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Simcoe-Muskoka-Thornhill, Ontario

Updated: Nov 28, 2023

Lighthouse45, Rawley Resort, Port Severn

Steps from the western entrance to the 386-kilometre-long Trent-Severn Waterway, and minutes from Highway 400, Rawley Resort has accommodated boaters and road-trippers since 1922. The bucolic waterfront property has become increasingly luxurious as it has expanded over the years, with the new Lighthouse45 restaurant being the latest expression of this upmarket evolution.

Helmed by Chris Locke, the trailblazing chef behind Toronto’s Marben farm-to-table eatery, Lighthouse45 seats 77 in its Art Deco-inspired dining room and another 30 on its roomy dock-facing patio. The menu, meanwhile, leans heavily into locally-and-seasonally sourced ingredients from nearby farms, butchers, wineries and breweries. Standout dishes include local asparagus gorgeously grilled alongside marinated chickpeas, white bean hummus, pickled onion and sunchoke chips; and delicately pan-fried Arctic char accompanied by grilled bok choy, herb chutney and green-lentil daal.

Trading Post Cabin and the Icebreaker, Port Severn

Who knew tiny Port Severn was such a hotbed of culinary variety? Steps from Rawley on the village’s namesake road, the rustic-chic Trading Post Cabin serves espresso-based beverages and teas, fresh-baked pastries, towering bagels and sub sandwiches, mini pizza and bowls. The latter are undeniably creative, with one breakfast-oriented bowl deliciously combining mixed greens, feta cheese, avocado, sweet onion, shredded cabbage and tomatoes, and topped with olive oil vinaigrette and balsamic mayo drizzle.

Across the street on what recently became Rawley property, the Icebreaker looms large when it strikes Ice Cream O’Clock. Set in a decommissioned 50-foot paddlewheeler, the whimsical sweet shop scoops a wide range of Kawartha Dairy desserts that can be inhaled on the boat’s upper deck.

Author: Adam Bisby, July 28, 2023

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