Modern menu meets regional relics

Debbie Frey

Step into the Proof Kitchen + Lounge and you realize instantly that this is not your ordinary hotel restaurant. Residing inside the new Delta Waterloo (in the barrel yards of uptown Waterloo) Proof salutes Waterloo’s colourful past and exciting future in every facet of its business.

The name ‘Proof’ for example, embodies Waterloo’s identity in its multiple meanings. A proof is a deductive argument for a mathematical statement, and the measure of intensity in alcoholic beverages, a clever nod to two of our most famous industries. Adorning the walls are mathematical equations by local physicists on old-school chalk boards. Part of an ongoing series, these equations are constantly changing and their authors are showcased on Proof’s website. An ice bar was commissioned for their recent grand opening, with two sculpted Seagrams’ whiskey barrels serving as pillars.

“We were inspired by the spirit of Waterloo,” said Laura Umbrio, general manager of Proof. “We wanted to celebrate the Region’s geographic location and its proximity to rich farmland throughout our menu.”

“The pork chop that will change your life,” boasts Umbrio.

The locally grown Berkshire pork thrilled Executive Chef Tim Dunnill, who was cautious about tampering too much with its flavour. Proof cold smokes the pork to gently infuse without overwhelming it. The result is Proof’s signature dish. Proof’s fish and chips are made with fresh pickerel, battered in Waterloo Dark Ale. Paradise Farms supplies the meat for their ‘Proof Burger’ that is all naturally raised and grass fed within a twenty-mile radius of the restaurant. The burgers include 6oz of ground chuck, clod, and brisket served on a pretzel bun.

The drink menu features ten locally crafted beers, including a Barrel Proof Ale, a proprietary brew created by Grand River Brewery and offered exclusively at Proof.

A newcomer to uptown Waterloo’s upscale dining scene, Proof demonstrates right out of the gates that they are here for the long haul. With its ingenious menu offerings and decor, Proof Kitchen + Lounge celebrates the best that Waterloo region has to offer.


Debbie Frey is the owner and Publisher of New to Waterloo, an online resource for people moving to Waterloo from outside the Region or province.