Bay of Quinte Entrepreneurs: Kylie and Braden Lawther

An interview with Kylie and Braden Lawther of The Counter Restaurant in Quinte West.


Kylie: she/her Braden: he/him

Briefly describe your business.

The Counter is an elevated deli, where quality ingredients are made different. We are trying to provide a comfortable and approachable menu and atmosphere, while also pushing the boundaries on classic dishes.

A smoked meat sandwich from The Counter restaurant in downtown Trenton

What brought you to the region?

When the Covid housing market was hot we took advantage and sold our house in Norwood. With nothing keeping us in that area, we took the leap to Belleville where we fell in love with a house in a good neighbourhood to raise kids, with a big backyard for our furbabies and near water to take boat rides in!

What makes the Bay of Quinte a good fit for your business?

The community lacked fresh and good quality lunch options in the downtown areas that are independently operated.

A bowl of curried coconut soup from The Counter restaurant

What was the hardest thing about starting a business

Knowing our clientele before we even had clientele. Also taking the plunge to quit our jobs and taking the huge leap of faith to invest in ourselves.

What advice do you have for entrepreneurs in the area?

Trust in yourself and the brand you’re creating because everyone has opinions, but if you believe in what you’re doing and put in the hard work, success will be there.

How do you like to spend your days off?

We spend our days off soaking in as much family time with our two young children doing activities in the area like going to the YMCA, the gymnastics club or public skating. In the summer, we look forward to going to our family cottage in Yarker, and boating on the Bay of Quinte

If you could have one word tattooed on you, what would it be?

Kylie: Food – it’s something I am passionate about. it has helped shape me. I’m teaching my children about the importance of local food, growing food, utilizing all of the product, how to nourish our bodies and what food can do for us, how it can provoke emotions and show love. If I wasn’t a chef, I quite honestly don’t know what I would be doing with my life. Food has given me everything I have in life.

Braden: Honesty – I am a firm believer that being transparent and truthful is very important. You are only as good as your word.