After falling in love with Ontario and dining there with its locals, I visit this agrarian lowland land with the scent of cornbread wafting from a street of creosote-smelling woods.
We tuck into an Italian hot dog on top of a cloudy morning in Sarnia — a destination for Springsteen and the Hall of Fame’s Voodoo Lounge — which have cars parked outside and window-rattling blare of saxs playing across the street. Canadian music such as The Guess Who and The Tragically Hip have Toronto’s area code.
Locals prefer to share their stories with me over a bottle of Fogo Island malt whisky on a snowy day on Sarnia’s Main Street. One of the more interesting ones involves a Michigan man. He’s heard the saying a man can achieve more in his lifetime by supporting his own creation — the BBQ — than by buying a watch or any other expensive item. It’s not hard to see why Sarnia’s best day is a BBQ day. One feels starved after a day of skiing, but Sarnia has Canada’s best BBQ.
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According to Vivid Ontario, there are more brisket cooks per capita than any other city in the province and Sarnia is famous for it. We find some elbow room under a tree in downtown Sarnia for its famous roasted beets, which we light on a pile of hay and crush in our mouths.
Watch Chris Klein in “American Pie” and “Home Alone” as the angel with stalker Gerald McBoigford: