Quietly hidden away…

…in a small strip-mall in uptown Niagara-on-the-Lake is one of Canada’s leading restaurants, backhouse, which offers a continuously evolving menu with a commitment to integrated cool climate cuisine and enlightened hospitality.

Once one finds backhouse, the aroma of peach wood burning in the brick oven and glow of the wood-fired grill lets guests know they’re not out just for dinner, but are embarking on a culinary journey of somewhereness. Boasting a finely curated local and international wine list, with a highly skilled culinary and front of house team, we guarantee our guests one of their best dining experiences.

We are a renaissance restaurant.

The staff tends to our garden and delivers vegetables daily, still warm from the sun. We cook them fresh every day and preserve those which we can’t, for those long winter months. We source ethically raised meat, do all of our butchery in-house, and cook over an open fire. Our sourdough breads are hand crafted and baked fresh in our wood-fired oven every day.

Alongside the food, we have a team of dedicated sommeliers and service professionals who work with local wine, beer, and spirit producers to showcase the best our community has to offer.

Each day our team works together in writing the menus that tell the story of backhouse and our community through food and drink, offering tasting menus with optional beverage pairings. These pages from our continually evolving story are a taste of time and place.

Please sit back, relax, and let us tell you the tale of backhouse…


The backhouse team

Creating and inspiring a team that thrives on excellence is a collective effort.

Standing behind the team rather than in front creates space for their autonomy, creativity and growth. Our team at backhouse exceeds our expectations and inspires us to be better at what we do. It is a joy working with all the people who have passed through our doors. We are incredibly humbled and grateful for the people who help us on our journey.


about backhouse Chef Ryan Crawford

Ryan Crawford

Executive Chef | Owner

Some people are born to do what they do, that is true of Chef Ryan Crawford.

Ryan has been involved in the kitchen his entire life. He studied at the noted Stratford Chef School and then became an instructor there for four years. He has travelled extensively, staging at The French Laundry and Terra Grill in Napa Valley; l’Orangerie, Lucques and Patina in Los Angeles, and Jardinière in San Francisco. Closer to home, he has worked with Michael Stadtländer and Jamie Kennedy.

Ryan solidified his place in the Canadian culinary scene as Executive Chef of the Stone Road Grille in Niagara on the Lake. It was during this time that he and his good friend Paul Harber of Ravine Vineyard Winery began farming together. Ryan and Paul brought The Happy Pig Farm to Niagara.

Ryan later went on to make his own wine – The Crawford Wine Project. This wine is featured in restaurants across Ontario, and even off the coast of Newfoundland at the Fogo Island Inn.