A neighbourhood pub and restaurant serving pub classics. Live bands on Saturdays.
I was driving downtown and craving a burger, and I ended up at the JK restaurant. It looked like a nice place. When I tried to order a beer, I was told that JK was dry, but I could have food (from JK) AND beer next door at the Princeton, so off I went with Mrs. C in tow.
Wow, it was like time travel and I was back in 1975 Canada. I ordered a beer and burger, and soaked in the ambience. The bar is actually quite pleasant, and I half expected the McKenzie brothers to be at the next table. The beer was cheap and the burger was huge. I foolishly ordered the “supreme”, and it came with two patties, the usual toppings, i.e. cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, plus an egg, and shrimp. Shrimp? That was different. I could feel my arteries clogging as I gobbled down every delicious bite. I also tried the fries which were quite tasty, and some hot and savory onion rings. Mrs. C and I didn’t talk much with the locals since our mouths were full.
The place had a nice retro ambience, and they had 15 (I counted) TV’s as well as the usual pool tables. Les the server/bartender was a friendly sort, and he bantered with the customers between pours. I also checked out the w/c and found it to be clean. Plus the place was smoke-free. That was a bonus.
All in all an unexpectedly satisfying experience.
Although it has a "retro" feel, it isn't really retro. I suspect the decor hasn't changed much in thirty years, which is about the first time I ever set foot in the place. Visited again recently and found it fun, friendly, and with excellent pub food from the attached cafe. Nothing particularly imaginative on the menu, but its good, inexpensive and plentiful. Not a place for the chrome and fern crowd, nor the carefully contrived ambiance of some newer neighborhood pubs. A real place for real people.
Went to the Princeton Grill today for lunch with wife and two kids. I've been there twice before with a friend for breakfast and both times we agreed the food was awful. The only reason why I went back is because of the restaurants very unique feature which I mistakenly mentioned to my son and who has been pestering me to take him there ever since. The backside of the restaurant has row of tables lining a wall of huge windows that looks directly onto a series of railway tracks with constant activity. The train conductors regularly gave my friend and I the nod as they chugged along the tracks back and forth. Was a charming little feature for an otherwise disgusting restaurant.
Flash forward to today. My son said that he wanted to go to the train restaurant for lunch and feeling bad that I mentioned it to him but never took him there I gave in. The first good sign I saw when we got there was a sandwich board outside that said "New Menu". Although new menu means nothing if it's the same cooks I was relieved when we got inside and were told that the restaurant was under new ownership.
The restaurant was surprisingly busy with a very eclectic crowd of folk from every walk of life. The space is large with a sit-up bar, many tables and booths as well as those coveted tables against the back windows. The decor of the restaurant is pleasantly old-timey without being too run-down. The walls have many of old historical photographs of sea vessels and steam trains. A few of the photos are of maritime and train disasters which strangely my son seemed to particularly enjoy. Lucky for us a table for four was available at the back windows.
Even tho we were there for lunch the server told us we could order from the breakfast menu as well. I took both menus just incase I changed my mind about lunch and then surprisingly she also gave both our kids children's menus. Being a parent we're always happy when restaurants consider young families and children as valued customers. Even tho the breakfast menu tempted me, we decided to order from the main menu which was the two Princeton Burger platters ( one shared by the kids) and the Ruben sandwich for me. We all got fries which the server told were homemade and excellent. After a short wait our food came and everything looked excellent. The burger patties and home made and even tho I forgot to ask the hamburger buns looked homemade as well. My ruben was excellent. Toasted rye, lots of corned beef, sauerkraut, and melted swiss. The Burgers were probably the best Burgers in the Hastings Sunrise area (yup, even better than Red Wagon) especially for the price! And we all agreed that the fries were delicious.
In the end the bill for all of us came to a very inexpensive $33 incl tax. Two burger platters, a ruben, one coffee and two juices for the kids. Hard to beat. I look forward to going back soon and trying food from their breakfast menu as well meals from their lunch and dinner menu.
This is a real great place to go for a good cheap breakfast for the price. The portion are a good size and they put out a real tasty breakfast. The place is real clean and bright. The staff is real friendly. We were a large group of 11 and there was lots of room to seat us, the restaurant is a real large room with lots of group seating, and gotta like the cheap caesars on a sunday, helps with the hangovers.