Gifting Ideas: Dinner Experiences

If you’re in search of a unique and memorable gift for the holidays, look no further. Whether you’re shopping for seasoned foodies or simply those who enjoy a night on the town, a dinner package makes a great gift.

Dinner Packages 101

The holiday countdown is on, and as always, one big question weighs on your mind: what should I buy for my parents? My siblings? My friends? If you’re looking for a memorable gift that’s sure to please, try giving a dinner package. Think of it as giving a date to busy parents, a culinary experience to foodie friends or family, or simply an enjoyable night out. It’s a gift that always gets used, and never gets old — you can buy a different package next year, and start a new (and tasty) tradition.

Multi-Course Gourmet Dinners

An indulgent, gourmet dinner is a fabulous gift for anyone. It’s a perfect way to celebrate milestones like anniversaries, birthdays, or professional achievements — or to give as a gift during the holidays. A gift like this makes the perfect date night for busy parents, or simply a decadent evening out on the town for family or friends. You can treat them to an evening of great food, and at the end of the night you’ve already paid the bill.

Loire 3-course menu & Kir Royal - 119 Harbord St., Toronto, ON

The old adage of 'good friends, good food and good wine' is a living credo for Chef, Jean-Charles Dupoire and Sommelier, Sylvain Brissonnet. It is also the inspiration for their restaurant, Loire Casual Gourmet. And while friendship is in the essence of Loire, it is a lifetime of passion for food and wine that serves as its foundation. Sylvain and Jean-Charles grew up in the centre of France's Loire Valley and have been friends since early childhood. Spending their formative years in a culture rich with food and wine gave them an opportunity to cultivate their tastes and truly learn what a good dining experience could be: uncomplicated recipes cooked entirely with the freshest local ingredients. They also recognize that every person brings their own set of expectations to the table - and as hosts, it is their job to identify them and ensure that everyone leaves feeling their experience has been truly enjoyable and personal. That what makes Loire is a unique place to dine, where the true marriage of good friends, good food and good wine is present in the ambiance, on the plate and in the glass.

Quatrefoil 7-course tasting menu - 16 Sybenham St., Dundas, ON

If there is any reason to make the drive from big city Toronto to Dundas, Ontario, that reason is Quatrefoil, a true culinary destination brought to the small town by two Chef-owners, a husband and wife duo. Fraser Macfarlane and Georgina Mitropoulos met while working together in Toronto's Scaramouche. They went on to travel to London, England in search of fresh culinary styles and experiences. Years later, the product of their European training is Quatrefoil ; a polished ode to the glory days of fine dining, whose refined atmosphere is as suited to cocktail-attired occasions as it is to fleece-and-jeans dinners. Macfarlane and Mitropoulos bring their inspiration to pristine local products creating sophisticated yet approachable dishes with contemporary French technique. The presentation is impeccable and the flavors out this world. No wonder Quatrefoil has received so many rave reviews and has placed Dundas on Canada’s culinary map.

La Rabastalière 3-course meal - 125 Rabastalière, St-Bruno-de-Montarville, QC

A true institution of the south shore of Montreal, La Rabastalière offers since 1979 an outstanding modernized traditional French cuisine that can be enjoyed on the superb patio outside during the summer months or in the cozy dining room located in a century-old house. The place is charming and intimate, ideal for a romantic meal or for dinner with friends. The service is refined yet friendly. In more than 30 years, the owners have not changed and they still kept the same exceptional quality of food. To enjoy a full culinary experience, the tasting menu offers a large variety of flavors and the sommelier will propose a different wine to accompany each dish. Every bite is a pure delight, like firework in the mouth. La Rabastalière is a real gem of the South Shore not to be missed.

Café Massawippi 7-course Chef’s menu - 3050 Capelton, North-Hatley, QC

A wooded driveway leads to Manoir Hovey, a Relais & Châteaux located only 1 ½ hours east of Montréal. Perched on the shore of Lake Massawippi, it is the jewel of North Hatley, a charming village in the Eastern Townships. Chefs Roland Ménard and Francis Wolf dazzle with their seasonal menus and ever-evolving avant-garde cooking techniques. Dinners are followed by the widest selection of artisanal cheeses in the province, artfully displayed on a trolley. Not to mention the extensive wine list contains many treasures and has earned the Best of Award of Excellence from Wine Spectator magazine every year since 2004. Dinners unfold seamlessly in the wood-paneled dining room overlooking the gardens and lake. From the first glass of champagne to the delicate mignardises served at the end, it is indeed a meal to remember.

Étape Gourmande 6-course menu - 1400 Ste-Adèle, Ste-Adèle, QC

As its name implies, L’Étape Gourmande is not just a stopover but is truly a gourmet destination. The chef, Denis Genero, shares his passion for the kitchen with menus that change with the seasons. Original modern recipes blend seamlessly with flavours from elsewhere and from other times, and are prepared with the best ingredients. Try out his specialty, Quebec duck foie gras, prepared in every possible way (pan-fried, in risotto, au torchon…). L’Étape Gourmande also offers a complete range of fish and seafood, game, sweetbreads, duck, etc. Come spend a pleasant evening, comfortably ensconced in the dining room decorated in the colours of Provence, with a fireplace and a view of the beautiful Laurentian mountains.

Getaways with Gourmet Dinners

If you’d like to go all-out, give a memorable trip paired with world-class dinning — a unique gift that’s sure to be an unforgettable experience. Canada’s vastness offers different sceneries for your picking. From the charming Maritimes to bustling Toronto, and the countryside of Québec to the Rockies of British Columbia, you can choose an adventure that will make the perfect gift.

The Halliburton Gourmet getaway - 5184 Morris Street, Halifax, NS

The favorite downtown retreat for visitors and locals alike, The Halliburton offers a unique four-star hotel experience. Enjoy a blend of contemporary amenities and personalized service in the historic setting of downtown Halifax’s historic boutique hotel. The Halliburton features signature dining and 29 individually appointed guest rooms and suites of various sizes in a trio of heritage townhouses. Stories restaurant offers inventive regional cuisine in intimate dining rooms. In the summer months, guests enjoy cocktails and light fare in the garden courtyard. In the autumn and winter, a crackling fire invites you into the cozy library. The Halliburton is a short stroll away from popular shops, restaurants, historic sites and various attractions like the famous Halifax Waterfront, the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, Pier 21 National Historic Site…and a lot more to discover!

The Trillium Resort & Spa getaway - 848 Clearwater Lake Road R.R. #1, Port Sydney, ON

Nestled among 86 acres of pristine forest and woodlands, a spirited waterfall and private lake, The Trillium Resort & Spa offers the perfect “adult only” vacation getaway in Muskoka, Ontario. The lakeside resort accommodations features 6 waterfront chalets and 11 “bedsitting” cottages set amid towering hardwoods. Every season offers a variety of recreational activities: enjoy a quiet snowshoe along height kilometres of trails, take a cross-country ski over the trails adjacent to the property, try the tennis court, climb a natural rock wall, relax by the fire in your personal Chalet or Cottage, or pamper your mind, body and soul in the 5,000 square foot Spa facility… The Trillium Resort experience can be as active or relaxing as you choose. Enjoy casual fine dining in post and beam dining room, whose menu offers seasonally inspired cuisine, emphasizing fresh and locally grown foods. Experience warm hospitality and rustic elegance in this Muskoka resort!

Auberge Ripplecove getaway - 700 ch. Ripplecove, Ayer's Cliff, QC

Ripplecove Inn is located in the Eastern Townships overlooking the sparkling waters of Lake Massawippi. Whether in search of a unique gastronomic experience, an intimate hideaway, a restful retreat or invigorating outdoor activity, the country elegance of Ripplecove Inn is sure to please the most discerning guest. Discover a resort rich in history that knows how to create the perfect blend of comfort, culinary adventure, vintage wine and attentive service. The well-respected Guide Restos Voir awarded Ripplecove’s “cuisine de terroir” and dining room a 5-star rating in 2007. Its enviable location offers a vast array of year-round outdoor activities: enjoy a springtime stroll in the woods, swim in the lake during summer, or just relax near the fireplace on a cold winter’s day. If you are looking to rejuvenate your soul, or rest your active mind, try the magnificent spa and lakeside hot tub. The atmosphere created by the spa’s log cabin décor will enhance your peaceful retreat.

Hockley Valley Resort getaway - 793522 Mono 3rd Line ,R.R.#1, Orangeville, ON

Surrounded by rolling hills within their namesake Hockley Valley, the Hockley Valley Resort has created an unparalleled experience, no matter the season. Spend your summer days playing a round of golf on the championship course, experience the full beauty of fall hiking along the Bruce Trail, or hit the slopes all winter long without ever leaving the grounds. Let’s not forget about the equally compelling indoor activities — rejuvenate at the full service spa; enjoy exceptional cuisine in the dining room, lounge or cafО; relax in one of the recently renovated, lavish guest rooms and suites. During the winter season there are few resorts that can match Hockley Valley Resort for sheer exhilaration on the slopes and luxurious comfort off of them. Hockley Valley Resort offers many Stay and Play packages to suit every taste. Create the getaway of a lifetime at Hockley Valley.

Le Creux du Vent gourmet getaway - 1430 rue de l'Académie, Val-David, QC

Le Creux du Vent is a restaurant and inn located just steps from the P’tit Train du Nord linear park, a few minutes from the centre of the village of Val David, famous for its cultural and sports activities. Have a relaxing stay in one of our cozy rooms where the rhythm of the winds will take you on a trip around the world. In the warm and welcoming dining room or on the magnificent terrace overlooking the North River, you can enjoy genuine and tasty dishes and have a full-flavoured culinary experience. Prepared with care by chef Bernard Zingre and his team, the menu highlights regional products such as fish, meat and game, foie gras and garden produce. In addition to these fine foods, you will be charmed by the attentive service and the friendly atmosphere.
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