Let me start out by saying “no, they aren’t a coffee shop”.

Many who are new to the city, or have yet to go to the Westdale restaurant, are mistaken in thinking they’re just going there for a cup of coffee. You MAY (Bean Bar has an extensive hot drink menu), but you will also get a whole bunch of delicious food for lunch or dinner!

Bean Bar is currently celebrating it’s 25th year in Hamilton; 25 years as a wonderful part of the cultural fabric of Westdale. Through the Bean Bar has been known as a popular pre or post movie meal for those frequenting the historic Westdale Cinema (soon to be re-opened), the restaurant is popular with nearby Mac students, local neighbourhood residents, and Hamilton-wide.

This year marks an important year for the Bear Bar, which is also a year of changes for them. They will be undergoing some large changes this year, from the marketing to the interior and menu options. The implementation of this has already begun, with a large full-wall mural from Street Art Hamilton racing their east wall and additions like desserts from Donut Monster.

Menu options at Bean Bar still include many of the favourites that guests have come to love; split into categories like Starters, Salads, Wraps, Hot Sandwiches, Pastas, Mains, Burgers and Sides.

While there, we tried their Crispy Canadian Burger (Sirloin Burger with Bacon, Canadian cheese mix, onion rings, sweet roasted pepper sauce) with Onion Rings and their Cobb Salad (Grilled chicken, bacon, tomato, cheddar & mozzarella mix, scallions, hard boiled eggs, mixed greens, balsamic dressing with the addition of Avocado). The Crispy Canadian had the right amount of juiciness and flavour, and it was massive. Onion rings has a tasty, not-too-thick breading, which is right up my alley. (Note: Sides are extra on top of the burger and sandwiches). I like that they have a build-your-own-burger style option where you can pick your patty type, making a great vegetarian option – two veggie choices – or a meat-lovers heaven.