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After winning Canada’s Best New Restaurant in 2018 by Air Canada’s enRoute Magazine, The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette was definitely on my must-try list.
Why? For one, it amazed me that a restaurant in a small rural community, Jordan Station in Lincoln, Ontario, won
I honestly didn’t even know about Jordan Station until learning that the Pearl Morissette restaurant came from there, so I was definitely intrigued and wanted to check it out myself.
Also Read: Aloette, No. 6 in Canada’s Best New Restaurant
I got even more excited upon researching that the co-chefs at The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette has worked in some of Europe’s top and Michelin starred restaurants.
Chef Daniel Hadida worked in Paris at one Michelin-starred
Located in Jordan Station about 1 hour and 20 minutes from Toronto, The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette is aptly named for being the restaurant inside a Niagara winery called Pearl Morissette.
It is hard to spot Pearl Morissette winery,
Inside The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette
When you enter the building, you climb a set of stairs that brings you to the Pearl Morissette restaurant where the front of house will be there to greet you and lead you to your table, or the lounge if you arrive earlier.
The inside of The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette is fairly straightforward. From where you’ll meet the front of house, right in front is the lounge.
On your most left is the open kitchen, then the washroom, then to the right is the dining room with a centre table of cutleries and honeycomb and cheese.
What’s On The Menu at The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette
The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette menu only offers one French-inspired farm-to-table tasting menu with at least eight courses for a reasonably priced $110 per person (as of Jan 2020). To top it off, tips are already included with all their prices.
The menu changes daily based on seasonality and what’s fresh that day, which makes this restaurant very repeatable. I went on December 6, 2018 when it was $88 and at least five courses.
You can do the wine pairing for an additional $70 which includes spirits and wines from all over the world, as well as wines from their own vineyards. Since Pearl Morissette’s wines are low supply, doing the wine pairing allows you to try them.
Travelling Foodie Tip: If you want to try the pairing but can’t drink a lot, you can choose to split one wine pairing between two people at The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette.
I went back to Pearl Morissette Restaurant in December 29, 2019 and the price was $96 from the $88 the year before so be sure to try them before the price raises again!
The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette Seasonal Tasting Menu
Since the tasting menu at the The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette changes daily by season, I’m featuring the dishes we had on the dates we had the tasting menu.
December 6, 2018 Tasting Menu
We started with some grilled bay scallops from New Brunswick with elderflower capers, preserved tomato water, and brown butter topped with porridge flower.
It was my first time hearing of elderflower capers where you pickle the young flower buds. Nevertheless, the dish was very refreshing with the Yugo Junmai sake bringing an interesting
Next was the fresh homemade sourdough bread with a side of warm butter, followed by the Potato Tartlet.
The Potato Tartlet had a shell made of potato. The inside had goat cheese and pureed potato and potato skin. On top are collared green and a special seabass bottarga that’s been smoked then dried.
Did you know? Bottarga is an Italian way of curing caviar where the fish roes are kept in the sacks and cured as a whole.
This was fun to eat because you get to eat the shell which is very crispy. It was a
When I attended the media preview for the unveiling of Canada’s Best New Restaurants, Pearl Morissette Restaurant Executive Chef Daniel was there serving BBQ Sea Snails for guests to sample, which I really loved!
So I was excited when he mentioned that there was going to be a different sea snail course that night.
The whelk (sea snail) course came with celeriac noodles and pickled garlic, topped with sturgeon caviar. The celeriac noodles
I didn’t even realize there were whelks until Chef Daniel told me this was the whelk course. I also wished the taste had more dimensions as I only tasted sour throughout the dish.
We’re starting to come to the main courses, starting with the seafood course, which was the pan-roasted pickerel with roasted shallot, fermented rhubarb, sour cream
The whelk was soon forgotten after a bite of this perfect pickerel. This is perhaps one of the best pickerel dishes I’ve had.
The fish was so fresh, and the meat was so
This course also introduced the first Pearl Morissette wine in the wine pairing. The Irrévérence is a blend of 64% Riesling, 22% Chardonnay
What’s particularly special about this wine is it’s an amber/orange wine due to skin-fermentation. For this, the Gewurztraminer was fermented on skins for a total of 6 months.
The vegetable course was grilled pumpkin with prickly ash and persimmon. Simple looking yet nice and sweet way to transition to the meat course.
One thing I loved about the tasting menu experience is how it differs in service with traditional restaurants. At The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette, all the staff helps with service including the co-chefs.
This is really interesting but also gives it a nice touch to see the chefs themselves going out of the kitchen, serving and clearing dishes, and talking to diners.
In fact, when we first sat at our table, Chef Daniel was going around each table carrying the whole roasted goose to show to guests before it gets sliced for the tasting.
The goose was dry-aged and cooked in
This was the coup de grâce course at The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette! I typically stay away from goose because my memories of it have been tough and dry, but this was perfectly tender, juicy, crispy and flavourful.
It was the best goose dish I’ve ever had! My only complaint is they only gave two slices because I wanted more so badly.
Before dessert, you have the option to do the supplemental cheese course for $15, which also comes with honeycomb from the apiary that they have at Pearl Morissette winery.
The type of cheese varies at The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette. On our dinner, had the Dorset Drum Cheese which they bought and aged since December 6, 2016, meaning we were eating cheese that was aged exactly 2 years to date!
If you love cheese, I highly recommend you to get the cheese course. I find you can do one order and share for two people (photo below is one order).
Now it was time for desserts, starting with the sea buckthorn that acted as a palate cleanser. It reminded me of mochi ice cream with the
Next is the Mille Feuille, a French three-layer pastry. You may be familiar with Napolean which is Mille Feuille filled with almond-flavoured paste. In this case, it was filled with plums.
The last for the night was the Ginger Cookie which was crumbly and buttery just the way I like them. It reminded me of the Butter Cookies I’ve made myself at home.
December 29, 2019 Tasting Menu
I came back to Pearl Morissette Restaurant on December 29, 2019 with my brother and sister, and it’s still consistently an impressive experience.
One thing I noticed is that though it seemed like they increased the number of courses noted on the website from at least five to at least eight, it ended up being the same number still. This is because they have counted the extras we had before as courses like the bread and palette cleanser.
The first course started with the homemade sourdough bread with spelt and emmer. Their bread is always so good here!
Second course was hen consomme with leek dumpling which was warm and comforting on the cold night.
The third course was an aged belted galloway served as tartare and with a duck egg.
Fourth course was a “vegetable course” of roasted carrots. The carrots were fermented then roasted, then served on caramelized whey sauce and topped with crispy pancetta.
I love the use of local fishes at The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette. The main fish course was Lake Erie Walleye with fermented white asparagus and potato cake.
The potato cake was very unique because it was like a crepe cake but with potatoes. What’s mindblowing was each layer of potato on the cake uses a different type of potato.
The main “vegetable course” was roasted sweet onion with onion puree with roasted crab and sea urchin.
The main meat course was Guinea Hen. The guinea fowl was aged for 3 weeks and served with guinea fowl jus and celery puree, and topped with black garlic.
We did the supplemental add-on for the Cheese course because we enjoyed the selection last time and wanted to try the selection this time.
The eight course was a palette cleanser, Apple Sorbet. The sorbet had fresh pressed hazelnut puree and apple balles.
The first main dessert was a unique fermented strawberry curd which tasted refreshing.
The last course was Sunchoke, using different parts of the sunchoke and assembled with sour cream and maple as the glue.
Also Read: Tasting Menu at The Song of India, Michelin Restaurant in Singapore
Delicious innovative dishes, great service, friendly staff, reasonable prices… plus it makes for a good road trip from Toronto! I suggest you to visit soon because I have a feeling the prices will go up and reservations will get harder soon.
I predict The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette will make it into Canada’s 100 Best Restaurants list, making reservations even harder than it already is after being named Canada’s Best New Restaurant.
Hope you enjoyed this review of The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette!
Read about other tasting menu restaurants in Ontario:
The Restaurant at Pearl Morissette
Address: 3953 Jordan Rd, Jordan Station, Ontario, Canada L0R 1S0