Niagara-on-the-Lake’s Sandtrap Pub & Grill scooped four first-place platinum finishes and one runner-up prize in the 2020 NOTL’s Choice Awards.
The Mary Street eatery won the most categories in The Lake Report’s first residents’ choice competition.
The restaurant won for best local bar/pub, best casual restaurant, best burger and best pizza.
Plus bartender Matt Gordon won a gold medal, bringing the restaurant’s tally to five.
Sandtrap co-owner Matt Dietsch said he’s honoured to have been chosen by the 3,000 residents who voted.
“For us to be nominated for anything is an honour, and then, of course, to have people voting on it, and winning them is a bigger honour.”
He said over the years of being the “town watering hole” he and his brother Paul, who co-owns the business, have got to know a lot of customers on a personal level.
“For us, our local support is really where it’s at,” he said.
He and Paul have been working overtime to try to get through the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It’s been so, so much work. Because we’ve got to cuts things really as much as we possibly can. Paul and I have been really ‘burning the candle’ shall you say, just so we can sort of keep our head above water through all this time. Because once the weather starts to change, who knows where we’re going to go from there.”
But even through the pandemic, people have been kind in supporting the business, Dietsch said.
“The support through this summer has been overwhelming, in the sense of kind comments on the things that Paul and I are trying to do. Because it’s been a work in progress and things are changing so rapidly.”
“The town’s been very kind to us in supporting us during all these weird and crazy times.”
He congratulated Gordon for winning a gold in the best bartender category.
“We’re happy to have him and Glenn (Muir) having our backs. They’re sort of a little extension of us, you know?”