Insider tips for a stylish stay in Ontario’s newest hot spot.
Less than four hours west of Montreal (and even closer to Toronto and Ottawa), the county’s compelling combination of scenic beaches, chic accommodations and abundant agriculture have made it a bonafide hot spot in the past few years. If you haven’t already been swayed by the endless sunset Instagrams geotagged at Drake Devonshire, Editors Inc. asked a few of Canada’s top fashion creatives to share their favourite places to shop, eat and stay to help you plan your next stylish getaway.
“Hit Google Maps before you book your accommodation. The county is sprawled out with attractions all over the place. Figure out what your priorities are (Sandbanks beach, wineries, the Drake Devonshire, cottage life, the Arts Trail, etc.) and try to find a spot nearby. My ideal scenario is to snag an Airbnb in Wellington and rent bikes for winery hopping.” — Caitlin Kenny, digital editor
“It goes without saying, but try to go in the off-season or on weekdays in the summertime—that way, you’ll have the dunes all to yourself! Or, visit during the winter. The county is calmer, more peaceful and quite stoic which I like. And if you’re a guest at The Drake Devonshire, you can have s’mores by their firepit…just make sure to bundle up with the blankets they provide!” — Jed Tallo, art director
“For my next trip to the county, I’m hoping that the chic Willow Creek House will be available for rent. There are so many great short-term rentals and bed-and-breakfasts in the area now.” — Truc Nguyen, creative director
Food & Drink
“[Go to] Schooner’s Fish and Chips in downtown Picton, and order the halibut. It’s your classic fish and chips greasy spoon, and they actually served the fish in literal newspaper until about 10 years ago (now they use unprinted butcher’s paper).” — Isabel Slone, writer
“East & Main Bistro in Wellington is a must for dinner. Their menu focuses on local wine and seasonal dishes that use ingredients that both celebrate, and are sourced from, the County. The restaurant has a welcoming and laid-back ambience, with simple decor and moody lighting that makes it easy to enjoy a long evening eating and drinking.” — Matthew Biehl, fashion editor
“I always make it a point to visit Fifth Town Artisan Cheese. They are a bit out of the way, but it’s worth the drive especially if you love goat cheese!” — Jed Tallo, art director
“One way to make the most out of a trip to PEC is to focus on buying wines that you can only get at the wineries you visit. Not all wines are produced in large enough quantities to be stocked at the LCBO, so look for special vintages and small batch wines that you won’t be able to get anywhere else. Having this goal in mind will motivate you to find new wineries to visit and wines to try that you might not normally drink, and you won’t be disappointed. Just be sure to buy more than one bottle when you find something you like — it’s not like you’ll be able to just pop out to the store and stock up when you feel like it.” — Matthew Biehl, fashion editor
“Karlo Estates is my favourite winery. The grounds are gorgeous (back behind the vines, they have a life-size chess board and Insta-worthy dry stone bridge), and the wine is delicious. It’s worth doing their full tasting experience, which is very educational and includes surprising food pairings like wasabi peas. On your way out, pick up a bottle of their signature white port.” — Caitlin Kenny, digital editor
“Every time I come home I beg my mom to come shopping at City Revival with me. It’s a consignment store in downtown Picton that stocks a lot of designer goods, and it’s sentimental to me because I found a pair of Prada boots there when I was still in high school for $75.” — Isabel Slone, writer
“There are plenty of great antique and thrift shops in the county, but my favourite was the unassuming MacCool’s Reuse, located inside a barn off County Road 12. Owners Cindy and Colm MacCool have a great selection of mid-century furniture and collectible knick-knacks, all at very reasonable prices!” — Truc Nguyen, creative director