• [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 Toronto. Show all posts

[Charity Event] Eat To The Beat 2017


Eat To The Beat is back for its 22nd year as one of Toronto’s must-attend culinary events and fundraisers. The charity event is hosted by the Canadian Cancer Society (CCS), and will be held at the Roy Thomson Hall (60 Simcoe Street) on Tuesday, October 17 from 7 pm – 10 pm. Guests have the opportunity to enjoy both savoury and sweet dishes at 60 food stations and a wide selection of alcohol/non-alcoholic beverages from 20 drink stations.


Funds raised at Eat To The Beat will be directed towards supporting breast cancer programs and services of the Canadian Cancer Society. An estimated 25,000 Canadian women are diagnosed with breast cancer every year. So, the funds will surely help and assist patient support.

EVENT DETAILS:

Event: Eat To The Beat
Date: Tuesday, October 17, 2017
Time: 7 pm to 10 pm
Location: Roy Thomson Hall (60 Simcoe Street)
General Admission Ticket: $189
Tickets: Buy here

Ticket: Tickets include savoury and sweet dishes at 60 stations along with wine, beer and a selection of non-alcoholic libations from 20 of the finest beverage purveyors.

* a tax receipt will be issued for the maximum allowable amount








The event exclusively features 60 female chefs supporting women through the challenges that come with a breast cancer diagnosis. The line up of chefs is impressive and includes some of the following:

Sandra Abballe, Succulent Chocolates and Sweets
Suzanne Baby, Gallery Grill at Hart House
Suzanne Barr, Kid Chocolate
Manal Bashir, Victor Dries
Vanessa Baudanza, The Rolling Pin
Wanda Beaver, Wanda’s Pie in the Sky
Renee Bellefeuille, Art Gallery of Ontario
Cathy Beneway, Creative Catering by Cathy
Emma Beqaj, Emma’s Eatery Catering
Richell Castillo, Fabbrica
Arvinda Chauhan, Arvinda’
Preena Chauhan, Arvinda’
Tiiu Christie, Marigolds and Onions
Tysa Christie, Marigolds and Onions
Felicia Derose, Chase Fish & Oyster
Donna Dooher, Mildred’s Temple Kitchen
Stephanie Duong, Roselle
Rossy Earle, SupiCucu
Alexandra Feswick, The Drake Hotel
Elia Herrera, Los Colibris, El Caballito
Kimberly Humby, East & Main Bistro
Anna Janes, Cocomira Confections
Leyla Kizilirmak, Art Square Gallery and Café
Charlotte Langley, Groundwork Food and Scout Canning
Vanessa Le Page, The Cake Lady
Tara Lee, Eastbound Brewing Co.
Jacqueline Lo, Ruelo Patisserie
Isabelle Loiacono, The Rolling Pin
Lynn Mendelson, Lynn Mendelson Catering
Tiffany Miguel, George Restaurant
Joan Monfaredi, Park Hyatt Hotel
Jennifer Mooers, Hooked
Lauren Mozer, Elle Cuisine
Andrea Nicholson, Butchie’s and Killer Condiments
Anne Novo, The Gladstone Hotel
Leona Nyman, Azzurra
Catherine O’Donnell, Willow Cakes and Pastries
Christine Ostiguy, Yorkshire Pudding Catering
Angela Panigas, The Sultan’s Tent & Cafe Moroc
Chef Véronique Perez, Crepes a GoGo Spadina and Limonana
Jennifer Perusini, BerBer Social
Andrea Poirier, Inn on the Twenty
Karen Rachlin, Bite Catering
Nuit Regular, Pai Northern Thai Kitchen, Sabai Sabai, Sukhothai
Emily Richards, Professional Home Economist
Sophia Rouleau, Ace Bakery
Dufflet Rosenberg, Dufflet Pastries
Jeanne da Silva, George Brown College Chef School
Alida Solomon, Tutti Matti
Lili Sullivan, Pomodoro in the Country
Amy Symington, George Brown College Chef School
Meghan Van Horne, Public Schoolhouse
Elaine Wong, The Omni King Edward Hotel
Winlai Wong, The Badminton & Racquet Club of Toronto
Vanessa Yeung, Aphrodite Cooks

All of the chefs are donating their time and talent to the event, so please support this great cause. More information and buy tickets at https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/eat-to-the-beat-presented-by-kitchenaid-tickets-35572292685.


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[Event] Taste Matters - Eva's Initiatives for Homeless Youth

Taste Matters is a charity event hosted by Eva's Initiatives for Homeless Youth. The charitable organization is an award-winning organization that aims to help young people (16-24) who are homeless, living in shelters, “couch-surfing”, or housing insecure. Eva's also offers family and individual counseling to at-risk and homeless youth and their families. I think it's amazing that there is an outlet out there that works collaboratively with homeless and at-risk youth to help them reach their potential to lead productive.

Eva’s Taste Matters will be taking place on Thursday, November 2, 2017 at the Liberty Grand Entertainment Complex from 6 pm. The event is a feast of delectable delights that brings together Toronto’s finest food and beverage. Proceeds go to safe shelter, nutritious food and 24-7 support for homeless youth at Eva’s.  Early bird tickets are currently on sale at https://www.biddingforgood.com/auction/communicate/eventtickets.action?auctionId=285405395

EVENT DETAILS:

Event: Eva's Taste Matters
Date: Thursday, November 2, 2017
Time: 6 pm to 9 pm
Location: Liberty Grand Entertainment Complex
Tickets: Buy here


 Eva’s Place opened their doors in 1994, and has since expanded from one to three shelters - Eva's Place, Eva’s Satellite and Eva’s Phoenix. All three shelters offer several different programs and services for homeless and at-risk youths. Since they started, they have helped approximately over 19,000 youth from the Greater Toronto Area and across Canada. It's a safe haven where youths are provided a supportive and safe environment as they try to better their lives.

The Mission: "The mission of Eva’s Initiatives is to work collaboratively with homeless and at-risk youth to help them reach their potential to lead productive, self-sufficient and healthy lives by providing safe shelter and a range of services, and to create long term solutions for homeless youth by developing and implementing proactive and progressive services." (source)

The grand-scale event will be held in The Liberty Grand in downtown Toronto. There will be over 20 food and beverage hosts, including a few tables featuring baked goods from the youth of Eva’s. Please support this great cause as all of the money raised from the event will go towards helping homeless youth receive critical job and life skills training and education, shelter, and housing for better futures.

Please enjoy all the photos from last year's Eva’s Taste Matters - Eva's Initiatives for Homeless Youth event below!









Last year's event had 466 attendees and over $174,000 was raised for the charity. It was record breaking!!


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Yumba - Toronto's Food Delivery Service

A couple of weeks ago, I had the chance to check out Yumba's meal delivery subscription service. They are Toronto's new trending healthy eating experience offering carefully sourced natural meals curated by local chefs. This is especially helpful for those who have busy work schedules, and do not have the time to cook or go out. Yumba offers gourmet meals with great taste, and conveniently delivered to customers' doorsteps weekly in a chilled reusable thermal package. 


 The meals are diverse balanced dishes of well portioned proteins, carbohydrates and nutrients. 



"We started Yumba because we saw an opportunity to create a healthy eating experience that’s innovative, affordable, and transparent. You never want to compromise quality when it comes to food, and Yumba ensures you can access delicious, nutrient-rich meals in an easy and convenient way that doesn’t interrupt your lifestyle.” – Will Bowcott, Director of YUMBA.
As a young professional, I find meal prep to be quite a daunting task, especially when it's a long day's work. This is where Yumba comes in handy, as they offer a weekly meal service with high-quality meals made fresh to order. Each week, customers can choose flavor-packed dishes like summer confetti linguini, Chipotle pulled pork pasta, creamy dill salmon, and chicken tikka masala. The meals change weekly, so you'll get different dishes per week. 

The meals are super easy to make, as all you have to do is remove the sauce container before heating your meal in the microwave with the lid loosely fit for 2 minutes. Afterwards, pour the sauce on your food once it is finished heating.

Japanese Kabayaki Flank



Chicken & Shrimp Spinach Pesto Pasta



Burrito Bowl


 The three meals that I received from Yumba were healthy and I enjoyed its taste. My favorite out of the three was the chicken & shrimp spinach pesto pasta, which was light, and the chicken and shrimp were well-cooked. It's definitely a lot healthier than some of the food choices available out there and certainly lighter on the wallet. 4 meals per week is $49.99. which comes out to $12.99/meal. However, if you order 6 meals per week, it's $65.99 (so $10.99 per meal).


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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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Holts Café at Holt Renfrew Toronto

A couple of weeks ago, we had the pleasure of visiting Holts Café for lunch. It's a trendy cafe on the mezzanine level of one of Yorkville's institutions, Holt Renfrew. The cafe was an elongated bright space with a red and light grey color scheme. It's an ideal setting for a casual lunch, business lunch, dates, or mid-afternoon shopping break. Holts Café's menu features a locally-inspired menu with a variety of signature dishes including the chopped salad and Holts burger.

I started off with a drink from their mocktails selection; the Mango Mule ($7) - peaches and cream syrup, lime juice, mango juice, ginger syrup, Angostura bitters, soda. It was a sweet and refreshing non-alcoholic beverage. 


We got the Grilled Jerk Shrimp ($14) containing jalapeño pineapple salsa as an appetizer. I was told that it only had a slight kick due to some regular clienteles complaining about the heat level. The jerk shrimp along with the sweet and juicy pineapple was a fantastic combo.  


The Fragrant Steamed Mussels ($13) - peppers, thyme, oregano, garlic, shallots, white wine was another stand-out appetizer.  The seafood delicacy come together with the help of white wine and various spices to create a lovely aromatic smell. The broth itself was light and savory, and there was a generous helping of mussels (big enough to share between two people). 


One of Holts Café's most recommended salad was the Chopped Salad ($19) - avocado, cucumber, peppers, chickpeas, sweet corn, red cabbage, romaine lettuce, French vinaigrette. The salad was a decent option, but there wasn't enough French vinaigrette, so it tasted too light to me. 


I opted for the Pickerel ($27) as my main, and it was a perfectly cooked dish. The fish was lightly seasoned and complemented the creamy Jerusalem artichoke and French beans. It was also topped with some shaved fennel, which didn't really seem to add or detract from the taste. Lastly, the pickerel was pan-seared, which resulted in a beautiful crust that added to the texture of the fish. A simply light main course!
 


For the main course, J got the Steak Frites ($27) - 8 oz petite tender, hand cut fries, wild mushroom ragoût, red wine jus.


Desserts has always been one of my favorite things, so I was looking forward to trying the Strawberry Shortcake ($10). It was made with shortcake biscuit, pastry cream, strawberry compote, crème Anglaise, Chantilly cream. It was literally a platter of sugar, which probably doesn't suit everyone's palette. It was very sweet, which I liked. However, I think that they could add a few more strawberries to balance out the sweetness of the shortcake biscuits.


The Chocolate Mousse ($10) - fresh raspberry, feuilletine hazelnut crust, coulis gracefully sat in a pool of coulis made from puréed fruits. It was definitely an airy and rich dessert.  


Brewed Coffee ($4.25)


Overall, our lunch at the Holts Café at Holt Renfrew Toronto was a very pleasant dining experience. Despite it being near 75% capacity, I noticed that all diners were being attended to appropriately, which I am not surprised considering the brand namesake. Furthermore, our server (Joe) was attentive and personable.

If you do come for lunch, they are are extremely limited parking spaces in the Yorkville area. So I'd recommend either using public transportation, Uber, or taking a taxi. However, if you do plan on driving, Holt Renfrew does offer valet parking for $25.

Address: 50 Bloor Street West, Toronto, ON, M4W 1A1

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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 canapés 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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Toronto's Festival of Beer 2017 (July 28-30)

One of the hottest beer festival is back! Toronto's Festival of Beer presented by the Beer Store will be taking place July 28 to July 30. Tickets for the much anticipated event are sold out for both Friday and Saturday. However, you can still purchase ticket for Sunday's event at https://www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/1263171.

Toronto’s Festival of Beer:

Date: Friday, July 28 to Sunday, July 30
Hours: July 28 (4:30 pm - 11:00 pm , July 29 (1:30 pm- 8:00 pm), July 30 (1:30 pm - 8:00 pm)
Location: Bandshell Park - Exhibition Place at 100 Princes' Blvd, Toronto, ON M6K 3C3
Website: http://www.beerfestival.ca/


Get Social:

 Toronto's longest running summer beer event returns to Bandshell Park @ Exhibition Place, with a great roster of chefs, food purveyors, and of course ... BEER!!

This Year's Food Purveyors:

Campagnolo
Chimney Stax
Fidel Gastro’s
Heirloom Farm to Truck
Hot Bunzz Street Cuisine
Jack Links
Mangia & Bevi
Meltwich Food Co.
Ontario Corn Roasters
Oyster Boy
Queen Margherita Pizza
Smoke’s Poutinerie
South St. Burger Company
Ted's World Famous BBQ
The Pie Commission
Tiny Tom Donuts

See you there!

 


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Famoso Neapolitan Pizzeria's Spring/Summer Menu

I had the pleasure of returning to Famoso Neapolitan Pizzeria to check out their new Spring/Summer menu a couple of weeks ago. The menu features two new pizzas and the return of a seasonal favorite. We opted to return to the Bloor Street West location, which opened its doors in 2012 and has become a local spot in the Annex. Famosa is best known for its authentic Neapolitan style cuisine, which makes no apology for their creative menu of fusion pizzas. Dean (the owner) runs two locations with his brother, and he is very passionate about the trade. He explained in details about the journey that they embarked on to bring us this delicate taste of Naples menu that we were able to sample.



We started dinner off with the Fire-Roasted Tomato Bisque - roasted Campania tomato soup topped with feta cheese, and served with flatbread. This was one of the highlights of the evening. The bisque was rich with flavor, as the tomatoes hail from Pompeii, Italy. The body of these tomatoes taste stronger, sweeter, and have less acidity in them due to the growing conditions of the volcanic ash that makes up the significant content of the soil. With some added crushed peppers, and Parmesan cheese, the aroma of the bisque was brought to its greatest. 



Famoso Neapolitan Pizzeria offers a limited menu of seasonal pizzas, which changes every season. The first new pizza that we got to try was the Prawn Pesto ($16.95) - fior-di-latte, seasoned ricotta, sautéed prawns, roasted garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, arugula, pistachio pesto, lemon wedge. In a departure from the standard pizza toppings, the new pizza is topped off with sautéed prawns, which remarkably makes a very delicious pizza.  Out of the three new pizzas on the menu, I'd say that this one was my favorite.


The Mattina ($16.95) - parmesan crema, sautéed leeks, pancetta,  prosciutto crisps, Grana Padano, Italian parsley,  topped with a fried egg, was the second new pizza on the menu. I didn't like this one as much, but J really liked it.


We were quite stuffed from the two pizzas, but the owner (Dean) graciously brought out a third one for us to try. The third pizza was a returning favorite, the Don Andreas ($16.95) - crème fraîche, fior-di-latte mozzarella, roasted chicken, corn and chipotle salsa, avocado, cilantro, lime wedge, side of Valentina hot sauce. I could definitely see why it was a favorite among patrons. All of the toppings just came together well, and it was one tasty pizza.


Dean has some leeway when it comes to their drinks menu, and tries to be creative with the ingredients. We opted for the non-alcoholic options, which was the Strawberries Mocktail (comes with one free re-frill).



If you're craving pizzas with some creativity and fusion, then make sure you try out Famoso Neapolitan Pizzeria They do also have standard pizzas like the margherita pizza and pepperoni topped ones if you want safer choices.



Address: 386 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M5S 1X4

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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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