|Busy breakfast bar at The Hubb|
Cinnamon-sugar donuts / County Mimosa
I should have really followed the advice of the #indulgePEC veterans on this matter; "Eat light and save room - there's gonna be more." But it seemed impossible to resist the bounty laid out for us.
On Day 1, our group congregated at The Hubb at Angeline's, a mere skip across the driveway from our newly renovated motor-inn-style rooms. Laura, the barkeep on hand, poured goblets of County mimosas: grapefruit juice / rhubarb simple syrup / Huff Estates 2010 Cuvée Janine, a blushing bubbly of 100% pinot noir highlighted by notes of pomegranate and raspberry. Oh, and there were donuts (beignets? Donut holes? Whatever. They were fresh-from-the-oven warm, doughy morsels of early-morning numminess, dusted with cinnamon and sugar. Impossible to resist.)
The Agrarian served up gourmet grilled cheese and superlative waffles for lunch, along with a choice of top-notch County wines. I opted for a sammie with Bothwell maple-wood smoked cheddar, double-smoked bacon and maple mustard (actually, our whole table did - who can say 'no' to bacon?) The Keint-He 2009 Chardonnay was a good match with the woody, smoky flavours: lightly oaked, butterscotch and caramel-sweet on the palate, with a pleasant seam of acidity on the finish. The Maplelicious tart from Just Sweets Retro Bakery was teeth-achingly sweet, topped with a nutty crumble and wrapped in buttery layers of pastry.
I love the bar in this place. A mish-mosh of found items, antiques and funky lighting dominated by a huge wooden slab. The front panels of the bar (along with the ceiling) feature tin tiles from the original structure; vertical wine racks frame a long mirror behind rows of spirits.
Pomodoro's focus is contemporary Italian. Three courses of amuse-bouches were trotted out (you know, because we haven't had enough food already): deep fried rice balls, one done with pesto, one done Buffalo-style; fried gnocchi with pancetta in a wine cream sauce; and slices of pancetta / tomato / smoked mozzarella pizza. The Countylicious menu included unique takes on traditional classics like veal parmesan and house-made pasta. I opted for the calamari primi and the parpardelle secondi.
|Crispy calamari / lemon caper aioli / arrabiatta sauce|
|Parpardelle / wild mushrooms / peppers / spinach / parmesan / balsamic cream sauce|
Goodness, we were stuffed. And there was still a whole other day to contend with. Sunday dawned with more donuts at The Hubb, followed by a sugar-shack feast at the Waupoos Gazebo Restaurant, complete with syrup tapped from their own maples and rendered on-site. We walked off some of the calories hiking around the vineyards and adjacent farm, but still dreaded facing another meal.
What a relief, then, when we arrived at the Bloomfield Carriage House to have ... salad. Of course, this wasn't just any old salad:
|Arugula / poached egg / shiitake mushrooms / bread crisps / shaved parmesan / truffle oil|
The Marshmallow Room, an annex of the Carriage House, tempted us with sweets, pastries and other confections for the road; I couldn't help but grab an oatmeal-raisin cookie on my way out. That's the way things roll in the County. You simply can't resist One. More. Bite.
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