K-Town isn’t just dollar beers and Billboard hits

…And I wish I figured that out sooner. While the classic watering holes in the hub have earned their place in Queen’s students’ hearts, opting for a more relaxed drinking experience can be a breath of fresh air. 

If you blink an eye, you may miss Musiikki: a cozy cafe by day, and a rustic whiskey bar by night. What’s even better is that there is live music almost every night. 

Located at 73 Brock Street, Musiikki’s “hole-in-the-wall” exterior is deceiving. In the front room, the walls are decked out with antique instruments and local art (look out for Francisco Corbett’s paintings). 

Walk upstairs, and you’ll find an intimate room where the stage can be found. With around fifteen seats, you always have a front-row view. Here, I’ve stumbled upon Kingston-based artists that I would have never discovered otherwise. 

Siydock is guaranteed to serenade you with his acoustic folk covers, and you can count on Room Tone Jazz to provide jazz licks that will warm your soul. If you’re in an especially fierce mood, you can catch a drag show hosted by the one and only, Rowena Whey

I could go on, but it’s easier to check out Musiiki’s Instagram where they post their lineup every week. If you’re picky about what genres you listen to, definitely take a look at the roster beforehand. 

Possibly the best part of Musiikki is the courtyard patio. Tucked in the back of the limestone building, picnic tables are arranged underneath a magnolia tree strung with fairy lights. In the months that Kingston is not frozen over, this is the place to be. 

When it comes to mixology, Musiikki makes some killer cocktails too. My go-to’s are the Whiskey Sour (a classic), Spiced Sour, and Rosemary Greyhound. If I’m in an especially sophisticated mood, I’ll ask the bartender for whiskey recommendations. I’m no connoisseur, but I will say the smell on my breath makes me feel like a sexy cowboy from the Wild West. 

Food-wise, there are, unfortunately, no bites served at Musiikii in the evening hours. An insider tip is to bring in food from outside or even order Uber Eats straight to the door! 

If you’re one for discovering local music or sipping on well-crafted boozy bevs, I highly recommend you visit Musiikki. Thank me later. 



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