The model of the traditional roadhouse – an insular steel box that relies on an internal theme while denying the context outside its doors – dominates our suburban Canadian landscape and fosters the idea that suburban developments can’t be real or have culture. When one of the largest players in the industry needed a new prototype design for its flagship restaurants, Stantec’s engineers wanted to challenge, and change, this perception.
The Burloak prototype restaurant allows diners to enjoy their own community by emphasizing the social nature of the dining experience. Large windows opening to the outdoors encourages the community to see and be seen dining, while the Canadian pastime of extending the patio season far longer than we probably should is encouraged through a two sided fireplace and radiant heating incorporated into the roof structure, which stretches over sections of the outdoor seating.
In Kingston, the restaurant reinforces its position on one of the busiest corners of the historic city by preserving the original stonework from 1841 and incorporating it into the restaurant space. Old timbers that had framed the building’s penthouse now form the bulk of the millwork.