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John Mahoney's Free-fire Zone
John Mahoney
John Mahoney
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is editor of the Log Cabin Chronicles.

His previous columns are archived HERE.

Posted 08.12.05
Fool's Hollow, Quebec

JOHN MAHONEY

Part 2: There's Niagara on the Lake and then there's the famous Niagara Falls of honeymoon legend

smallest jail
© 2005 JOHN MAHONEY
SMALLEST JAIL IN NORTH AMERICA
Located in Tweed, Ontario
enroute to Niagara Falls from Pembroke

The Silver Fox and I left Fool's Hollow at 8 a.m. on Thursday, August 4, for Beachburg, QC. Hit the Champlain Bridge at Montreal, cleared the city on the 20 and the 40, and were ordering up smashing crepes two hours later at Le Café Campagne, 3675 Harwood, in Hudson, QC (Rte. 40, Hudson/St. Lazare exit).

The SF had the banana/chocolate crépe, I the spinach/swiss cheese. Good coffee, too. Recommended, eh?

Dinner at our son Kevin's spread in Beachburg, ON with Ali and two of the three kids. Dessert was Ali's famous rum cake. Had some for breakfast, too.

Friday ayem early we linked up with son Denis, Susie, and little Jack Marquis in Pembroke and departed for Notul - a five-hour ride about an hour southwest of Toronto.

Lunch midday at Montana's in a mall somewhere in the urban sprawl of TO. Food was okay and they didn't bruise my Absolut on the rocks.

Arrived in Notul in midafternoon. Flight control at the Angel in the Garden BnB brought us in safely. Nice clean rooms, friendly folks (but, sadly, not wired), good breakfast the next day.

Hate to give them a black mark but the coffee was thin and weak, and not available until 8 a.m. No way to plug in to the 'Net, which was a bit of a bummer.

Enjoyed a late afternoon bottle of the local merlot on their patio. The wine was palatable, the ambiance first class.

We tooled around a while, marveled at the flowers and the loveliness of the village and the homes, and then looked for a dinner restaurant. We settled on RW Roasters on Queen Street.

Roasters has an enclosed patio in the rear, private and charming with a large fountain in the center.

Seated, we ordered a bottle of local Reif Merlot and asked for a small piece of bread for little Jack.

Alan, our wait-person, said that would cost $3 extra. We're talking about a $200 bill here (with tip) and Roasters wanted an extra $3 for a small plate of buttered bread.

We paid for the bread but God bless little Jack, who is just 14 months old. With a quick sweep of his little hand he flipped a plate to the tiles where it was smashed into smithereens. Yup, we paid for the bread but not the plate.

The steaks were good, Alan did his job well, but the institutional policy of maximum value extraction sucked. Not on Old Grumbles eat-here list.

Compare Roasters with Frank's Tomato Pie up in Niagara Falls:

Niagara Falls
© 2005 JOHN MAHONEY

At Frank's the waitress promptly appeared with a large platter of fresh bread and two kinds of tasty olive oil for dipping. My thin-crust pizza was delicious and the keyboardist singing Chet Baker style on our outdoor terrace was outstanding. Good wine, very cold beer.

Frank's is on a busy street, but well away from the gaud of Frankenstein Lane.

While we're talking food, let me give praise to Zee's patio and Grill in Notul. We ate on the covered veranda. Emily, a charming student at Laurier University, was our girl.

Niagara Falls
FujiFilm S20 Pro © 2005 JOHN MAHONEY

First rate food, very cold local draft beer, first rate service, first rate ambience, modestly priced for Notul.

My salmon had a far-out caper sauce. The mixed veggies came in a truck. Actually, in a glass container in a little wooden truck. So off the wall funny that it was a delight. Susie's chicken dish came in…what else…a ceramic chicken.

Alas, they wouldn't let me keep the truck.

If you go to Notul, don't miss Zee's Patio and Grill, right on the main drag.

Coming up next week:

Raise the flag, fire the Brown Bess

GO TO NIAGARA PHOTOGRAPHS

Part 1: Niagara Falls column

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