The 1909 Culinary Academy, aptly named after the year its bricks and mortar were built, is a chef-owned restaurant and culinary academy located in Ayr.
City of Kitchener
SUMMER 2020 UPDATE: The Grand Trunk Saloon is now OPEN for take-out and indoor dining!
Try their WR United Signature dish: Grand Trunk Fried Chicken!
Contact The Grand Trunk Saloon for the most up to date hours and menu offerings.
The Grand Trunk Saloon is a soul food restaurant and cocktail bar located in the core of downtown Kitchener. The atmosphere is that of a Southern saloon with a Louisiana feel. It also offers live folk music with the house band, Onion Honey.
The menu has a wide variety of interesting foods, both of the typical Southern variety and more eccentric choices. For example, the Louisiana Gumbo and Chicken Fried Steak are offered alongside ‘Gator Nuggets and Octopus & Grits. The latter two contain fried alligator with a remoulade and braised octopus with hominy grits, respectively. There are more traditional restaurant options, though they also come with a twist; these include a Soul Caesar Salad, which includes cracklins, and the Patriot Burger, which includes coleslaw as a topping.
The drinks menu, which is divided into drinks that are dry, sweet, and bold, is similarly diverse; it includes the Wine Gum Sour, as well as their specialty, Coffee and Cigarettes. There are a number of specials offered each day, including the Taco Board and the Jug-O-Beer, which helps to keep the menu diverse.
The name of the Grand Trunk Saloon was inspired by the Grand Trunk Railway, which connected Toronto and Montreal in the years prior to confederation. The railway also helped to build Kitchener (then Berlin) and the surrounding areas when it arrived here in 1856, making it an important part of the cultural history of this area.
The Grand Trunk Saloon was founded by Darryl Haus and Manish Patel. Darryl Haus is the owner of the Hogtails Barbeque in Waterloo, which influenced the restaurant’s Southern style. Manish Patel is the man behind the Fo’Cheezy grilled cheese food trucks.
Visit on the first Wednesday of each month to see Onion Honey play their folk-style music. It perfectly complements the Southern menu and atmosphere. The instruments played include mandolin, banjo, and even the washboard.