Monday, 29 August 2011

Asteria Souvlaki Place

ASTERIA SOUVLAKI PLACE (292 Danforth Avenue, Toronto)
My favourite greek spot in the world and I have been coming here for many years! Don't let the interior fool you. Yes, it a small hole in the wall but it houses some of the best greek food in the city. Also the portions are very generous and it is excellent value for your money. One honourable mention that is not featured in this post are the gyros (beef & pork mix). They are thick cut, juicy and extremely flavourful.


Mythos: Brings me back to Greece. Very nice blonde beer, crisp, not to much hops and a very clean finish.

Saganaki: FLAMING CHEESE! What is not too like about that description. Saganaki is often a sheep's milk feta cheese that is pan fried then set on fire (OPA!) a.k.a. the name "flaming" cheese. It comes out on this sizzling cast iron pan and this super salty, gooey, savoury cheese is the result. It is absolutely divine. Often served with pita bread (Shown below).




Greek salad: So simple but delicious. One of my most favourite Greek salads in Toronto. I don't know what they do but the dressing is bang-on and always served with a healthy portion of feta.

Chicken souvlaki (dinner above and pita below): The chicken souvlaki here is incredibly juicy, moist, tender and delectable.... marinated & cooked to perfection. Again simplicity rules. The dinner comes with salad, rice and potatoes. The pita bread here is nice and chewy and the tzatziki is a wonderful creamy garlicky concoction. Everything is delicious.


Asteria Souvlaki Place on Urbanspoon





Friday, 26 August 2011

Pizzeria Libretto

PIZZERIA LIBRETTO (221 Ossington Avenue, Toronto)

This being my first visit to Pizzeria Libretto (have been a loyal Terroni fan for years!), I definitely enjoyed my experience here. I liked the small, rustic space and the bustling but fun atmosphere. I cannot decide which place I liked more because they both bring something different to the table. I feel the quality of ingredients are of higher caliber and I enjoy crust at Libretto better BUT I enjoy the creative, delectable combinations that Terroni provides (i.e. C't Mang!).


Fried Zucchini Fritters: These little bad boys literally melt in your mouth. These hot fritters have a light, crisp exterior with minced zucchini and buffalo mozzarella interior that just melts in your mouth. Utterly savoury and delicious. I could have eaten 100 of these.


Argula, Pear, Piave, Walnut & Sherry Vinagarette: We started with this light salad which was delightful but nothing incredibly memorable.


Ontario Proscuitto with mozzarella, basil and tomato sauce: This is my kind of pizza. If you are a fan of proscuitto, I recommend this one 100%. I love the thinly sliced, salty, fatty pieces of proscuitto draped in strips over the entire pizza. The crust was chewy and had an excellent texture. They also have this wicked chili oil that I could not get enough of!



Salami, Tomato, Gorgonzola, Roasted Red Peppers, Mozzarella: This is one bad-*ss pizza! This is a much bolder pizza than the previous one, flavours exploding. The strong flavours from the salami and gorgonzola melded nicely with the gooey mozzarella and the subtle sweetness from the tomato sauce.  



Pizzeria Libretto on Urbanspoon




Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Post on PIZZERIA LIBRETTO soon to come! Hopefully getting my camera back by Friday latest (hence the delay)!!

Monday, 15 August 2011

The Stockyards Smokehouse & Larder

THE STOCKYARDS SMOKEHOUSE & LARDER (699 ST. CLAIR WEST, TORONTO)

I absolutely love this place. They house some of the best fried chicken and burgers in the city. Food is always fresh and you can tell they use good quality ingredients. So simple but so good. I usually come on a Sunday and it is ALWAYS busy. I also got there at 6:30pm (they open at 5pm for dinner on Sunday) and they were so sadly SOLD OUT or ribs, which are apparently excellent (will have to come back for these). Featured below is the fried chicken, classic burger with (added) aged cheddar & bacon and the fries.



Mint infused limeade: A refreshing take on limeade. Tastes similar to a mojito, very limey and definitely can taste the mint infusion. I wish it were more tart.

Fried chicken: YUM NOM. I am not a fan of fried chicken but here I will make the exception. Moist, juicy pieces of chicken that have been marinated in buttermilk, perfectly fried crunchy exterior and a stellar mix of seasonings. 

 
Fries: ARE AMAZING. These fries are skinny, crispy but at the same time have a tender interior. Nicely seasoned and just the perfect texture. You may be skeptical at first but once you get two or three mouthfuls in, you will know what I am talking about.


Classic Burger (with bacon & aged cheddar): Hands down one of the BEST burgers I have had to date. If you love burgers, you must make a visit. They make it smash-griddle style, which creates a nice char on the exterior and also cooks in its own juices. This creates a incredibly flavourful, fatty and juicy burger. The aged cheddar was nice and gooey and although the bacon was great, I could have gone without it because the burger really could hold its own. Nice sesame bun with classic toppings of red onion, lettuce, tomato, house-made mayo and ketchup. I wanted more.

**This last photo taken from torontovore.blogspot.com


The Stockyards Smokehouse & Larder on Urbanspoon

Friday, 12 August 2011

Prairie Girl Bakery


PRAIRIE GIRL BAKERY (18 KING STREET EAST)

When you walk into the store, you feel like you are dreaming. A small shop with the back wall covered with 13 flavours of cupcakes perfectly lined up and you wonder how you are going to make a decision. The smell is intoxicatingly sweet and the cupcakes are amazing. The two I had were real winners! Note that I only enjoy the mini cupcakes here. I found that the large cupcakes were too sweet and really dense.


Banana cupcake with Peanut Butter buttercream: Intense, smooth flavour of the PB buttercream paired nicely with the moist banana cupcake. The banana flavour was very subtle and was a little overpowered by the PB buttercream. Would have liked a stronger banana flavour but excellent cake texture.

Vanilla cupcake with Strawberry buttercream: Bright flavour of the strawberry buttercream tastes like fresh strawberries. Nice vanilla cake but again, would have liked a stronger vanilla cake flavour.



Prairie Girl Bakery on Urbanspoon

Monday, 8 August 2011

Terroni

TERRONI (720 Queen Street West, Toronto)

I am a huge fan of Terroni pizza and for good reason. They produce creative and delicious flavour combinations using quality ingredients. They also have a great wine list at very reasonable prices. Even more reason to indulge. Below are a couple of my favourite pizzas (another one is the San Giorgio, all 3 of these pizzas are included at Bettola "Terroni's Greatest Hits").


C’t Mang: White Pizza with Mozzarella, Gorgonzola, Fresh Pears, Walnuts Speck, and Honey. The ultimate sweet & savoury pizza. Utterly delectable. The salty, fatty speck in combination with the sweet pears and honey give that perfect combination. Walnuts add a great texture to the pizza and although there are two cheeses featured, the pizza is actually quite light. The crust was cooked to perfection this time .. nice, crisp and chewy.


Smendozzata : Tomato, Mozzarella, Gorgonzola, Red Onions, and Homemade Italian Sausage. If you are a gorgonzola fan, this pizza is absolutely for you. The homemade sausage is incredibly flavourful and juicy and the gorgonzola adds a nice creamy tang to the overall taste.  


Terroni - Queen West on Urbanspoon

Porchetta Soft Shell Crab Po'Boys

I made it to Porchetta & Co. in time!

The saturday special: Soft Shell Crab with creamy coleslaw, proscuitto "bacon bits"and dill pickle. The bun was nice and squishy providing an excellent base for the succulent crab, fresh out of the fryer, exploding with juices and flavour. The crab was incredibly tender and delicious. The creamy coleslaw was more vinegar based (vs. mayo) which provided a nice balance and obviously the proscuitto "bacon bits"were awesome (although I wish there was a lot more!). The dill pickle I could go without but it did not deter from the enjoyable experience. This was really awesome and I hope this isn't that last weekend they has these delectable crabbies.




Porchetta & Co on Urbanspoon

Friday, 5 August 2011

Ki Japanese

KI MODERN JAPANESE (181 Bay Street, Toronto)

Ki is one of my favourite places for sushi. The fish is always incredibly fresh and although they have great classics, I love their modern twists on makimonos. Items that should never be missed when dining here are the sweet potato wedges that are incredibly fork-tender and I opt for the garlic aioli (vs. the wasabi aioli dip), the plump and juicy bite size explosions of tempura rock shrimp (also substitute with the garlic aioli) and the ki beef maki which is a teriyaki-glazed Canadian AAA striploin wrapped around scallions, sesame seeds, sweet potato tempura and asparagus. Some of the lovely ladies from my work and I went for a quick lunch today and featured below is perhaps my most favourite item, the Kiwi Tuna makimono. 

 Kiwi tuna makimono: is comprised of yellowfin tuna, mango, cucumber, spicy tomato salsa, and topped with Kyoto miso. Simply irresistable. 

Ki Restaurant and Lounge on Urbanspoon

Demetres

DEMETRES (2962 Bloor Street West, Toronto)

After Dinner at Enoteca Sociale we decided to stop for a sweet treat at Demetres.

The ultimate sundae and is a creation of my own. Two scoops of peanut butter overload ice cream which is made in house filled with chunks of chocolate bark, peanut butter and actual peanuts. Elegant creamy texture like a good ice cream should be. Topped with banana slices, nutella sauce in a made to order waffle bowl. It's actually heaven.

Enoteca Sociale

ENOTECA SOCIALE (1288 Dundas Street West, Toronto)

This place truly reminds me of being in Rome. I love the rustic, trattoria style of the space and the cozy & comfortable atmosphere this restaurant evokes. I start off with the Majolini Franciacorta (my ultimate favourite) the minute we arrive.
Entrance of Enoteca Sociale

Arancini con stracciatella, arugula & caramelized onion: Fried risotto balls with caramelized onions and arugula. Fried morsels of goodness except it lacked enough caramelized onions (I needed more!!) 
  

House made torchietti, speck, corn, chili pepper, egg & pecorino.  Similar to a dish I had in Italy but surprising so much better. The pasta was perfectly al dente, sweet peas in combination with the salty speck and the creaminess of the pecorino cheese. Absolutely divine.


House made ravioli, ricotta, marscarpone, watercress pesto, brown butter & breadcrumbs. Another winner! I really love marscarpone cheese and this ravioli was delicious. Little pockets of delicious cheese with a wonderful pesto and fresh handmade pasta. The breadcrumbs added a really nice crunchy texture to the dish.


Cheese from the Cheese Cave

Moliterno: raw sheep's milk cheese, Sicily, aged 18 months, infused with black truffle paste.

Thunder oak Gouda : pasteurized cow's milk, Ontario, tropical fruit, nut & caramel notes

La sauvagine: pasteurized cow's milk, quebec, buttery, mushroom notes

Enoteca Sociale on Urbanspoon