By Adam Brazeau
CORNWALL, Ontario – The Seaway Winter Food Festival wraps up in two days – have you made your reservation yet?
Table 21 Steakhouse and Oyster Bar owners Ahmad Mansori and Dominique Gilgen said the response since the festival started on Tuesday is overwhelming.
“The impact of this event is huge – we’ve actually had to turn people away,” said Mansori.
Table 21 is located directly above their other Pitt Street restaurant, Truffles Burger Bar. The popular downtown eatery participated in the first edition of the event, Seaway Summer Food Festival, in 2014.
So Table 21 was added to the mix this year and the pair couldn’t be happier.
“It’s very exciting for our staff that we’re so busy because business typically slows down in March,” said Gilgen.
But there’s some bad news for local foodies (don’t shoot the messenger): both establishments are completely booked for the weekend.
Other fine dining options include returning restaurants Bar Q, Moustache Joe’s, Eight Zero Zero, Schnitzels, and Casa Paolo, as well as new participants, Propeller, Sticks Sports Bar & Grill, and Maple Room Steakhouse.
Each one offers a specially designed three-course menu for $22 or $28.
To ensure a spot, organizer Sebastien Manigat recommends making a reservation prior to showing up.
“We’ve seen some restaurants being sold out,” said Manigat. “What’s been more surprising is the level of engagement people from the community have had via social media.”
He noted that Facebook posts, ‘Likes’ and comments increased by 400% and the number of times content was shared increased by 250%.
Manigat also teamed up with Cornwall photographer Jason McNamara for an online magazine (swff.ca/magazine) promoting the various chefs and eateries in this year’s event.
The website has received over 5,000 unique visitors, which translates into 30,000 page views.
For more information, click here.