Monday, March 30, 2015

Fonda Lola [#MexicanFiesta]

Have been a fan of Andres Marquez (@andres_tequila) and Howard Dubrovsky (previously L.A.B post here), so I have no idea why I haven't been to Fonda Lola (@fondalola) sooner for a real meal that is since I was here for the media launch.








Oh yes maybe because it's so difficult to get a reservation, this time I made plans with friends and made de reservation a month in advance.


The 4 of us decided to go with the Mexican Fiesta which is a taste of the whole menu for $150.
(we got a deal on Travelzoo for $99)
 

CocoLoco Margarita $14
~ Citrus Margarita base with coconut water & lime kefir
Andre's recommendation for this "kinda healthy" cocktail with the hydrating coconut water and the turmeric added (^_<) It has all the component of a cocktail that I like, perfectly refreshing and tart while I wait for my friends.


Cesar $12
~ V8 juice, aguachile, aged tequila with candied bacon
It was my friend's drink, being a big Cesar fan this was too thick for my taste and I bet it's because of the V8 use instead of the Clamato. But OMG, the salt/chili rim and the bacon was so good.


And the fiesta start with a plate of that perfect Candied Jalapeno Bacon, total my type of candy #obsessed
 


Smoked Cuba Libre $12
~ Smoked Coke, aged rum and lime
Smoked to order, it came smoking and not only does it look amazing when pour at the table, it was really delicious and you can actually taste the smokey flavor.
 


Thursday, March 26, 2015

County in the City 2015 [Contest]


I'm giving away a pair of tickets to 


I was really lucky to have won tickets to County in the City (@drinkincevents) last year and got invited back this year. If you follow my blog or twitter, you know that I am pretty familiar with Niagara-on-the-Lake and 20-Valley wines and wineries but not so for the ones in PEC except for a few wineries. So I am very excited to see what I'll discover this time at the event, last year found some new favorites from wineries that I have never heard of.

So I am excited to have been offered an extra pair of tickets to share with you (^_^) #cheers

 About:
That night more than 50 Price Edward County (PEC) wines will be available for tasting under one roof and then you can buy your favorites with free shipping since most of the wines featured are not available in the LCBO.

Location:

315 Queen Street East 
.
 Date & Time:
Thursday April 16, 2015
5:00-9:00pm
Ticket Details:  
$49 per ticket in advance or $60 at the door (subject to availability)
Get your tickets here

Good Luck!!!



Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Mata Bar [South American]

I was so bummed that I couldn't make it to the Media event to Mata Bar (@MataBarTO) back in July last year and couldn't find time to go until recently. Largely influence by South American flavors and the concept of shared plates, I was super excited to finally try them.











Love how the change the place by just adding to the basic of the previous Keriwa Café (compare to here) just by changing the color of the bar and light fixtures.
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Love the old crates used as the bar shelves, love it with the lighting.

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We decided to go ahead with their 8 course tasting menu plus a Caipirinha cocktail at $45pp, but there wasn't a menu for it and the chef will serve you what he felt like (on and off menu).
 .

Monday, March 23, 2015

Victor Restaurant + Bar [Iron Chef Dinner]

This past weekend I went on a dinner date with some girlfriends at Victor Restaurant + Bar (@victorlounge). It was an Iron Chef Battle theme dinner, where we got to choose an ingredient "Lemon" in advance and each chef will prepare one dish. This sound exciting, how come I have never heard of this before.






5 course Dinner for $85pp 
 Each of us got to judge each course by 4 element: 1) How well was the theme ingredients incorporated into the dish 2) How original was the dish or how authentic 3) Presentation 4) Taste.
Oh, sorry in advance if the picture are not that great since I took in with my iPhone, not wanting to carry my camera around.

Lemon & Roasted Garlic Hummus w/ Preserved Lemon Tabbouleh and Grilled Pita
No idea how original this dish could be, I hate when I eat something at a restaurant and think I could have made it or made it better. That was definitely how I felt for this dish, things that I could easily pick up at supermarket and just add lemon to everything.
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Lemon Chicken w/ Sesame and Fried Rice 
Being a table of 8 our of 9 Chinese girls, we were rather opinionated about this dish. This was a rather food court style Chinese dish and we are paying a lot for this tasting, we were joking how they could at least gave us more rice.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Casa Manila - Kamayan Experience [Philippine]

I was invited to Casa Manila (@CasamanilaCa) for a media tasting and was lucky to try their new "Kamayan" style dinner where we got to eat with our hands
I was surprise to arrive at a fairly packed restaurant at around 6:00pm with the rest of the tables already reserved. No wonder since Philippine Restaurants are hard to come by in Toronto which I always find it surprising given the large Filipino population.  


Traditional Kamayan Style dinner means eating with our hands with fresh banana leaves as our plates. It's funny how our amazing waiter kept reminding us not to put our stuff on our plate aka the table covered by the banana leaves. Kamayan is basically a family style picnic allowing everyone to gather around to pick and choose whatever they like to eat. I have always love eating with my eats, everything just taste better so this was definitely a very fun experience for me.


Monday, March 16, 2015

Tartine Bakery & Cafe [San Francisco]

Arriving Tartine Bakery & Cafe (@tartinebakery) just right before 10:00am on a Friday morning, a line was starting to form just right out of the door but when we were leaving it got even longer (see picture on the left)







 We pass by another day around 5:00pm and the line was just as long, so if you want to try their goodies be prepare for line up. It was a pretty quick line so while Ben lined up, I went to look for seats outside and since inside was packed, we didn't get to take picture of it's interior. 

Brioche Bread Pudding $4.25 (small) 
~ seasoned fruit
Since I didn't even get to see what they had to offer, Ben can't choose a more perfect dessert for me. Love warm bread pudding and this was extra custard-y and yummy which totally worth the line up.


Thursday, March 12, 2015

Pomegranate [Persian]

Pomegranate was one of our first date night back when we first dated, so Ben decided to surprise me by bringing me there on Valentine Day. Upon entering they told us we got our time wrong and they eventually got us a table but we only had an hour. I was kind of upset but after a while a couple came in with the same problem.





The place look exactly like when we went a few years ago, don't you just like the colorful space with the cute lights and the carpet on the wall.


Mint Tea 
Hot cup of refreshing mint tea to start warm me up


Kashk-e Bademjaan
~ charred eggplant, garlic and walnut dip w/ Persian Whey
A very generous portion, that was more than enough for the two of us. It came warm topped with caramelized onions, crispy onions and yogurt. Rich and yummy.