GPS – Great Palate Sensations
Gastronomic Geocaching: Feast on palate pleasures from the Lake and our fertile farmland that stretches inland – prepared with creativity and care. Sample the food and drink of the many culinary creators who bring their unique vision to produce extraordinary edibles! Observe the geocaching golden rule: take something, leave something. Take memories and share your finds on TripAdvisor and Facebook.
VICTUALS WITH VIEWS
Smackwater Jacks Taphouse customers drink in fabulous sunsets along with Canada Craft on draft. Enjoy local lake fish and meat dishes.
Check out the picturesque, sailboat-filled Bayfield marina while noshing at The Docks Restaurant & Bar and be sure to Funk Up Your Fries!
Steak night, specialty pizza, nachos and a splendid view of the golf course are among dining delights at Dave’s Pub & Grill at Oakwood Resort.
HISTORY & HOSPITALITY
The Albion Hotel (Bayfield) has been a country-styled favorite for over 140 years and touts, some say, a resident ghost with a tragic story. Food-wise, think country classics, pub grub, fresh fish, ribs, etc.
The Grand Bend Public School opened in 1874, known today as the Schoolhouse Restaurant it aces homework with dishes like meat loaf, chicken pot pie and ratatouille. Smaller portion sizes available as are your choice of more than a dozen savory sides.
Converted grist and wool mills form part of Benmiller Inn & Spa’s scenic property where The Ivey Dining Room uses local ingredients in its fine dining dishes. Try Maple Glazed Ontario Duck Breast and Artisanal Cheese Board.
Sample the Ontario Tribute Board/Charcuterie or Chicken Appleby with Brie & Caramelized Granny Smith Apples at Eddington’s of Exeter.
The Prime Rib Saturday Buffet that runs Victoria Day long weekend until Thanksgiving is a popular event at The Oak Dining Room at Oakwood Resort.
A Seafood Sampler, Coconut Curry Chicken and Chocolate Toblerone Fondue tempt at F.I.N.E. A Restaurant (Grand Bend).
Famous for its fresh, home-made dough pizzas, including Mediterranean, Hawaiian and Mexicana, Grog’s Pub & Grill (Port Franks) also serves the yummiest combination of garlic and cheese known as Zaney bread.
Not to be outdone on the pizza front, Riverbend Pizzeria (Grand Bend) cooks up their pizzas in stone ovens to give it that authentic taste loved by pizza connaisseur.
Destination restaurant Midori Sushi (Grand Bend) has out-of-the-traditional-bento-box sushi; enjoy the patio and live music.
German küche at Hessenland Inn (St. Joseph) includes Kalbs Schnitzel Wiener Art; try with Helles draft beer or Hessenland’s own beer and wine. Be sure to make reservations for their Long-Table Vineyard Dinner.
Discover Chevapi (Serbian sausages) at Veslo Family Restaurant (Port Franks), along with other specialties like Lepina bread, Goulash and Karadjordjeva (a rolled schnitzel stuffed with cheese and fried to perfection).
Pad Thai and Lemongrass Spring Soup tempt at Exeter Thai Cuisine (Exeter).
Local craft brews are on tap at Paddington’s Pub (Grand Bend) as is the signature “Tilson Burger” topped with a fried egg, made using the owner’s own mother’s family recipe.
ON THE GREEN
The Barn (Exeter), literally a restored turn-of-the-century barn, is a locals’ favourite known for its rustic atmosphere, great views and freshly made menu items.
Widder Station Golf Course (Arkona) has also expanded its club house for summer and extended seasonal dining along with its own brew offering – “Train Wreck” – on tap.
FAMILY & FUN
Got a sweet tooth? Try a huge “Pink Lemonade” cupcake – just one of the delicious go-to treats at The Pink Flamingo Bakery (Bayfield). The sweet theme continues at BeaverTails (Grand bend) where chocolate hazelnut spread topped with Reese’s Pieces and peanut butter create a signature decadent “Triple Trip” pastry.
While Arbor Acres Country Plaza (Ipperwash) serves two dozen soft serve ice cream flavours.
Classic outdoor dining at Denny’s Drive-In (Grand Bend) satisfies with summer favourites like fresh-cut fries, poutine and footlongs.
Or, sit-out under the trees at family-friendly Woodland Drive-In (Bayfield) while enjoying classic burgers, wraps and “Fuller Fries” topped with cheese, bacon, diced tomato and green peppers and sour cream.
Pickerel and Perch are on the menu at MacPherson’s Restaurant (Port Franks) where home-style cooking and homemade pies also tempt.
Purdy’s at the Bend (Grand Bend) offers locally-caught fresh fish take-out dinners along with views of the marina and lighthouse. Fresh fish also available to cook at home.
At Back ‘n Time Catering (Grand Bend) choices range from hors d’oeuvres to barbecue; take out home-style meat pies and healthy, frozen dinners – perfect for a cottage weekend.
In similar style Jerry Rader’s Homestyle Catering (Zurich) serves up roast beef, pork and turkey and old-time church supper recipe book pies, sweets and sides. The retail outlet in Zurich also boasts ready-made frozen single or family-size meals.
Hosting something larger? Pineridge Barbecue Catering Company (Hensall) offers meat choices including chicken or baby back pork ribs slow-grilled over charcoal locking in the flavours of their secret sauce and served with home-made hot or cold sides. Finish with fruit crisps or a build-your-own sundae bar.
PATIO, FUN & MUSIC
Gables in the Bend (Grand Bend) is a venerable beach venue with live entertainment – check out Monday Jam nights, Country Night summer Thursdays (show your dance moves), acoustic Sundays and more. Dine in or on the popular Uptown-Downtown Patio.
The fusion menu at The Sandbar & Grill (Grand Bend) includes plump beefy, crispy Indian dumplings full of authentic flavours alongside gourmet pizzas or a black bean quinoa wrap.
Crabby Joe’s Tap & Grill (Exeter) offers burgers, pasta, ribs and wings; nosh in or out on the summer patio. Big screen TVs attract sports enthusiasts. Farm-fresh foods and locally-produced specialties are plentiful throughout the area.