We had the pleasure of dining at the Athlone Inn on our way back from rainy Tremblant this weekend. (on a poutine quest of course!) After a quick drive around this beautiful town, we were wondering... 'what's for dinner?' so we walked down the street from our hotel to some gorgeous Victorian Inns. One promised 'Elegant Dining' with a kind of retro sign, which could be a very GOOD sign or a very BAD sign.... but we decided to investigate.
Inside... gorgeous. Beautiful interior with muted wall colours, white tablecloths, black chairs, simple and elegant. Classical and modern. Were welcomed in our slightly unsuitable attire (weren't expecting to end up in such a beautiful place) and were seated immediately. The service from start to finish was impeccable. Our server was very helpful with the wine selection once she knew what we were having and offered us several samples of different wines to try.
Bread came to the table with a compound herbed butter and was home baked, made with LOCAL GRAINS. Wow. Arrived steaming hot from the oven, and reminded me of a soda bread vs. a yeasted bread. Really fantastic.
I had the french onion soup and the bass. My DC had the composed tomato salad and the lamb. The french onion soup was a lighter version of the classic, with two large croutons floating in a gentle broth and minimal cheese. The onions themselves could have used a bit more colour and the soup a bit more seasoning, but it was soothing and really very good. The composed salad was outstanding. Slices of heirloom tomatoes layered with goat cheese (local) and phyllo pastry, with a cascade of fresh herbs on top and an elegant vinaigrette. Some sauteed cherry tomatoes tucked around the bottom of the stack were bursting with flavour. The dish did not need the edible flowers however. Gilding the lilly.
Moving on, the bass was perfectly cooked (more edible flowers on this plate) and looked like a freshwater bass from my days growing up fishing in Georgian Bay. Served atop a sweet and spicy cornbread, these two fillets (2!) were very filling indeed, even though they were on the 'lighter side' of the menu.
My DCs lamb was cooked to perfection. Medium rare, and came with a kind of cross between a yorkshire pudding, souffle, and bread putting.... I cannot remember the veg on his plate beacause we were well into the wine by that point! Sotty hounders. I am capable of so much more detail than this. You'll have to imagine the rest of the plate. Be assured it was good and there was nothing left. ;-)
Dessert for me was a glass of Taylor Fladgate port and a cheese plate. They had some interesting desserts on offer but we just couldn't fit any in. Blueberry basil sorbet stands out in my mind. The cheeses were local and delicious. Served with walnuts in a balsamic glaze and crostini.
If we are ever in Gananoque again we will definitely be back! Price for 2 apps, 2 mains, 1 bottle wine, ($45) 1 glass port ($8) and wine course was $150 including tip. I thought that was a great price.
If you are ever out that way - I highly recommend!