Saturday, January 25, 2014

Dessert at Hopgood's Foodliner

The roncy restaurant known for their contemporary East coast comfort food is great for dinner but also great just to drop in to satisfy your sweet tooth.  Ex Hoof Cafe chef Geoff Hopgood impresses with his homemade chocolate bar - a mix of rice krispies, white chocolate, crispy toffee and rich dark chocolate coating.  There's also the banana crunch which comes in a bowl filled with cubes of soft banana bread, custard, pieces of meringue and dark chocolate sorbet.  And on special the night of our visit - doughnuts and ice cream.  What's better than that, right!?

Sunday, January 19, 2014

The Chase - Fish & Oyster

At The Chase - Fish & Oyster it's not just the seafood that's the main catch.
The five month old restaurant is impeccably designed.  There's the exposed brick walls, mahogany tables and ceiling fans, mixed material (stone, tile and wood) basement with dreamy wallpaper, and a kitchen at the entrance enclosed entirely in glass.  Speaking of the entrance, don't worry if you can't find it at first.  You would think to enter somewhere near the large glass windows along Temperance street.  Instead the front door is hidden at the end of a cute cobblestone and brick alleyway.  Before heading inside take a good stare at the chefs busily preparing for their lunch and dinner service.

The Chase ain't cheap but with large portions (even for the appetizers) you pay for exactly what you get.  The Albacore tuna starter with sweet and sour northern kiwi, sesame oil, fresh chilies, and fresh coconut costs $18 and comes with five large meaty pieces of fresh tuna.  The king crab rosti with brussels sprout 'kraut' and chive sour cream is $32 and is another generous and filling portion (and it better be at that price).  The light and tender arctic char with roasted cauliflower, quinoa and burnt butter and walnut vinaigrette is $24 and compliments the heavier dishes.  Of course there's the raw bar with oysters, clams, shrimp, lobster, and stone crab claws which you can order a la carte at market price.  If you're with a large group or just a 'balla' there's the Yonge platter for $50 (oysters, clams, tuna, and shrimp) and the Bay platter for $110 (oysters, clams, tuna, crab, lobster, shrimp, and scallops).
The roasted and stuffed acorn squash ($7) makes for a nice wintery side - although the squash could have been roasted a little longer.
If you aren't in the mood for fish (which you should if you are thinking of eating here) there's fried chicken, a burger with pickled jalapeno herb aioli, beef sirloin, and lamb chops.    

The Chase - Fish & Oyster is located on the first floor of the 19th century Dineen building (their sister restaurant The Chase is located on the fifth floor).

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Toronto Pearson's Terminal One Transformation

While waiting for your flight at Toronto Pearson's Terminal one (by gate area D) there are some new and noteworthy shops to keep you occupied.  If you aren't feeling like a Starbucks or Tim Hortons - try a gourmet cuppa at Davids Tea.  Kill time sniffing through the dozens of sweet and savory flavours, and sip your drink out front in the bright and welcoming space while people watching other passengers.    

Feel like taking a piece of Canadiana on your trip? The Hudson's Bay Company has you covered with everything from their iconic striped pea coats to scarves and hats and even a canoe (priced at a mere $7,500).
The iStore has the latest apple gadgets, iPhone cases, headphones and even MacBooks.

And for a semi fast food fix roll you and your carry-on into Massimo Capri's Boccone.  The chef behind the restaurant Mistura serves up his traditional Italian pizzas and pastas, and starting at 5:30am there's breakfast (until 10:45am).  The two breakfast pizzas come highly recommended by staff.  The Primo Scaccia is stuffed with scrambled eggs, melted cheese, onions and sausage.  You also get some tomato sauce for dipping.
It will leave you full and ready for take off.