Freshly shucked oysters and sauces at Tide & Vine in Niagara Falls

Hidden Gem Restaurants in Niagara Falls, Canada

If you’re visiting Niagara Falls and looking for great places to eat, take it from a local: you’ll have to bypass a ton of chain restaurants and tourist traps to find the real gems in this city.

That’s not to say there aren’t fantastic places to eat in Niagara Falls. It just takes a bit of extra research to find them. 

This list is a great place to start, especially if you want to avoid overpriced chains, support small businesses, and get a sense of where the locals eat.

A quick FYI: not all restaurants on this list are technically hidden gems.

Some are well-known but worth the hype. Some are popular with locals but harder to find for first-time visitors. And some are truly hidden gems (even though I know that term is super cliche and overused these days).

The common theme with all the restaurants on this list? They’re independently owned/family-run and serve up fantastic food. 

Lobster roll at Tide and Vine, Niagara Falls

1. Hi-Lite

Breakfast prices in the Fallsview area are insane. At the Hilton, it costs $25 (!) for two eggs, potatoes, and toast. 

Drive roughly eight minutes away from the Hilton, and you’ll pay less than half that at Hi-Lite—an old-school diner with retro vibes. Lots of locals eat here too, so you know the food is good.

The portions are generous and the prices are extremely reasonable. Breakfast will only set you back around $6 – $13, with options like eggs, home fries, pancakes, breakfast sandwiches, and a selection of omelettes. 

Price: $10 – $20
Address: 4524 Queen St, Niagara Falls
Hours: Closed on Sundays

2. Far Out Cafe

Update: Far Out Cafe is closed temporarily while they search for a new location. You can find their food truck at Sherkston Shores all summer.

There are only a handful of places where you can get smoothie bowls in Niagara, and Far Out Cafe is easily the best.

Try their Mercury smoothie bowl (chocolate almond milk, peanut butter, banana, yogurt) or the Uranus bowl (mixed berry, banana, yogurt) with all the toppings. You won’t be disappointed.

If you haven’t already guessed by the name of the bowls, the whole cafe is space-themed. It’s super cute inside with friendly staff and an inviting, laid-back vibe. 

Beyond smoothies and smoothie bowls, Far Out has a range of healthy options for breakfast and lunch, including open-face toasts, paninis, and sandwiches. Everything on the menu is delicious, so you really can’t go wrong.

Person holding smoothie bowl at Far Out Cafe in Niagara Falls

3. Red Ganache

For a light breakfast and all things sweet, Red Ganache Bake Shop is your best bet.

As soon as you walk in, you’ll see a display case filled to the brim with beautiful-looking cakes and pastries. Everything is handcrafted, from the tarts to the eclairs to the chocolates and the croissants.

Red Ganache’s pastry chef has worked at several impressive resorts and restaurants across the globe, including the Atlantis in Nassau and the Fairmont Royal York in Toronto. So you know the quality and flavours of everything here will be next-level.

If you’re in the mood for something savoury, try their smoked salmon croissant sandwich.

Price: $10 – $20
Address: 5592 Robinson St, Niagara Falls
Hours: Closed Mondays and Tuesdays

4. We The Finest Burger Company

This no-frills restaurant has some of the best burgers in the region. 

Their smash patties are made in-house daily with fresh AAA brisket and chuck. They also make their own sauces and pickles.

Try their signature WTF burger (cheese, pickles, WTF sauce, and bacon onion jam) with a side of crinkle cut fries and queso dipping sauce. Everything is super-fresh and jam-packed with flavour.

Even better, they offer 2-for-1 specials and different deals most days of the week.

Price: $10 – $20
Address: 3643 Portage Rd, Niagara Falls
Hours: Closed Sundays

5. Niku Japanese BBQ

Niku Japanese BBQ is one of the best all-you-can-eat experiences in Niagara Falls.

The menu has a variety of different meats, seafood, and veggies, and you can order as much as you want. The best part? You cook it all yourself on a little tabletop grill. 

There are also a bunch of tasty sides to choose from, including bibimbap, kimchi, miso soup, seaweed salad, spring rolls, and dumplings.

The service is top-notch; every staff member makes you feel welcome from the moment you step foot in the restaurant.

Prices are cheaper from Monday to Thursday, and at lunchtime (the lunch menu is smaller, though).

Price: $40 – $60
Address: 5278 Ferry St, Niagara Falls
Hours: Open 7 days a week from 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Table filled with food at Niku Japanese BBQ in Niagara Falls

6. La Revolución Taqueria

If you’re on the hunt for authentic Mexican food in Niagara Falls, La Revolución Taqueria is the place to get it.

The food here is similar to something you’d find in Mexico City, rather than the Tex-Mex style dishes at most Mexican restaurants in the region.

Beyond the tacos (which are excellent), they have quesadillas, soups, and a few other specialties. Everything is simple, fresh, and ultra-flavourful. 

They make several menu items in-house, including corn tortillas, guacamole, and salsa (the pineapple habanero salsa is a must-try).

FYI: the restaurant is a small grab-and-go style place with a few tables inside.

Price: $15 – $25
Address: 3747 Portage Rd, Niagara Falls
Hours: Closed Mondays and Tuesdays

7. Fork You

Fork You is the definition of a gem. It’s a family-run restaurant hidden in plain sight not far from the tourist hub (just a few minutes away from Great Wolf Lodge and the Whirlpool Aero Car).

It’s also one of the only places serving authentic Peruvian cuisine in the Niagara Region. 

The prices might seem a bit high at first glance, but the food is incredibly fresh and the portions are huge. From the moment you walk in the restaurant, the staff and owners go above and beyond. You can tell they’re passionate about food and love what they do.

A few can’t-miss dishes include the ceviche, porchetta sandwich, and pescado a lo macho (fried snapper fillet in a creamy seafood sauce with Peruvian spices, scallops, shrimp, calamari, and mussels).

Price: $20 – $30
Address: 4015 River Rd, Niagara Falls
Hours: Open 7 days a week at noon

8. Counterpart Brewing

If you’re into breweries, add Counterpart to your must-visit list. They’ve got a great selection of beer, but I’d say the food is the real star of the show here. 

I recommend the fish tacos, but most people seem to rave about their fried chicken sandwich. The menu is ever-changing, so there’s always something new to try. Whatever you choose, it’s guaranteed to be high-quality and delicious.

They also have board games you can play and a dog-friendly patio for the furry family members. 

Price: $15 – $25
Address: 3659 Stanley Ave, Niagara Falls
Hours: Open 7 days a week at noon

9. Camp Cataract

This unpretentious bar has a fun atmosphere and just the right amount of kitsch. 

From the cabin-style wood walls to the canoe and branches hanging from the ceiling, the decor is designed to make you feel like you’re at a retro cottage or campsite.

They have an awesome selection of craft beer and cocktails, so it’s the perfect place to chill with a drink and listen to live music. 

Happen to visit on a night without entertainment? There’s still lots of fun stuff to do here. Take your pick from board games, arcade games, ping pong, and vintage pinball machines.

In terms of food, Camp Cataract is mainly known for two things: fantastic pizza and giant gourmet hotdogs. To get the best bang for your buck, check out their weekly specials and happy hour deals.

Price: $10 – $20
Address: 4317 Queen St, Niagara Falls
Hours: Closed Sundays and Mondays

10. Tide & Vine

This is one of my favourite restaurants in the Niagara Region, and definitely the top spot I’d recommend for seafood.

A few of my go-to dishes are freshly shucked oysters, steamed mussels, and house-smoked salmon.

If you visit during the week between 3 p.m. and 5 p.m., you can snag some of their happy hour deals—including $2 oysters and half-price mussels.

Price: $30 – $50
Address: 3491 Portage Rd, Niagara Falls
Hours: Open 7 days a week

Freshly shucked oysters beside different sauces at Tide & Vine, Niagara Falls

11. Napoli

Napoli is all about fresh ingredients and old family recipes. They’ve been around for over 30 years, so they’re definitely doing something right.

Their house-made pasta and Neapolitan-style pizza are always a solid choice. They have fantastic desserts as well, especially the tiramisu. 

Napoli is located close to the Fallsview Casino, so it’s a great option if you’re staying in the tourist hub.

Price: $24 – $40
Address:  5485 Ferry St, Niagara Falls
Hours: Closed Mondays

12. Havana

Havana has everything the big chain restaurants don’t: authentic food, a vibrant atmosphere, and passionate owners who truly care about their customers. 

The menu features traditional Cuban food, including ropa vieja, tostones, and Cuban-style paella. 

They often host different events and live entertainment, including dancers, musicians, DJs, and late-night dance parties. Keep an eye on their Instagram to see what’s happening.

Price: $20 – $35
Address: 4555 Queen St, Niagara Falls
Hours: Open 7 days a week at 5 p.m.

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