Top 5 Board Game Restaurants and Cafes in Mississauga

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The wonderful world of board games has greatly expanded since I was a child. Long gone are the days when Monopoly was the first board game to come to mind. In most instances, I play in the comfort of my own home, with a close knit group of friends. On occasion, we venture out into the world and look for a place willing to host us. Usually, we settle on the same old Toronto cafe, where we wait in what seems like an endless line. After all, Mississauga isn’t a big enough city for board games spots, right? At least, that's what I used to think. There are a fair number of spots around Mississauga for people to play, some for less serious gamers and some for intense gamers.

Without further hesitation, here are the top 5 game spots in Mississauga:

**Please note: many of the places on this list have a limited selection (not true gamerz), so it's best to inquire before venturing out or to just bring your own if you want to be on the safe side.

5. Easy Drink Easy Go Cafe

Easy Drink Easy Go is a modern-styled cafe located in a busy strip mall on Hurontario, just south of Dundas. When a customer walks into this tiny bubble tea shop, the aroma of their fresh brew is pleasantly overwhelming. The beautiful smell is just a precursor to the taste of their tea. This shop's focus is entirely on making a strong tea, so don't visit with the intention of eating: there are absolutely no food items on the menu. The small space, however, is a wonderful place to sip a warm beverage. It's super inviting, with a basket of quick games on each table, so customers can play while they savour. If you're not looking for a serious gaming location, but wouldn't mind playing a fast and social game of cards, Jenga or even Chinese Checkers, Easy Drink Easy Go is a fine choice.

4. Flip a Coin

Located in Port Credit at John and Lakeshore, Flip a Coin is a new Asian tapas bar with a beautiful interior and delicious eats. The restaurant itself is quite narrow, though its high ceilings help make the space feel open. Two rows of tables lead to a small but well-designed bar fitted with chic black subway tiles. My two favourite decor features (I can't choose just one) are the bright paper parasols that are strewn over the bar and a few lucky tables and the vivid artwork hung throughout the restaurant. The tapas style menu is perfect for those wanting to play games. For just $20, I was able to order off the "Board Game Menu" which included a drink and five small dishes of my choosing. The portions were bigger than I expected, perfect for sharing and enjoying over an extended period of time. This restaurant was a strong option, with only a couple drawbacks: unless you're okay playing cards or Monopoly, bring your own games. Also, please note, you have to let the restaurant know your intention to play board games in advance so they can have a few games ready for you and, more importantly, prepare the special menu for you when you visit.

3. Cold Pressery

The Cold Pressery is an organic juice bar close to Square One, focused on healthy eating. It is a place where you will find both strong classics (an open faced portobello sandwich, apple pie, an assortment of cakes, etc.) and several unique food options (for example, a raw chocolate bar). I highly recommend the macaroons. The setup is perfect for playing board games - large reclaimed wood tables tables furnish this juice bar, giving its patrons ample space for food, drink and gaming. The game selection is quite large and boasts several fan favourites, including Battleship, Cards Against Humanity and Settlers of Catan. Be warned, you won’t find any meat options on the menu, so it may take some convincing to get your carnivorous friends out to this spot.

2. Studio 89

Every Friday night, Studio 89 hosts an evening where gamers can gather and play in a loving, inclusive environment. With its large tables and delightful eats (well-made coffee and tarts, just for a start), Studio 89 is strong choice for an outing for a group looking for a different evening (or even for one person to meet some new people with shared interests). When I visited Studio 89, there were several games going: Pandemic, Dead of Winter (an awesome zombie game) and even an obscure Donald Trump game. The friend I was with commented that the spot is reminiscent of a Toronto art studio, a great space to enjoy an evening. I'd have to agree. Anywhere I can make new friends who will want to play Settlers with me is a place I want to be. That said, there weren't a lot of options for games in store, so make sure you bring your own or be willing to ask to join another group.

1. De Code Adventures

Are you intrigued by the prospect of eating melted spicy cheese and tortilla chips while playing your favourite board game? Perhaps you're interested in eating a waffle covered in multiple scoops of ice cream while trying a new game instead? If either of these options piqued your interest, De Code Adventures is a place you need to visit. The space is large, the staff is friendly, the selection of games is immense (intense board gamers, no need to bring your own - they've got a lot to choose from). Most importantly, when you visit on the weekend, they've got a full menu and are ready to serve. For a perfect evening of grownup board games, De Code Adventures is the prime spot in Mississauga to play to your heart's content.

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