A Unique Dining Experience in Peterborough

Last week we finally made use of a WagJag coupon that was soon to expire, and went to The Electric City Gardens  for lunch. This was our second visit there and I was still struck by the uniqueness. The first impression is not really a good one. It is located in an old home on Queen Street in downtown Peterborough.The outside looks inviting, but the entrance hall is cluttered with personal belongings, presumably belonging to the owner/chef who lives on the second floor. However, there is comfort in the original wooden stair case and trims. The first room to the left is fairly large and contains a long dining table and chairs at the front end by the windows; the back end leads into the kitchen, and the cooking supplies and recipes seem to have overflowed from there out onto the only other table, the cupboards and the floor.

Straight ahead another doorway and a step down takes you into what would have been originally the sun porch, I’d think. Stepping into it is like stepping into a cafe somewhere in France. The walls are painted pink; the many purple-framed windows are draped with gathered pieces of brightly coloured voile, in reds, blues, greens. The inside wall is uncovered red brick and adorned with brilliantly coloured abstracts. Through the open window a few wooden tables with metal chairs enameled in green, red and blue, can be seen on the garden patio.

Electric City Gardens

Colourful decor

Electric City Gardens

Electric City Gardens

View from the window

Inside, tables with distressed wooden tops and metal bases form a line in groups of one, or two along the windows. Heavy wood and leather chairs sit on the outsides of the tables; a long fuscia velvet-covered bench serves as seating along the window side.

There are no paper menus to peruse, for the menu changes daily. The waitress brings out a small chalk board on which there is written the soup of the day, two or three choices of  entrees and desert. This day classical music was emanating from the stereo, perhaps a little too loudly.

We opted to try the Borscht, followed by the grilled ground lamb patty and  salad. One cook and one waitress means a leisurely lunch, leaving plenty of time for conversation and soaking up the atmosphere. A plate of fresh bread slices and butter helped to keep hunger in check while we waited.

Electric City Gardens

Our yummy lunch

The Borscht was served piping hot in mugs and was delicious. The lamb patty was very thick and braised in a mint sauce — very tasty, but it could have been cooked a little more in the middle, the disadvantage of thick burgers. A large salad of baby mixed greens, cucumber chunks, sweet red pepper strips and fresh tomato halves with a vinaigrette dressing completed the meal and left us too full to try the desert.

All in all it was a good dining experience and one that I would recommend if you’re looking for something different. It even came with a bonus incentive to return; along with the bill was a two-for-one coupon for Sunday brunch.

Peterborough Pathway of Fame

What do a Singer, a Keyboarder, a playwright, a painter, life-time volunteers, folk singers and a Professor of English Literature, all have in common? They all hail from Peterborough, Ontario and yesterday morning they were all inducted into the Peterborough Pathway of Fame for the contributions they’ve made to their community.

The Peterborough Pathway of Fame had its first Induction Ceremony on July 18th, 1998 in Del Crary Park, after numerous years of meetings and brain-storming among several individuals who felt there was a need to recognize the area’s abundant wealth of talented, community-minded people who have enriched Peterborough and area. Inductees are first nominated by a member of the general public, a friend or a family member. A three member Selection Committee spends many hours perusing the application forms and letters received to eventually make the decision as to who will be accepted. Inductees are not only honoured at the ceremony, but they are featured in the Footprints of Life publication, which is distributed to attendees, and a stone bearing their name and category is placed along the Pathway of Fame, in Del Crary Park. With this latest batch of inductees,  there are now 204 stones on the Pathway.

We had the privilege of being invited to the 15th Pathway of Fame Dedication and Induction Ceremony, held at the Showplace Performance Centre. The invitation was given to family members of past recipients, and Jim’s dad, Ernie Victor, received that honour, posthumously in 2001 for his contributions to the Peterborough Entertainment Scene for many years.

Ernie Victor Stone on Pathway of Fame

A stone on the Pathway of Fame

It was truly inspiring to hear the stories of these people, whose passion for what they do and believe in is amazing. We were also thrilled to listen to the Peterborough Pop Ensemble (led by Inductee Barbara Monahan) perform their rendition of the national anthem and entertain us in the lobby before and after the ceremony.