Fall in love with Waterloo as it is named the 13th most romantic city in Canada

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Photo by Yitian Cai

On Feb. 4, the Waterloo Chronicle released an article stating that Waterloo had been named the thirteenth most romantic city in the country by Amazon Canada, selected through a process of analyzing consumer sales data in the last year.

Victoria, British Columbia was named the most romantic city; out of a potential top 20, BC also achieved six other nominations, including Vancouver. Ontario managed to secure a close second to BC, getting five other nominations including Oakville. But what is it about the city that has influenced its reputation as being “romantic,” especially during Valentine’s Day? Well, Brian Plouffe, owner and operator of King Street Trio in uptown Waterloo, might be able to provide one explanation.

On Feb. 5, King Street Trio was named amongst “the most romantic restaurants” in Canada by OpenTable, an online company that provides accessibility in booking restaurant reservations.

“This is our fourth year in a row receiving [this award]. It’s guest-driven completely; guests who dine on OpenTable, at any of the OpenTable restaurants — and they have thousands of them across North America — are then given an opportunity to evaluate the restaurant,” Plouffe said.

Boasting a 97 per cent recommendation rating, a 4.8 out of 5 average rating and series of outstanding reviews on OpenTable, they were also “proudly named one of Open Table’s Top 100 Restaurants in Canada 2017 & 2018.”

But what does it take to be named OpenTable’s Top 100 Restaurants in Canada: most romantic? Plouffe sees the secret behind the success of the restaurant as the focus on high-quality food and guest service.

Valentine’s Day is easily one of their busiest nights of the year, as tables have already been fully-booked up, but Plouffe hopes that students will come and visit over the weekend and during their reading week as well.

“We’re always excited when our guests feel that our venue fits a romantic dining experience [and] we are very happy when they rate us highly in terms of overall satisfaction,” Plouffe said.

There are a number of elements that go into making KST an award-winning romantic venue; such as their music choice, candlelit dinners and having the chefs work in view of the customers, which Plouffe believes adds to the “mystique or romance” of the restaurant.

“[As well,] we are a smaller venue, so I think that definitely plays into it. The venue is always 58 seats, so I think definitely when you’re there it feels intimate; a lot of the finishes in the restaurant are very unique or somewhat refined, so it gives you a nice feeling.”

Despite the volatile changes that have been occurring in uptown Waterloo in the past few years, with construction blocking off a number of businesses from their potential customers, Plouffe’s restaurant has persevered — and even thrived.

“I think that perseverance was based on us making sure we take care of each and every guest when they come in the front door. We’re very tight in terms of timeline now; we’ve reduced our service period to six days a week from 5:30, so we’re closed on Sundays,” Plouffe said.

“You really get the A-Team in there every time you come in for dinner.”

Valentine’s Day is easily one of their busiest nights of the year, as tables have already been fully-booked up, but Plouffe hopes that students will come and visit over the weekend and during their reading week as well.

“Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday we offer a dynamic weekday pricing program, so we offer a discount on the food … Monday’s are 20 per cent, Tuesdays are 15 [per cent] and Wednesdays are 10 [per cent],” Plouffe said. “I’d say that we’re not a pretentious restaurant and we’re always happy to have guests who have never been there before drop by and try us out.”

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