Travel With Bradley

A Wonderful, “Mother and Son Week”

Mom and I have really enjoying our, “Mother and Son” week.

You may have noticed if you follow Facebook that my brother, sister and family have been traveling in California and Nevada, so in their absence I moved back, “Home with Mom”. What a fantastic time we had, enjoying local day trips, new restaurants and sitting next to the fireplace while watching home renovation shows on television.

I couldn’t ask for a better Mom – we are best friends. We share so much in common. The two of us aren’t going to be traveling together this winter but we spent so much time together over the past week it felt just like a vacation.   The problem is the time flew by way too quickly.

We had fun dining at, “Craft Farmacy” in London, ON. This is one of Londons newest restaurants. A friendly male host sat us next to a fireplace in their dining room and surprisingly at the adjacent table was a lady who has traveled for years on many of my tours so we all spent time reminiscing. The atmosphere at “Craft Farmacy” is a causal one, but most importantly our lunch which featured locally sourced foods was just delicious. We’ll certainly be back.

I typically don’t like to write about negative restaurant experiences as I realize a chef is bound to have the odd bad day. We certainly did not receive a warm welcome when we walked into the lobby of a beautiful Inn in London. That should have been our indication to go elsewhere. After an uncomfortably long wait our breakfast arrived. When I cut into my omelette I noticed it wasn’t cooked all the way through. Mom and our waitress agreed so it was taken back to the kitchen. Very quickly our waitress returned – the chef told her the omelette was cooked, it was just watery….. we won’t rush back there.

Lunch at, “Spencer’s at the Waterfront” in Burlington was terrific. We enjoyed a window seat which offered sweeping views of the lake. The entrees we picked arrived piping hot and were full of flavour. Its always a treat dining at, “Spencer’s”.

By far our best dining experience was yesterday at, “The Bruce Hotel” in Stratford where we enjoyed Sunday brunch. This elegant hotel opened in 2014 and back then I read some negative things about their restaurant so I stayed away.

I admit I was a little worried that our brunch experience might not be that good but I was pleasantly surprised as it was nothing short of perfect!

Chef Arron Carley, became, “The Bruce Hotel’s” executive chef in 2015. He is also a proud winner of the TV show, “Chopped Canada”.

The 25 room Bruce Hotel is impressive both inside and out. When we approached the entrance door there was a sign saying they were closed to the public Saturday night, reopening at 11:00 am on Sunday due to a private event.

We soon learned that a gentleman from London, ON bought out the hotel for his birthday party. He invited his guests for dinner, overnight and breakfast. What a wonderful invitation!

When we walked into the homey lobby of the Bruce Hotel we were warmly greeted and then shown to the dining room where a hostess made us feel very welcome.

We soon entered the tastefully, elegant dining room. Most tables were already full of diners. It didn’t take us long to figure out that they were the birthday party guests.  They soon finished their breakfasts and Mom and I had the dining room to ourselves.

Service was top-notch. A few people looked after us. Everyone was so friendly but professional at the same time. Our plated breakfasts were so delicious. The atmosphere in this space was so relaxing, we took our time and were already talking about when we could come back!

We asked to see their dinner and lunch menus. Dinner in the main dining room is pricey but there is a different much more casual, reasonable menu offered in the lounge.

The residence of Stratford should be proud to have, “The Bruce Hotel” as part of their community.

Mom and I can’t wait to take the rest of our family to the Bruce for dinner. We’ll probably try out the lounge menu.

When we finished our meal and re-entered the lobby, the front desk host proudly told us about the hotel and then he opened the door for us as we headed back out to the parking lot.

Today’s winter weather messed up my plans. I had made reservations for Mom and I to dine at a popular restaurant in Toronto where we would have enjoyed picturesque views of the downtown core….. we’ll have to try it another time.

Last night as I was getting ready to retire for the evening Mom said, “Thank You For Staying With Me” and I admit those words brought a tear to my eye.

Spending time with my Mother is a, “Joy That I Cherish”. There is nothing better than spending time with your best friend!

Here are a couple, “Bruce Hotel” pictures – notice there was no snow on the ground yesterday – today is a different story!



3 responses

  1. Judy

    You are so lucky to be able to spend this time with your mom. She is blessed to have you and you are blessed to have her.

    January 29, 2018 at 7:15 pm

  2. Gary McLeaming

    Nice to see you spending some time with your mom…life can be short

    January 30, 2018 at 3:23 pm

  3. Merle Henhoeffer

    Mom’s are so special and your Mom is one of them.
    What a nice and thoughtful way to spend a week.
    Life is so fragile we just never know what the next day will bring us.
    Hi to your Mom from us.

    January 31, 2018 at 3:30 pm

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