Monday, 27 August 2012

Amelia's Garden Restaurant at the Waring House Inn

Amelia's Garden Restaurant at the Waring House Inn
395 Sandy Hook Road
Picton, ON


In her opinion:
The setting of this country inn, cooking school and restaurant is just beautiful. The Waring House sits in the heart of Prince Edward County, in between the towns of Bloomfield and Picton.

We decided that Amelia's Garden Restaurant at the Waring House would be the spot for our last meal in the County. We had wanted to try their lunch menu but since it was Sunday, they were offering their famous Sunday Brunch.

It was a typical Sunday Brunch set up...a few breakfast offerings, a few lunch offerings, including a small salad bar and a dessert table. The scale wasn't huge but what I tried was delicious.

Instead of trying the breakfast first...I wasn't feeling the best and decided that I wanted real food...lunch. After all, our reservation was for 1 pm. I tried their roast beef, perogies, veggies, baked tortellini and a couple of their salads (pasta and a creamy potato). The food was well made and flavourful. Nothing to jump up and down about but consistently good brunch favourites.

I decided to try their breakfast offerings next since Edgar had started with breakfast and the pancakes were calling my name. I tried their bacon, pancakes and Waring eggs (their version of Eggs Benedict). As I thought, the pancakes were perfect. The bacon was not my favourite and the Waring eggs were nice. Again nothing out of this world. Just good honest food.

I sampled the carrot cake and almond berry tart from the dessert cake. Well, I finally found a carrot cake I didn't like. The almond berry tart was delicious. There was a quite an assortment of dessert choices but I stuck to these two.

What I didn't like about the brunch was that coffee, tea and juice was an extra fee. I've had buffet brunch in a lot of different spots and most include coffee, tea and juice in their price. I can understand if you want something else...but these are brunch staple beverages.

I would love to return to Amelia's Garden Restaurant at the Waring House and actually try Chef Luis de Sousa's lunch or dinner menu.

In his opinion:
The Waring House is like a compound of small buildings gathered to provide you with a vast array of services, all within walking distance. You have the Main house and Amelia's Garden Restaurant, the Barley Room Pub, the Waring Hall and Cookery School, the Conference Centre, the gardens, Vineyard View cottages, Reception and offices, the Heritage Lodge and Brian Cardy Boardroom and Quaker Lodge & Garden Spa. Although all of them are in close proximity, I found it hard to find Amelia's Garden Restaurant, given the poor signage for that building that also includes, The Barley Room.

The restaurant has an old world charm style, the feel of a heritage house inside and a beautifully appointed garden/sun room in the back, downstairs, which is the room where they serve the brunch.

The brunch here is very famous and highly recommended by many publications so I was looking forward to a great meal and a great combination of breakfast food and also lunch favourites. The spread is not huge by no stretch of the imagination but with an adequate number of dishes.

We had a reservation towards the end of the brunch timeframe so we moved swiftly to get our plates as soon as we ordered our bottle of San Pelegrino.

I started with the breakfast plate, the choices were on the minimal side, bacon was undercooked, I had to wait 15 minutes to get fresh eggs benedicts put on buffet. Apart from that, the breakfast food never left the adequate stage, very bland and uneventful.

Moving on to the lunch portion of the brunch, there were some dishes that were very good. The baked tortellini, the salads and the pastas fall well within what was expected from a brunch at this restaurant, but unfortunately, the same can't be said for the flavourless perogies and the severely undercooked roast beef that was tasteless even with the sauce.

So this became the disappointing meal of our stay in beautiful Prince Edward County. We expected so much and I particularly was very disappointed with the quality of the food served during brunch. The desserts made up for the brunch with good selections of cakes and tarts, especially the great carrot cake, but unfortunately, it was a bit too little too late.

I will not rate this restaurant given that I still think that a lunch or dinner experience would be a different story. I suppose I just might have to make another trip to Prince Edward County, to taste test the much more appealing a la carte menus.

With the great selection of restaurants in this County, they will have to step up their game to stay in the fine dining experience that they promise on their website.

The Waring House Restaurant & Inn on Urbanspoon

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