COVID-19 has reaped havoc on so many industries, but one of the hardest hit is the restaurant industry. Many establishments have lost their life’s work. The ones who have been able to hold on are restaurants with financial backers and those who were innovative, quick thinkers on how to re-stage, re-sell and change.
Pearl Morissette Restaurant and Winery at 3953 Jordan Road in Lincoln Ontario, was a little slow on the trigger. They weren’t the first to revamp and re-open in the area, because they wanted to do it right. In 2019, Pearl Morisette was voted #1 for Canada’s Best New Restaurant in Canada’s 100 Best Publication. In the 2020 edition, chefs Daniel Hadida and Eric Robertson were awarded the Most Innovative Chefs in Canada. They had a reputation to uphold, and I think they did it brilliantly. Le Pré has been open for a few short weeks and are already selling out well in advance. Their “wedding style” tent, open on three sides with views of the farm and vineyard, is rather romantic and charming, especially with the fabric draping the ceiling, and lights strung within. In the evenings the fields are lit up with round cylindrical fixtures. They have continued in their style to accommodate guests with all measures of safety protocols, including outdoor air-conditioned bathrooms for use, on their open-air terrace located right next to their big barn, where they house their restaurant, that’s temporarily closed.
The good news is, you can still find the same beautiful and tasteful approach to using local and seasonal ingredients served by a warm, knowledgeable and hospitable staff that we had previously come to love. They now serve a smaller changing multi 6-course menu at $100 per person but can accommodate dietary restrictions with advance notice. The menu features ingredients largely grown on their own land and surrounding area. They have an abbreviated wine list and juice pairings as well.
This has become such a hit that chef Eric told me the outdoor restaurant may become a permanent fixture in season!