Skip to content
Highway closure may affect travel to RBG 403W will be closed from September 30 at 11 p.m. until October 3 at 5 a.m.
19+ Evening Events


Thursdays to Saturdays, February 3 to March 26
5:30 to 11 p.m., last admission at 10 p.m.
Rock Garden

Experience the brilliance of Canadian white winters like never before as the Rock Garden turns into the season’s most elegant indoor and outdoor jazz lounge experience.

Adorned in glowing white lights and roaring firepits the garden’s natural winterscape is the perfect setting for a night out. Embrace the snowy paths or take in the view from inside the Rock Garden Visitor Centre while you enjoy live music, classic cocktails and a signature small plates menu.

RBG has partnered with T.U. Jazz Fest to bring live performances from emerging musicians and JUNO Award-winning artists.

This is a 19+ event.


Tickets for WinterTide at the Rock Garden are only available at the door upon arrival.

As of March 1, RBG no longer requires visitors to prove they have been vaccinated against COVID-19. Please see RBG’s Covid FAQs for details and to learn more about visiting safely.

Ticket Type Ticket Price
Event Admission $10.00
RBG Members $8.00
  • All prices are subject to HST.
  • Tickets are non-refundable and final sale
  • General admission discounts and coupons are not applicable to this ticketed event
  • Winter Lights At The Rock Couple At Campfire Eating
  • Two muskoka chairs around a warm firepit. The Rock Garden Visitor centre is lit up with coloured lights inside
  • White string lights wrapped around a tree
  • Lounge area full of visitors watching jazz performance
  • Snow covered muskoka chair behind a warm firepit. Trees in the courtyard are decorated with white string lights
  • Empty stage with guitars and other instruments set up
  • Shrub decorated with white string lights at the Rock Garden in the snow

Evening Entertainment

RBG has partnered with T.U. Jazz Fest to bring live performances from emerging musicians and JUNO Award-winning artists.

‘All that Jazz’ Thursdays, ‘Jazz & Soul’ Fridays, ‘JUNO Special’ Saturdays.

Music begins at 6:30 p.m. with multiple sets throughout the evening.

Black and white photo of a person playing the saxophone

February 3, 17
Mumbo Jumbo Combo
The Mumbo Jumbo Combo is made up of four instruments; Drums, (Jackson Haynes) Bass, (Trent Grossman) Keyboard, (Ian Webster) and of course, Saxophone (Noah Abrahamse). We are all young but experienced players with a passion for Jazz. We play everything from Funk, to Swing, to Latin music.

Four people standing outdoors in a small fenced in yard

February 4, 25
Named for the sixth month of the year and a semiprecious stone said to protect anyone travelling by night or by water, JUNESTONE is the innovative and illuminating musical visions of Olivia Brown as performed and realized by herself, Jake Franiczek, Justin McHugh, and Ian Aisling,

ernesto sitting at a drum kit

February 5, March 12
Ernesto Cervini
JUNO Award winner Ernesto Cervini is a sought-after drummer, composer and bandleader and an influential presence on Canada’s modern jazz scene and beyond. He has documented his vision with the Ernesto Cervini Quartet (featuring Joel Frahm), the innovative sextet Turboprop, numerous co- led trio projects including MEM3, Myriad3 and TuneTown, and also the quartet Tetrahedron, featuring acclaimed guitarist Nir Felder, electric bassist Rich Brown and alto saxophonist Luis Deniz.

jesse ryan holding a saxophone

February 10, March 4
Jesse Ryan Trio
Saxophonist and composer Jesse Ryan grew up in Port of Spain, Trinidad & Tobago surrounded by a rich heritage of music. Perhaps, it’s no surprise that he has steadily earned his place as one of Trinidad’s bright, young stars, being the grandson of one of the islands’ calypso veterans, Clifton Ryan, aka the “Mighty Bomber”.

Jesse is the 2020 recipient of the Toronto Arts Foundation’s Emerging Jazz Artist Award – an award that puts a spotlight on emerging jazz musicians with a keen sense of the grand tradition behind jazz music while putting their own stamp on the genre and the Toronto music scene with their unique style and approach.

jacob chung wearing a blue suit and holding a saxophone

February 11, March 3
Jacob Chung Trio
Canadian saxophonist/composer Jacob Chung is a young and swingin’ voice in the Toronto jazz community. He currently studies as a 2018 BMO National Scholar at the University of Toronto Faculty of Music where he has twice received the Norman and Joan Promane Jazz Scholarship (2019, 2020) and is the recipient of the 2021 Jazz Arranging Prize.

aerial photo above adrean playing a grand piano

February 12
Adrean Farrugia Trio
Award-winning pianist and composer Adrean Farrugia is one of Canada’s most distinct voices on the piano. Since the late 1990s Adrean has been in high demand as a freelance performer and educator. Keeping a busy touring schedule, mainly as a sideman, Adrean has toured extensively across Canada and the United States as well as in venues across Europe, Australia, the UK, Israel, and Japan.

Side portrait of Ryan Gazzola wearing a wide brimmed hat

February 18, March 11
Ryan Gazzola
Ryan Gazzola‘s music combines modern pop songwriting with retro musicianship and musicality. Originally from Vancouver, the Toronto-based singer-songwriter is preparing to record a batch of singles leading up to an EP. “With this project, I am attempting to create a modern pop record built on the backbone of funk and soul instrumentation”, Gazzola explains, “it draws inspiration from Maroon 5, John Mayer, Daft Punk, Tom Misch and Stevie Wonder”.

mike downes playing the cello enthusiastically

February 19, March 5
Mike Downes Trio
Multiple JUNO award winner Mike Downes has been a prominent Canadian bassist, composer, arranger and educator since the early 1980s. His musicality, emotional depth and melodic approach to the bass have thrilled audiences in Europe, Japan, South Korea, Brazil, Mexico, Israel, Iceland, the United States and Canada. In addition to leading his own groups, Mike has performed with virtually all of Canada’s top jazz musicians, including Molly Johnson, Oliver Jones, PJ Perry, Lorne Lofsky, Don Thompson, Kirk MacDonald, Robi Botos and Pat LaBarbera. He has performed with international artists Pat Metheny, Chris Potter, Michael Brecker, John Abercrombie, Peter Erskine, Kenny Wheeler, John Taylor, Dave Liebman and many others.

Matt Austen Greenwood playing the guitar

February 24, March 10
Matt Austin Greenwood Trio
Born and raised in Harare, Zimbabwe, Matt Greenwood is now pursuing his passion for music in Toronto. Matt is about to finish his third year of Humber’s Bachelor of Music degree program. Growing up in Zimbabwe meant access to music education or even equipment was extremely limited. However, the country’s rich musical heritage and culture was an incredible thing to be a part of. Matt has performed with some of Zimbabwe’s most acclaimed musicians including Oliver Mtukudzi, Gemma Griffiths, Forward Kwenda, Vee Mukarati, Othnell Mangoma Moyo, Josh Meck and Rob Burrell (Mann
Friday) and countless others.

Pat sitting on a fallen tree with a large cello laying on the ground in front of him

February 26
Pat Collins Trio
Originally from Qualicum Beach, B.C., bassist Pat Collins moved to Toronto in 1988 and has become one of the more active bassists on the Canadian Jazz Scene.  Pat has performed with such legendary musicians as Oscar Peterson, Joe Henderson, Dizzy Gillespie, Herb Ellis, Jimmy Cobb and Lee Konitz.  He has also performed with legendary Canadian musicians as Moe Koffman, Rob McConnell, Ed Bickert, Peter Appleyard and Don Thompson.

four men wearing sunglasses standing around one man sitting in a chair with sunglasses on.

March 17
Born out of a love for funk and a passion for fusion came McBrown — the funk-fusion group developed by bassist, bandleader and composer Liam Brown. The group features an all-star lineup of Mohawk College attendees and graduates featuring Alex Pedherney on saxophone, Liam Brown on bass and Nathanael Pollard on keyboard. Taking inspiration from musical superpowers Chick Corea, Kenny Wheeler and West-Coast Hip-Hop, Liam has taken the spirit of his inspiration and morphed it into his own creation. As the band continues to create, they hope to release an EP by the end of 2021.

sean stanley sitting and playing a grand piano

March 18
The Sean Stanley Trio
The Sean Stanley Trio is a Swing inspired jazz-blues group from Toronto and includes some of the top young musicians in the city.

allison holding a saxophone

March 19
Allison Au
Juno-award winning Jazz Saxophonist, Composer and Arranger, Allison Au (pronounced “ow”) refuses to be defined. Born to a Chinese father and Jewish mother, and raised in the multicultural metropolis of Toronto, Allison found music as a young child. Exposed to a wide array of musical styles, she was captivated by the unhinged freedom of Jazz. Jazz became Allison’s lab for self-expression, exploration, and musical experimentation. Her work weaves a mosaic of influences into a seamless and soulful sound, a concoction steeped in the tradition of Jazz but skillfully laced with elements of Classical, Pop, R&B/hip hop, Latin, and world music.

chris molyneaux jazz trio with their instruments

March 24
Chris Molyneaux Jazz Trio
The Chris Molyneaux Jazz Trio is a group of 3 very talented musicians whose friendship began during their years at Humber College. They formed the Trio in 2016 and have been steadily growing their listening audience and fan base. Playing predominantly throughout Southwestern Ontario, the Trio is spreading its wings into the GTA. Be prepared to fall in love with their dynamic, fun and playful manner. They play a wonderful combination of original jazz works, standards, and funky covers.

aisha barrow laying on her side and smiling

March 25
Lifeandthetribe is the alias of Gambian born/Hamilton-based artist Aisha Barrow. Previously releasing music under her birth name which means “she who lives”, Aisha wanted to convey the collaborative nature of her music and the “tribe” of musicians and producers who back her R&B- based-pop-project.

tara davidson holding her saxophone

March 26
Tara Davidson Trio
Tara Davidson is a JUNO Award-winning alto and soprano saxophonist who has performed around the world at such prestigious venues as New York City’s Carnegie Hall, the acclaimed North Sea Jazz Festival in the Netherlands, the JZ Jazz Club in Shanghai, China, and The Kennedy Center, in Washington, D.C. As a bandleader, Davidson has produced seven recordings since 2004 and performed on approximately forty recordings as a side person. Four of her recordings as a leader have been nominated by the JUNO Awards for “Album of the Year” in the “Traditional”, “Solo” and “Group” jazz categories. Davidson is an active educator presently on faculty at the University of Toronto and York University.

Tara Davidson is proud to be a Yamaha Artist and plays their Custom Z alto saxophone, Custom CSVR clarinet, and YFL-577 Series flute.

Toronto Undergraduate Jazz Festival Logo

T.U. Jazz Fest is a federally incorporated not-for-profit organization that creates developmental and performance opportunities for youth and emerging musicians in Canada. Since 2015 they have presented annually T.U. Jazz Fest and various other events to connect emerging musicians with the community and the public. With the goal of creating performance, networking, and learning opportunities for over 1,000 emerging musicians yearly, T.U. Jazz Fest is a bridge connecting emerging musicians and equity-seeking musicians with mentors and the community. 

  • Winter Wonders Ale can on a small glass table
  • Blistered shishito peppers on a small white plate
  • Saxophone player in the background. Foreground features toasted bread and cheese plate
  • Beet Gravlax on a small white plate
  • WinterTide view from table looking towards jazz quintet playing on the stage

Food & Drink

Indoor seating in the lounge areas of the Visitor Centre is available on a first-come-first-serve basis.

Seating is also available within the garden and guests are encouraged to enjoy the outdoor winter experience and firepits. Rock Garden’s outdoor area is fully licensed for alcohol consumption — low impact compostable cups will be made available for those wishing to enjoy their drinks under the stars.

Lounge Tapas Menu

Available 5:30 to 11 p.m.

A small plates menu offering wine and classic cocktails is available in the indoor lounge areas of the Visitor Centre.

Beet Gravlax $11
Beetroot Cured Salmon| Potato Gaufrette| Herbed goat cheese| Shaved fennel| Radish 

Kettle chips $6
Rosemary Salted Pomme de Terre| Roasted Garlic and Paprika Aioli 

Moules Mariniere $10
Mussels| White wine| Butter| Shallots| Garlic| Herbs 

Blistered Shishito Peppers $7
Citrus| Sriracha Mayo | Grana Padano 

Tomato Ginger Chili Jam Grilled Cheese Sliders $8
House-made Herbed Focaccia | Gouda | Aged cheddar | Gruyere |Tomato Chili Ginger Jam 

Roasted Red pepper Hummus $10
Crudité | Olive oil | Smoked Paprika 

Antipasto $14
Cured meats | Artisanal cheeses | Grilled Sourdough | Tarragon Dijon| Gherkin | Red Grapes  


The WinterTide Negroni $13
Dillon’s Dry Gin / Lillet Blanc/ Sweet White Vermouth

French 75 $13
Peller XOXO Sparkling Pino Grigio/ Dillan’s Dry Gin/ Lemon Juice

The Rock Sour $13
Gretzky Red Cask Whisky/ Lemon/ Simple Syrup/ Peller Cab Merlot Float

Espresso Martini $11
Kahlua/ Smirnoff Vodka/ Propeller Coffee Co Turbo Espresso

Mulled Wine $11
Peller Cab Merlot/ St Remy

The Great One $9
Gretzky Whisky Cream/ Hot Chocolate/ Whipped Cream

The Tea House Toddy $9
Gretzky Red Cask/ Lemon/ Wildflower Honey


GLB & RBG Collab Winter Wonders Ale $9
Craft Cans $9
Premium/ Import Bottles $7
Domestic Bottles $6

Rock Garden Bistro Menu

Available 5:30 to 8 p.m.

The Rock Garden Bistro features an eclectic full menu that boasts fresh, locally sourced ingredients.


Heirloom Carrot Salad $14
Heirloom Carrot | Citrus | Blistered Shishito Peppers | Arugula

Moules Mariniere $17
Mussels | VQA White Wine| Butter| Shallots| Garlic| Herbs

Saffron and Onion Potage $10
Toasted Almond| Blistered Thyme| Smoked Paprika| Annatto Seed Oil

Beet Gravlax $17
Beetroot Cured Salmon| Potato Gaufrette| Herbed Goat Cheese| Shaved Fennel| Radish

Lighter Side

Frittata de Terre $16
Mini Red Skin Potatoes | Wild Mushrooms | Caramelized Onion | Smoked Gouda | Frisse Salad

Rock Garden Salad $15
Mesclun| Heirloom Carrot | Fennel | Radish | Tomato

Chicken Waldorf Salad $18
Ontario Free-range Chicken| Red Grapes| Gala Apple| Celery| Toasted Walnuts| Herbs| Waldorf Dressing| Frisse

Tomato Ginger Chili Jam Grilled Cheese $16
House-made Herbed Focaccia | Gouda | Aged Cheddar | Gruyere | Garden Salad

French Beef dip on Sourdough Baguette $18
Braised Ontario Beef | Sourdough Vienna


Steak Frites $27
Grilled Flat Iron Steak | Potato Frites | Grilled Tomato Arugula Salad | Café de Paris.

Atlantic Salmon $24
Pan Seared Atlantic Salmon |Puy Lentil and Shard Sauté | Lemon Dill Beurre Blanc

Chicken Ravigote $20
Free-range Ontario Chicken Supreme | Pan-Roasted Root Vegetables | Butter Poached Broccolini | Ravigote Sauce

Veggie Lasagne $18
Roasted Vegetables | Tofu Ricotta| Soy Bechamel | Pomodoro

Tempeh and Mushroom Bourguignon $19
Wild Mushrooms | Marinated Tempeh| VQA Red wine Braised Vegetables


Chocolate Pot de Crème $10
Chilli Pistachio Bark | White Chocolate Pearls | Bramble

Coconut-Lime Strudel $9
Key Lime Custard | Phyllo Nest| Poached Blueberry

Red Wine Poached Pear $ 10
VQA Poached Bosc Pear | Crème Chantilly | Bramble

Rock Garden at Royal Botanical Gardens

Find this event at this historic Rock Garden, 1185 York Boulevard, Hamilton ON.

Rejuvenated in 2016, the David Braley and Nancy Gordon Rock Garden respects our iconic treasure’s heritage, look and feel while celebrating the beginning of a new era with a beautiful, modern renovation.

Event FAQ

Have a question about WinterTide at the Rock Garden? Click the topics below for more information. If you have a question that is not answered, give us a call at 905-527-1158.

Am I required to be vaccinated to enter RBG?

As of March 1, RBG no longer requires visitors aged to prove they have been vaccinated against COVID-19.

Are masks required?

Royal Botanical Gardens’ (RBG) is making every effort to help ensure your visit is enjoyable and, above all, safe. 

Following the advice of public health authorities, masks are required to access the indoor spaces (entry to the garden, café, washrooms, etc.), and while standing in any lineup (either indoors or outdoors). Please wear a mask outdoors when you are unable to keep your distance from others. Please observe all markers and one-way indicators upon arrival and stick with your group for the duration of the event, following physical distancing guidelines. 


Tickets are only available at the door. General admission discounts and coupons are not applicable to this ticketed event.

What's Included

Your ticket includes access to Rock Garden during this event. Your ticket is for this event only, and does not include general admission for the full day.

Food, and drink are available at additional costs.

Parking in the lot across the street from the garden is included.

Arrival / Entry

When planning your visit, please note that you may arrive at any time. Visitors are welcome to arrive throughout the course of the evening. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Last admission of the evening is at 10 p.m.

Directions and Parking

This event is held at Rock Garden, located at 1185 York Boulevard, Hamilton Ontario. Parking is included, available in the designated lot across the street.

Rock Garden is located along bus routs for Burlington Transit, with stops a short distance from the entrance. See for more details.

Food and Drink

This is a licensed event; some alcoholic beverages will be available for purchase for those age 19+. A valid I.D. is required for beverage purchase.

Outside food and drink is not permitted.


The newly rejuvenated Rock Garden features some wide, lit, paved paths that descend with a slope into the lower bowl of the garden.

Accessible parking spaces are available outside Rock Garden. Visitors access the garden through the Rock Garden Visitor Centre.

If you have any further questions about accessibility at this event please contact us by phone (905-527-1158).


WinterTide is held rain/snow or (moon)shine, so come prepared for the weather! RBG reserves the right to cancel WinterTide due to inclement weather without notice.

Pets / Service Animals

With the exception of service animals, personal pets are not permitted at this event.

Terms & Conditions

Tickets purchased to WinterTide are final sale and non-refundable.

Liability: RBG assumes no responsibility for loss or damage to property, or for personal injury or mishap; all activities are at the risk of the participant.

Filming/Photography Release: Please be advised that all photos, audio-video, and static images taken at this experience may be used for exhibit, reproduction, and/or distribution for RBG related promotional use, including all forms of print, television advertisement, social media and /or website display. In consideration of your participation as a guest or attendee of this experience, you authorize Royal Botanical Gardens, its legal representatives, suppliers, invited media and assigns unrestricted right and permission to copyright and use such photos and images under their sole discretion. Royal Botanical Gardens, its legal representatives, suppliers, invited media and assigns are released without limitation of any claims for libel or invasion of privacy.

By purchasing tickets and participating in this experience on RBG properties, you are agreeing to the above release for yourself, and on behalf of your guests.