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Current thoughts on Prince Edward County?

TorontoJo Jun 29, 2011 04:22 PM

Taking a couple of days to hang in the County next week. Here's what I've got planned so far, I'd love updated reviews or other suggestions. I'm staying halfway between Wellington and Picton.

- Blumen
- East and Main

- Lake on the Mountain?
- Huff Estates?
- Portabella?

- ???

- Closson Chase
- Norman Hardie
- Keint-He

  1. prima Jun 29, 2011 08:43 PM

    Haven't been for 2 years, but I was impressed by look of the baked goods at the Carriage House's bakery on Main St in Bloomfield. Didn't try any of their baked goods, so I don't know how they taste, but they certainly looked tempting. I'm hoping to try some of their baked goods next time I'm near Bloomfield. http://www.bloomfieldcarriagehouse.com/pages/bakery.php

    Also, there's a location of Cooke's Fine Foods in Picton (as well as a larger location in Kingston), which carries the Victoria Gourment Seasoning Blends that used to be carried at Dash Kitchen. I like the Moroccan blend. http://www.cookesfinefoods.com/

    Carriage House
    260 Bloomfield Main, Bloomfield, ON K0K1G0, CA

    1 Reply
    1. re: prima
      Food Tourist Aug 15, 2011 11:52 AM

      The Marshmallow Room Bakery at Bloomfield Carriage House is expensive but the blackberry tart was delicious with a perfect crust. Gingerbread chocolate cookie was too crumbly and not as tasty.

      Lunch was terrific though tiny portions. $12 for small sandwich and soup/salad. Not enough to feed a hungry adult. Best quiche I've tasted in years!

      Carriage House
      260 Bloomfield Main, Bloomfield, ON K0K1G0, CA

    2. s
      Sadistick Jun 30, 2011 09:47 AM

      Never been.

      Let us know how it goes (especially re: the wineries) though.

      The wife and I are considering a trip there this summer.

      1. k
        k8supergrover Jun 30, 2011 12:47 PM

        For Lunch I would do County Cider Company (Bongard's cross road and #8). Lake on the Mountain is over priced and uninspiring. I would stop for a drink on the patio if you really want to go.
        Breakfast you want to go either to the Harbor View in Picton (at the bottom of town hill). It is worth a wait, diner style pancakes and eggs. Also, Miss Lilly's in Picton has good coffee and croisants.
        East and Main - Make a reservation! Ask to sit in the window. It is all amazing.

        16 Replies
        1. re: k8supergrover
          TorontoJo Jun 30, 2011 02:42 PM

          Thank you! Reservation made for Monday, requested table in window.

          Now I have a problem -- it turns out that neither Blumen nor East and Main are open on Tuesdays. I'll probably make Blumen a lunch option for either Monday or Wednesday. So I now need a dinner option for Tuesday night.

          Any recs, anyone? Waring House Pub? Merrill Inn? Bloomfield Carriage House?

          Carriage House
          260 Bloomfield Main, Bloomfield, ON K0K1G0, CA

          Merrill Inn
          343 Picton Main St, Prince Edward, ON K0K 2T0, CA

          1. re: TorontoJo
            k8supergrover Jun 30, 2011 03:12 PM

            Waring house is good but crowded and can be noisy if they have music in (which they usually do. But if you like that kind of thing it's great!). If you are looking for a bit quieter they have the same menu but you can be seated in the dining room instead of the pub which is a bit nicer. The food is decent. but its more about the pub atmosphere if that is what you are looking for.
            Merrill in - some love, some (such as myself) have a less than inspiring experience. The food was ok, service was uneven, room was HOT (dress in layers or sit outside. its in a basement)
            Can't vouch for the carriage house.
            Have you looked at Currah's? Atmosphere not inspiring but food is good.
            Or you could do Lake on the Mountain for dinner....I would suggest the strawberry Salad if it is still on the menu (haven't been yet this year).

            Currah's Cafe & Restaurant
            252 Main Street, Unit 2, Picton, ON K0K, CA

            1. re: TorontoJo
              TorontoJo Jun 30, 2011 03:12 PM

              OK, Carriage House is also closed on Tuesdays. Sigh.

              Merrill looks more French than we want for this trip.

              Milford Bistro looks promising, but may be further from where we are staying than we want to drive for dinner (30 minutes).

              Milford Bistro
              3048 Country Rd, Picton, ON K0K, CA

              Carriage House Restaurant
              2101 Old Lakeshore Rd, Burlington, ON L7R1A4, CA

              1. re: TorontoJo
                k8supergrover Jun 30, 2011 03:35 PM

                You could also do Schrodeters for some take out. It's a farm market with great home made soups and sandwhiches and lamb shanks to die for. Also great options for the Gluten Free crowd. Good fried egg sandwhiches for breakfast as well. Atmostphere is county quaint...

                1. re: k8supergrover
                  TorontoJo Jun 30, 2011 03:51 PM

                  k8 - can you give me any more info on Schrodeters? Googling doesn't turn up anything. Same thing for Harbour View in Picton -- googling only turns up a B&B by that name.

                  1. re: TorontoJo
                    k8supergrover Jun 30, 2011 07:54 PM

                    Spelling it properly might help, sorry! It's Schroeder's market...They don't have a website I'm pretty sure. It is right by Huff Estates if they are on your wine tour. If you aren't going for a meal I highly suggest the donuts.

                    http://www.pec.on.ca/pictonharbourinn for the harbour inn...Again, my apologies with not actually knowing the name of things! Scroll to the bottom of that page for a sample menu. They have lunch stuff on the menu so I guess you could go there but it's really better for breakfast. If the wait is less than 15 minutes, it's worth it.

                    1. re: k8supergrover
                      TorontoJo Jul 1, 2011 03:40 AM

                      Thank you, that's great! We're actually staying at Huff Estates, so it's perfect.

                      1. re: TorontoJo
                        prima Jul 1, 2011 07:46 AM

                        TorontoJo, have you also considered Angeline's in Bloomfield? Michael Potters is now the Chef de Cuisine at Angeline's. Thinking I might have to make a trek out to PEC later this summer. http://angelinesrestaurantinn.com/dinings8.php




                        Edit: Argh. Then I noticed, Angeline's is also only open for dinner Wed-Sun. How annoying. Hope PEC starts to get enough business that its restaurants can run weeklong during the 2 months of high season. Arowhon Pines in Algonquin Park can do it, and upscale seasonal restaurants in Stratford are open Tue-Sun. Not sure why PEC's restaurants haven't found a way serve fine dining to the midweek visitors.

                        Angeline's Restaurant and Inn
                        433 Bloomfield Main St, Bloomfield, ON K0K1G0, CA

                        1. re: prima
                          TorontoJo Jul 1, 2011 07:49 AM

                          Looks lovely... but they're not open on Mondays or Tuesdays, which is when I'm going to be there. :(

                          But that review does not make it sound promising!

                          1. re: TorontoJo
                            prima Jul 1, 2011 08:00 AM

                            Thank Buddha that Buddha Dog is open daily. Now you have me wondering whether Huff Estates vino or Waupoos Cider pairs better with Buddha Dogs....

                            1. re: prima
                              k8supergrover Jul 1, 2011 10:43 AM

                              Cider, all the way Prima! Buddha Dog is great, but more of a snack if you ask me, those dogs are small and I feel weird ordering 3 hot dogs. Maybe just me.

                              1. re: k8supergrover
                                klwatts Jul 31, 2011 07:01 AM

                                I really enjoyed Buddha Dog but compared to other 'gourmet' hot dog joints (Hot Doug's in Chicago for example) it seems really expensive for what you get..

                                Buddha Dog
                                163 Roncesvalles Ave, Toronto, ON M6R2L3, CA

                          2. re: prima
                            prima Jul 31, 2011 06:29 AM

                            I dined at Angeline's recently, and had a lovely meal. I loved the summer minestrone with pistou, as well as the county lamb with merguez sausage I ordered as my main. Interesting variety of local vegetables were served with each main. Also enjoyed the blueberry tart.

                            Would recommend to anyone seeking fine dining in PE County.

                            Angeline's Restaurant and Inn
                            433 Bloomfield Main St, Bloomfield, ON K0K1G0, CA

                            1. re: prima
                              Food Tourist Aug 15, 2011 12:00 PM

                              Agree on Angeline's: almost-fine dining done right. The owner even brought us a complimentary plate of 6 raw oysters as it was Sunday night and they would be closed til Wednesday. I suspect they also threw in foie gras on our lamb mains for the same reason. Gorgeous appetizers -- scallops were perfectly cooked, and the snail-sweetbreads were heavenly. I like that the server brought samples of wine before choosing a Closson Chase sans chene wine by the glass.

              2. re: k8supergrover
                Food Tourist Jul 11, 2011 11:05 AM

                k8 tell us more about your lunch at the County Cider company, please! Thinking of going there on a Saturday in August for lunch before visiting Fifth Town for a 3 pm pairing tasting.

                Or do you know of any other good lunch spots nearby? How about Waupoos Winery -- how does it compare to the Cider company?

                1. re: Food Tourist
                  k8supergrover Aug 1, 2011 12:21 PM

                  Just went the other day again. Great view! service slightly spotty on busy weekends and there is a bit of a line to pay at the front (also, if you're paying by credit card and also buying cider, don't use the % tip function, since it takes a % of the total amount, not just your meal!). They offer free tastings of the cider (I like the peach!). I had the humus and olives app (lots of flat bread, I hate it when they stinge!) and then the pollo pizza for the main. Both were great!

              3. a
                Arcadiaseeker Jul 2, 2011 02:28 PM

                The Regent Cafe in Picton changed hands recently and they do a great, simple lunch - homemade pizza and sandwiches. And great baked goods and coffee. It's worth a shot - I think they are also open for breakfast.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Arcadiaseeker
                  kidzip Aug 2, 2011 01:24 PM

                  I went to Saylor's True Blue Cafe and I was very disappointed. The cutlery was dirty and the staff was rude. PEC is beautiful with some wonderful people and restaurants but go to Saylor's at your own peril. They also run a B&B and talking to someone who spent the night, they told me the sheets and pillow cases were dirty. Cash only place. Tells you something.

                2. TorontoJo Jul 6, 2011 02:05 PM

                  Thanks, gang! My trip report here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/794135

                  1. Food Tourist Aug 15, 2011 11:55 AM

                    Warning: AVOID the Acoustic Grill for food. They claim their local beef burger on special bun is great, but it was the worst we've ever had -- burnt outside, poor texture and tasteless! And a hair on top of the bacon. Homemade potato chips were dripping with oil (and were likely refried store-bought chips). Even the breaded hot chicken wings were weird: too soft and fall-off-the-bone, and accompanied by tortilla chips not carrots/celery. Great live music, though! Go to hear the music and drink a pint of County Cider (the only local on tap). It was around 9:30 pm on a Saturday night. Perhaps the kitchen is an afterthought in this local bar.

                    Acoustic Grill
                    172 Picton Main, Picton, ON K0K2T0, CA

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Food Tourist
                      Cat123 Jun 11, 2012 09:18 AM

                      I was at the Acoustic Grill last weekend - wandered in after trying Buddha Dog (which closes at 5 btw so not a place to linger over dinner). I was almost scared off by the above post but I have to say I tried and then really enjoyed the burger - perhaps they have improved in a year but I found it very tasty and well cooked. I don't think I was alone as about half the tables seemed to have at least one of them. I didn't have the house made chips but instead had a side poutine with local cheese curds and it was just fine too. Side garden salad was nothing earth shattering (as expected) but very fresh. The only disappointment was the deep fried pickles which, although tasty, were way over-priced.

                      This place is really popular - we just wandered in and were asked if we had a reservation - almost didn't get a table. Surprising since it is very casual but it has a great vibe if you are in PEC. I'm not saying the burgers are out of this world compared to some of the amazing offerings in Toronto but they are more than adequate IMO.

                      Standout of the weekend was the wood fired oven pizza at Norman Hardie - amazing!

                      Checked out the Great Canadian Cheese Festival in Picton as well - well worth attending and Quebec in particular had great representation with lots of interesting stuff to try.

                    2. Food Tourist Aug 15, 2011 12:03 PM

                      Had the most amazing, delicious, perfect, thin pizzas straight out of the wood-burning oven at Norm Hardie winery last Sunday. $12 for pizza BETTER than Libretto, QM, and Terroni. The tomato sauce and sausage alone are worth a long drive. They only make pizzas on weekends in summer. We loved the pizza so much we ordered 3 different ones and devoured them all.

                      1. Food Tourist Aug 15, 2011 12:11 PM

                        One major complaint about PEC is lack of dining options after 8:45 pm on any night especially weekends. Everyone's kitchen closes at 9 pm. Ridiculous! Was impossible to find a decent place to eat after theatre show that ended at 8:40 pm in Rose Hall / Hillier area. East & Main wouldn't take a reservation after 8:45 but seems to seat a lineup of people long after 9 pm "just for drinks".

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Food Tourist
                          alvino Aug 17, 2011 10:37 AM

                          Was in the County the last few days and was very happy with dinners at the Milford Bistro and the Gazebo Restaurant at Waupoos Estates Winery. The owner of the former is enthusiastic and knowledgable about local produce and wines. The disadvantage of the latter is that its wine list is limited to its own wines, but the setting is lovely.

                          Milford Bistro
                          3048 Country Rd, Picton, ON K0K, CA

                          Waupoos Estates Winery
                          County Rd 8, Picton, ON K0K, CA

                        2. k
                          Kooper Sep 1, 2011 10:14 AM

                          Does anyone have any suggestions for an affordable place to eat. We have a 5 month old and we would like somewhere that will let us bring our little one. She is a good sleeper so don't worry.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: Kooper
                            k8supergrover Sep 1, 2011 11:45 AM

                            What kind of food are you looking for? Ambiance? There are no "no kids allowed" places in the county that I know of . Can you be a bit more specific with your price range?
                            Pretty much anything on the main street of Picton would be a good bet, depending on what kind of food you're looking for. If you want the little one to be able to run around a bit you could split a pizza between 2 people at the County Cider Company - seating is all outside and the pizzas are big.

                            1. re: k8supergrover
                              Kooper Sep 1, 2011 12:18 PM

                              I have read all the recommendations on the various threads and all the recommended places have entrees in the mid to high 20s. I was hoping for something in the $15-20 range. We are going to go to one nice fancy dinner but need to be economical for the second. As for style of food we are adventurous and don't have much in the way dislikes.

                              1. re: Kooper
                                k8supergrover Sep 2, 2011 02:42 PM

                                I'm struggling a bit to come up with suggestions of places that are actually good (ie. better than average) at that price point. If average is ok then I would say Picton Harbour Inn (see previous breakfast suggestion, but they also have lunch), Budha Dog on Main Street in Picton, Scooner's Fish and Chips (if you like that sort of thing), Lake on the Mountain (about half of the dinner entrees are less than $22), Barley Days Pub (just outside of Picton at the traffic circle). None of these are adventurous in the least but should hit the spot. Lunch is, as one expects, less expensive than dinner so maybe max out the budget by making that your fancy meal? (For my money, I'd do East and Main in Wellington for your fancy dinner...it's great and not crazy expensive)

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