All posts filed under: North America

Toronto Cafes you Need to Check Out

There’s nothing like sipping a steamy latte on a lazy Sunday afternoon as you casually people watch or read your favorite book. ¬†This is starting to become a weekend tradition of mine so I’m sharing some of my favorite spots ūüôā Colette A beautiful Parisian inspired cafe right next to the Thompson Hotel on King and Portland. Colette boasts a bakery, bar, and lounge all cleverly divided with different atmospheres and decor. Aside form grabbing a cup of coffee served in a delicate porcelain white cup, you’ll want to try their brunch menu which includes classics like Eggs Benedict on a croissant or their Lemon Ricotta Pancakes. NEO Coffee Bar If you enjoy Japanese desserts, you will LOVE this place. NEO makes their desserts and coffees in house. You can watch the pastry chef decorate freshly baked green tea swiss rolls as you sip on your matcha latte. The design of the cafe is also very Japan-esque – clean cut and simple. Field Trip Cafe Just west of Ossington is a a humble little cafe …

Gifts for Him: Unique Stores for Last Minute Shoppers

Your holiday shopping guide for men. ¬†Last minute hustling doesn’t have to mean boring cookie-cutter gifts that he will never use. ¬†I’ve uncovered a few Toronto based stores¬†that¬†offer a little something special for every man. Frank & Oak For: The man that appreciates the art of dressing well without breaking the bank. Where:¬†735 Queen Street West Sale? YES! Frank & Oak offers a solid¬†selection of dress shirts, blazers, and men’s accessories. There’s even a coffee shop right inside this store if you need a pump of caffeine to get the shopping started! ¬†They really do offer some great items for very reasonable prices. GOTSTYLE For: Those who want to splurge for that special someone. Where: 62 Bathurst Street Sale? YES! GOTSTYLE doesn’t mess around when it comes to dressing men impeccably. I remember walking in there with my boyfriend to try on some suits and I was very impressed by how knowledgable the staff were about fabrics and clothing production. They have an excellent selection and even a salon inside. Uncle Otis For: The stylish …

Gifts for Her: Unique Stores for Last Minute Shoppers

The holidays are in full swing and between the office parties and potlucks with friends, it can be hard to allocate solid time for gift shopping! ¬†If you are still looking for a special something for a special someone, I’ve got just the stores for you.   Jonathan + Olivia For: The high fashion gal who loves her sleek all black outfits with badass ankle boots and structured leather bags Where: 49 Ossington Aveunue On Sales? YES! If your girl is into high fashion, this is the place to be. ¬†Think of this store as a condensed Holt Renfrew (focusing on black and leather pieces) with a healthy variety of designers like Alexander Wang, Rag & Bone, Isabel Marant. COS For: The minimalist girl who rocks the shapeless look and loves solids and structured pieces Where: 85 Bloor Street West A Swedish clothing label that has recently planted a flagship in the heart of Yorkville amongst a sea of other high fashion and trendy retail stores. ¬†I first encountered COS in Berlin and fell in …

Pittsburg and Ohio: Baseball and Stumbling upon one Hell of a Waffle House

Our last full day stop at Pittsburg was a rather spontaneous one. ¬†We actually didn’t have anything planned at all. ¬†Whilst doing some impromptu research on the city, we thought maybe we’d check out the¬†Carnegie¬†Science Center there. ¬†Unfortunately… Pittsburg’s plethora of confusing and winding roads took us on a detour which pushed our time back a bit. ¬†So instead we drove aimlessly around looking for a place to settle for dinner… got lost… and stumbled upon this amazing view of the city. ¬†There, we met a couple of locals and asked them what to check out. ¬†With the recommendation of eating on Market street, we were off.¬† ¬†Market street is essentially a square with a bunch of restaurants and this cool glass castle-like building. ¬†After days of eating greasy American food, we were feeling like Asian cuisine. ¬†On the particular day we were in Pittsburg, there must have been some sort of Anime or Comic convention going on because people were dressed up like cartoons all around the street. ¬†We saw Lightning from FF13 and …

West Virginia – Exploring the depths of a Bat Cave

Heading up north back to Toronto, we stopped by West Virginia to check out Organ Cave – one of the oldest and largest caves on the East Coast of the States. ¬†It was a hiding place for over 1,100 Confederate soldiers for three years and a mining operation for extracting minerals such as saltpeter for the American Civil war. I arrived totally underdressed and was sent back to get some sneakers on and warm clothes… Thank god I listened to our guide because it was freezing inside the dungeons cavities of the giant cave. ¬† All sorts of cool creatures inhabit the cave including bats! ¬†I’ve never seen one in real life and these guys were hibernating so we got a pretty close up look at them. ¬†Some of the bats have a¬†coat ing of frost on their body because the heat from their body freezes over from the cool temperatures of the cave! ¬†We also learned that, unfortunately, because of changes in the ecosystem thousands of bats are dying each year ūüė¶¬† Our guide …

Seafood in South Carolina

Charleston was my favorite city by far from our road trip. ¬†It had a very Californian feel with its palm trees, warm dry breezes, and an active community. ¬†All the beaches, restaurants, and points of interest we wanted to hit up were within driving distance of one another which was brilliant. ¬†Our first stop was breakfast at Hominy Grill. ¬†We found this place online as it was starred in several food networks and was highly rated – for a good reason too. ¬†The place is extremely clean and beautifully decorated that gave it a perfect summer brunch venue feel. ¬† We opted to sit outdoors since it was such a gorgeous day. ¬†Their breakfast menu is a modest one-pager with Southern classics like Shrimp & Grits, Biscuits, and waffles. ¬†I went straight for the grits. ¬†K went with a spinach and feta omelet with taters.¬† This being the first time I’ve ever tried grits, I was blown away by how much flavor was packed into what seemingly looked like plain porridge. ¬†It was delicious!!! ¬†In …

Lounging in Myrtle Beach

It was a gruesome 8hr drive from Washington to South Carolina, but the prospect of sand and sun waiting for us in Myrtle Beach was more than enough to keep us motivated on the road. ¬†In just a few short days we managed to escape surprise snow attacks and the bitter cold in Toronto to Mrytle Beach. ¬†Waking up to this view was glorious. First thing we did was grab a coffee and go on a nice long walk along the endless stretch of beach ¬† We had plans to fish along this pier, but we were too knocked out from our long drive to wake up at the crack of dawn. Still a very nice pier though. ¬†Great view! ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† Fish Tacos and a juicy burger for lunch (Mmmm). Played a few rounds of mini put…this was my first time and I found it highly entertaining Cooling off an intense game with some ice cream ūüėȬ† Then a quick pizza for dinner at Broadway at the Beach which is a large …

In the American Capital

Our next stop after Baltimore was a brief layover in Washington. ¬†We were very impressed by how cleanly and organized the city was.¬† ¬† The Union Station was huge… almost as nice as New York’s Grand Central. Our objective was to check out the White House… but instead we ended up at the Capitol Building which we thought was the White House… Folks, there are a lot of white buildings in Washington. ¬† Then I found the Securities & Exchange Commission!! ¬†For some reason I was really excited… as a finance major, I only read about this in textbooks and suddenly I get the see the physical building where all the action takes place. ¬† On the topic of nerdy things… ¬†One of the best things about Washington is that they boast an impressive collection of museums… for free! ¬†I hopped on Google and saw that the Museum of Natural History as one of the most popular and highest ranked. I had a serious case of deja vu as I entered the museum. ¬†I realize …

Baltimore, MD

Driving along the East Coast, the one food – amongst the many – that was on our to-eat list was really good seafood. ¬†Baltimore offered an abundance of seafood restaurants, all of which came with pretty hefty price tags. ¬†I know seafood in general is pricier, but we must have been pretty deep in touristy/busy district because the prices we saw were pretty inflated. We settled for an Italian family-owned restaurant called Sebastian which was a modest little place tucked into Little Italy. ¬†The service was superb and the food was absolutely delicious. ¬†For our appetizer, we shared a portabello mushroom stuffed with a generous amount of crab meat. For our mains, I got pan fried jumbo shrimp with a side of pasta in marinara sauce. ¬†K got this amazing melt-in-your-mouth Chilean sea bass on penne. ¬†The whole meal was definitely a splurge but I haven’t had such delicious seafood in a while so I think it was worth it. The next day we got up bright and early to check out a breakfast joint …

Philadelphia, PA

I used to dread road trips. ¬†As a kid, the thought of getting jammed in a car with my parents arguing about directions for hours on end was enough to make road tripping an obsolete term – I did not associate it with vacations. ¬†It wasn’t until recently when I eased myself into short road trips with friends that I realized…it wasn’t all that painful. ¬†I cannot stress enough how big of a difference travel companions can make or break a trip. ¬†After tackling drives to New York and Montreal, I was about to embark on my biggest roadtrip yet. ¬†A 14hr drive away from Toronto to South Carolina. ¬†To make the journey less daunting, we decided to stop in different cities along the way, experiencing the culture and food of 8 destinations. Our first stop was Philadelphia. ¬†No…we didn’t go for a Philly Cheesesteak. ¬†Instead, we visited DiNiC’s, a sandwich joint that was featured on Man x Food which looked utterly mouth watering. ¬†We arrived in Philly on a wet, chilly day, but we …