Guest Writer: Stef Richardson
I consider myself a small town gal (raised here in Grey County) with an interest in all things food, culture, community & people. Known for my clogging, blogging and vlogging, my work seeks to showcase the love and appreciation I have for all that is discoverable in Ontario. There is something equally invigorating and addictive about creating relationships with business owners across the region and getting a behind-the-scenes tour of all that they're passionate about. I'm all about digging lokal and sharing my discoveries with the adventurous + foodies at heart. Follow along @lokaldigs
The leaves are falling and the patio days are limited, but these transitional weeks are some of the best to enjoy crisp walks and tasty treats. I feel pretty darn lucky to live next door to the Blue Mountain region as it serves as a connector to so many awesome people, places and things. On days and nights when I feel like a quick road-trip, it feels fun and easy to hop in my car and visit some close but “out of town” gems. Whether that’s a tour to Craigleith for coffee, shopping and fondue or the Blue Mountain Village for bao, axed throwing and chocolate covered apples – sign me up for it all.
Of course, there are many more to explore but here are a few highlights, worthy of your weeknight agenda if you crave the adventure any day of the week. Make sure to research their weekday hours + in-store policies for minimal disappointment.
The Alphorn Restaurant – This Switzerland inspired restaurant is a classic. Prepare to leave full of fondue, raclette, sausages, schnitzel and rosti as it’s hard not to order a bit of everything. Decorated in vintage ski bibs, big wooden booths, and historic memorabilia, it truly feels like you’re kicking back at the chalet. Bottoms up! They’ve got a pretty diverse beer list too. After your meal, how about doing some window shopping at the Craigleith Trading Post, Shan Home and Gift and/or Surf and Turf.
Mother Tongue – New to the village, Mother Tongue brings Southeast Asian shareables to a new and exciting level. Their dishes are full of flavour + fun while inspiring guests to discover items they may not have tried before. Highly recommend the fried brussel sprouts and the chicken + veg gyoza. YUM!
AXED – If you crave a challenge and embody a good time, you might need to hit up the new AXED throwing facility at the Blue Mountain Village. They have been working hard to get this new space up and running and it’s sure to be an exciting addition to this 4-season hub. Owners Melissa + John bring such an energy to their business and strive to provide guests with a thrilling and inviting experience. You’ll feel it.
Thonburi Thai Food – I love this local business. Owned and operated by two amazing Asian-Canadian women, Narry and Rose – this joint pumps out delicious + authentic Thai cuisine. The Thai-style pad thai is a personal fav but you can’t go wrong any of their offerings. Affordable, tasty, and made with so much love.
Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory – Pop into this sweet shop and tell me you aren’t tempted to buy everything. From pre-boxed chocolates, bulk sour keys, and truffles, to chocolate covered licorice and pretzels – it’s straight up drool central. This shop has been in the village serving homemade sweets and treats since 2005 and is the place I go for the perfect chocolate covered apple. I may or may not have had one for lunch today. That is perfectly acceptable by the way.
After you’ve scored the goods, I highly recommend taking some time to tour around the village and see what’s happening and what’s new. That could be the children’s toys at Jack and Maddy or the new Burton store prepared to launch this winter. Or maybe it’s fireside for a meal at The Pottery Restaurant.
Every chance they get, the Grey County / Blue Mountain business community is always offering up new experiences, products, and tasty eats. Even when you think you’ve seen it all…you probably haven’t! My words of encouragement: Keep connecting, keep exploring and keep loving this community.
I feel like I’m constantly falling more and more in love with living here, and it’s the best feeling.