Friday, June 29, 2012

nota bene

 Many people are surprise that I have never been to Nota Bene (@NotaBeneToronto) but apparently I am not the only one, Amy (@lu_amy7) haven't either so we decided to take advantage of the Dinning Date Night deal $10 for 30% off entire bill including alcohol (it's FREE to join)

We arrive about an hour early since we were so hungry and couldn't wait for our resevation time, so they suggested us to sit at the lounge area instead of the dinning room which we were fine since it was much brighter which is a lot better for picture taking =P

They carry my fave local winery : Megalomaniac

Crispy Duck Salad $15
~ Sumac-Dusted Green Papaya Slaw, Cashews
Frankly there was more coriender than the papaya slaw but the duck was definetly crispy and flavorful
and love the addeded touch of the chopstick (Asian style, which sort of justified the large amount of corriander I guess)

Monday, June 25, 2012

The Black Hoof

I have been a big fan of The Black Hoof (@TheBlackHoof) since it first open but I have never found time to go back until recently and I actually have never blog about it (>_<)
The Black Hoof have been able to keep it's popularity since it first open and with the no reservation policy, I would recommend to go early in order to avoid long wait since it's a pretty small space :)

 That small corner by the bar is their kitchen; and it's pretty impressive how they use only  a standard electric 4 burner household range and been able to throw out all these yummy dishes.

In the middle is the head chef, Brandon Olsen (@King_of_Ginger)

Simple menu with a group of 4 or more, you could probably order everything from the menu.
Too bad the 2 of us was still a bit full from our late lunch, so we didn't order much :(

 Moulin Rouge $14
~ gin, lillet rouge & blanc, blood orange, orange bitters

Bread $2
~ Thuet bread are always so good

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Kampai Toronto Sake Festival

Kampai Toronto which took place on May 31, 2012 was the largest sake event ever taken place in Canada. Since Ben (aka the bf) is a big sake fan, I bought tickets for us as soon as I heard about it as a belated anniversary gift (he was on a work trip for 5 weeks). As per their advertisement, there was over 100 types of sake to try but frankly I don't think there was as much which was ok since we arrive later than expected due to work.

Frankly I like sake but not as huge a fan as the boyfriend but we have been trying to taste as much as possible since we met 4 years ago.... I won't pretend to be an expert and same as wine, I always though that you should drink what you like, everyone have different taste and preference so why judge by region, year or price.

But here are some of the most common sake styles that you'll normally find/hear :
Genshu ~ Undiluted Sake which is bolder in flavor w/ higher alcohol content
Nama ~ Unpasteurized sake
Nigori ~ Unfiltered or "cloudy" sake which has more texture and creamy on palate
Tokubetsu ~ "Special" sake. Brewers typically use this to make a Tokubetsu Honjozo or Tokubetsu Junmai. Usually there's a higher milling rate or a special process being use.

And sake are graded from low to high as follow :
Futsu, Honjozo, Junmai, Ginjo & Daiginjo

 Here are a few that have been my favorite for years  (^_^)
Wakatake Onikoroshi "Demon Slayer" Dai Ginjo & Ginjo
(Agent: Ozawa Canada and they are conveniently located next to where I work)

Hakkaisan "Eight Peaks Sake" Honjozo & Tokubetsu Junmai
(Agent: Ozawa Canada)

Somewhere in the middle of the event, I pass the camera to Ben and he just manage to not take any picture since someone was too busy sampling :(
And he didn't take a picture of one of my all time fave, the Southern Beauty (the below was taken by Instagram, hence the quality).

Nanbubjin "Southern Beauty Super Premium" Junmai Dai Ginjo Sake (shown in below pic)
& Nanbubijin "Southern Beautykubetsu Junmai Ginjo (n/a pic)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Butter Avenue

I have finally been able to made my way to Butter Avenue (@butteravenue) last month. It has been open since December but I just happen not to be in that area since then... I arrive on a Sunday afternoon which was Mother`s Day and was surprise to find the store empty (no customer) and the store was so hot with the sun blazing in, we didn`t feel like staying at all. I find the lcation a tad unconvinent since parking is not allow at the front, so no dropping by for a quick buy (>_<)

Butter Avenue have a very clean, simple, bright and spacious space which is really the norm for "macarons" places these days. In my opinion, it was a tad too simple, just plain white space all over.

Friday, June 15, 2012

La Carnita

The anticipation for the opening of the oh-so-popular taco & art roaming pop-up shop La Carnita  (@la_carnita) have been building, especially after the UNO party at Brickworks back in April this year. I have been a big fan just after a bite of their fish taco (see previous post here & here). And this past Tuesday June 12th 2012, they finally open their doors to eager fans like me at College and Bathurst.
They have been quite secretive about their opening date and have only been giving us sneek peek of their renovation... and have only let slip the opening date this past weekend but too bad I already had something plan for the night, so I have only been able to go on the 2nd day (^_^)

It's previously the Briscola space (post here), so I know that it will be a large enough space compare to most places especially the popular and 1-2hrs line up taco place, Grand Electric (post here)

The 6 of us arrived at around 7:00pm this past Wednesday and immediately got a table/booth by the back.
Love this light bulbs light fixture right above our table

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Lamesa Pilipino Kitchen

Pass by Lamesa Filipino Kitchen (@LamesaTO) a couple of time and have been meaning to give it a try since it's not everyday that you'll find such a pretty Filipino Restaurant in the heart of downtown Toronto. 
"Chef Rudy Boquila has taken traditional homestyle Filipino food and elevated it using fresh locally grown ingredients as well as new and classical techniques. The flavors remain authentic but the presentation is more contemporary."

It's a pretty narrow and small space, we went on a Friday night and it was packed but good thing we had reservation. I really not too familiar with Philippines cuisine, so not sure what each dish should have taste like and if it's authentic or not (>_&lt;)? So I'm just commenting base on my personal taste....

San Miguel Beer from Philippines

They have a fairly simple menu, 3 choice of apps, 3 main and 2 desserts that can be ordered a la carte.... or you can choose their Tasting Menu $35 which we did, it's basically a prix fixe where you choose 1 from each section plus a Chef's amuse bouche and a pre-dessert. Oh and don't forget the AYCE steam rice (^_^)

Monday, June 11, 2012


Was waiting for the streetcar, on our way to dinner here day a Friday afternoon... sothing more casual and relaxing for a Friday (^_^) As you should have notice by now I'm not a pants/jean girl, so I always have a tough time choosing my casual Friday outfit to work...
Any suggestion????

I totally forgot to take a picture at the back, it actaually have a fushia zipper at the top and that's why I paired it with the fushia skinny belt

Btw, love this colorful H&M necklace.... I've finally been able to get hold of a H&M necklace taht I actually love before it's sold out =P

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Drake Cafe & Bistro

One of these past sunny Saturday, as usual we are trying to think of a nice patio for our lunch/brunch and we decided to try Drake Cafe & Bistro. It was packed when we got there at around 2pm but were lucky enough to get the last  table with a sunny spot. I had been here for their Summerlicious lunch here last year and wasn`t very mpress with the food but since I promise myself not to judge with the licious meal, I decided to give it another try (^_^)

Drake Mojito $12 for me & Rolling Rock Beer $6.66 for him
Frankly I thought the cocktail was a tad expensive given that it wa really nothing special w/ only 2oz of rum

House Made Granola $8.50
~ yogurt, fresh fruit + wild flower honey
I really wanted to try their blueberry scones since it's suppose to be "the best in Toronto" but Ben didn't feel like it and insisted on the granola instead. Personally I find granola always being over priced at brunch spots... this was delisious but really didn't work well under the hot sun and still not worth the $$ :(

Wednesday, June 6, 2012


Woodlot have been on my to-eat list for a while now but I have never been able to make it there, maybe because it was so difficult to get a reservation. But after a whole afternoon of a mini food crawl in Kensington Market, we decided to just walk in and see if there's table available and good thing there was still two seats left at the communal table that they leaves for walk in customers. We didn't order much that day since we ate so much all day long, so we decided to just give a few dishes a try. 

Even better since it's right by the kitchen and we got to see as the food got prepare ♥
Took this pic as we were leaving and by then the communal table have clear (I was by the door)

Upstairs are table for reservations....

Love how they have the fridge and expose shelves of spices...

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

pizza e pazzi

Heard some really good things about Pizza e Pazzi (@PizzaePazzi) from friends recently and they swear that it's the best in Toronto, so obviously I have to go try (^_^) As most of you know, I'm a big fan of the other popular pizza place (aka Pizzeria Libretto post here) and after tasting the one here, I don't want to but I'll have to agree that it's my new fave =P

They are one of the two pizzerias in the city that can claim certification from the Associazone Verace Pizza Napoletana (the other certified pizzerias are Pizzeria Libretto)