hal2010's Profile

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What is Important in Food Photography?

A really good tilt-shift lens

2 days ago
hal2010 in Not About Food

Debu Saha is back -- Biryani house at 365 King W.

He likes trios.

May 23, 2015
hal2010 in Ontario (inc. Toronto)
1

Who owns the doggy bag in a host's refrigerator?

But how do you know whether it's a doggie bag?

May 23, 2015
hal2010 in Not About Food

Where to Sit

We were shown to an out-of-the-way corner table, but asked to sit beside the pass at Mercer Hall in Stratford Ontario. We had a great conversation but it was highlighted by eavesdropping on the chef and his sous calling orders, talking about the menu and reviewing dishes. I used to work in restaurants. But my wife doesn't have a clue what goes on behind the scenes so it was nostalgic for me and educational for her. A great meal, by the way. I highly recommend a visit if you're in Stratford.

Who owns the doggy bag in a host's refrigerator?

A doggy bag is pretty well indistinguishable from leftover take-out or prepared food bought from the grocery store. Unless you were at the meal where the doggy bag was obtained, and have a really good memory, there's no way you'll know that the stuff in the fridge in a Styrofoam container is the half of Jill's lasagna that she was too full to eat.

May 22, 2015
hal2010 in Not About Food

There are "Kosher", "Special Diets", & "Vegetarian & Vegan" boards; why not a "Halal" board?

This place needs a Gluten Free board. It's all you see in Special Diets.

May 19, 2015
hal2010 in Site Talk

Simply Raw: Reversing Diabetes in 30 Days

Type 2 isn't always brought on by lifestyle choices.
Here's an article about Newcastle University's starvation diet: http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandsty...

May 18, 2015
hal2010 in Food Media & News

Simply Raw: Reversing Diabetes in 30 Days

I saw a reasonably believable documentary recently which claimed that Type 2 diabetes could be reversed by 2 weeks of starvation. Less than 800 calories a day, under medical supervision. I'm Type 2 and have yet to try it.

May 17, 2015
hal2010 in Food Media & News

Loblaws purchase of Arz and T+T

The canned Arz and T+T products have made their way into the Real Canadian Superstore at Don Mills and Eglinton. The Arz canned Baba Ghanouj and Hummus are dreadful. Bland, tasteless, mushy and definitely canned.
I haven't tried the T+T noodles and sauces.
I've noticed that there's more consistency in the Chinese vegetable offerings at Loblaws and RCSC, but they are all massive pre-packs with 3 lbs of bok choy or Shanghai Bok Choy or Napa.

T+T Cherry Street

I stopped in a few weeks ago for the first time in a year. The produce seemed more expensive (isn't it everywhere though?) but other than that I didn't see much difference.

Haven't returned to a former favorite restaurant because of bill issue.

One has no responsibility for their experience until they leave the establishment happy and full. Or at least that's the way it's supposed to be these days.

I'm with you, especially on the dropped ice cream cone thing. There was an ice cream place across the street from my childhood home and we all knew to eat the chocolate coating first because it would always fall to the ground if you didn't.

May 15, 2015
hal2010 in Not About Food

The "Food Babe" Blogger Is Full of Shit

Fly in First Class. They get 100% oxygen.

May 14, 2015
hal2010 in Food Media & News
1

Holy and Hungry - a new Cooking Channel series

No that's another show: Starving and Secular

Holy and Hungry - a new Cooking Channel series

What a dreadful name.
I predict at least one show about loaves and fishes.

Can Ceviche Conquer the World? Peru’s Top Chefs Think So

A good ceviche is great. A mediocre ceviche is dreadful. I could see Peruvian food being the next big thing.

May 09, 2015
hal2010 in Food Media & News

Top Chef Season 13 Is Heading To...

Top Chef Canada was shelved after 3 boring seasons eh.

May 01, 2015
hal2010 in Food Media & News

Curry Powders And Heat

Dry turmeric doesn't have a wonderful taste and it's used for color. Coriander and cumin are the main spices in many Indian dishes.

Apr 29, 2015
hal2010 in General Topics

Banquet hall tipping - when guest thinks servers are getting it, but owners pocket all...

I'd call it an extra charge tacked on to take advantage of the American tipping culture. There's no additional 20% profit and overhead fee added when consumers make any other purchase as far as I know.

Apr 29, 2015
hal2010 in Not About Food

Banquet hall tipping - when guest thinks servers are getting it, but owners pocket all...

I don't understand why, when your contract with the banquet hall is entirely for the rental of "amenities", there is a 20% amenities fee on top. It's like a store charging a 20% "retail" fee.

Apr 29, 2015
hal2010 in Not About Food
1

Curry Powders And Heat

None of the spices in curry powder are hot other than the chilis. So adding extra cumin, turmeric, coriander, or cardomom might deepen the flavour.

It's easy to make your own blend if you buy whole spices and grind them in a coffee grinder, and you'll get a lot more flavour from fresh ground spices. Make sure you cook the spices in oil to release the full flavour. If you're just sprinkling premade curry powder into a hot stew that could be why you aren't getting the depth of flavour you get at restaurants.

Torontonians in Newfoundland

Nicole's Cafe in Joe Batt's Arm for lunch. Their calamari is the freshest and tastiest I've ever had.

Apr 28, 2015
hal2010 in Atlantic Canada

Stratford Restaurant Commentary (Long)

We went to Mercer Hall last night and it was very good. Had a roast cauliflower and socca dish that was one of the best things I've eaten in a while. I am going to start making socca at home! The sous-vide hanger steak was melt-in-your-mouth. Good service, nice compact menu, great craft beers from Black Swan, including a free tasting of a unique sour Berliner Weisse.

As we were leaving they told us they are opening under new management in a couple of weeks with a new menu and new chef. I hope they don't change too much because they had almost everything right. The only complaint was no cappuccino machine and weak coffee.

Government says it's okay to eat some food 12 or 18 months after its sell-by date

It's "Best before" not "Poisonous after".

I've found yogurt will last 2-3 months after the date. I toss it if it goes blue or red, but not before.
That bagged salad mix, on the other hand, usually has really optimistic dates on it.

The "Food Babe" Blogger Is Full of Shit

Having just undergone major surgery I can confirm that mainstream medicine is quite aware of the benefits of a holistic approach to health. My cardiac rehab includes nutritional counseling, a stress management course including meditation and lots of exercise.

Apr 25, 2015
hal2010 in Food Media & News

The Ontario Restaurant Policy Discussion

That's not much of a prize.

I want the inside scoop on where I can line up for 2 hours to be seated at a picnic table and served small plates at large plate prices while listening to music at 110dB and buying $20 "cocktails" with a real rusty nail and some elderberry leaves in them?

I'll leave a $5 tip per drink. I promise. Those full-sleeve tattoos are expensive, I know.

Rude treatment at Khao San Road

" If you were running a busy restaurant, and a group of 4 came in, demanded to sit at a table, saying that another guest is running late would you sit them? Say 45 mins later, that guest still isn't there, and they haven't ordered, and you have a lineup 90 minutes long, what would you do? "

But that's not what happened in the two cases I noted.
Four people came in and were told their 5th guest wouldn't be allowed to sit with them if they sat down. In they end they were put at a 4 top with the 5th on the end. If they'd let them sit immediately, they wouldn't have lost anything and might have gained a 5th sale when the 5th arrived. If they just refused to seat them and waited for another 4 top to arrive, they would have wasted valuable precious table time, inconveniencing all of the people who had ever eaten there and losing $19.73 per 15 minutes while that table sat empty.

And in the second case 6 people were seated at a table but 2 place settings were removed! So those 2 places sat empty. Where's the business logic in that?

As I said, it sounds petty and spiteful.

restaurants that don't take reservations, that will seat you before the rest of your party has arrived

Swiss Chalet

The "Food Babe" Blogger Is Full of Shit

The fact that she's not only ignorant but factually wrong about almost everything she talks about isn't a turn off? Her air travel article could have been written by a slow grade 5 student.

Rude treatment at Khao San Road

"the hostess removed 2 place settings and told us that 6 of us could eat together and the 2 latecomers would have to eat separately"

"She said if she seated us, we would be put at a table for 4 and that the 5th wouldn't be allowed to join us...we were seated at a table for 4 with an additional chair pulled up to the end."

Sounds like they're just being spiteful when they lean on this "policy". In both cases the parties could have been seated and their guests could have joined later without losing any seating opportunities for the restaurant. Or maybe it's a real trial pulling an extra chair up to a 4 top for the 5th person? And removing already laid out place settings to make a point? Unreal.

People have certain expectations when they go to a restaurant and this policy is certainly not in the realm of any reasonable expectations. I'm not buying the argument that it enhances the dining experience for everyone else, either. I hope they read each customer the lengthy rules and regulations of the establishment whenever they take a reservation.

Please interpret this menu pricing....

Looks like a hell of a lot of money for kebabs.

Apr 20, 2015
hal2010 in Not About Food