Cora explained that the Holiday Inn uses Kawartha Choice Farm Fresh products that are grown and produced locally in the Kawartha Region. Given its rich farmland, high quality water and fresh air, the Kawartha Region has long been an important agricultural production centre and supplies a wide variety of products, from beef to buffalo meat, to a wide variety of fruits and vegetables and local products like honey and maple syrup. Cora comes to the Holiday Inn’s riverfront restaurant once a month for a luncheon with the local Business Women’s Network for a great meal and some networking.
Executive chef Hanuman Ramdoo gives us an introduction about his cuisine
Executive Chef Hanuman Ramdoo joined us and told us more about the cuisine at the Holiday Inn. One of the innovative ideas that he has come up with is the annual Kawartha Choice Burger Challenge that features different burgers prepared with beef, pork, chicken, lamb or elk meat from 12 local farms. The restaurant guests get to vote on their favourite burger and this burger will then be featured on the permanent menu for the coming year. What a great way for the patrons to have input into the creation of the menu…
Bernie’s Tap and Grill – named after a long-time employee
We left our picturesque waterfront spot and headed inside where Hanuman gave me a quick tour of the common areas of the Holiday Inn. From the reception area we headed into Bernie’s, the restaurant’s bar that is named after a long-time employee of the Holiday Inn. Immediately adjacent is the Riverside Grill and Gazebo Bar which includes the fine dining restaurant with the huge panorama windows that overlook the Otonabee River and Little Lake. The Gazebo is the outdoor patio which is a popular spot for weddings and special get-togethers. Hanuman also took me into the kitchen where he works with his 14 staff members.
Hanuman takes me into the kitchen and introduces me to some of his colleagues
Finally, after our anticipation had been heightened, we got our meal. Hanuman had ordered Asian Style Salmon with a fresh ginger and scallion crust, topped with coconut and lime butter, all nicely displayed on a bed of noodles. Cora had ordered one of the most popular dishes: Butter Chicken – succulent chicken breast in a rich blend of herbs, coconut milk and tomato puree, accompanied by jasmine scented rice and pita bread.
Cora’s mouth-watering butter chicken
I could not wait for my enticing meal: Island Pork Tenderloin, composed of oven-roasted pork stuffed with sweet figs, brushed with a spicy Caribbean Jerk marinade. The tender meat just melted in my mouth. And for dessert we had a deliciously sweet pineapple-flavoured crème brulée.
My scrumptious Island Pork Tenderloin
But we had no time to linger as we had one more activity planned for tonight. Cora and I walked along the water’s edge to Del Crary Park, location of Peterborough’s popular Little Lake Musicfest. Formerly called the Festival of Lights, this music festival is now in its 24th year and offers free admission concerts every Wednesday and Saturday throughout the summer. It is hugely popular with the locals and the tourists alike who can enjoy free open-air concerts with musicians of various genres under the stars in the park.
Nite Fever, a popular Bee Gees tribute band, have got the crowd going
On the program for today was Nite Fever, a Bee Gees tribute band, and Abbamania, a popular tribute band that celebrates Abba’s biggest hits. By the time we got to our lawn chairs, the huge lawn in front of the bandshell was full with people who were singing and clapping along to the biggest hits of the Bee Gees. When they were done Abbamania took to the stage and the crowd went wild with every Abba song. The singers of Abbamania not only sound, but they also look like the real thing; and the blonde lead singer even invited some audience members onto the stage for some humorous banter. The music was amazing and the crowd had an absolutely wonderful time.
Abbamania put the audience into a great mood
Then Cora and I headed back to her bed and breakfast for a good rest for another full day of discoveries in Peterborough.