Posts Tagged ‘Ontario’


I’ve just returned from an incredible stay in Erieau, Ontario.  This charming small city, is home to great sport fishing, a fantastic beach and lively community. I don’t know about you but I had no idea Erieau existed and I’m so glad that it’s now on my radar. 

erieau - photogrid

For some reason I’ve been driving north on the 401 or east along the 401 but never west. Silly me!! It’s so close to Toronto and there’s way less traffic.

The highlight of the trip was a fishing trip with J&P Charters. I’ve never been on a chartered fishing trip but it’s always been on my bucket list. Lake Erie is known for it’s Walleye and Rainbow Trout and that’s exactly what we caught.

erieau - walleye

I couldn’t have been happier with this experience. Not to mention that the weather and the water conditions were perfect too.

J&P Fishing Charters has everything you need..a) a well equipped boat b) state of the art technology c) and 26 years of experience. What more could you ask for? Not to mention, Captain Paul will clean the fish so you can take it home! (Which we did).

erieau - paul

One great thing about this experience is you don’t have to have any experience to go out on a fishing charter. While on the boat, I decided to leave the reeling up to the experts (Captain Paul and his son Tyler) however they are more than happy to assist you and give you the guidance you need to reel in your catch!! The choice is yours.

With the help of Tyler, my boyfriend reeled in the biggest catch of the day (about an 8 pound Walleye ) and Tyler was very helpful and walked him thru the entire process of  reeling it in.

We got off the boat at 6:30 pm and by 8:30 pm we were perched at Molly and OJ’s restaurant eating our catch of the day cooked up by the chef.  Does not get any fresher! Our dinner included soup, salad, dessert and the fresh fish that we had just caught, all for $15 per person. INCREDIBLE.!

erieau - dinner

After dinner, we relaxed at the Bayside Brewing Company.  Yes – Erieau has a microbrewery and it’s right across from the marina!! Of course I had a flight of beer. They had a chocolate mint beer that was most interesting and I enjoyed it more than I thought I would.

erieau - beer

We stayed at Molly & OJ’s Lakeside Cabin Rentals, in a very clean and well equipped cabin (ie fridge, cutlery, and microwave) that was located just steps away from their private beach. There were bicycles, paddle boards and a kayak too but I was content to just go for a swim and relax.

erieau - cabin

This stunning private beach was just steps away!

erieau - beach

For breakfast we went to The Galley Grill and Pub and we certainly enjoyed a unique breakfast that included eggs over easy, fried potatoes and cheese and several pieces of fried perch. 

I figured including fish in every meal was the right thing to do since Erieau is known for its fresh catch.

erieau - breakfast

If you are considering a trip to Ontario’s Southwest for a fresh foodie adventure, check out You can also enter to win a Dream Foodie Escape Contest

Sadly we didn’t have time to go to Rondeau Provincial Park but I’m already thinking about going camping there next year.

In fact, on our entire drive back to Toronto (which was not a nightmare, unlike some other routes), I couldn’t stop thinking about this unique trip.

For more information:

Molly & OJ’s: 875 Mariners Rd, Erieau, ON (519) 676 8812

Bayside Brewery and Pub: 970 Ross Lane, Erieau ON (519) 676 1888

J & P Charters:  (519) 745-1992  or  cell: (519) 897 1042

Galley Grill Pub: 1005 Vilder Ave, Erieau, ON  (519) 676 4469

Huge thanks to the Ontario’s Southwest for helping set up this amazing experience.

Disclosure: I was compensated for this trip however all opinions are my own.

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In another life I would like to be a florist. I truly love flowers. Therefore Canada Blooms is a show that I really appreciate and adore.

I think I like flowers as much as food! I simply could not stop taking photos even though I don’t have a backyard to landscape or furnish. It’s still good to dream, right?

bloom - landscape

Yes – I’m a dreamer. Just a wee bit of a dreamer.

bloom - backyard

I also dream about growing plants that survive. Believe it or not,  I do not own one green plant in my apartment. Why is that? Oh right – it won’t survive more than 2 months. However I’m convinced that this summer my patio will have multiple containers that will thrive. Stay tuned.

blooms - plants

Seeing as I’m mostly a food blogger, it was only appropriate for me to pick up some delicious Ontario Honey with Lemon. (from the Toronto Botanical Garden booth) I swear this stuff isn’t even going to make it onto a piece of toast. Its going from the tablespoon – right into my mouth! Who needs toast?

bloom - honey

I hope you consider visiting Canada Blooms. There are beautiful exhibits, speakers, workshops and more!!

For more information:

Website:, March 13-22, 2015, Direct Energy Centre, Exhibiton Place

Hours: Monday – Saturday 10am-9pm, Sunday, March 15 10am-6pm, Sunday, March 22 10am-5pm

Twitter: @CanadaBlooms

Instagram: @CanadaBlooms

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My road trip adventures continue but this time my  adventure was in a cozy Hyundai Elantra.
To be honest, I wasn’t sure I was going to like driving a sedan but it turns out that I loved it. It handled well, had all the right bells and whistles and still had the power I needed to accelerate. Not to mention…a very smooth ride.

st anne - car

I drove the Elantra (happily) all the way to Ste. Anne’s Spa.…which is just east of Toronto. In a little over an hour I was happily staring at these beautiful grounds.

st anne - grounds

After touring the property, we checked into our STUNNING and SPACIOUS room. This was a real treat for me to actually stay overnight as previously I’d only been for a day visit. Please note, that my last visit was two years ago and there has been numerous renovations and upgrades. ie newly decorated rooms, new gym, and a new gluten free bakery too.

st anne - room

I was treated to 3 beautiful meals (which I enjoyed in my robe) and afternoon tea as well (which I enjoyed in my robe).

One of the perks about staying at  Ste. Anne’s is that IT”S PERFECTABLY ACCEPTABLE TO BE IN YOUR ROBE AT ALL TIMES. Yup – I wore my robe for 24 hours and it was DA best feeling. I’m actually kicking myself that I didn’t buy it. (note to self: next time)

The only disadvantage to wearing a robe for 24 hours is that it prevented me from taking out a bicycle to enjoy the rolling hills that surround this property!!

st anne - bike

Naturally I enjoyed a spa treatment as well. My tummy was happy (due to the delicious food) and now my skin was happy too due to the seaweed body masque that I experienced.

st annes - seaweed

I drove back to Toronto very well rested, well fed and relaxed. My 24 hour stay at Ste. Anne’s Spa was superb – on every level – the service, the food, the spa, grounds and accommodations.

The Elantra continues to impress me as I haven’t had to fill up the gas tank for the whole week. Sweet!!

For more information:

Ste. Anne’s Spa 1609 Massey Rd, Grafton ON

Phone: 1 888 346 6772

Twitter; @steannespa

Hyundai Canada

Twitter: @hyundaicanada

Disclosure: My trip to Ste. Anne’s Spa, as well as the Hyudai Elantra, were both provided to me, however all opinions are my own

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Nando’s has been around since 1987 and has a huge presence outside of Canada. They have seven locations in Ontario (with two of those locations being in Ottawa and continue to expand!. Yet – for some reason I had never heard of Nando’s before. This has now changed!!

I was invited to the opening of Nando’s downtown location (832 Bay St) on Friday and accepted this invitation even though I really don’t eat a lot of chicken. Well guess what? I ate EVERYTHING that night. In fact I even had two sliders..that’s how juicy the chicken was.

The Nando’s at 832 Bay St. is located in a huge heritage building. Think – massive ceilings….Think…original stunning columns. Their design team did a fabulous job to reflect this brands South African roots (the first restaurant was opened in a suburb of Johannesburg).

photo credit: @joallore

photo credit: @joallore

That night I experienced: hummus with pita, (drizzled with PERI PERI Drizzle) roasted red pepper dip, PERI-PERI Sliders, PERI PERI Fries, PERI PERI Chicken, and Chicken Skewers. I was in chicken heaven!! (and PERI- PERI  heaven too). Of course I had to try the carrot cake but it’s the chicken and the PERI-PERI that steal the show here.

nandos- 4

Not only am I a fan of Nando’s Chicken but I’m also a fan of their clever marketing.

nandos - package

Note: Pili Pili is the Swahili word for the African Bird’s Eye chilli. Nando’s calls it PERI PERI and it truly is what makes their chicken so special. I will end this blog post with something I read on their brochure: The Result is ultimate PERI-fection!!

For more information:

Nando’s 832 B ay St. Toronto (416) 925 8888


Twitter: @NandosPeriPeri


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Are you looking for a “unique” gift? Well, Samba Days might be the answer!! Samba Days is all about giving a unique “Gift Experience”. Infact there are over 70 different experiences to choose from. There’s Body and Soul experiences, Golf experiences, Adventure Experiences and more.

Naturally I selected the  Gourmet Getaway Experience. I simply activated my gift card, picked the location for my Gourmet Get away and booked the date when I wanted to go.

Here's what the cards look like

Here’s what the cards look like

Pretty cool, if you ask me.

We chose to go to the Westover Inn which is located in St. Mary’s, Ontario.(about 2 hours away from Toronto). We could have selected from over 14 different properties throughout Ontario but this one caught our attention.

We weren’t disappointed with our Samba Day Gourmet Getaway experience at all! We were impressed with the property, the accommodations and the food!!

samba- 4 photos

My dinner consisted of a beautiful 4 course dinner – Spinach Salad, Walnuts, Blue Cheese and Pancetta with a Roasted Pear Vinaigrette, an amuse bouche, Grilled Beef Striploin with Dark Ale and Madagascar Peppercorns with Roasted Fingerlings Potatoes and a warm apple tart for dessert! Could not complain.

My breakfast was equally as delicious. It was difficult to chose from the menu as there were so many delicious sounding options!

Seriously…if you are looking for a unique gift….please consider Samba Days!

For more information:

Samba Days: 1 888 95 SAMBA

Disclosure: I was approached by Samba Days to experience one of their gift cards. However all opinions in this blog post are my own.

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Cottage Life

True Story: the first time I went to a cottage I was in my mid 20’s. You see, I grew up going to summer camp every year and most of my friends did too. (like 98% of them). The first time I actually went to a cottage, I was in my mid 20’s!

This past weekend, I was invited to spend an entire weekend at a beautiful cottage  that was located just a few hours north of Toronto. Before heading up, I did a bit of prep in the my Toronto kitchen so I could truly enjoy the cottage and not have to spend time away from the dock!!

cottage - prep

I also made a broccoli stir fry and picked up some prepared food from Ararat Foods (1800 Avenue Road). I picked up Labaneh, Hummus and Tabouleh…to be specific.

cottage - brocoli

I spent Saturday and Sunday – either in the  boat touring the lake or on the deck eating. I should mention that both days started off with a quick dip into the lake. The biggest decision I had to make all weekend was to jump or dive in the lake. Actually for me – that was an easy decision. JUMP.

cottage -swim

Life is good.
cottage - boatride

I also had the most stunning boat ride just at sunset. It was truly magical.

cottage - sunset

I enjoyed all my meals on the deck or the dock as the weather was perfect and I wanted to be outside as much as I could.

cottage - breakfast

cottage - shrimpOne of the highlights of my weekend at the cottage was the STEAM BATH. I forgot to take a picture of what the steam bath looked like on the inside but this is a pretty neat photo of the wood fire that heats it up. (which takes about an hour by the way). The process went like this: sit in the steam bath for 10 minutes and then run into the lake. Repeat. 3 times.

cottage - steambath

The other highlights of the weekend included: seeing 4 deer, 2 moose, several frogs, a family of ducks, many loons, and a gazillion stars. Nature rocks.

There is something peaceful about visiting a cottage. Sigh….I can’t wait go back.

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I knew I wanted to drive somewhere special on my last day driving the Chevy Volt. I also knew I wanted to go somewhere I had never been to before. I quickly realized that a day trip to Ste. Anne’s Spa would be ideal.

I have been known to be a unhappy customer at a few spas in Ontario…you know, where everything that is suppose to be right goes wrong? Well Ste Anne’s was simply perfect. I cant complain about anything!.

From the minute I arrived till the minute I left – everything was truly thought of.

Here’s how my day went:

7:00 a.m. left Toronto

8:30 a.m. arrived at their beautiful property and was warmly greeted with a complimentary bag. What a genius idea as I was shlepping a lot of “stuff” and really needed this extra bag.

stunning, right?

9:00 a.m. My day started off with a Caribbean Aqua Therapy Treatment (new for me)!! My skin was exfoliated and then I was rolled under (well the table was rolled) under the Vichy Shower. Following the Vichy Shower, my body was massaged with the Caribbean Therapy Line. If my skin could talk it would scream, say “THANK YOU”.

vichy shower (im on a table underneath all those jets)

9:30 a.m – 10:30 am Had fun in the outdoor cold plunge pool, hot tub, and small lap pool. Then went indoors to enjoy the eucalyptus steam room (heaven)

cold plunge pool.

11:00 am – Stretch class. I have never done this type of class before but I was intrigued. Let’s just say that I was relaxed before the class and certainly feeling relaxed after the class.

my mat was waiting for me. Sweet.

12:00 – 1:30 p.m Lunch with Marketing Manager of Special Projects. What a treat!! I was not surprised when she told me that 25,000 people visit Ste. Annes each year. The place was packed on a Monday before the summer has even started. She took me on a tour of their beautifully appointed rooms and it was evident that she is passionate about her job. Oh yeah – she introduced me to St. Annes own line Nourishment Line. Guests have the opportunity to use these “unadultered botanical” products while they shower. Then they line up to buy the products in the retail store!! I swear – the products are that good.

1:30 p.m – 3 pm – hung out by the pool

Did not want to leave!!

3:00 p.m had to leave (boo) so that I could return the Chevy Volt (boo). Two very sad events for me as I had a blast driving the Chevy Volt and a spectacular experience at Ste. Annes.

Here is a list why this property stood out amongst the other spas I have visited:

-plenty of friendly staff. Staff was everywhere I looked – either they were cleaning, or helping clients answer questions, or greeting clients. There was no shortage of staff to help you.

-everything was clean and well maintained.

-nothing was overlooked. i.e a schedule was sent to me prior to my arrival, the complimentary bag, the electronic locks (no need for a key to hang from my wrist) etc.

-the property and the buildings are gorgeous….trees galore, sitting nooks, patios…I had plenty of options!!

Hope you get to visit Ste. Anne’s one day soon.  You won’t be disappointed.

1009 Massey Road

Grafton, ON

1 888 346 6772




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Last week, I had the pleasure to drive a Chevy Volt for  four full days which meant I was going on four day trips. There was no way an electric car was going to sit in my underground garage!! I was going to drive it and I did.(happily!!)

This blog post is dedicated to day #1 where I drove to Fergus Ontario (about an hour away from Toronto) so I could learn to fly fish with Wilson’s Fly Fishing Centre. I found them thru the internet (google, google google) and was thrilled to find out that they had some time to teach me how to fly fish.

Fly Fishing was not on my 2012 bucket list but it should have been. I have always wanted to try it but it’s not something you can just pick up and do. Wilson’s Fly Fishing Centre was the perfect place to learn. All I had to bring was sunglasses and a hat and they provide everything else.

When I walked thru the store, I was immediately greeted by my guide (and instructor) Rob. After the initial introductions, I changed into my waders, boots and a Wilson’s Fly Fishing Tshirt (what a nice touch) and off we went to the Grand River.

Within 20 minutes, we were wading thru the Grand River to find the “perfect spot”. Rob has been a professional fly fishing guide for over 12 years and is extremely passionate about this sport. I was quickly given “fly fishing 101” lessons and within no time at all – I was Fy Fishing!!

My Fly Fishing experience was highlighted by the fact that both Rob and I – BOTH caught brown trout. Except mine got away (my luck) and Rob had a chance to reel his catch in, so that I could take a photo.

ps...catch and release

I also found out that Wilson’s is one of only two stores in CANADA with multiple locations (a) downtown Toronto and (b) Fergus Ontario. Pretty cool.

All in all – I was thrilled to  have experienced fly fishing and to have caught a brown trout (even if he got away). Can you tell I’m still getting over it?

This means, that I’m just going to have to hang out with Wilson’s again!! It truly is a “fun” sport and you can’t beat the surroundings.


PS if you are looking for a unique birthday gift or a fathers day gift…..look no further. Give Wilson’s Fly Fishing School a call.

My next blog post will be dedicated to Day #2 and Day #3. Stay tuned for more of my adventures with the  Chevy Volt. Oh and don’t worry – I will be blogging about the Volt as well!!


WIilson’s Fly Fishing Centre:- Toronto: 199 Queen St East (416) 569 34 74 (ps lessons are available in the GTA too)

WIlson’s Fly Fishing Centre – Fergus (519) 8787 3474





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Last week was my birthday and my BF spoiled me rotten by whisking me away to the Inn on the Twenty in Jordan, Ontario.

It was the perfect time to get away – it was off season (ie. NO CROWDS) and the weather was warming up. There’s something to be said about travelling when it’s off-season. I really think it’s the way to go!!

We left on Sunday at noon and got to Jordan just in time for a late lunch at the Jordan House. Our friendly waitress (Leah) informed us that the fish tacos were a new item on the menu so it was a no brainer for me to check them out!!  Plus we both ordered beers. (even though we were in a wine region).

Would order this again - in a heart beat

There is no doubt in my mind that the fish tacos will stay on the menu. They were perfect. Absolutely perfect.

After lunch we checked in. We were originally suppose to stay at the Jordan House but they upgraded us to a beautiful room at the Inn on the Twenty. We were thrilled to find out that the room was massive, complete with a sitting area and a fireplace  (it was Room #1 – just so you know). Not to mention that the bathroom was so big it could have been a room!!


We had dinner reservations at 8 p.m and simply crossed the street to get to the restaurant. How convenient.

We ordered martinis (I know I know – we didnt have wine) to start off the evening. Then we proceeded to have our main dishes. I ordered a pasta dish that was pretty extremely tasty. i.e the plate was white when it was returned to the kitchen. Specifically I ordered the Upper Canada Ricotta Agnolotti. Described in the menu as “baby spinach and ricotta, winter squash puree, toasted pumpkin seeds and chardonnay foam.


Of course, we ordered another round of martinis to enjoy while we ate our dinner. (I know I know – we didn’t have wine)

Monday was my actual birthday – so we started it off in style with a gorgeous breakfast that we really really enjoyed.  Not that we needed it cause we were still full from the nite before, but we both managed. How could we say no?

Great way to start off my birthday

We were super impressed with this plate of goodies as well.

Then we took a drive into Niagara on the Lake (about 15 minutes away) for a brief stroll downtown and then stopped off at Stratus Winery on the way back to the 401. If you haven’t visited this winery, you really should. I finally got to meet the charming marketing manager that helped me run a contest TWO years ago. I was too full to sample a flight of wines but my BF certainly enjoyed the Malbec.

One final note: Special thanks to my BF who made sure my birthday was extra special this year.

For more info:

Inn on the Twenty, 3845 Main Street, Jordan Village 1 -800 701 8074

Jordan House: 2751 Main St, Jordan Village

Stratus Wines: 2059 Niagara Stone Road, Niagara on the Lake

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I have a few friends that have been visiting Arowhon Pines for many years. was my turn!!

I wanted peace, quiet, and relaxation and that’s exactly what I got. Oh yeah – I wanted to see a moose too!

Arowhon Pines is a slice of heaven, for many reasons.

Here’s some photos of what impressed me.

a) The dining room: Oh what a building….the location, the height of the structure, the fireplace, the windows and even the placement of the tables.

Here is the porch that surrounds the dining room . Definitely, the perfect place to hang out, either before or after a meal.

b) The food: Your stay at Arowhon Pines includes three delicious meals. There was always a lovely selection to choose from and I was ALWAYS FULL. I particularly loved that you could order an HALF PORTION. (which I did once). Plus the service was outstanding. I mean – OUTSTANDING. The dining staff were courteous, efficient and certainly well trained. Here’s a photo of the breakfast menu.

The appetizer table before dinner was also impressive.

c) The dock: I sat on the dock reading (for a change) and tried to figure out why Arowhon Pines was so different than the other resorts I have visited. I finally figured it out…ITS QUIET.

i.e no ski- doos, no motor boats, no fishing boats, no banana boats –  NOTHING BUT SILENCE. Not true – you heard the occasional loon!!

d) The surroundings: Arowhon Pines is beautiful. Not beautiful as in manicured lawns, but beautiful in the sense that the buildings, pathways, bridges, docks, gardens… blend in well with the surroundings.

Now lets talk about the moose!! I was on a mission to see a moose.  It was suggested to go out on the highway after dinner, as there would be a possibility of seeing moose on the sides of the road  licking the salt. BINGO!! We saw a mommy mooose and a baby moose. I think I sat staring at them for 10 minutes!!

I also saw a fox, some deer and a coyote…(off the highway again). Not bad eh?

Sadly I didnt take advantage of the canoeing, but I did participate in the pontoon tour and was struck by the beauty of this fabulous park that is only 3 hours from Toronto.

Thank you to the staff at Arowhon Pines, for introducing me to your resort and Algonquin park. Plus a huge thank you to @optimom for joining me.

Can’t wait to return in the fall. I’m sure the whole area is stunning when the leaves change.

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