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Wednesday, December 18, 2013

[Toronto] The Guild

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1442 Dundas Street West
Toronto, Ontario 647-343-7288

Located on the west end of the city in Little Portugal is The Guild (@guildresto), serving up contemporary Canadian cuisine. With Chef Mani Binelli in the kitchen (who is also the mastermind behind one of my all time favourite restaurants - Auberge du Pommier), I agreeably accepted an invitation to taste their new and improved menu.

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The Guild

Monday, December 9, 2013

[Toronto] The P&L Burger

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507 Queen Street West
Toronto, Ontario

A collaboration from the makers of Parts and Labour and Executive Chef Matty Matheson (@mattydeathbro), comes Queen West area's newest destination for burgers: The P&L Burger (@thepnlburger). Located just a couple doors down from the well-established Burger's Priest, they definitely have a lot to prove in the burger world. In contention for this new joint is the eponymous burger "The P&L", which has already clinched a championship title of CMT's Burger Wars. Just last week prior to their official opening, I had the opportunity to taste this prized P&L burger as well as all that Chef Matty's menu has to offer.

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P&L Burger

Friday, November 29, 2013

[San Francisco] Jasper's Corner Tap

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401 Taylor Street
San Francisco, CA 94102

You know you're Canadian when you order the two most patriotic consumables down south in America. You know what I'm talking about. Poutine, and beer.

One of my nights in San Franciso, I had a late night rendez-vous with my currently-residing-in-America-but-Canadian-at-heart friend, Joanne. The outcome? A trip to Jasper's Corner Tap (@JaspersSF) for the aformentioned Canadian eats. I guess you never really grow out of being Canadian, eh?

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Jasper's Corner Tap

Friday, November 22, 2013

[Toronto] Cafe Bar Pasta

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1588 Dundas St W
Toronto, Ontario

Cafe Bar Pasta (@Cafebarpasta) is located just at Dundas and dufferin, in a welcoming little space. Just as the name would lead you to believe, their modus operandi are coffees, pastas, and drinks. Luckily for me, I got to experience all three at a media preview dinner!

Passed around before dinner were sample offerings of on-menu appetizers. The Two Tartar consisting of an Ostrich and Seabream tartar were particularly memorable.

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Tuna Tataki - grapefruit chilli marinade, lemon aoili

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Two Tartar - citrus, frisee, puffed caper ostrich, grainy mustard, toasted walnut, wild boar crisp

Monday, November 11, 2013

[Event+Giveaway] 6 Reasons to Attend The Gentlemen's Expo

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Did you wake up this morning and wonder "Damn, how can I be more interesting?" Well the wonderful folks at the Gentlemen's Expo (TGE) have got you covered. Carrying the underlying theme to help people "be more interesting" (seriously, try out their hash tag #bemoreinteresting), the first ever Gentlemen's Expo (@GentlemensExpo) will be taking place at the Metro Convention Center, November 22-24, 2013.

So instead of telling you what you can expect during the this manly expo, I'll do you one better and give you 6 reasons why you should go.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

[San Francisco] Sotto Mare

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552 Green Street
San Francisco, California
United States 94133


After what seems like an eternity of a blogging hiatus, I've accumulated quite a couple dining locations that deserve notable mention on my food blog! Where to start, how about all the AWESOME food from along the west coast?!

That's right. A couple months ago I embarked on one of the most highly recommended road trips in North America - the pacific coast highway drive. Not only is a treat on the eyes with its scenic routes, it's a treat for the tummy as well!

My adventure started in San Francisco, which is a haven of seafood. After a convincing recommendation from one of my coworkers, I stopped by Sotto Mare for a light weekday lunch.

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Sotto Mare

Monday, August 19, 2013

[Event] Toronto Festival of Beer 2013

Last weekend I had the pleasure of once again attending the Toronto Festival of Beer (@TOBeerFestival). Despite it being the 19th annual TFOB, this would only be my second time in attendance. And with all the lessons I managed to learn from my first beer festival visit last year (see here), I think it's safe to say I was able to enjoy it this time around even more!

The Preparation

First order of business was to (a) buy tokens (no tokens, no beer!) and (b) to hang out a bit in the media lounge. It's a nice refuge from all the walking and standing around, and it also doesn't hurt that there are an endless supply of Neal Brothers (@NealBrothers) chips and LOL Candy trees (@LOLcandyco)to snack off of! :)

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Official Beer Festival Currency

Thursday, August 1, 2013

[Toronto] Magnum Ice Cream

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11 Bloor Street West
Toronto, Ontario


Over the past few weeks, you may have already seen these Magnum ice cream bars pop up on feeds of various social media outlets. I remember when I first saw it, I thought to myself "So, what's the big dealio?".

Well if you haven't heard, Magnum Ice Cream (@magnum_canada) has recently opened a pop up store in the heart of yorkville offering a customizable and indulgent experience with their premium Belgium ice cream bars. Despite the many customizable dessert shops that already exist (think Menchies, Marble Slab, etc), Magnum seems to assert itself as something special. I work around this area, and there is never a time where the line up doesn't span out the door and across several other store front entrances. Not surprising though, because this ice cream paradise is only here until August 30th. Are you lining up yet?

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Magnum Ice Cream Store

Thursday, July 18, 2013

[Toronto] Azure Restaurant & Bar

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225 Front Street W
Toronto, Ontario

Azure Restaurant & Bar has been around for quite some time. Located in the InterContinental Hotel (@ICTorontoCentre), the restaurant prides on delivering a modern Mediterranean fare using the best Canadian ingredients. The truth is, I've been here before. Around half a decade ago I visited during for a fixed-prix Summerlicious menu. I don't exactly remember how the dinner went, but the fact that it barely left a memory probably means it was nothing to write home about.

Fast forward to the present. When I was informed that Azure had been undergoing a full restaurant revamp (read lunch, dinner, dessert and bar menu face lift to be released), it struck some interest in me. I wonder how it is now? The only way to find out, was to make a visit to the restaurant and try the Summerlicious (@liciousTO) menu once again.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

[Toronto] Harbourfront Shipping Container Food Stalls

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235 Queens Quay West
Toronto, Ontario

If you have noticed already, food trucks are all the hype now. Gone are the days where food sold on the street is considered sub par fast food. Gourmet popups serving restaurant quality food are sprawling the city, many picking up popularity. So what's next? How about, storage container food stands?

Nestled in the beautiful Harbourfront and Queens Quay area are a trio of shipping containers that have been recently (and not to mention creatively) transformed into food truck like kitchens. The food stands are powered by solar panels which is a bonus to the environmental subconscious! Also gives a hand in preserving the environment.

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Harbourfront Shipping Container Food Stalls

Friday, May 10, 2013

[Missisauga] &Company Resto Bar

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295 Enfield Place
Mississauga, Ontario

Being a girl with no business far from Toronto, its not very often that i woiod venture too far outside the heart of the city. Unless there is some thing really special. So what was I doing out west in Mississauga on a Friday night? Well, that was just it; there was definitely something special here. Located just outside Square One shopping mall, is one of the few night clubs in Missausagea &Company Resto Bar. When I found out from Lien (@LienValesquez) that they had just a day ago revamped their menu for then summer, I decided to take a look and was impressed. Some interesting options, reasonable prices, Added to the fact that on Friday nights they have burlesque dancers to entertain you while you eat, and a dance floor to transition into a nightclub after dark, I didn't see why I wouldn't make the short trip out for an experience.

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&Company Resto Bar

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

[New York] Grimaldi's Pizzeria

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1 Front Street,
New York, NY 11201, United States

New York style pizza is characterized by its large, wide, cirspy yet foldable pie shape. As recommended by various media outlets, one of the most well-known New York-style pizzerias is located in Brooklyn, just under the iconic Brooklyn bridge. On a windy, and rather cold day, John (@J1kim), Rob (@Rawbzz), and I ventured out to the most populous burrow of New York to try Brooklyn's very own Grimaldi's Pizzeria (@Grimaldispizza)

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Ready to eat!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

[New York] David Burke Kitchen

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23 Grand Street Soho, NY 10013

Chef David Burke is probably not an unrecognized name in the Tri-state area. He has under his belt an impressive portfolio of restaurants, all with a specific theme, and all eponymously named after him. Standing out the most from the list is David Burke Fromagerie, which puts one of my favourite things on earth; CHEESE in the spotlight. But let's stay on track, today's post is about David Burke Kitchen (@DBKitchen), a restaurant focused on locally sourced ingredients from the New York area.

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David Burke Kitchen

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Mr. Pig says: "Welcome to the Kitchen!"

As you approach the restaurant, you can feel the full effect of their "farm-to-table" concept. A life size pig statue greets you at the entrance. Inside, the decor has all the elements of what I'd like to call a "little house on the prairie" theme; checkered table clothes, fruit baskets, and sepia filtered pictures of livestock.

Monday, March 11, 2013

[New York] Bogota Latin Bistro

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141 5th Ave
Brooklyn, NY
NY, United States
(718) 230-3805


Well...not really. But that definitely was the appropriate phrase to keep near the tongue when I stopped by Bogota Latin Bistro (@BogotaBistro) for dinner, last new years eve. Located in Brooklyn near the newly constructed Barclays Center, it was a logical dinner choice to precede the Jay-Z and Coldplay NYE concert occurring later that night.

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New Year's Even gear, compliments of Bogota!

Monday, March 4, 2013

[New York] Essex Restaurant

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120 Essex Street,
New York, 10002
NY, United States
(212) 533-9616

It's barely noon when we arrive at Essex Restaurant (@EssexNYC)for brunch. Even with a reservation, we found ourselves crammed like sardines near the entrance, waiting for a table. Turns out by New York state law, alcoholic beverages cannot be served prior to noon on Sundays. Normally that wouldn't be a problem for most brunch spots, but at Essex, the alcohol is every bit as important as the breakfast fare itself.

While the internet has high regards for the food here, I am going to remember this establishment by the amount of alcohol that moves through the bar. Watching the bar for just a couple minutes left me fascinated at how quickly the champagne, vodka. and orange juice on the shelf was depleting. It's not until I saw a menu that it all made reasonable sense. "$22.95 Weekend brunch includes 3 Bloody Mary's Mimosas or Screwdrivers". Clearly the folks at Essex aren't joking around about doing brunch the right way.

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Essex Restaurant

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

[New York] Morimoto

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88 10th Avenue,
New York, NY, United States
+1 212-989-8883

Morimoto Restaurant, eponymously named after it's creator Masahru Morimoto (@chef_morimoto) of Food Network's Food Network's Iron Chef , was near the top of our dining establishment hitlist during a short trip to New York City. Most popular with their Omakase menu, Morimoto also offers an a la cart menu that would please anyone looking for an Asian-fusion dining experience.

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Morimoto Restaurant

A quick glance at the menu, and regular followers of Food Network's Iron Chef would recognize many of the dishes as ones Masahru Morimoto has prepared for the show. And then there are others which are an untraditional collision of of Asian, Japanese, and fusion cuisines.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

[Niagara] Trius Winery - Harvest Table Lunch

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1249 Niagara Stone Rd

If you just so happen to land on my blog the past week, then you'll notice that I was in the Niagara-on-the-Lake region recently for the Days of Wine and Chocolate festival (read my Day 1 and Day 2 adventures here!), sampling delectable desserts and local wines. Somewhere during the day my boyfriend rob and I decided it was time for some real food, and we headed to Trius Winery (@TriusWinery) which was formerly known as Hillebrand, for lunch. The winery restaurant offers regular lunch service, but we opted to partake in a special lunch Trius Winery hosts. The Harvest Table Lunch is a seasonal event offered each Saturday during the months of February and March, to the first 12 patrons to make a reservation. This intimate lunch is hosted by Trius Chef Frank Dodd's culinary team, who are knowledgeable in both food and wine. For us, this multi-talented individual would be Brad.

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Trius Winery

So our Harvest Table Lunch experience starts when Brad leads us from our coatcheck to a glass wine cellar, where a reception consisting of charcuterie and sparkling wine awaits. We got acquainted with the four other individuals attending the lunch, which Rob and I would soon realize were the loveliest individuals to share the table with.

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Helping ourselves to charcuterie

Monday, February 11, 2013

[Niagara] Days of Wine and Chocolate - Day 2

After having such a great experience from Day 1 of the Days of Wine and Chocolate festival (read about it here!), My boyfriend Rob and I continued onto the mission to visit as many participating wineries in the Niagara on the Lake area. Long story short, we would fail at this mission, but it was a great time regardless!

Andrew Peller Signature Series Ice Cuvée | Candied Bacon and Chocolate Sponge Toffee

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Peller Estates Winery

Peller Estates is a rather common wine found in the LCBO, but actually seeing the winery was quite a memorable experience. Even with a blanket of snow covering most of the property, pulling up to the winery was breathtakingly grand. I got a tingly sensation just driving up the long pathway leading to what could only be described as a castle. Well worth a visit!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

[Niagara] Days of Wine and Chocolate - Day 1

Niagara on the Lake is definitely one of my favourite places to plan a spontaneous getaway to. Sitting on a perfect escarpment for growing wine grapes, the area is abundant in local wineries both big and small. I've been out here a couple times, but only ever in the summer where the open vineyards are so scenic and inviting. That got me thinking, what exactly happens here during the winter time?

Turns out there is much to do in the winter, even when there aren't grapes growing anymore! In the spirit of Valentines day, 28 wineries in the Niagara on the Lake region (@NiagaraWine), collaborate to bring a Days of Wine and Chocolate event. For $35, a touring pass is provided which gives you access to each of the wineries during the weekends of February. In exchange for a stamp in your touring pass booklet, you'll receive a small chocolate inspired treat, along with a carefully selected wine pairing. Each pairing allows the winery to showcase the flexibility of their signature wines. I initially thought it would be a lot of desserts to consume, but the portions are quite manageable. Not to mention, they aren't all sweet, either! There A handful of wineries decided to make savory chocolate treats. One even cooked up a pot of peanut butter pulled chicken! More on that later.

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Days of Wine and Chocolate

If I lived closer to the Niagara region, I would probably return every weekend with my touring pass and attempt to visit every winery. Unfortunately, I don't have that luxury. With 28 tastings, one car, and only 2 days, we settled on cruising down one street per day, crossing off as many wineries as we could.

And so, here are the samplings from Day #1 of Wine and Chocolate.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

[Thornhill] Song Cook's Authentic Korean Restaurant

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72 Steeles Avenue West #6
Thornhill, Ontario
(647) 678-8000

I always find the Galleria Supermarket near Yonge and Steeles to be a good quick fix for all my Korean food needs, but that was before I knew Song Cook's Authentic Korean Restaurant (@SongCooks)was a mere 20 steps away.

I came here on a chilly winter day with the family to celebrate my sister's birthday. After we parked I wanted just to run inside to the warmth. From the outside, nothing really striked me as unusual. It seemed like the typical small, quaint, and cozy Korean joint with limited seating. To my surprise, it was quite the opposite. This may very well be the largest Korean restaurant I've been too!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

[Toronto] Bestellen - Suckling Pig Dinner

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972 College Street
Toronto, ON

WARNING: Please be advised if you are a vegetarian or have opinions against the consumption of animals/cute piglets, then you need to stop reading right now.

No seriously, because this is going to be one graphic post of meat consumption. If the title hadn't given it a way yet, you're going to be feasting your eyes on some serious suckling pig.Bestellen (@BestellenTO) is probably one of the few places I know in Toronto where an entire suckling pig can be ordered, so it was definitely an experience when I decided to head over with Ben, Carmen (@carmenhungry), Justine (@foodigatorJ), Jing (@jingloh) Joe (@jsinb88), Mike (@chopstickhero), and Vickie (@kiki_BFF) to partake in a family-style pig roast dinner for 8! For a price of $59 per person (and 72 hours notice), here is what you can expect out of Bestellen's Suckling Pig Dinner.

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Wednesday, January 23, 2013

[Toronto] Reds Wine Tavern

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77 Adelaide Street West
First Canadian Place
Toronto, ON
Tel: (416) 862-7337

A couple weeks ago, I had the pleasure of attending Vickie's birthday dinner (@kiki_BFF) at Reds Wine Tavern (@REDSWINETAVERN). Along with the company of 15 others, which included Justine (@foodigatorJ) and my boyfriend Rob, the restaurant crafted a pre-fixed menu for us. Normally I like having the flexibility of choosing my own dishes, but considering all the great things I heard about this newly renovated restaurant, I didn't mind it too much. And with the Executive Chef in the kitchen being Season 2 Top Chef Canada contestant, Ryan Gallagher (who by the way, was one I rooted for), I had some faith in the pre-set menu.

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Reds Wine Tavern

Friday, January 4, 2013

[Boston] Neptune Oyster

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63 Salem St
Boston, MA 02113
(617) 742-3474

If you had a chance to read my post on Mike's Pastry, then you might recall me mentioning how my friends and I stuffed our faces with canolis prior to a big seafood dinner. Well ladies and gentlemen, this is said dinner. Neptune Oyster, the 8 year old restaurant headed by Chef Michael Serpa (@michaelserpa), would be the last seafood restaurant during my short but sweet Boston trip.

Atlantic Fish Company, was the very first restaurant we visited in Beantown, and in comparison, Neptune Oyster has a more intimate and lively atmosphere. It almost feels like a secret restaurant, but then again any place that has a 2-3 hour wait time for a table can't be too deep undercover.