All posts tagged: restaurant

2016 Winterlicious Top Picks

Between Jan 29 – Feb 11, enjoy a 3 course meal for a fixed price. This is a great chance to try out the plethora of dining options in Toronto. Also a great opportunity to hit up your coveted list of fancy restaurants that you would normally need to sacrifice a paycheck to entertain your tastebuds.  Here are my personal favorites based on past experience. Canoe – Contemporary Canadian.  $28 Lunch // $45 Dinner One of the most highly requested restaurants for Winterlicious/Summerlious, Canoe sits on top of the TD building on the 54th floor. Soak in the bird’s eye view of Toronto as you dine, or better yet, come during sunset for a extra special touch to your meal. The service is excellent and each dish is carefully crafted together like a work of art. Be prepared to experience a variety of unusual textures and tastes that Canoe aims to incorporate in all its seasonal dishes. Where: 66 King Street West, 54th Floor (TD Tower) Estiatorio Volos – Modern Greek.  $23 Lunch // $35 Dinner This is …

Paradise Island, Maui

Maui is the all encompassing definition of island life – pristine beaches, tropical palm trees and glorious sunsets. Although K & I planned a good handful of fun activities like surfing and snorkeling, we were determined to slip right into the chill lifestyle of Mauians for the duration of our one week excape.  Maui is known for a few must-eat food items: Macadamia nuts, tropical fruits, and Kona coffee.  On our first day, we had a delicious hearty breakfast made with local ingredients at Leoda’s Kitchen & Pie Shop.  I had their Banana Pancakes which was like eating the best banana bread in breakfast form.  K had their house Frittata and a side of Coconut French Toast drizzled in condensed milk.  Two thumbs up for this place! After breakfast we set off to explore the island by driving along the highway that hugs that parameter of Maui. Almost every strip of the drive was filled with views of the dazzling ocean and mighty mountains in the background. There are plenty of spots for scenic views. …

Boston: Exploring Harvard and finding the best lobster roll

We started the day off with a nice jog around Jamaica Pond which was very close to the neighborhood we were staying in – Jamaica Plains.  I would describe JP as divided into two parts – The Ghetto and the Hipster hood.  The Ghetto is pretty run down and sketchy while the other side is lined with cute little shops and home to quite a wealthy looking group of folks.  I just remember seeing huge mansion size houses near Jamaica Pond when we were jogging.  By the way, its not really a ‘pond’ one lap around the body of water is about 2.5km.  After getting a good sweat we stopped by one of the indie cafes in the neighborhood called 7 Pond Coffee Bar to grab a well deserved Americano and croissant. The cafe was actually one of the most clever and well thought out spaced I’ve seen.  The scafe is tiny, but the way it was designed maximized every square foot.  The photo here doesn’t do it justice… the quality of the interior design was …

Toronto Summerlicious – Sassafraz Review

Toronto hosts two very popular culinary events annually – Summerlicous & Winterlicuous.  Restaurants across the GTA participate by offering a 3-course prix fix meal to encourage diners to try out new cuisines and get a taste of the culinary talent in the T.O. Usually I’d end up going to about 3 restaurants on average but because I’m spending this summer in Ottawa, I was lucky enough to sneak in one meal.  I dined at Sassafraz with my family for lunch – an upscale French inspired restaurant in the heart of Yorkville.  Click here to see their $28 lunch and $45 menu. The service in Sassafraz is very good.  The waitors are attentive and are there when you need them, and out of sight when you don’t.  They provide fresh, warm bread and generously re-fill throughout the meal. For the Appetizer, I had the Bay Scallops with new potato, chorizo, and sumac roasted cauliflower.  I was a little disappointed at the size of the scallops, I’m not a fan of these tiny ones at all.  The chorizo …

Ottawa Photo Diary 2

Summer in Ottawa is a great time to just roam around discover new neighborhoods and good eats.  Ottawa also does a very good job of keeping their public gardens and trees very well groomed.  I love jogging the canal and just taking in the scenic views. Fraser Cafe – A neat little cafe featuring fresh produce.  I had their Cobb Salad and it was actually so good!  They added small twists of flavor from pickled radishes and crispy chips on top and a light dressing which complimented the crumbles of blue cheese very well.  Great place for a light, healthy meal. I’m quite a fan of LavAzza coffee, their beans produce a really good strong brew and I love using it for making espresso.  They have a cute little cafe on Lansdowne which also serves gelato and some prepared foods.  Iced Americano is my go-to summer caffinated drink and LavAzza makes a really one – none of that watered down crap. Took a stroll down to Victoria Island to check out the views there.  Nothing special …

Summer in the Capital

Surprisingly, there is a lot of events happening in Ottawa in the summer.  Almost anything you’d normally find in Toronto, there’s something similar (granted, on a smaller scale).  Although, there is one thing that Toronto is lacking – Nordstrom.  I’ve found some great deals on their summer and anniversary sale.  Their built in restaurant, Bazille, is actually a great spot to dine after a good shopping haul.  They have a lovely patio area, delicious food, and great service.  Bonus: the menu is very affordable so you don’t have to choose between that pair of sunglasses or a satisfying dining experience. I like to stick in scenic shots of my jogging routes in all my Ottawa related posts because… I mean, look how soothing this is. Bluesfest – another huge event in Ottawa that runs multiple weeks with dozens of artists coming to perform including the likes of Keith Urban and Hedley and many more in between.  I had the pleasure of attending courtesy of my company.  We had a gorgeous two tiered booth with an open …

Toronto Food Finds

With so many new restaurants and food trends popping up in Toronto, there’s always new things to try!  Here are some places I’ve hit up recently. Hibiscus – A tiny little cafe tucked behind the plethora of stores and restaurants in Kensington Market.  I’ve easily walked right past this place multiple times even when I’m trying to look for it.  But it’s well worth the hunt.  Their menu might be small, but the salads and crepe sure do pack a punch in terms of flavor and presentation.  I love their salad bowls – full of beautiful colors and textures and hearty enough to keep you full for hours.  Their Squash Puree has a nice kick of ginger and their savory crepes are to die for.  Hibiscus also has an assortment of vegan ice cream and desserts.  Seating is limited but I’ve never had a problem with getting a table.  Highly recommend! Japango – another tiny restaurant that one can easily miss.  You know it’s the real deal when its run by Japanese people.  Their Japango Roll is …

Ottawa First Impressions

Although just four hours away from Toronto, my move to Ottawa was not an easy one.  There is a  very noticeable distinction in culture and way of life in the Capital.  My initial impressions of the city is how quiet and slower it is compared to Toronto.  People simply move at their own pace and there is rarely a sense of urgency.  Downtown Ottawa consists mostly of government buildings and everyone disperses after work hours, leaving the premise pretty deserted for the most part.  However, there are some gems that I’ve uncovered so far. The Parliament buildings are always a sight to behold.  The mixture of old and new architecture in Ottawa brings character into the city.  And the canal and bridges are lovely and peaceful to stroll across. The Annual Tulip Festival is held in Ottawa which stems from Princess Juliana’s token of gratitude for her stay in Canada while in exile.  10,000 tulips are gifted each year and attracts upwards of 500,000 tourists. I was shocked at how many exotic breeds of Tulips …

Hong Kong [Part 6] Blue Butcher, Gardens, LKF, Dragon Dance

We spent our last day in Hong Kong hitting up all the places that remained on our bucket list.  We started the day off with brunch at the Blue Butcher.  The picture below should explain the name..don’t worry, it’s not real blood.  Apparently this place was extremely hard to book as people usually reserve up to a month in advance!  And for a good reason.  For a fixed price, they offer a buffet style selection of delicious salads all made form quality ingredients such as prosciutto, tuna steak, and beef.  They also have all-you-can-eat raw oysters, foie gras, and a waffle station.  This is just the first course by the way.  For my main, I had eggs benedict over a slab of crusty bread.  Other options included French Toast, half roast chicken, and burgers.  The 3-course meal finishes with dessert which was very delicious as well.  I would highly recommend Blue Butcher! After the heavy brunch, we walked around Hollywood road which is the oldest road in HK.  Lot’s little shops and such in the …

Germany: Good Eats Pt 2 (Restaurants)

Although Berlin has an abundance of street food, one cannot ignore the many restaurants the city has to offer for some quality dishes and tasty German beer. When I think German food, I instantly think sausages and pork knuckle.  One of the first proper places I ate at was a traditional restaurant recommended by a friend called Mutter Hoppe.  It was a beautiful day and we sat outside in the comfort of the lazy afternoon sunlight.  I tried a wheat beer which was pretty much overflowing with foam and it had a very interesting aftertaste.  It’s very difficult to describe the taste of beer using words but it’s very different your typical mainstream brews. Of course we had to sample their pork knuckle which came in a huge slab of meaty goodness served with traditional sauerkraut, potatoes and peas.  The meat was literally falling apart and it tasted heavenly with the caramelized saurerkraut. Their sausages were alright.  I’m not usually a fan of sauerkraut but I found myself reaching for forkful after forkful of the …