This is an excerpt from Ed’s Book, A Casual Traveler
Conch shells lay in water, along beaches everywhere
Line gardens, paths, and porch stair.
By Cathryn Gagnon:
The historic town of Amherstburg is the home to a cozy little pub called, Lord Amherst Public House and Wine Bar. It’s located at 273 Dalhousie Street, and named after Lord Jeffrey Amherst, who served as the first Governor General of British North America. This quaint meeting place comes complete with creaky wood floors and traditional English pub fare. Separate from the pub, there is a wine bar upstairs. It has a rustic European décor and features imported and local wines.
Our server was sweet, welcoming, and attentive. We started off with a Grimbergen, dark lager, craft beer. It had caramelized undertones with a crisp coffee finish. Since it was my birthday lunch, and my mother was buying, I thought I would splurge. We ordered soup and sandwiches.
By Cathryn Gagnon:
A recent visit to see Cityline in Toronto brought the girls and I to Yorkville. We discovered that a favorite restaurant named Ciao, at 133 Yorkville Avenue, has been renamed Cibo Wine Bar. It did not disappoint. I was pleased to hear that there now is a Cibo Wine Bar on King Street as well.The place is huge, among the other posh eating establishments in Yorkville. Cibo is trendy and loud, but the whole atmosphere is vibrant.
We chose to eat a lighter fare, but every mouthful was amazing. I highly recommend Cibo Wine Bar, rating it 9 out of 10.
By Cathryn Gagnon and her Dining Divas
This month the Dining Divas experienced Toscana Restaurant and Wine Bar at 3891 Dougall Avenue, in Windsor. When making the reservation, the restaurant was completely booked, but they were able to accommodate us in the redesigned bar area. I actually prefer to sit in the bar area at restaurants; the energetic atmosphere is abuzz, making it a fun setting.
Although it’s a fair size, Toscana is always full. The new bar area now seats about 20, and puts diners face to face with the sushi chef. Stylish round booths surround the comfy bar stools. Our favorite way, for my husband Ed and I to enjoy Toscana, is to reserve a bar stool and share a few of our favorite starters, paired with a bottle of wine.
Two of the main buildings at the Ben Miller Inn & Spa are over one hundred and thirty years old, but it’s the simplicity and charm of the old grist mill, that keeps visitors coming back for some good old fashioned country R & R. It’s nestled in the rolling hills near Lake Huron, about ten minutes from downtown Goderich.
Rooms are available in different buildings or cottages, depending on the experience you are looking for. We stayed in one of the Mill rooms that overlooked a gushing stream and the Maitland River. The sound of the water and the view were amazing.
The room was clean will all the amenities, including a mini hideaway kitchenette. I was a bit disappointed with the overall condition of the old Inn. There is being old and there is looking old; the Inn looks like it could use some TLC. It was more evident on the property away from the main building.
Ed and I were in London, Ontario this past weekend for a friend’s birthday. We helped him celebrate at Icarus Resto Bar at 519 Richmond Street. I had been there once previously, having the best lamb shank ever, so I was looking forward to another gastronomic experience.
The lamb shank is braised with red wine and rosemary, served over creamy polenta, and accompanied by market vegetables.
There were twenty guests for the birthday party, so a pre-arranged family-style meal was served. Personally, I believe a party of that many people is a challenge for the diner, as well as the server and restaurant. Our server and the kitchen did not let us down.
To get our evening started my friend, our host, put a few bottles of wine on the table. A Schug Pinot Noir and McManis Petite Syrah were to go perfectly with the spanakopita appetizer and chicken kabob, and then beef kabob and lamb chops, respectively.