Explore DTK, Try New Food, Eat for Free!

The Local Advocate and Downtown Kitchener have partnered to pilot a review program that will get people experiencing new food and restaurants in their downtown and generate content for downtown Kitchener restaurants!

Do you love food? Are you good with your words or a camera? Do you like getting FREE STUFF?!

If this sounds like you, please read the following document for further instructions and get in touch with us to sign up or learn more:

  1. Choose the restaurant which you would like to review (check www.thelocaladvocate.ca to see which restaurants have already been reviewed and try to choose one that is not already covered)

  2. Plan an evening around the dining experience. Try to include other experiences in DTK (even something simple as a walk through Victoria Park or through Goudies Lane) to enhance your story and the experience.

  3. Go out, eat and enjoy!

  4. Ensure to take lots of good quality photos of the restaurant, food, atmosphere and your experience.

  5. Make notes on your phone or notepad during the meal so you don’t forget specifics.

  6. Whenever you have the time (sooner is better), write a review of the experience, restaurant and food following the guidelines below.

  7. Submit your review and photos to kayla@thelocaladvocate.ca and mistie.brown@kitchener.ca

  8. Once your review has been edited and posted, you will receive $25 Downtown Dollars as compensation for your time which will be distributed by Kayla or Mistie.

  9. Use this money to shop at your favourite downtown locations or use it to review another restaurant so you can keep eating for FREE!

Goals for this initiative:

  1. Generate content for local businesses that will appear on Downtown Kitchener website, Local Advocate website, social media, restaurant websites and other platforms.

  2. Encourage more people to dine locally and try out new places.

  3. Showcase our downtown as a vibrant, unique, exciting place to be and visit.

Guiding questions to help with your review:

* these don’t all have to be answered! The point is to paint a story, highlight the entire city and your experience and showcase our downtown in a positive light.

How did you hear about the place for the first time?

Had you ever been before?

What motivated you to go there at that time?

Did you hear about it from friends/ family, what did they have to say about it?

What were you doing before?

Are you going somewhere after?

How did you get there? (stroll down King Street, parked in the Market Lot, paused on your way to take a photo of cool graffiti, etc.)

What were you entering impressions (smells, sights, greetings from staff…)

Did you go with friends, a partner, for an event?

Pointing out some of the decor items, interesting, unique qualities.

What were you most excited to try there?

What was your previous knowledge on the type of food? Can you elaborate further with interesting history, facts or a past story of your own?

How was the menu, service and ordering experience?


How was it presented?

Did you get to interact with the kitchen/ food preparation at all (open kitchen, salad bar, tableside service)?

Summarize your experience of the food:

  • Be honest but always try and portray an overall good experience and feedback should be constructive (we are here to help and make everyone better!)

  • Pricing or exact ingredients aren’t always necessary but if they tell a better story, are unique or seem important to share- go for it! It’s YOUR experience.

How did the meal end? Did you have to rush out or could you hang around leisurely?

Did you have other downtown experiences after?

And whatever else you want to add!

Photo Guide

  • Clear, clean photos of food and location

  • Try to avoid too much clutter (dirty napkins, cutlery, distractions)

  • With food photos, try and choose a nice selection of colours and variety if possible (include your drink, phone, wallet, accessory, wine bottle or hands for extra interest)

  • Use different angles (top down of food and table, side angles, close up, far away)

  • Take LOTS of photos (more than you think you need to)

  • Experiment! You never know which ones will turn out cool

Kayla ZawiskiComment