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tygrr_lily's Profile

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First date - Need a recommendation where to go tommorow

I went to Sidecar on my first date with my fiance, and I thought it was a good first date place. Not too expensive, easy food, lots of cocktail choices and not too quiet or romantic! Easy to go elsewhere for drinks on College as well. They also have a great spacious back patio (inside of the restaurant is a bit cramped)

Culantro (NOT cilantro) in Toronto / Etobicoke / Mississauga?

Most Asian grocery stores will have it. My mom gets it at the Don Mills Sunny Food Mart. I think there is a Sunny in the west end too

Where can I buy Kimchi in Toronto?

My fiance's mom is a kimchi snob, and she says if we're not eating her own, then the one at Galleria is "acceptable" :p. I've bought it from there many times and it tastes good to me! Agree - after the second week or so, you start to taste a noticeable difference

The other banchan at Galleria are also pretty good! And I think it's really cheap - like 3 for $10 or something (kimchi included)

ISO best Vietnamese Bun in central Toronto

A bit to the east in Leslieville/Riverdale, but Hanoi 3 seasons has pretty good bun dishes. They cater a bit more to their clientele (i.e. not Vietnamese) so prices are more expensive than at a typical pho place, but the dishes are cooked well and are pretty huge portions with lots of meat, herbs and veggies. Their spring rolls are not my fave though - I find them really bland and lacking in meat

I've had bun in California and Vietnam, and I think the difference is that places here don't grill on charcoal the way they do there. So I've never found in Toronto a place that has quite that same delicious taste

Meaty English Cut Beef Short Ribs -Where can I find them in Toronto?

I've gotten them at Gasparro at Bloor/Ossington. I can't remember how much they were offhand, but I'm pretty sure it was less than that

Valentine's Day 2014

We had a late reso to Chantecler. Great meal - had the lettuce meal w/ an extra duck confit leg we added, oyster shots and their popcorn shrimp. Service was great as usual. We love this place. The place was still rammed when we left at midnight!

A waiter told us they had a lot of no shows though. Apparently Vday is huge for that

Chipotles in adobo sauce?

As another downtownish option - I just purchased some at the Metro in Liberty Village. I had trouble finding them here a couple of months ago as well, but it seems like they're stocked up now

Congee Queen - 1st timer

The fried chili turnip patties and the spice and pepper salt squid (Asian style calamari) are really good

Restaurant Chantecler - Parkdale

Yes, you're right about all of those. I think I just like meat a lot, so I would have liked maybe some more beef thrown in there... personal preference though :). Some of the ingredients were pretty luxurious, but the portions were all tasting size so it was a good amount

I've yet to try the Sunday brunch so I'm not sure if the turnip cake is the same version. The texture was really creamy and you could taste bits of Chinese sausage in it too (lap cheong). Really good

You should definitely try the dinner! The reso is a pain to make though. I tried a couple times before but I don't think I called early enough. So this time, I finally put an alarm on my phone to remember to call exactly at midnight on Halloween

Restaurant Chantecler - Parkdale

Haha yes, we were waiting awkwardly at the front door for a while so I'm sure that was us.

Ah feuilletine - that probably makes a lot more sense than corn flakes. We were several glasses in at this point so that was my best guess. And I had no idea what feuilletine are - will edit my earlier description :)

The Campagnolo Thread - Hits and misses?

Thought I would update on Campagnolo

Came w/ a party of 9 on Saturday for a birthday dinner. Had a great evening and the overall experience was positive. We had a family style tasting menu at $60/person before tax, tips and drinks

We had:
- Grougeres w/ butter and olives on the side
- Arugula and radicchio salad (found this a bit bitter)
- Burrata and roasted grapes
- Fried sardines w/ polenta fries ("fish and chips")
- Lasagna
- Risotto w/ gorgonzola
- Trout
- Steak
- Creme caramel (I think - Can't remember exactly what this was)

I also brought a birthday cake and there was a plating fee for this.

Food was tasty and the portions were generous. As usual w/ Campagnolo, I preferred the appetizers over the mains, but I think this is what I almost expect here. Highlights for me were the burrata and the fish and chips.

I would recommend Campagnolo for a group event like this as I found the booking was really painless and the person on the other end was really helpful. All of our waiters were quick and friendly, and drinks and food came efficiently. We were booked in at a 6:45 earlier seating and we had a nice table beside the window and were out of the restaurant by 9:15. Overall, I was happy w/ the experience

Restaurant Chantecler - Parkdale

I was a bit surprised by the cost too as I thought the range was $40-$60. We were fine w/ the cost as we thought the meal was worth it, but I'd have liked to know that maybe when they called to confirm the reso or even when we sat down and were told about the tasting menu. The bill came out to about $305 before tip.

We opted for the wine pairing at $45 each as well and really enjoyed it. We were given 7 different pairings altogether - 4 white wines (cava, chardonnay, riesling, altesse), 1 dessert wine, 1 rioja and 1 bourbon cocktail w/ dessert. Overall we enjoyed them all - they paired well w/ the dishes - and our waiter gave pretty generous pours and kept topping up our glasses so we were pretty happy and tipsy by the end of the meal :)

The meal skewed very seafood-heavy and we only had 1 meat dish and red wine pairing. I would have liked at least one more, but I'm a big carnivore

To the best of my recollection we had:

- Tartare w/ shrimp crackers
- Clams casino (I think they called it - a big clam each in sauce)
- Lobster thermadore w/ a small puff pastry
- Poached oyster w/ tagliatelle and caviar
- Sea urchin w/ carrot panna cotta
- Fish taco lettuce wrap
- Turnip cake w/ xo sauce
- Barely poached scallop w/ pork belly
- Smoked duck w/ 3 types of kale in a honey (?) sauce
- Ice cream w/ feuilletine and thinly sliced apples
- Milk truffle w/ the bill

Standouts for me were the turnip cake, scallop, oyster and duck. The smoked duck was really fantastic and my boyfriend went crazy for it - we were really ready for a meat dish at this point, and this one was so so good.

When we first came in, we were left waiting and standing awkwardly at the front door for over 10 minutes before being acknowledged. The service once we were seated was very friendly. The power went out about half way through, and they were quick to light up some candles and top off our glasses.

Overall it was an enjoyable experience and a good birthday dinner for my bf. I'd definitely go again, but at that price point, probably just for a more special occasion

Restaurant Chantecler - Parkdale

I was told to allow 2.5 hours for the tasting menu.

I have a reservation at Chantecler this Friday as well, but after you at 9pm. I was offered 6:30 or 9 when I booked - I think they do 2 seatings a night.

Hope that helps. Excited about the meal :)

Downtown bar with a good scotch list?

Oh that's a great idea. Will do - thanks!

Downtown bar with a good scotch list?

Thanks for all the suggestions! Going to look into them. Looks like Spirit House or the Caledonian would be good choices as we want to stay downtown probably. How is the Caledonian's vibe? Is it similar to Spirit House, or more pub-ish?

Going to definitely take him to the Feather's pub another time - he is going to love it. The tour and flight tasting sound interesting

Downtown bar with a good scotch list?

It's my boyfriend's birthday next week and I'm looking to take him to a fun bar with a good scotch list. Scotch is definitely not my forte, so I would appreciate any suggestions. I was thinking maybe Spirit House, and I searched and saw some recommendations for Emmet Ray. Just wondering if there were any others.

There will be about 10 of us, late 20s/early 30s, and we'll be having dinner at Campagnolo first, so anything near Bathurst/Dundas would be a plus!

Thanks

What would you LOVE as a midnight snack @ a wedding? [Do you even want one?]

It seems like the midnight snack is definitely a popular trend now. Most of the weddings I've been to over the last year or two have had them. As a guest, it's a welcome treat even though I'm usually pretty full still. But I'm greedy haha

The best snack I've had was at Graydon Hall Manor because it was executed so well. They had mini sliders, mini grilled cheese, fish and chips, etc. Everything was piping hot and just really delicious. I think the food being hot was a big factor. They were also passed around by wait staff which was nice because it kept the party on the dance floor

At other venues, I've had mini pizza, sliders, poutine, popcorn, grilled cheese, sandwiches, veggies and dip, cold cuts, etc.. The pizza and sliders usually go over well and taste okay cold still. The poutine and grilled cheese got soggy and aren't appetizing cold. Popcorn was good too but messy. The rest were kind of meh/not exciting. I generally prefer savoury over sweet so don't usually touch the sweet table

If I were having a midnight buffet, I think I'd choose something that would still taste okay sitting out in case ppl don't eat the food right away. I like the randy patty idea but not sure how they are cold - that'd concern me

food shopping at Winners

I really like the Gary Poppins popcorn - the Chicago mix style one (cheddar + caramel and there's one w/ kettle too). It's pretty expensive (5.99 for a pack usually) but it's addictive and definitely reminds me of Garrett's!

Aser! Please recommend a downtown place to order suckling pig

What a coincidence! I've also been looking for a downtown location to order one for my bday next week!

We're going to try filipino style roast pig (lechon) from Bernard's Pilipino Specialties (1534 Queen Street West). Not sure when you need it for and if you only want it Chinese style, but I can report back about the lechon after next Saturday!

The Costco Thread - new products, old favourites, interesting items

Oh how disappointing! I hope you can find them. I'm not sure where your local Costco is, but I usually have no problems getting them at the Etobicoke location. This is what they look like for next time:

The Costco Thread - new products, old favourites, interesting items

In my Costco (Etobicoke), they're usually in the aisle with all of the crackers and cookies. They come in a clear box and there's three rows of the crisps.

The Costco Thread - new products, old favourites, interesting items

That jalapeno dip is my favourite Costco product!! I love it with Diva's Delightful Crisps, also at Costco. I recently got a batch of the dip at the Etobicoke store that was off though - a lot more sour than usual blech. Hoping it was just a one off

Restaurants in downtown Kingston, and rec's?

I love eating in Kingston. Went to school there and still visit just to eat!

Second Pat's. It's really close to the highway on Division. They do Cambodian the best in the city

Woodenhead's is really good too. And the prices are extremely reasonable if you're coming from a place like Toronto. I like the pizzas but my fave dish there is the "Kai Mekong" - chicken curry on fried rice cakes. Eat it every time I'm in town

Pan Choncho's is a good bakery at the end of Princess. Like the brunch there and picking up a few treats for the way home

Top Chef Canada, Season 3, Episode 13 (FINALE)

I was rooting for Danny but knew Matt would take it. Both chefs presented amazing meals - I would have loved to eat both

I thought it was interesting how similar Matt's amuse was to the dish that got Nicole eliminated! Didn't they go on and on about how creme fraiche w/ oysters was odd on her rendition? Thought it was funny that they didn't mention it all here

Jun 11, 2013
tygrr_lily in Food Media & News

Diabetic / sugar-free cake

Good to know - thanks. I did sent out an email to Bunners asking for more details, but have yet to get a reply

Diabetic / sugar-free cake

Thanks! I've contacted these three. Think I bought one at Gerhard's a couple of years ago as the name/location is familiar.

Diabetic / sugar-free cake

Does anywhere know where I could find a tasty diabetic / sugar free cake in Toronto? It's my grandma's 80th birthday and would love to be able to get her a cake to celebrate. I thought Dufflet might have one, but i could only find gluten free

Thanks!

Top Chef Canada, Season 3, Episode 9

Great recap!

Hmm - It seems as if Becky suggested the dish based on the way Danny was mocking himself, but it was ultimately his decision to go along with it. He's young and seems impressionable still, especially compared to someone like Matt who looks like he'd do his own thing regardless if the leader wanted it or not

Definitely agree that Caity became a lot more likeable as the season progressed. I really disliked her at the beginning, but I thought she left very gracefully yesterday. In comparison to Becky's petulant exit, it was definitely a lot more respectful of the whole competition and I like that she acknowledged her own faults

I have to say, I'm liking the judging more as a whole this season. Not sure if it's just the editing, but Shareen in particular seems to have more insightful and opinionated comments this year instead of just agreeing with everyone else. And I really enjoy Lisa as host

May 14, 2013
tygrr_lily in Food Media & News

2013 Alphonso Mangos

The case was $25

2013 Alphonso Mangos

I bought a case of 12 from Kohinoor on Gerrard today. The man behind the counter asked if I wanted a case or to buy them separately, so I'm assuming he is willing to sell them individually as well

I also inspected all of the ones I purchased, and he switched out a few that were overly ripe for me