• [Food Post] Tsujiri Toronto

    Tsujiri Toronto's first North American outpost opened earlier this week near Bay and Dundas amid much fanfare. This is their first foray into a market outside Asia, but they are planning on expanding to other cities in North America in the future. I had the pleasure of getting a sneak peek of some of the products that Tsujiri Toronto has to offer a day before its soft opening, and got the chance to chat with one of the managers, Tylor Shek.

  • [Food Post] Nordstrom Eaton Centre Opening Gala featuring Daniel et Daniel

    The gala opening epitomizes what Nordstrom is all about - great customer service and consistency of the brand. Hence why they partnered with Daniel et Daniel to be the official caterer of the Nordstrom Opening Gala, as both companies share the same ideals and business ethics.

  • [Food Post] Waterloo Food Tour

    The Region of Waterloo is home to many regions that inspire start-ups (such as Thalmic Labs), housing, and of course many restaurants. The Region is developing and propelling a movement alike many urban areas, by bringing innovative ideas and talented people together, whilst keeping the scenic and spacious rural landscape. Andrew Coppolino of www.waterlooregioneats.com (@WatRegionEats on Twitter) gave us a tour on behalf of Waterloo Region Tourism, with 4 set destinations in mind for the day.

  • [Food Post] Ebisu on Queen / Ebisu Toronto

    Ebisu Japanese Restaurant originated from Vancouver, as its first location opened in December of 2006. There are two locations in Vancouver and one in Richmond, along with two restaurants under the Kamei names. The brand itself is very well-known in Vancouver, and they hope to expand it in Toronto with this new outpost.

  • [Food Post] Dave and Buster's Oakville Grand Opening

    However, over the last two decades, much has changed, including the demise of arcade and game centers due the emergence of mobile phones and Netflix. The health movement over the last six years has also made Dave and Buster's traditional burger and fries menu far less appealing than what it was. With that being said, they have changed their food menu, and the options are now more diverse. The menu is rather extensive with items like shareable appetizers, side salads, beef steaks and ribs, pasta, sandwiches, and so much more.

  • [Food Post] Morals Village Mississauga

    Morals Village is a hot pot restaurant chain with over 600 locations in China. They opened their first Canadian location in 2015, and has since grown at a relatively rapid pace. About 1.5 weeks ago, I had the pleasure of attending the Morals Village Mississauga Grand Opening Event. The Mississauga location is their 5th Canadian location, and they have plans to open another in Ottawa. With that being said, Morals Village prides themselves in providing top-notch quality and Szechuan cuisine influenced flavour with their hot pot offering.

  • [Event] The Royal Dinner with Chef Michael Bonacini

    The Royal Winter Agricultural Fair is now open until November 13, 2016 at the Exhibition Place, Toronto. Start the holiday season early by attending one of the largest combined indoor agricultural fairs and international equestrian competitions in the world. The fair takes place every November in Toronto, and it is where guests can enjoy the best in agriculture, local food, and equestrian competitions from across the country. There are so many things to do, and see at this year's The Royal Winter Agricultural Fair.

  • [Food Post] CNE Media Preview 2016

    Every Sunday, Montecito offers a brunch buffet starting at 11 am to 3 pm. Brunch isn't new at Montecito, but they recently revamped their brunch buffet, and added several new items to the menu. The 12,000-square-foot Montecito opened up its doors late 2014, and is a partnership between Hollywood director Ivan Reitman and Chef Jonathan Waxman.

  • [Travel] Satsuki and Mei's House from Totoro

    My Neighbor Totoro is a 1988 animated production written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki. It's a childhood favorite of many people and I have seen many shops dedicated to selling Totoro merchandise while in Japan.

  • [Travel] Day #15 in Japan [Koyasan]

    A shukubo is an accommodation that allows you to stay in a Japanese temple or shrine for the night, and enables you to experience the culture. You are given your own personal room, and there are multiple washroom facilities throughout the temple.

Showing posts with label Media Events & Tastings. Show all posts

Akira Back Toronto

Celebrity chef Akira Back's first Canadian namesake restaurant is now open in the Bisha Hotel Toronto.  Located inside of the luxury boutique hotel, the restaurant offers a menu of Japanese cuisine with Korean flavors and Canadian twist. We had the pleasure of attending a media preview at Akira Back Toronto last week, where we were treated to a tasting menu of some of his best dishes. 


I was looking forward to the opening of his restaurant when it was announced earlier this summer. Akira Back has a growing reputation in the hospitality industry for the creativity that he brings to his culinary creations. Back's food is inspired by his passions for adventure, travel and culinary exploration. "Each of his restaurants features inventive menus that embody his life and travel inspirations throughout the world, representing the root of his culture and his culinary background in every dish. Akira Back is one of the most exciting names in the culinary world, growing rapidly across major international". (credit: press release) 


“Toronto is a cultural epicentre with a diverse and multi­cultural food scene, which is why I always hoped to have a restaurant here,” says Chef Akira Back. “The menu will feature a number of my signature dishes along with some new ones that were inspired by my time spent in the city.” - Akira Back
Throughout his career, he has many culinary successes, including being awarded the title of “Rising Star” by Restaurant Hospitality (2008) and has had the distinct honor of hosting the prestigious James Beard House dinners (2008, 2010, 2011 and 2012, 2013 & 2014). Besides having restaurants in the USA, he has opened several overseas locations such as Akira Back Restaurants in Singapore, New Delhi and Jakarta.


Walking into the restaurant, I was in awe by the space as it paid homage to traditional Japanese culture with contemporary ornamentation. "Subtle nods to Japanese culture will appear through refined and intimate details which balance the central design feature, a full­-length cove ceiling showcasing a colourful custom graphic". The overall interiors contain several neutral elements with bold wooden decor, which creates an intimate yet classy environment that appeals to a wide range of diners.




The menu at Akira Back Toronto features a number of his signature dishes, along with several new ones that were inspired by his visit to Canada. The tasting menu that night consists of five courses with wine pairings that perfectly complement each specific dish. 


[First Course] 

Tuna & Mushroom Pizza - truffle oil, micro shiso


[Second Course] 

Jeju Domi - orange tobiko, red sorrel, chojang

Salmon Tiradito - roasted peaches, Kizami wasabi, spinach cilantro


[Third Course] 

Eggplant Miso - sweet miso sauce


Rock Shrimp - sriracha ranch

(photo credit: @akirabacktoronto)

[Fourth Course] 

Seared Halibut - mushrooms, soy beurre blanc,

(photo credit: @akirabacktoronto)

48 Hour Wagyu Short Rib - root vegetables, quail egg, braising jus


[Dessert] 

Black & White Sesame Matcha Cake - salted agave ice cream


Yuzu Citrus - sable crumble, strawberry gelato 



“Akira Back is an extremely talented chef on the cusp of exploding internationally and we’re excited that Bisha will be his first location in Canada. After interviewing many recognized chefs over a three­year period, I felt that Akira Back’s talent and uniqueness would be the perfect match for Bisha Toronto to make it a complete hospitality experience,” says Charles Khabouth, Chairman, ICONINK. (credit: press release) 


Akira Back Toronto is definitely a welcoming addition to the city of Toronto for its visionary dishes that encompasses the combination of Asian and North American cuisine.


Social Media:

Disclaimer: The food provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.


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Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) 2017

Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) opens today! Prior to their official opening date, I had the opportunity to attend CNE Media Preview Day where bloggers and media got a sneak peek at some of the creative concoctions from this year's The Toronto Star Food Building. We got to sample several innovative foods for 2017 at the CNE. The CNE opens Friday Aug, 18 and runs until Monday, Sept 4, 2017. For this year's Canadian National Exhibition, the food vendors have combined traditional carnival eats with trendy ingredients.

We started the morning off with some coffee and treats from Tim's Horton's.


Deep Fried Cheese Curds from the King of Curds



The Juicy Oink from Hot Bunzz Street Cuisine


Pickle Balls from Canadian Bacon Pickle 


Iced Caps from Tim Horton's



Pancake Bowls from Eat My Bowls


Last Samurai from Yatai


Dragon's Breath Crepe from Eative




Strawberry Shortsteak from Philthy Philly's


Stacked Philly Cheesesteak from Philthy Philly's


Vegan Poutine from Dutch Frites


Cricket Cone from Bug Bistro


 Takoyaki (Crispy Octopus Balls) from Japanese Karaage Cuisine


Campfire Smore's Cones from Chimney Stax


Fried Cheese Balls 


Spaghetti Donut Balls from Fritta



The Colossal Coliseum from San Francesco's Italian Sandwiches


Popcorn


All Canadian Red Hot Burger from Bacon Nation


What-A-Melon


Sugar Mountain from Cake Shack


The Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) runs from Aug. 18 to Sept 4, and admission is $18. There is also a discounted rate of $6 if you go after 5 pm from Monday to Thursday. That is an amazing deal! Besides the food, there are tons of attractions this year like the Aerial Acrobatics & Ice Skating Show featuring Canadian figure skater Elvis Stojko, CNE Gaming Garage, Innovation Garage, and CNE Aquarama. 

Social Media

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheEx
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/letsgototheex/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/letsgototheex
Website: http://theex.com/

Disclaimer: The food provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.


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Zucchi Olive Oil Blending Event x Flavor Your Life

 We had the pleasure of attending an oil blending event held at the Aria Ristorante a couple of weeks ago. The event was hosted by Zucchi, a family-owned olive oil company that has been in business since 1810. They are committed to creating the highest quality oils, and only source from the top olive oil growers. Zucchi pride themselves on the techniques they use, high quality, and incredible flavors of their products.


BLENDING IS AN ART which requires a large number of technical and scientific skills, as well as the ability to conceive and create the personality of an olive oil. (source: http://www.zucchi.com/)


Both Zucchi and Flavor Your Life have partnered up to educate North American consumers about the quality and authenticity of extra virgin olive oil from Europe. Many of the companies in the Flavor Your Life program gets their funding from the European Union, the Italian government, and a consortium of European extra virgin olive oil producers. So, the blending event was an opportunity for them to reach out to a larger demographic of consumers.


Zucchi is known for their Art of Blending, where their olive oil consists of a blend of multiple refined oils. Thus, their Blending Experience events aim to give participants a direct, sensory initiation into exactly how a new olive oil blend is created. The event was led by Zucchi's Olive Oil Blend Master, Giovanni Zucchi. He guided guests through the flavor profiles of various oils from the Zucchi portfolio, explaining in-depth the olive oil making process, and the history of Zucchi Olive Oil  (source: http://www.zucchi.com/).

http://flavor-your-life.com/

 Before the blending experience commenced, we got to smell and taste the 4 different olive oils. First, we had to pour it into a small plastic cup and warmed it in our hands before inhaling the aroma. After distinguishing the notes, we got to taste it. Next up, we were provided with the opportunity to create our own Zucchi Olive Oil blend. Each guest was provided with four different blends of Zucchi Olive Oil, and we were instructed to mix the oils in a graduated cylinder to create our preferred blend. The entire set-up reminded me of science class when I was in high school. It was really fun getting to blend the different oils together.


How To Smell An EVOO

1)  Take a small cup of olive oil, cover the top with your right hand, and then gently rotate it in the palm of your other hand.
2) Tilt the cup at an angle.
3) Uncover your cup and hold it to the top up to your nose to inhale 2-3 times.



Olive oils from Crete, Arbequina, Sicily and Spain



Our finished product =)


After the blending experience with Zucchi, we got to enjoy a number of different canap├ęs such as this delightful shrimp skewers at Aria Ristorante. The dishes showcase the various flavors of Zucchi Olive Oil and how it naturally complements different food items.


The Zucchi Olive Oil event was a very informative one, and I learned quite a bit about the art of olive oil blending. High quality olive oil surely makes a drastic difference compared to the cheaper ones on the market. Thank you to Zucchi and Flavor Your Life for hosting the event! 

You can experience how to create a new oil with the help of their blendmasters at Zucchi's blending experience events. You can check the calendar here at http://www.zucchi.com/en/events-en/.


 Zucchi Olive Oil's Social Media:

Instagram ||  Facebook || Youtube || Website

 Flavor Your Life's Social Media:

Disclaimer: The products provided in this post was complimentary. However, all of the opinions expressed in this review are of my own.


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