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Need a great LA chocolate shop that also delivers locally

Looks great, nice little packages for Valentine's as well.

Feb 04, 2013
T.I.M. in Los Angeles Area

Need a great LA chocolate shop that also delivers locally

Wonderful! Sounds perfect. I'll have a look at their site and call them to see what local delivery options are available.

Feb 04, 2013
T.I.M. in Los Angeles Area

Need a great LA chocolate shop that also delivers locally

Hi, I'm a Chowhound from Canada whose girlfriend will be in LA for a conference on Valentine's day. I'm planning on sending her some chocolates on the 14th and would prefer to get something handmade locally and delivered to her hotel by the same company.

Do you guys have any recommendations? I believe she is staying at a hotel attached to LAX.

Thanks!

Feb 04, 2013
T.I.M. in Los Angeles Area

Amazing Experience at Solomon's in Victoria

Glad everyone was motivated by my post! The place really was great, and their attention to detail regarding my girlfriend's sensitivities was a welcome change. She is avoiding a lot right now, wheat, sugar, dairy, MSG, alcohol...and a few others in an attempt to figure out which is the culprit. With all the above in mind they still managed to make dessert! You just don't find that kind of service many places. I look forward to reading some reviews when you all eat there! I am hoping to have brunch there sometime soon, brioche french toast with Cointreau!

Mar 18, 2009
T.I.M. in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)

Where Do I Get Knives Sharpened? - MTL

If it was in NDG on Wilson or Melrose in the summer...that guy would have been me. I have a big 11" chefs knife that was in desperate need of some sharpening. I ended up doing 6 knives later on when he came back. Problem with that truck, it looks like he uses the same wheel to sharpen scissors or lawn mower blades as he does knives. While the knives came back sharp, it looked like he took a lot of metal off. Anyway, glad I could be entertaining. Knives are still sharp.

Mar 01, 2009
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Amazing Experience at Solomon's in Victoria

Hi all, it is rare that I post anything since moving from Montreal to Victoria, as I've not really found any places that have screamed out "amazing." A few weeks ago, I had what is probably the best food experience of my life at Solomon's (542 Herald Street - downtown Victoria, (250) 590-SOLO)

It started with a conversation with Matt, the sous-chef who came out to discuss some food sensitivity issues with my girlfriend. She has some allergies that make eating out very tough (didn't stop us from going out a great deal in MTL though...). Turns out that he was trained in NYC to do just that, deal with sensitivities and still produce very excellent French-inspired gastronomy. The restaurant was not very busy as we had just missed second seating, so we had loads of time with him to talk about all kinds of tasty options. Then...the head chef Justin came out to see what was going on. After some conversation Justin said, "hey, why don't we just do a little tasting menu, 5 courses maybe? I just cut some local salmon sashimi and misted it with absinthe...want some to start?"

Yes. Yes I do.

Before the first course, Matt came out to also talk about price, and I had set out to have a relatively low-key and cheap night as I had only just found work that week and wasn't a rich man. I won't tell you how much it was, but it was probably the cheapest high end tasting menu on the planet that day. It was a one time thing I'm sure, and were I to go back for something similar, I would not hesitate to pay a lot more.

The food was all so good, highlights included absinthe-misted local salmon sashimi, Chicago-style beef fillet with espresso jus and delicious homemade fruit leathers topped with Galliano-flambe banana scallops on warm house-made walnut milk (my girlfriend can't have dairy, but this was so creamy and good, I don't want to call it a dairy-substitute, rather it is just ... deliciousness in a jar).

Each of the 5 courses was expertly executed, presented with care and fully explicated by each chef that prepared it. The interaction with the chefs was amazing and fun, and the food well worth it.

Then of course, we have the cocktails. Solomon's has a large selection of top shelf stuff, and he paired cocktails with some of the courses. The highlight was his "Esquimalt" cocktail that was paired with the salmon. It was a very nice mix of strega, vodka, vermouth, and iris-scented gin ...with a piece of smoked salmon on the side or in the drink as you like. So very very tasty and perfect with the sashimi. I chose to drop it in the drink where it soaked up all the flavours like a ceviche.

I won't describe any of the other courses as my memory would probably not serve me well and I'd miss a detail that the chefs tried so hard to include. All I can say is go there for a drink and some delicious food, and hopefully it isn't so busy that you can't talk to Solomon and get a quick history of the cocktail as told (and mixed) by a master.

Mar 01, 2009
T.I.M. in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)

Help...banana leaves in Victoria?

Found it in Chinatown, the smaller store that sells fruit and veggies outside on Fiskgard had them in the freezer. Thanks!

Dec 28, 2008
T.I.M. in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)

Help...banana leaves in Victoria?

Is there any place to find banana leaves in Victoria? I'm making a slow cooked pork dish and want to wrap the shoulder in leaves.

Thanks!!!

Dec 25, 2008
T.I.M. in B.C. (inc. Vancouver)

Tapioca Thé MSG Free?

I have heard many good things about the new chef here, and want to have dinner there before they turn down the heat because of too many complaints about the spice level! But, my girlfriend has a serious allergy and can't handle MSG at all. Does anyone know if Tapioca The is MSG free?

May 01, 2008
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Best place to buy Organic Chickens in Montreal?

Boucherie Westmount in NDG has some organic free range chickens sometimes, call and ask Tony if he has some, if he doesn't he will get them in for you. Prices are ok, not cheap but not totally overpriced either. He has also started getting in more special poultry like quail, goose, fully smoked turkey and capons.

5207, Sherbrooke/Marlowe
514-481-1811

Mar 09, 2008
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Need achiote (annatto) seeds and Mexican oregano in NDG (or close)

The owner is a trained chef from Mexico city, and does add a bit of a fancy touch to her Mexican fare. Now, I've had a very good seveche there (odd choice for the middle of winter...but tasty nonetheless), but it is very hit and miss I find. The tamales were not great, very "eggy" and the pork was rather flavourless, but the el pastor was the best I've had North of San Diego. Still, I do recommend it, and you'll find the owner and her family very very friendly and endearing, and she is always happy to share tips and recipes with customers. They also make that tasty Mexican flavoured water made from flowers that I always guzzle all at once.

Mar 09, 2008
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Need achiote (annatto) seeds and Mexican oregano in NDG (or close)

Stopped by Amaranto during the storm, and found just what I needed. Well, not seeds, but the paste will work fine. The chef also gave me some of her own Mexican oregano for very cheap. So, I had to stay for some soup, quite good, served with fresh scallions, radish, and avocado that you add while eating. They also served a tostada with it topped simply with sour cream and queso fresco (I think it is called, tastes like a mild feta and is often crumbled on top of many Mexican dishes). Thanks for the help!

Mar 09, 2008
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Need achiote (annatto) seeds and Mexican oregano in NDG (or close)

Good idea, I'll stop by if only to bask in the cuteness of that place.

Mar 08, 2008
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

blood oranges

Fruterie Rocky Montana in NDG (Sherbrooke corner of Harvard) had them a few days ago. I neglected to see where they were from, but I found them a little too bitter. PA did have them as of a few days ago as well.

Mar 07, 2008
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Need achiote (annatto) seeds and Mexican oregano in NDG (or close)

While Rocky Montana does seem to have everything sometimes, I don't think it can help find these ingredients. Rocky had Seville oranges so I bought some for sour orange juice, and have enough left over for some Yucatecan slow-cooked pork. But, I need the achiote seeds and oregano for the spice mix, and don't know where to find them, please help!

Mar 07, 2008
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Cassoulet wine pairing suggestions?

The SAQ Selection did not have two of the first wine suggestions, but the wine counselor did recommend a Cahors that was lovely and paired nicely with the Cassoulet. It was a 2004 Chateau Lamartine, that was almost buttery when paired with the cassoulet. Thanks to you both for the recs.

The food though, I wasn't overly impressed with La Caserole. The duck in the cassoulet was more like roast duck then confit, little slices of pork were very dry, and the smoked sausage was also quite dry (even for smoked sausage). The overall taste was a mix of many, that in the end didn't have any distinctive flavour. The soup was also a little bleh. A creamy veggie soup that reminded me of that green creamy soup you get at weddings that has too much pepper, and no distinctive flavour save celery, maybe. On top of it, the Gateaux Basque (which I had high hopes for, having been made in-house, by a Basque chef) was quite dry, like it was a day or two old. The coulis with it was too sweet and the berry flavour was lost in the sweetness.

On the flip side, the service was excellent and quite friendly and attentive.

Again, thanks for the suggestions!

Feb 15, 2008
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Cassoulet wine pairing suggestions?

Fantastic! I work near the Atwater Market SAQ Selection, so I should be ok, thanks to the both of you!

After asking a friend for a recommendation, he confirmed that I have tried the 2004 Clos Triguedina when he made a roast duck at his place. I enjoyed it then, and will pick it up for tonight I think.

I would normally have gone with a Bordeaux because I knew it would work and is always a safe bet, but not nearly as exciting as the above suggestions. As far as Basque wine goes, totally out of my frame of reference, I feel like I should get it and maybe get a little preferential treatment by the kitchen, Basques are reputably a proud people!

Thanks again, I'll report back on the food and wine.

Feb 14, 2008
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Cassoulet wine pairing suggestions?

I was just coming back here to put a price range. About $25 for a bottle works for me. I was going to guess Bordeaux (based on a bottle a friend brought over last week), and I think the restaurant recommended "un petit de Castillon" but I can't say for sure as my French is only so-so.

Feb 13, 2008
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Cassoulet wine pairing suggestions?

Because my longtime live-in girlfriend can't drink due to health problems, I find that I don't drink often myself, although I love to eat! And drink! Tomorrow we are going to La Casserole for cassoulet, and I am going to treat myself to something to drink, but I have no idea what to bring with me. I asked when I made the reservations, but didn't quite understand what was suggested. Before you say it, I was too late for reservations at Le P'tit Plateau, where the cassoulet is indeed very very good.

Feb 13, 2008
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Korean

Chez Hwang's address is 5545 Upper Lachine, kitty corner to Momesso's (great Italian sub shop).

Feb 13, 2008
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Korean

There is a newish Korean place on Upper Lachine in NDG called Chez Hwang (no relation to Hwang Kum apparently), and I highly recommend it. All the BBQ items were great, the galbi and bulgogi were great, not too sweet, very tender and almost impossible to overcook. The dok-bok-gi (spelling!) called "spicy chicken" was also very good, regardless of the generic name. First rate kimchi, "Korean sour pickle" and other great sides were all enjoyable, and the service was attentive and informative. I also liked their pajun (seafood and green onion pancake) was much thinner and less greasy then the equivalent at Hwang Kum. This place is not busy (not the best location) and I hope people can stop by before it is gone.

Feb 13, 2008
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Why does baked carrot turn green in carrot muffins? (moved from Quebec)

I made some carrot and ginger muffins today, and noticed green spots inside within hours. Does anyone know what this is or why it happens? Same happened when a friend made some similar muffins. What can I do to avoid this?

Sep 23, 2007
T.I.M. in Home Cooking

Vietnamese coffee

I've asked some servers at Vietnamese restos and found they both said they use French dark roast (makes sense, Vietnam used to be a colonial possession of France) and they use an espresso grind. The guides above are very close to how I've had it prepared in front of me in at a place in Ottawa (no idea the name, it was in Chinatown and is long gone).

Sep 01, 2007
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Where Do I Get Knives Sharpened? - MTL

Hi, about the sharpening steel, that only hones a knife and helps it keep an edge longer, but eventually all knives that are used regularly need to be sharpened. The Centre du Rasoir is rather expensive, but is a lot closer to me (NDG). I often think I hear the truck though! I have run out onto the street like a crazy man wielding knives the couple of times it came up my road. In any event, I'll head up to Norton to have it done.

Sep 01, 2007
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Need to fill propane tank in NDG

Thanks, I know where that is, proving yet again that I don't get to the other side of the tracks very often. I'm always curious about the Little Little Little Italy that area has going on.

Aug 14, 2007
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Need to fill propane tank in NDG

The only thing I can find is the Canadian Tire, but that is a swap and at $20.99, a little expensive. Does anyone know where I can get my tank filled up so I can BBQ tonight?

Aug 14, 2007
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Gambian lunch counter on Mont Royal

Yeah, I've seen that place as well, I'd love to know what it is like. It serves Yassa which seems to be almost pan-Aftrican (well, that part of Africa), and that is always tasty...maybe next week I'll have a look see.

Jul 31, 2007
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Korean

I used to swear by the Hwang Kum house, but when I went last they didn't offer me the spicy nappa kimchi and tried to dissuade me from getting a spicy cold noodle dish. I had to insist I could handle the spiciness and ask specifically for the nappy kimchi (which should be standard). But, when I last had their kimchi chigae, it was pretty good. The place across from Snowdon metro is quite good, and they sometimes cook the meat at your table for you. Last, Korea House in Westmount is ok, but their Korean Style seafood Shabu Shabu (fondue) is excellent and worth the money.

Jul 31, 2007
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Best birthday cakes in Montreal???

I just had a cake made by Tammy at Streganona Dolci, it was amazing all my guests loved it (some serious foodies among them). Everything is made from scratch and she will customize your order any way you want it. I just told her the flavours I wanted and she produced a wonderful product on short notice, and it included delivery. It fed 17 people for $30, and the vanilla infused whipped cream topping was light, frothy and very tasty. My cake is on the homepage right now (Happy Birthday Miss Brandi!). Check her site out:

http://www.streganonadolci.com/index....

Jul 06, 2007
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)

Where Do I Get Knives Sharpened? - MTL

Thanks, I did ask a couple of chefs and was told Norten (which I had forgotten, thanks for the reminder) and just basically "Little Italy." I will try Norten as I want to get them back today and can leave them while I shop.

Jul 06, 2007
T.I.M. in Quebec (inc. Montreal)