If there’s any place I’ve been to in Canada that belongs on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, it’s Ted’s Range Road Diner in Meaford, Ontario.
Where, you say? Exactly. Meaford is a tiny town somewhere in between Owen Sound and Collingwood, which is north-west of Toronto. In other words, it’s the last place on earth where you’d expect to find some ultra-delicious food.
The first time I rolled up to Ted’s (this was the second time I’ve been there) I couldn’t believe my eyes. The restaurant is in a f@$%ing quonset hut, which is a lightweight building originally used for military purposes that are mostly found in agricultural settings today. Enter the quonset hut – the place bears a resemblance to Merlotte’s diner in True Blood. Straight up country. The staff are possibly the nicest people on earth. Legend has it that the chef (Ted) likes to cook shirtless, although my eyes have yet to confirm this. Rather than menus, diners are invited to read the chalk writings on the wall, which showcase all kinds of interesting dishes. This includes a lot of game and exotic meat, like bison steak, crocodile bites, kangaroo, elk, and everything else you could think of. All of these factors won me over before I had even taken a bite.
We came here for my bday dinner, so I spoiled myself and ordered a 12oz, aged, AAA Angus steak topped with peppercorn gravy and mushrooms, with homefries on the side. The quality of the meat was absolutely outstanding. While it was cooked a tad above the medium rare that I requested, I honestly didn’t care at all because it was melt-in-your mouth steak like I’ve had nowhere else. The gravy complimented the beef perfectly, and the homefries were exactly what you want when you get homefries. I also had a caesar salad to start, which came with an extremely garlic-heavy dressing that I adored.
The steak was a popular choice amongst my family. My sister (who is responsible for the nicer looking photos in this post) ordered the beef ribs – my birthday status enabled me to have a bite, and I definitely wanted to keep going. The meat was a bit fatty, but I’m all about that – and the sauce was nice and tangy.
My partner ordered the seafood bake, which came with lobster, scallops, and shrimp, topped with a phyllo pastry. I was hoping to pull the birthday trick to get a bite of that, but she devoured the thing. From what I could gather, the seafood all looked nice and big, and the dish gave off an aquatic aroma that was saliva-inducing. I hear it was absolutely delicious.
The food at Ted’s is seriously great. Birthday-dinner worthy for sure. And to top things off, they gave me a slice of homemade chocolate cake that my belly did not need, but my mouth was definitely pleased. It was rich, moist, and I ate every last crumb.
Even if the food at Ted’s wasn’t good, I feel like I would still enjoy eating there. The vibe is unlike any place I’ve ever been. If for any reason you ever find yourself within an hour of Meaford, I’d suggest making the trek for a meal at Ted’s Range Road Diner. I think it’s one my favourite places I’ve ever eaten, period.