Sunday, May 21, 2017

Bao Bei

This Chinese brasserie in Vancouver serves killer cocktails and delicious dumplings, crispy tofu, tender pork belly, shrimp fried rice and so much more.  They don't take reservations so best to arrive early.

 (Crispy tofu, garlic sweet soy, fresh water chestnut) 

 (Steamed prawn, scallop & chive dumplings) 

 (Steamed halibut with ginger, citrus, fermented fava bean, cilantro & basil pistou)

 (Crispy pork belly with radish, cucumber, pickled ginger, mint, crispy potatoes & Vietnamese cilantro root dressing) 

 (Kick ass house fried rice with marinated red prawns)

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Kissa Tanto

Landing the top spot on enRoute magazine's 2016 Best New Restaurants list, it's easy to understand why when you step inside and eat from the Japanese/Italian inspired menu.  Located in Vancouver's Chinatown, be sure to make a reservation far in advance.

(Fish crudo) 
(Wagyu tartare with parmesan) 
(Octopus salad) 
 (Porchetta agnolotti) 
(Half chicken and Japanese eggplant with bechamel and almond crumble) 

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Aunties & Uncles

This low key breakfast and lunch spot near College and Bathurst is open 7 days a week and won't disappoint.

The omelette of the day was stuffed full of broccoli and spinach and comes with buttered challah toast and a choice of potato salad, home fries or greens.  The banana oatmeal pancakes are perfect to share (if you're feeling hungry).

Be sure to head there early for weekend brunch to avoid a long wait.  They don't take reservations and it's cash only.  

Sunday, June 5, 2016

See our favourite dishes from Toronto Taste

With just a week to go until the 26th edition of Toronto Taste, we're looking back at some of our fave food from the past few years.  The event raises money for Second Harvest and brings together Toronto's top chefs, restaurants and beverage purveyors for a great cause.  Tickets are still available and each one sold provides 520 meals to Torontonians in need.  Since 1991, Toronto Taste has raised $11 million to support Second Harvest's food rescue program.  

(2015: Mark McEwan's sweet and sour chicken tacos) 

(2014: Cafe Boulud's crispy duck egg with jambon de Paris) 

(2013: Buca's Italian breakfast) 

(2012: Ruby Watchco's chicken liver parfait) 

(2011: Woodlot's asparagus salad) 

(Our favourite dessert every year from Gelato Fresco)

Sunday, May 29, 2016

True True Pizza

The world of gourmet pizza and salad deliciously collide at True True Pizza on King Street East.  
It's hard to miss the colourful space with its bright pops of pink and blue and modern day diner vibes.  
If you're feeling a pie, you can choose one of the many personal-sized pizzas off the menu like 'The Aristocrat' or 'The Pro' (both pictured below), or you can design your own.   Pick from an abundance of fresh toppings and dough (including gluten free), which they proof for 48 hours, hand stretch to order and bake in just over two minutes.     
  
There are four different salad options that are jam packed with vegetables including one called 'Juno' with chickpeas, eggplant, zucchini, red and yellow pepper or 'Heartbeet' that has, you guessed it, beets, marinated kale, red and white quinoa, pecans, dried cranberries, pea shoots and sliced orange.  
One of the side salads is called 'Kale, Caesar!', so points to whoever came up with all of the names. 

And if you're thinking True's pizza would go well with a glass of wine, it does.  True True offers red and white by the glass or bottle, and also draft beer.    

(Chop Chop with romaine, red & white quinoa, red & yellow pepper, avocado, grape tomatoes, pomegranate seeds, green onion, pea shoots, cilantro tamarind vinaigrette) 
(The Aristocrat with tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella, garlic confit, pesto, arugula, extra virgin olive oil and parmesan)  
(The Pro with extra virgin olive oil, shredded cheese, prosciutto, goat cheese, caramelized onion, asparagus, rosemary oil, parmesan)   

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Sunday Brunch at Ufficio

At Ufficio it's so easy to fill up on their perfectly grilled sourdough, you practically have to force yourself to stop eating it.  It comes on its own with two different types of preserves, it comes with four scrambled eggs, smoked butter, chopped truffles, grated parmesan and truffle oil, it comes with two poached eggs, mashed avocado, red onion, smoked salmon and bearnaise, and it comes with half a ball of burrata, olive oil, maldon salt, pepper, truffled butter, truffled honey and toasted pistachios.  

You'll want to order a dozen of the burrata, but just order one for the table to start. It's also the most photogenic dish we've snapped in a long time.

Of course there are items on the menu that don't include bread; like the buttermilk pancakes with whipped lemon ricotta, rhubarb compote and maple syrup, and the sunnyside up eggs with tomato sauce, wilted spinach, smoked provolone, basil, oyster mushrooms, basil cress and olive oil.

Go early to snag the coveted window banquette for optimal Dundas West people watching, and you can also use the light to get that burrata pic.  We know you'll want to.         

(Grilled sourdough with preserves) 
(Burrata, olive oil, maldon salt, pepper, truffled butter, truffled honey and toasted pistachios) 
(Scrambled hens eggs, smoked butter, chopped truffles, grated parmesan and truffle oil)
(Poached eggs, mashed avocado, red onion, smoked salmon and bearnaise)
(Buttermilk pancakes with whipped lemon ricotta, rhubarb compote and maple syrup)
(Sunnyside up eggs with tomato sauce, wilted spinach, smoked provolone, basil, oyster mushrooms, basil cress and olive oil)

Monday, April 25, 2016

Little Shmiddy's Hot Meat House

With a strong focus on meat that's hormone and anti-biotic free, naturally raised and locally sourced, not to mention flavourful and delicious, Little Shmiddy's is worth a visit.

The tiny spot on Parliament, in the heart of Cabbagetown, seats around 20 people. So if you're planning to check it out for dinner or brunch on the weekend, make a reservation.  We stopped by on a Sunday right when they opened at 11am, and were able to just squeeze in. 

Everything on the brunch menu is fairly heavy but you're at a meat house, so there shouldn't be any surprises there.  The smoked salmon bennie with hollandaise, buttermilk biscuits and home fries, came with perfectly cooked poached eggs.  The melt in your mouth brisket was the right combination  of lean and fatty and came with black beens, avocado, roasted tomatoes and a fried egg.  But beware: if you ask to substitute a poached egg instead of the fried, they will charge you $3.50.  That's not for an additional egg, just to cook it differently, which doesn't make much sense to us.    

Despite the egg up-sell, the service and food were both great.  The restaurant is getting set to launch their spring dinner menu, and we're looking forward to going back for brunch to try the Shmiddy's double down with chicken schnitzel breast, bacon, cheddar, green slaw and toasted duck fat brioche. Yup.         

(Open-face brisket sandwich with poached egg, black beens, avocado, roasted tomatoes and greens) 

(Smoked salmon bennie with poached eggs, hollandaise, buttermilk biscuits, home fries and greens)