first time and not our last. The service top notch. The food creative and delicious. Tempura Butternut squash addictive. Duck done perfect and burger to bun ratio on point. Those duck fat fries heaven. The wines on offer were also exceptional. Highly recommended.

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OT
Toronto
2 reviews
Dined on September 1, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Second visit and loved it again. Definitely coming back!!

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LS
1 review
Dined on September 1, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food, our friends were very impress ... will definatly be back

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CM
1 review
Dined on September 1, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

My wife an I look forward to lunch or dinner at the Benchmark whenever we visit the Niagara Area. We fondly remember when we were judges at the Caps and Corks event. It was a memorable evening and similar events would be welcome.
We really appreciate the fine work the instructors are doing with this restaurant and their students. Everyone working there is very focused on their personal performance and the food never disappoints.
We always visit the Wine and Beer facilities at the College on our visit there to enhance the experience. There is definitely a sense of pride exhibited at all of these facilities.
On this visit, I witnessed the culture in action at the Beer Bar. There was a family there with their son who was going to attend his first year at the college, and the people behind the taps were very welcoming and encouraging to the new student. There was definitely a good vibe happening there.
We will definitely be back.

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A
Toronto
1 review
Dined on September 1, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 4

We have been visiting the restaurant for more than 15 years (before it was called The Benchmark). We are both great supporters of education in food and food services especially at the college. It is one of the true "unique experiences" offer in Ontario. Everything for someone interested in food, wine, beer, horticulture, and coming soon distilled beverages and cannabis. A jem that needs to be at the front of every Ontario and Canadian tourism media. We are originally from British Columbia and never pass up taking visiting guests to the college to experience the college and all it has to offer.
Anthony and Daintry Davis

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SS
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on August 31, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent all around. Only minor complaint is that it was very cold in the restaurant.

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O
1 review
Dined on August 31, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

This was a fun place to go with great value. We enjoyed having the students serve us. My duck dish was perfect but those who ordered scallops found uneven cooking lead to some being overcooked and one being undercooked. The soup should have bit served a bit warmer, but it was very good. We were served some courses to the wrong people but that was not a problem and easily remedied. The cheesecake had a little section that was very sweet. The wine flights were good and we really enjoyed the wine made by the college. Student servers were very nice, and we really enjoyed our experience.

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G
Toronto
4 reviews
Dined on August 31, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Enjoyable lunch. Friendly staff. Located right beside Outlet Mall. Good food.

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G
Toronto
1 review
Dined on August 29, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 3

Had lunch here with a friend yesterday. We both enjoyed 2 different white wines, made by Niagara College, their chardonnay and a semi-dry reisling. It's a teaching restaurant for those in the hospitality industry, but other than our server's slight shyness, that doesn't show at all. Very good quality of attentive service, great food and they do well at making one feel like a valued customer. We both had the Niagara PLT burger, topped with peameal bacon, it was one of the best burgers I've had in a long time. The lemon thyme fries that come with are delicious. My only complaint (and I had to think hard to come up with any!) is they used head lettuce on the burger, and they used the tough heel of an outer leaf, not too appealing. I always pick the lettuce off anyway, but at $19 for a burger, they should be using only the very best ingredients/topping. We ended our meal with the lemon poppyseed peach shortcake. It was quite good as well, a bit dry since they served the shortcake on top with the fruit beneath, I like mine more traditionally with the fruit on top of the shortcake. But very tasty, and good cappucino to top things off. A very satisfying experience, I will be going back with my husband so he can try the burger. But be aware, the prices for dinner entrees seemed in line but I found the lunch prices a bit high.

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OT
Vancouver
23 reviews
Dined on August 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

Second time here. Food did not disappoint, however there was not enough pasta for the sauce. When we asked for them to add, they said they could not because they had portioned out the pasta per portion. They still need to learn that sometimes the customer trumps food portioning. And the lesson for them is to think about the ratio of pasta to sauce.

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P
1 review
Dined on August 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Nice atmosphere for casual/fine dining -- everything was excellent. My wife and I enjoyed the scallops and filet dinners. Beet salad with goat cheese was excellent. Cheese cake dessert was very good. Perfect size portions, quick service and great value.

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SO
Toronto
1 review
Dined on August 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

The food was exceptional. Lovely place for my birthday lunch!

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B
Oklahoma City
7 reviews
Dined on August 22, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Students doing a great job

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GH
1 review
Dined on August 22, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

food was very good and so was the service. would definitely return if we are in the Niagara Region again.

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F
Pittsburgh
3 reviews
Dined on August 17, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

An excellent choice for a very pleasant experience of presentation, excellent service and delicious, well prepared meal by the students as well as delicious dessert!

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JV
1 review
Dined on August 17, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had excellent service and an amazing meal. The students were attentive and professional. The food was tasty, inventive, and well -priced. Great evening.

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LM
Toronto
4 reviews
Dined on August 17, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 4

I think that there was a bit of a hiccup in the kitchen the day of our visit. We waited a long time for our food to be served. When it arrived it my dish appeared to have been under a heat lamp for a time and the fries were overdone. My sister however very much enjoyed her tofu dish. The server did apologize for the delay more than once through our wait.

Our server was very personable and professional.

The atmosphere of the restaurant was quite pleasant, with clean lines and large windows providing an openness to it.

I will visit the restaurant again as I think this first experience was not the best example of what this establishment has to offer.

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IJ
1 review
Dined on August 16, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

The service (Frances) and food was excellence, as was the ambiance.

Thank You.

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C
1 review
Dined on August 16, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 5

The venue is lovely & you can clearly see the passion in food quality, preparation & presentation.
NC wine a little on the pricey side considering I bought the exact same bottle we enjoyed during lunch for half the price 5 minutes prior at the winery.
I know it’s the College & everyone’s learning - so thought It important to share perhaps more efficient & engaging service. I definitely have an appreciation for a server that doesn’t hover however I also don’t enjoy having to hunt my server or someone else down when needed.
I’d definitely consider returning - a recommendation would be to have feature pairing events...oysters or mussels etc.
I live inSt Catharines and when speaking with friends / colleagues / tourists they have no knowledge of your amazing venue. Perhaps feature events would stir up some dialogue!

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PM
New York Area
1 review
Dined on August 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Fantastic food. Pricing expensive for lunch - meals should be offered in the $15 and under range instead of pizza for $19 and and bread for $3. Too much for a family of four to have a $100 lunch!

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GM
1 review
Dined on August 14, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Excellent food nicely prepared. Cuisine was well thought out and presented well.

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OT
New York Area
2 reviews
Dined on August 11, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 2ambience 5

Obviously a teaching restaurant. Pizza was tasteless, crust was gooey in middle. Charcuterie board was good but small for the price. Kitchen forgot salad dressing on salad and we were told "that happens a lot" Go elsewhere for lunch.

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G
1 review
Dined on August 9, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Nice restaurant "Benchmark", wood and tile, glass dome, outside eating if you like. Free dedicated parking next to the restaurant. Beer and Wine choices produced on the College premises. Visit the nearby wine and or beer buildings and go shopping or tasting. Food was top notch quality, presentation was great. We had the peppercorn ribeye, scallops and pizza dishes. All very tasty. Although my daughter didn't like the pizza. The scallops where large. Steak had a bit too much fat on it, perhaps it could have been trimmed a bit more. The onion ring on top of the steak was the best we ever had, anywhere. The student servers were eager to please. We went for early lunch, not too many customers at that time. Dinner only served on Friday and Saturday evening (reservations needed). Finished with four different desserts, all good, looked great. Liked the Crème Brulee and Shortbread with berries the best. Not a cheap meal, but worth the visit.

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DS
1 review
Dined on August 4, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food. The charcuterie plate is wonderful, with house-made meats, local cheeses and condiments.

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C
Toronto
1 review
Dined on August 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Lovely location, the service is excellent and supports a great menu and fantastic food.

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I
1 review
Dined on August 1, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We had the pleasure of attending Benchmark August 1, 2018 for a very enjoyable luncheon.

Nathan, our server truly enhanced a most memorable, and enjoyable experience. He in our opinion a real asset to the organization.

Meals were creatively presented, exquisite in taste, and exceeded our expectations.

The service, the food, and Benchmark’s location nestled amongst the beautifully landscaped grounds of Niagara College makes Benchmark a much sought after destination of distinction.

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T
Toronto
2 reviews
Dined on July 28, 2018
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Have been to Benchmark a few times and enjoyed its ambience and food everytime - have already recommended this restaurant to friends and family....and we will definitely return

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CH
Toronto
1 review
Dined on July 28, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

This is my sixth or seventh visit to Benchmark. I always love the quiet and beautiful environment of the restaurant. We come from Toronto, so it is a good an hour and half drive if the traffic is OK. But I always take my friends visiting from abroad to Benchmark because I want to impress them with your creative cuisine and beauty of the surrounding environment. After a good meal, I can take them to your wine store to do some wine tasting, then off to Niagara Falls.
As to the food, it is excellent and I quite appreciate the service. I know the waitor/waitress are students, and they are eager to leave a good impression with the clients. I also like the new ideas shown in the food, like the dressing of the salad and the vegetables to accompany the entrée like a piece of cod or scallop.

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