Folks, I had requested some feedback from Chowhounds regarding AROWHON PINES in Algonquin Provincial Park. I hadn't got much in terms of a response from people, so I thought I would share my review! it is a bit long, but I thought the information might be useful considering the cost.
First, you can check out their website at http://www.arowhonpines.ca/din.html
As far as locations go, this one is pretty great. There are some places I recommend for the location, not the food (i.e. Canoe). and this is one of them. It is a resort, so most of the people eating there are staying there. We actually canoed in from nearby campsite...which seemed weird, but I guess people do it a lot. I have heard Huntsville/Muskoka types do drive up for dinner. It is about 40 km from Huntsville, so you definately need to be prepared for a drive.
The lodge is gorgeous and a lovely setting. The staff were very competent and friendly, but not your typical big city sophisticated staff.
The dinner menu is a prix fix and dinner was served at 6:30, although people seemed to arrive as late as 7:45. The price was $70 per person--with tax and gratuity it was $184.52 for two. STEEP...OUCH. This does NOT include any alcohol, as they do not have a license, but do allow you to bring your own. OUCH. I have had great meals in the city for this much including wine...
The dinner meal consists of a appetizer/salad buffet, a soup course, a choice of 3 mains, and a dessert course. The food was very fresh, well prepared, very flavourful. The appetizer table had juices, salads, grilled vegetables, one hot appetizer (some kind of sausage roll). The soup was a "wild shrimp bisque" very flavourful and fresh but with one small tiny shrimp per bowl. The mains were Ham, Chicken, or Grouper. I had the Grouper, my partner the Chicken. Both very fresh, nicely prepared, but not too much WOW factor for the $$. They did offer us seconds (presumably you could have one each of the main courses), but we declined. The dessert buffet was very nice. Some great trifle, home made everything including very nice butter tarts, and a lovely cheese course.
Almost everyone seemed to have brought wine..and a few people (presumably staying at the resort) were having a cold beer or two on the deck before and after dinner, which seemed pretty relaxed. Also, the dress code was very relaxed and mixed. We were in casual pants and fleece and others in summer dinner attire.
Sitting out on the deck after dinner and having a chat was very nice. Of course we ate too much!! I did very much enjoy the food and the atmosphere, but it was WAY overpriced. I think I would recommend this as an option the way you would any other touristy "experience". I figured you are paying about 1/2 for the food and 1/2 for the location.
We did have a celebrity siting however. Frances McDormand (actress) was also enjoying dinner there that same evening. So that, along with the rest of our great canoe trip made for a very interesting weekend.
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