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Rural Ontario Restaurant a Hidden Gem in Canada

04/04/2013 02:57 EDT | Updated 06/04/2013 05:12 EDT

Canadians from coast-to-coast have been naming their favourite restaurants in a first-of-its-kind national poll to discover the nation's best choices for dining out. Vacay.ca follower Louise Dorfman's entry into the Foodie of the Year Contest -- which rewards the grand prize winner with airfare, luxury hotel stay and dinner for two at the Top 50 restaurant of his or her choice -- offers high praise for a little-known eatery an hour outside of Toronto.

In her entry that highlights the Mono Cliffs Inn, Dorfman writes: "I will start with the pub, because that is our favourite place to chill in the Mono Cliffs Inn. Peter Cellar's Pub is an experience not to miss for anyone who plans on visiting the Hockley Valley in Ontario. Manager Wayne Biegel runs a pub like no other.

"The rustic country atmosphere is matched by an upscale and delicious menu, which comes from the inn's restaurant kitchen upstairs. This is not pub fare. Every appetizer, main course, and dessert is beautifully presented and of the highest standard."

Dorfman of Mono, Ontario is one of thousands of Canadians participating in the voting, which wraps up on April 15, 2013. The Mono Cliffs Inn ranks fourth overall, trailing first-place Langdon Hall of Cambridge, Ontario. Ottawa's Atelier is second and Muse of Calgary remains in third place. The Mono Cliffs Inn is the most unique of the leading restaurants because it is neither in a city or part of a larger property like Langdon Hall, a Relais & Chateaux boutique hotel. Despite its name, the Mono Cliffs Inn doesn't rent rooms, it only engenders the feeling of wanting to stay a while, Dorfman writes.

"Wayne makes sure everyone is at home. In fact, you feel that you have gone to a party at his home. If you are lucky, he will pull up a stool in the middle of the small room, in-between the tables, and tell great stories -- seemingly all from his own experiences," she said.

Hers is only one of the outstanding entries received as Vacay.ca prepares to roll out this year's People's Choice winner and the Top 50 Restaurants in Canada.

Click here to read more of Dorfman's entry and find links to other entrants into the Foodie of the Year Contest.

To vote for the Vacay.ca Top 50 Restaurants in Canada, email vote@vacay.ca.