How to Beat the Post-TIFF Blues at Ontario's Must-See Getaway

Compass Rose Suites - Publicity - H 2018
Courtesy of Compass Rose Suites

Two hours outside Toronto, the bucolic Prince Edward County region offers everything from farm-fresh eating to high-end glamping and some much-needed detox when the festival frenzy is over.

Prince Edward County, Toronto’s version of the Hudson River Valley, is growing hipper (and more crowded) by the season. The arrival of the Drake Devonshire boutique hotel and oenophile-approved Norman Hardie Winery inspired more urbanites to make the two-hour trek east along Lake Ontario’s shores, and eventually, to put down roots. Its favorable terroir and agricultural heritage created just the right conditions for farm-fresh eating, drinking and post-fest relaxation. Sample the feast with these tips.

Go Glamping at Compass Rose

Compass Rose Suites, wedding central for its modern farmhouse, glamping and bucolic grounds, also sees its share of bed-and-breakfast guests. The newly renovated, multilevel Zephyr suite features a soaking tub and private balcony, among premier perks. After a home-cooked breakfast, explore the 100-acre property’s hiking trails and gardens.

575 Crowes Road; 613-503-5752

Detox at June Motel

Two female hoteliers and Liz Lambert wannabes added amenities and events to their year-old June Motel. Lululemon-led, detox/retox classes on a new yoga deck celebrate the surrounding wine country. It also partnered with the nearby Vic Cafe for three-course, bohemian forest dinners on a wooded hillside out back.

12351 Loyalist Parkway, Picton; 613-476-2424

Eat Organic at Seedlings

Former Drake Devonshire chef Michael Portigal and his wife, Ashley O’Neil, named their restaurant Seedlings in honor of their first independent venture and their toddler. Eighty percent of the all-day menu is sourced locally, including umeboshi (pickled plums) and pickerel and perch from Dewey Fisheries, the last remaining operation of its kind in the county. Sometimes it’s as easy as snipping herbs from their patio planters or going next door to the apiary for honey and pollen for sumac-spiced cake and its buttercream frosting, respectively. The dining room’s walnut tables will soon be filled with rabbit and squash dishes.

433 Main St., Bloomfield; 613-393-3301

Try "Farm-to-Fire" at Flame + Smith

Passersby thought chef-owner Hidde Zomer was building a pizzeria when they saw his wood-burning oven at Flame + Smith. The Dutch transplant uses his impressive setup, including a rotisserie and asado-style hooks, to cook everything from 50-ounce tomahawk steaks to ember-roasted eggplants served with buffalo yogurt. Describing his concept as farm-to-fire, he scours the countryside for an array of hardwoods such as maple, cherry and oak. Lighter suppers can be fashioned from chilled heirloom cucumbers in green goddess dressing and seafood platters from the well-stocked raw bar.

106 Main St., Bloomfield; 613-393-1006

This story first appeared in The Hollywood Reporter's Sept. 9 daily issue at the Toronto Film Festival.