Billy’s Taphouse serves up local food, beer and wine in Essex

Apr 19, 2021

Many Canadians have made a mindful decision to support local business during the pandemic, purchasing from small shops instead of big box stores and regularly ordering takeout from their favourite independent restaurants. It’s a great approach, and the positive impact extends even further when used by business owners. After all, when local businesses support one another, they help build stronger, richer communities. We love to see this happening across Ontario!

Doug and Jenn Kalapos are excellent examples of this philosophy in action. Here’s how they’re supporting local business through their own independent restaurant: Billy’s Taphouse in Essex, Ontario.

Get to know Billy’s Taphouse

What started as a billiard room over 20 years ago is now a popular restaurant that cooks up delicious meals from scratch. There’s something for everyone and with “taphouse” in their name, you know they have a great beer selection! Billy’s currently has 14 Ontario craft beers available on draught. There are new breweries opening in the Essex area all the time, and the taphouse is pleased to bring the best of Ontario craft beer to their customers. They even offer 64 oz refillable growlers to enjoy at home!

Billy’s is also known for their fantastic selection of local wine and craft cocktails. With so many award-winning local vineyards to choose from, the wine menu is constantly evolving. Each and every bottle is outstanding — there’s no need to serve anything less! And the cocktails? They’re made with local ingredients including fresh squeezed juice, house-made syrups and premium spirits. Cheers!

Shining a light on local food and drink

When you buy local, you directly support small business owners and their employees. Real people in the community benefit from your purchasing choices, and they appreciate it every day. Doug and Jenn Kalapos know this, and they make sure their commitment to shopping local extends to decisions made within their restaurant.

Billy’s Taphouse strives to highlight local food in their menu, from tender beef procured from Schinkel’s Butcher in Essex to fresh, soft brioche buns from Lakeside Bakery in Leamington. Billy’s sources a variety of produce from local farms — and sometimes, from their chef’s own garden! The restaurant also sources ingredients from 4D Sausage, Dockside Fisheries and North Ridge Greens, among other local producers. These community connections are often noted on the menu so customers know exactly what they’re getting and where it’s from.

When you get a meal from Billy’s, your dollars are truly staying in the Essex community. Plus, you’re getting high quality, signature dishes that will make your mouth water. It’s no wonder they’re a mainstay in town — though, the comfortable dining room atmosphere, breezy patio and summer beach volleyball court definitely help!

Billy's Taphouse menus

Taste the best of Ontario

Essex is a tight-knit community that is rich in agriculture and artistry. The food may be local, but it’s grown for the world. It’s amazing to see what restaurants can do with delicious, high quality products from their own backyard, and awesome to see these same products in demand well outside the region.

Doug and Jenn Kalapos of Billy’s Taphouse believe in supporting local business because they’ve experienced that same support firsthand. The Essex community has always been there for them and in return, they’re there for the people of Essex. The taphouse has shown exceptional resilience throughout the pandemic, keeping their local supply chain in motion while maintaining a very high standard of product and service. We’re proud to work with this great team and wish them continued success — they deserve it.