Whether you’re a golfer or prefer to just enjoy the view, all are welcome to dine at Monique’s Fairway Bar and Grill located at Huron Pines Golf and Country Club on Eldorado Road just west of Blind River, Ontario. This picturesque eighteen-hole golf course located beside the Mississaugi River and among the beautiful towering pines, is popular among locals and visitors alike–and for good reason.
Operator and manager Monique grew up in Blind River and is dedicated to providing fresh, local flavours and great service to everyone in her community. “I was raised on farm grown food and I’ve raised my four children on freshly grown produce too," she says. "I have also always loved to cook. I learned from my mother who is a fantastic cook. That experience influenced me in a way that has made cooking and food service my career.”
In addition to being raised on farm fresh food, she also worked in restaurants and devoured cookbooks and other titles related to the service industry. When restaurant space in Blind River became available, she decided to make the leap from home cook to restaurateur–which took some learning. "I like to pay attention to what my customers like and try to make sure they’re happy," she says. "The most important thing is people appreciating my food. That’s my goal.” She ran Monique’s Bistro in Blind River for several years and soon also started managing the bar and grill at the golf course, along with doing some catering for private events. “I was working non-stop those days and it became too much. I wanted to spend more time with my children and grandchildren." That's when she decided to move on from the bistro in Blind River and concentrate on operating Moniques Fairway Bar and Grill exclusively. "I can work five months of the year and spend more time with my family," she says, "while still running my catering business all year round in partnership with Melissa Hughes, owner of the Copper Bean Café."
Sourcing Local Ingredients
The ethos of Monique's business is to provide locally-sourced, fresh food to her guests while being a part of and supporting her communitiy. “I source many of my menu ingredients directly from Algoma farmers and producers, close to home," she says. "It’s amazing what we have here in the area.” Monique sources her meats from Penokeon Hill Farms and Maple Ridge meats, maple syrup and maple products from Maple Acres Farm, and micro greens from Beemers Micro Farm in Iron Bridge. Fish from Lake Huron is supplied by Nymans Fisheries (their once a week fish frys' are very popular). She also uses Twin Rivers Farm for fresh berries. Fresh cut flowers come from Lemuel Acres in Thessalon.
Another example of her desire to engage with the community through food, is her new venture with Maple Acres Farms where she's been busy developing vinaigrettes and BBQ sauce using their maple syrup. The partnership means the recipes are created by Monique and carry her name on the labels, while Maple Acres makes the products. Her Maple Bourbon BBQ Sauce and Maple Syrup Vinaigreettes are available online and at the restaurant, as well as other locations in and around the North Shore. They have proved to be popular items and sell quite well, according to Monique.
A thriving restaurant open 7 days a week
The restaurant at Monique's Fairway Bar and Grill seats 85-90 guests for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. “We also hold events in the dining room like weddings, parties and other events.” said Monique. As a small business owner, Monique employs upwards of fifteen people, which includes employees in her catering business.
The menu includes bar-style offerings with an elevated twist. “Everything is homemade from scratch, even the salad dressing and BBQ sauce," she says. Some menu items include the Maple Bacon Whiskey Burger, Fish and Chips, Chicken Pesto Panini, Maple Chipotle pulled pork, as well as several different kinds of salads, wraps, burgers, and soup and sandwiches. Breakfast items include fresh eggs, bacon, omelets, pancakes, and French toast. Whether you pop in after an enjoyable afternoon on the golf course or head over for a relaxing lunch with a view, there's something for everyone on the inspired, locally-sourced menu.
Monique’s is open 8 am – 8 pm seven days a week from May to October. The golf course is open to the public and all are welcome to dine in the restaurant, whether they are golfing or not.
“I wouldn’t live anywhere else," Monique says of Blind River. "I have a strong connection to the community not just in Blind River, but in Iron Bridge, and in Thessalon. We need each other and we support each other.”
Monique’s Fairway Bar and Grill at Huron Pines Golf and Country Club
Address: 303 Eldorado Road. Blind River, ON
Tel: 705 356-1663 Ext 2