The Best New Thing in Hamilton?

photo 1

Hamilton is scoring lots of attention these days: revitalizing, growing, there’s new development and we’re one of the hottest real estate markets in the country, all good.

Something else that’s been garnering attention, deservedly, is the 541 Eatery & Exchange on Barton St E. Yes for many Barton has been an artery you drive along, you don’t stop, it’s been rather barren for a long time but that is changing. I just visited the eatery  this week and am smitten. It’s not simply a place to eat, though the food is great, it’s a driver of positive change in and giving back to the neighborhood.

The food is great and local and affordable. The 541 also uses a pay it forward system: those who have more contribute more, those who have less get an assist, as it should be in life.

If you can afford it you can buy a button for $1, it’s optional of course, that button goes into a jar so if someone cannot quite cover the cost of their coffee, baked treat, lunch, they can make up the difference from the pay it forward button jar. Brilliant.

When I visited this week I paid for my baked treats, asked about the buttons and added a few to the jar. A man in line behind me thanked me saying it’s a big help, he needs to dip into that jar at times and he appreciates it. For many of us $1 a button is nothing  and yet it makes such a difference, just $1. Proceeds from food sales at the 541 support various community educational initiatives.

Here we have a fine old building, beautifully restored and turned out, fantastic, warm staff, delicious local food, and they make it easy for all of us to contribute to the community.

I think this is one of the best new things in Hamilton. Please go, and buy a button.

photo 2   …blueberry scones, delicious!


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