Adriano Ciotoli and Pina Ciotoli, co-owners of WindsorEats, have launched a new design for their website.
WindsorEats has been around since 2004 and promotes locally-owned and operated eateries and the local food movement within Essex County.
“When we first began eight years ago, community knowledge about local agricultural, culinary assets was limited,” explains Adriano. “Creating a guide that celebrates our local restaurants, farms and wineries has put a positive focus on our region and helped create a sense of pride about our city and county.”
The new site aims to promote Essex County’s role as a culinary tourism destination and will allow visitors to view what is available in the county as well as highlight restaurants that use local produce and products.
What’s new to the site:
- Easier categories that include Restaurants, Farms, Culinary Shops, Markets, Tours, Events and Beverages (which include wineries and local breweries);
- An interactive map of Essex County
- An enhanced search option that enables visitors to search by city, town, or neighbourhood. You can even search for what you’re in the mood for or what’s closest to your location.
- The ability for visitors to leave their own comments and reviews on the business pages.
Ciotoli explained that the overall change was designed to streamline everything on the site, “We put everything into easier to navigate categories. It’s not only about restaurants and wineries now. It all has its own categories.”
While WindsorEats hadn’t changed their website within six to seven years, Ciotoli believed that the site “didn’t truly reflect everything that we were doing. We wanted to reduce the amounts of clicks people had to make, and make it much easier for people to find the information they were looking for.”
This summer, Ciotoli is seeking to introduce walking tours for the city, and possibly expand the annual Bikes and Beers event to become more like their Wine Trails Rides.
As for the walking tours, “We have itineraries for different areas in the city. The first one will be within the Walkerville area,” he said.
With several awards under their belt, people from outside of our region are also paying attention to WindsorEats’ progreass. “The WindsorEats new restaurant and culinary guide site is a fabulous addition to the culinary tourism inventory of Ontario,” says Rebecca LeHeup, executive director of the Ontario Culinary Tourism Alliance.
“Having one central site for a destination to promote all of the elements of food – from farm gate to dinner plate – is an essential tool to attracting and servicing culinary tourists. We look forward to watching WindsorEats and the culinary offerings of the region grow.”
Jonathon Liedtke is the Features & Opinion Editor for the University of Windsor Lance Campus/Community Newspaper and a reporter for ourWindsor.ca. As a founding member and current Co-Chair of the Mayor’s Youth Advisory Committee, he is committed to representing, connecting, engaging with and advocating for local youth. He is also a member of Windsor’s “Punk with Horns” band The Nefidovs, and as such, is committed to enhancing and sustaining the arts community.