Holiday Get-away

Niagara Falls

During December holidays, I went out of town for a few days. It was time for a break – forget about office work, housework, etc. and get away. We all need a break once in a while.

In the morning, we went to TGI Friday for brunch – i.e. skipped breakfast and went directly to the lunch. I ordered the Chicken Quesadilla and it was satisfying. At the end, we made this. I had a ship in mind, but somehow, the waitress thought it was a Xmas tree. It must be the holiday season.

TGI Friday (Ship! Not Xmas tree)

After lunch, we tried to walk to the Niagara Falls but it was just too windy and chilling. Forget about that. I’ve already been to the falls many times. So, I took a picture of the falls from the top.

Hopped onto the car and headed to St. Catherines. I’ve heard about this small town, but never been there. One of the “designated spot” of our trip was this patisserie. Other ones include the Brock University and its special geographical landscape. It was the day of the Xmas Eve, but we were lucky that the store was still opened! YEAH! From outside, it looked like any other houses. If I wasn’t told, I would never knew there’s such a nice patisserie in this town. We went in via a door on the side of the house.

Chef Pino's 2 Chef Pino's 1

There were several ladies working at the shop. On the wall, you can see the prices, but I was drawn to the pastries and forgot to look at them. I took a peek inside (the picture below on the right – quickly ZOOM into their kitchen without being noticed – I think I do have the potential to be a reporter!) It seems that they were preparing a lot of party trays for the holiday.

Chef Pino's 4 Chef Pino's 3

Here are the close-ups of the trays. There was a variety of pastries. We bought 6 small pieces, including the swans (in the middle of the picture on the right). The price was reasonable… about $5-6 for 6 pieces. Looking at them, I felt very content. I know, food is just my passion. I can’t imagine one day… what if one day I lose my appetite or my interest of food.

Chef Pino's 6 Chef Pino's 5

Since there was nowhere we could sit and enjoy the pastries in the shop (yeh, the shop is for take-out only). We went to a small indoor shopping arcade (called the Lock and Main Marketplace) in Port Dalhousie (an historic lakeside town on the shores of Lake Ontario) where the Olson Food + Bakery is located. In front of Olson, we sat there and enjoyed the pastries we got. Also order a black coffee. I always like black coffee with pastries. I gotta say the pastries were heavenly. The cream (as you can see on the swans) was very very fresh and none of them was too sweat nor too light. They were JUST RIGHT! I would love to come back and try other ones one day. (Compared to the ones we were having, the ones at Olson “looked” heavy and sweet although I have yet to try them.)

Chef Pino's 8 Chef Pino's 7

FYI: Chef Pino’s Patisserie
3 Race Street
St. Catharines, ON
Tel: 905-641-5009

After the desserts, we walked around Port Dalhousie. Although it was COLD, it was very nice and relaxing. I had a good time.

Port Dalhousie 1 Port Dalhousie 2

Afterwards, we went to Niagara-on-the-lake. Felt like we were in a totally different world. Looking at the vineyard on the side. Yeah, this is called holiday.


Wandering around Niagara-on-the-lake downtown, we saw this art gallery and the horse sculpture in there. The place was closed, so I took a picture from outside.

Niagara-on-the-lake 1 Niagara-on-the-lake 2

In a convenient store, we saw these wine jellies, which could be very nice souvenirs.

Niagara-on-the-lake 3

It was getting dark and we had to head back to Niagara Falls… Good time always goes by quick.

Niagara-on-the-lake 4 Niagara-on-the-lake 5 Evening @ Niagara region

Apparently, there was a relatively new attraction… the SkyWheel in Niagara downtown. Went on there and got a view from the top.


We kinda felt like Asian food for the night. So, we went to a Korean Restaurant called “A Young”. It was a very nice restaurant. I think all the customers except us were Korean. The lady (I believe was the owner) was very polite. The service was good. We had a refill of the seaweed side dish (one of my favourite). Looking at their menu, there were not a lot of items – compared to those Korean restaurants in Toronto. However, we noticed that they had a lot of soft tofu stews – seemed to be their specialty. I ordered the seafood one since I didn’t feel like meat. It was good. The tofu was very soft and tasty. Forgot how much we paid, but I remember the price was reasonable.

Niagara - A Young 1 Niagara - A Young 2 Niagara - A Young 3

FYI: A Young Garden Japanese & Korean Cuisine
6079 Stanley Ave., Niagara Falls, ON. L2G 3Y3
Tel: 905-357-9992; Fax: 905-357-6435

After dinner, we went to see the light festival. On a very very small island near the Falls, there were lots of animated lights set up. We drove around the island just like any other tourists. The lights were gorgeous. At the end, we donated $5. From the reaction of the people collecting donations, I guess $5 was higher than average.

(Aside…) Although these lights were nice, they just couldn’t compare with the ones in Thornhill (Toronto)…. the CRAZIEST LIGHTS I have ever seen – “Lindsay Lights“. That was just a must see – if you were in Toronto. If you’ve missed it, no worries, you can check out the video on their website. SO COOL!

Niagara Falls lights

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