Monday, September 26, 2011

Toronto Underground Market

It was like Queen Street West meets the foodies of Forest Hill at the first edition of Toronto's underground food market on Saturday September 24th at Brick Works.  Over 25 up-and-coming chefs and home cooks were thrust into the spotlight, as large lines formed with hungry eaters hoping to get a bite of something different.  The press release describes TUM as "a new kind of community market; not a farmer's market, or a food festival, but something completely unique and new to toronto."

And what was new, at least for a lot of people, was the cornbread grilled cheese sandwiches that Comida Del Pueblo (food of the people) were serving.  The crumbly, gooey cheddar creations with guacamole and sour cream smeared on top, had a line 30 minutes deep. This kept Manuel Romero, Josh Standing and Guillermo Escalante very busy on their first time out.  Although they were smiling looking at the line, one of the boys did admit they wish they'd brought another grill.  Lesson learned, we hope.  The next TUM is on October 22.  It's already sold out.  

 

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Grey Goose Soho House - Cookhouse

During the Toronto International Film Festival, the Grey Goose Soho House is the place to party, hosting the world's biggest stars.  This year of course was no different - George Clooney, Ryan Gosling, Madonna, Mark Wahlberg (the list goes on) all stopped by for a drink, a bite (perhaps) and schmoozed in this newly renovated space at King and Duncan.  The furniture is brought in specially from across North America, so they mean business.   

The Soho House, a popular private members club with locations in the U.K., Germany, and U.S. including New York, Los Angeles and Miami, has launched Cookhouse.  The new program is aimed at educating and training young chefs, setting them up with jobs at Soho House restaurants and clubs, and then releasing them back into the culinary world. 

On Saturday Sept 10th, GG SH hosted a lunch for some of Toronto's foodies and cooking educators to spread the word.  After everyone was seated, out came the 'feed me now' platters - topped with bufala mozzarella, cherry tomatoes, octopus and seared tuna.  Next, three different kinds of ravioli, one of which, the lobster, was so delicious it was dangerous.  After that, salmon and steak with fresh vegetables and truffled mushroom risotto.  Desserts included shooter style tiramisu and chocolate profiteroles.  Lucky for us, Soho House is scouting locations for its very own Toronto club.  Will they accept membership applications just to gain access to the lobster ravioli? Let's hope.   

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Bowery (in Toronto)

Not to be confused with New York's, Toronto now has its very own Bowery.  Located on Colbourne Street, it's worth a visit for a drink and/or bite.  The beet salad proved to be impressively plated, sprinkled with big pieces of bacon.  The burgers came with giant onion rings on top.  The neon orange detailing inside was a nice touch too.         

Grand Bend - Where to Eat

For a weekend escape not too far from Toronto, head to Grand Bend.  The sandy beach and mesmerizing crystal blue waters of Lake Huron will make you completely forget that the big city is only 2 hours away.  
  

When it comes to the food, there are plenty of options down Main Street, especially for ice cream.  Below are a few of the places we tried. 

This pub is the closest spot to the beach and has a massive menu, so everyone will find something they like.  For starters order the deep fried ravioli and the nachos.    

 


The Dairy Dip - 
After lunch and then again after dinner (yes that happened), indulge in your wildest ice cream fantasies. Soft serve, dipped cones, sundaes, and slushys - they have it all. 


Even though it's off Main Street, head here for brunch.  The huge homemade cinnabuns and pies are served fresh from the oven...worth the drive.      


If you don't feel like you're living in another era while visiting GB, stop for a quick lunch at BEST'S and then you will.  Their homemade ice cream is delicious.  

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

PHOTO: Singapore Slaw at LEE

PHOTO: Fish Taco @ Bannock

Pickerel taco and cucumber apple salad on a steamed bun with caviar tartar at Bannock

Parkette

Just steps West of Trinity Bellwoods Park on Queen Street, Parkette offers a small, uncomplicated yet sophisticated enough brunch, which isn't a bad thing, because what's better than uncomplicated on a Sunday morning, right? 
The communal park bench and table is inviting, as is the wood flooring, brick wall and slight retro feel.  
Pictured below is the vegetarian eggs benedict and the pulled pork shoulder 'sandwich of the day.'  Also ordered was the regular benedict which came with a thick slice of pork belly.  Parkette is open for dinner as well as brunch.