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Rock Garden Bistro

Situated at the historic David Braley and Nancy Gordon Rock Garden, RBG’s newest restaurant features a French inspired menu with a garden flair that boasts fresh, locally sourced ingredients, many picked straight from our gardens! The bistro’s outdoor patio provides an inspiring bird’s-eye view of the garden’s rejuvenated lower bowl, a perfect spot to relax.

As seasons change, kitchen staff work closely with RBG gardeners to incorporate home-grown ingredients into your garden-to-table culinary experience.

  • guests laughing and enjoying drinks on the patio of the Rock Garden Bistro
  • vibrant beet salad with arugula, goat cheese, and walnuts
  • Sunny day on the rock garden bistro. table is filled with delicious looking food, drinks, and smiles on guests' faces
  • bowl of mussels in a white cream sauce, topped with sliced chilies
  • Hands clinking cocktail classes, with an expresso martini and lavender tom collins, in front of a rock garden backdrop

Plan Your Visit

Reservations

Reserve your space through OpenTable! Walk-ins accepted based on availability.

Current Hours

  • Wed: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Thurs to Sat: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Sun 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. (brunch only)
  • Closed Mon & Tues

*Exceptions may apply. See full hours below.

Location

Find the Rock Garden Bistro in the Visitor Centre at the historic Rock Garden!

1185 York Boulevard, Hamilton Ontario.

Exceptions may apply. Check back before your visit. Please note: outdoor Rock Garden hours may differ.

Today’s Hours

Seasonal Hours

  • Wed to Sat 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sun 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. (Feb 9 to May 15)
  • Wed: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thurs to Sat: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Sun: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Mon & Tues: CLOSED (May 16 to Sep 1)

Exceptions

  • Jan 1 New Year's Day: Closed
  • Dec 24 Christmas Eve: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Dec 24 Christmas Eve: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., last admission 2 p.m.
  • Dec 25 Christmas Day: Closed
  • Dec 26 Boxing Day: Closed
  • Dec 31 New Years Eve: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Find the Rock Garden Bistro in the Visitor Centre at the historic Rock Garden!

Our lunch menu is offered daily, except during Sunday brunch hours from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Appetizers

French Onion Soup $16
Spanish Onions | Prosciutto | Chicken & Beef Broth | Crostini | Gruyere Cheese

Pickerel Cake $17
Lake Erie Pickerel | Remoulade | Slaw

Mediterranean Platter $16 – V
Hummus | Crostini | Pita | Marinated Olives | Cucumber | Cherry Tomatoes | Fried Chickpeas

Cheese Plate $23 – VG
Gorgonzola | Brie | Gruyere | Crostini | Seasonal Compote | Berries

Mussels $20
White Wine | Bechamel | Pesto | Pickled Chili | Grilled Country Bread

Lighter Side

Chef’s Daily Frittata $16

Chicken Waldorf $22 – GF, DF
Grapes | Apple | Fennel | Celery | Walnut | Frisée

Beet Salad $18 – VG, GF
Roasted Golden Beets | Pickled Baby Beets | Whipped Goat Cheese | Arugula | Walnut | Beet Chips

Rock Salad $15 – V, GF
Baby Greens | Cherry Tomato | Cucumber | Heirloom Carrot | Radish

Green Eggs & Toast $17 – VG
Sweet Pea Puree | 2 Soft Poached Eggs |Grilled Country Bread | Pickled Honey Mushroom | Rock Salad

Grilled Cheese $18 – VG
House-Made Focaccia | Tomato Jam | Rock Salad

Entrées

Ahi Watermelon Garden Bowl
$19 -V, GF
Marinated Watermelon | Brown Rice | Cucumber | Pickled Apple | Walnut | Carrot | Pickled Chili | Edamame | Sesame Seeds

Croque Monsieur $23
Ham | Gruyere | Bechamel | Brioche | Rock Salad

French Beef Dip $25
Shaved Brisket | Baguette | Provolone | Sauteed Mushrooms | Balsamic Onions | Jus | Kettle Chips

Rainbow Trout $28 – GF
6oz Rainbow Trout Filet | Pommes Dauphine | Roasted Broccolini | Caramelized Lemon Butter

Linguini Fresca $23 – VG
Linguini | Zucchini Noodles | Pesto | Blistered Cherry Tomatoes | White Wine | Grana Padano

Maple Dijon Chicken $28 – GF, DF
7oz Chicken Supreme | Lentil Salad | Beet Gel | Maple Dijon Glaze

Steak Frites $34 – GF
6oz California-Cut Striploin | Frites | Sauteed Mushroom | Chimichurri

Dessert

Sticky Toffee Pudding $13 – VG
Orange Dulce De Leche | Candied Orange

Strawberry Rhubarb Charlotte $13 – V, GF
Strawberry Rhubarb Syrup | Lemon Poppyseed Pound Cake | Coconut Whipped Cream

Lime Strudel $13 – VG
Lime Custard | Phyllo | Poached Blueberries

Available Sundays and holiday Mondays, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Mains

  • Croque Monsieur $22
    Ham | Gruyere | Bechamel | Served with Rock Salad
  • Croque Madam $24
    Ham | Gruyere | Bechamel | Fried egg | Served with Rock Salad
  • French Toast $16 (VEG)
    Challah stuffed with caramelized banana Nutella | Seasoned eggs | Whip cream | Coulis | Berries
  • Eggs Benedict $18
    Peameal | Poached eggs | English muffin | Hollandaise | Served with Rock Salad
  • Eggs Florentine $15 (VEG)
    Spinach | Poached eggs | English muffin | Hollandaise | Served with Rock Salad
  • Eggs Royale $20
    Salmon gravlax | Poached eggs | English muffin | Hollandaise | Served with Rock Salad
  • Frittata $16 (VEG, GF)
    Roasted pepper | Eggplant | Zucchini | Red onions | Gruyere | Pesto frisée
  • Rock Melt (VEG)
    House made focaccia | Cheddar | Mozzarella | Tomato jam | Served with Rock Salad
  • Rock Breakfast $17
    2 eggs | Choice of protein | Home fries | Toast
  • Coconut Pancakes $20 (V, GF)
    Vegan pancakes | Coulis | Berries | Coconut whip cream
  • Brisket Skillet $22 (GF, DF)
    Shaved Brisket | Home fries | 2 Eggs | Baked tomato | Jus
  • Yogurt Parfait $14 (VEG, GF)
    Greek yogurt | Berries | Spiced honey | Granola
  • Trail Mix Salad $17 (V, GF, DF)
    Berries | Sunflower seeds | Walnuts, | Granola | Blueberry vinaigrette
  • Breakfast Sandwich $18
    Peameal | Fried gouda | Over easy egg | Red pepper aioli | Served with Rock Salad

Sides

  • Fruit $6
  • Toasted Brioche $3
  • Home fries $4
  • Peameal Bacon $5
  • Sausage $6
  • Bacon $5

RBG Lilac Gin

750 ml bottles available for purchase from the Greenhouse Café & Rock Garden Bistro.

Every spring, a heavenly fragrance drifts through Royal Botanical Gardens, marking the official start of lilac season. To extend the joy of lilac season, we’ve teamed up with Manns Distillery in Brantford, Ontario to create our very own lilac gin.

Crafted with a London Dry Gin base and fresh, hand-picked lilacs from the grounds of RBG, this gin has floral notes of lilac, lavender, and rose. Truly an exquisite combination. No artificial colours or flavours used.

Local, Sustainable

At Royal Botanical Gardens, we believe in being stewards of our environment and partners in our community. We source local products (including our own garden produce), partner with local farms and dairies as well as use eco-friendly, sustainable products throughout the facility and grounds.

We ask that you join us in our goal of preserving and enhancing the beauty of our environment by utilizing the recycle stations located throughout Royal Botanical Gardens.

Rock Garden Bistro FAQs

Where is the Rock Garden Bistro Located?

The Rock Garden Bistro is in the Rock Garden Visitor Centre, at 1185 York Boulevard, Burlington. Find the restaurant to the left upon arriving through the main doors.

Parking is available on-site (in the lot across the road), included in your visit.

Is admission required to access the Rock Garden Bistro?

Garden Admission is not required to join us for lunch at the Rock Garden Bistro. Garden Admission would be required should you wish to visit the gardens before / after your meal.

Other RBG dining locations:

Is there a Benefit for Members?

RBG Members receive 10% off their meal at RBG’s three on-site restaurants. To qualify for a discount, please show your membership card while ordering.

Are Reservations Required?

Reservations are not required to eat at the restaurants, but are highly recommended, especially for weekends, holidays, or larger groups. Please note the restaurant may not be able to accommodate larger groups that arrive without reservations.

Rock Garden Bistro reservations line: 905-527-1158 ext. 336

Host Your Event

Whether you just need coffee and snacks, breakfast, lunch or meals for the whole day, our in-house catering team has options for your meeting or event. With delicious options, flexible menus and a focus on locally sourced ingredients, the catering team at Royal Botanical Gardens promise to make your event one to remember.