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Ladies Weekend in NOTL - dinner suggestions?

s
Sinfulia May 29, 2008 06:56 AM

Looking for suggestions for a group of thirty-something ladies in Niagara on the Lake for dinner. Price should be around $100 per person including drinks. Something on the main strip is preferred, but any of the wineries would be okay as well. Any recommendations?

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  1. TorontoJo May 29, 2008 07:08 AM

    There is nothing on the main strip that I would recommend (sorry!). But if you're willing to go just 5 minutes off the main strip, I can't recommend the Stone Road Grille enough. You will easily hit your budget there and eat very, very well. The food has a great local focus and has a sense of humour (you can get maple sugar cotton candy for dessert). You'll get the quality of the best winery restaurants, at a better price point, in a great, casual environment that is great for having a leisurely dinner with a bunch of girlfriends.

    http://www.stoneroadgrille.com/

    2 Replies
    1. re: TorontoJo
      pinstripeprincess May 29, 2008 07:17 AM

      only been once, recently, but really enjoyed stone road grille (note that it's marked with "REST" as its main sign) and found it quite worth the value.

      1. re: TorontoJo
        t
        torontofoodiegirl May 29, 2008 12:56 PM

        I also concur that the Stone Road Grille kicks the arses of the restaurants on the main drag. It's really not that far from town -- my guess would be about a 15-20 minute walk, depending on the part of town (though I can't really recall).

      2. e
        exquisite May 29, 2008 09:05 AM

        Last summer, I had a decent dinner at a place called Zee's. I saw some mixed reviews about the place - for service especially - after my visit, but I remember the food was decent enough and we drank enough wine not to notice anything particularly bad in service. We brought 2 bottles of wine with us and they charged us I think around $13 for cork fee - which is pretty decent, considering how much a bottle of wine is at any decent resto.

        And I think it is on the main strip, more on the east end.

        www.zees.ca

        1. m
          MeMeMe May 29, 2008 11:20 AM

          If your girlfriends enjoy really fantastic food, I would recommend Restaurant Tony DeLuca at the Oban Inn. I've only been once, but our meal was very memorable.

          Here's an example of a menu - with wine pairings.

          http://www.tonydeluca.ca/pdfs/WinterD...

          Enjoy!

          1 Reply
          1. re: MeMeMe
            nummanumma May 31, 2008 09:45 AM

            i was not impressed with this place at all.

          2. j
            jjmcq May 29, 2008 01:15 PM

            I second the vote for the Stone Road Grill. Its casual enough that you girls can have a few drinks, get silly and loud and no other diners will be offended. The steak & frites are great as well as the chicken or fish dish. Make sure you make a reservation at least 4 or 5 days in advance. Enjoy!!

            1. h
              Hondapendragon May 29, 2008 01:43 PM

              Last summer, I had a beautiful dinner at Strewn Winery. It was a 5 course meal with wine pairings for $85 per person. There is a lovely patio at the restaurant there. I found it to be on the romantic side so it might not be the best venue for your group... but I had an amazing experience.

              1. c
                capetowngirlie May 29, 2008 10:56 PM

                Two thumbs up for Tony's at the Oban. Great menu!

                1. w
                  woodenhorse May 30, 2008 04:58 AM

                  Women love the Riverbend Inn- it is about a mile south of Shaw Theatre(main strip)on the Parkway. Price range is right-food is very honest, upscale country (pretty much a given since they operate a small vineyard and farm on-site ).Ladies love the setting-an old Georgian mansion set on beautiful grounds and there is a Coach House for groups (I think in the 25-35 person range)although it is usually booked- I had a few tries last summer for reservations in the dining room and it was booked solid but the patio is an option as well.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: woodenhorse
                    m
                    millygirl May 30, 2008 12:34 PM

                    Sorry woodenhorse, but not this gal, in fact my experience was quite the opposite. Four of us booked a night at the Riverbend very recently and while the Inn itself is nice, the food was horrible. All 4 of us were really, really disappointed. Seemed very amateur. The worst part was Mr. Millygirl's main course scallop dish. Forget about taste, they weren't even cleaned properly. You could literally taste the grit with every bite. He left more than half on his plate and they didn't even bother to ask why that was. Breakfast the next morning was no better. Everything arrived cold and for a place that calls itself upscale, it really surprised me to see bottled orange juice. One would think they could at the very least squeeze some fresh, no?

                    For us the Riverbend Inn was a complete waste of money. A real letdown. The other thing that I noticed was nobody seemed to be in charge. The place was really lacking for us in many ways.

                    1. re: millygirl
                      w
                      woodenhorse May 31, 2008 05:09 AM

                      Looks like I lucked out on good nights-sorry to hear that-was that recent?-I know there were some changes made in the spring-I hope to go back to Niagara in June and poke around. SRG is a bit tight for space on a weekend and the food and decor inside make you forget the location in about 5 minutes-La Cachette is an option although it has been years since I have been- Zees is a bit inconsistent and really busy. Oban is on my list as well but it might be a bit $$$-report back on what you find-always looking.

                  2. meld_la May 30, 2008 11:10 AM

                    Hi there- I have family in NOTL and go there quite often. Zee's and Strewn, both of which have been suggested, might fit the bill.
                    Zee's is on the main strip and Strewn (La Cachette) is a bit out of the way, but you could take a vintage taxi out there for fun.
                    People love the Stone Road Grille too, but the location is less than stellar for a special night out( in a strip mall at an intersection with a gas station, a tim horton's and a convenience store...)

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: meld_la
                      t
                      torontofoodiegirl May 30, 2008 02:06 PM

                      The exterior of SRG is very deceiving though. I remember being very dubious when I first saw it from the outside, and was really wowed when I walked inside. It's a really attractive room with a very cozy/warm ambiance and nice decor (upscale, yet casual, with lots of wood accents, if I remember correctly). IMHO, once you're inside you forget about the gas station, TH's and convenience store...

                    2. s
                      Snarf May 31, 2008 03:12 PM

                      With a group of 30, you might find it tough to get a booking at many places, or a seating which fits you all in a conducive manner. I suggest you consider the private room approach. The Old Winery has extremely decent food, as stated elsewhere, and has a couple of spaces that are cordoned off. Another option is Peller Estates, which has a number of private dining rooms, and does a higher end menu, somewhere between the Old Winery's pricing and his place at the Oban, and their food is in the top flight for the area. Not too far from the town, and many of the hotels have complimentary shuttles which they don't advertise, but you can book.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Snarf
                        t
                        torontofoodiegirl May 31, 2008 03:43 PM

                        I think "30-something" referred to the ages of the ladies but, if not, you're right that the previous suggestions may well not be viable options...

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