Monday, 28 March 2016

Amadeus Restaurant - Kingston (ON)

We wanted to try Michael Smith's new burger place: the Canadian Grilling Company on campus at Queen's University, but unfortunately, it was closed.  So instead, we yelped some nearby restaurants and I found Amadeus Restaurant for schnitzel.
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Daily Soup
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German Salad
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Milaner Schnitzel
Chicken schnitzel with tomato sauce and swiss cheese on top and roast potatoes on the side.
The schnitzel was good, but the tomato sauce and cheese kind of felt like a strange combination to have with the schnitzel.

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Hungarian Goulasch with spatzle
After learning how simple and easy it is to make spatzle at George Brown, I found it really interesting when we had spatzle here - and it worked really well with the goulash wine sauce which was rich and heavy.

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Chicken Schnitzel
This was a little plain and boring by itself (it almost made me want the tomato sauce so that eating the schnitzel wouldn't be as dry).  I know German food is usually paired with a beer, but I didn't want to indulge at lunch.  Overall, it was a decent schnitzel, but I think having a side with a sauce or potato salad would have been better than the roasted potatoes in this case (especially since I wasn't drinking).


Saturday, 26 March 2016

India's Taste

Located in a mostly commercial area in Markham, it's easy to drive right past it unless you know where to look.  It's also surprisingly super busy inside the restaurant (which is a testament to how good the food is).  The buffet is pretty cheap for under $20 per person. 
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Round 1: 
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Chana Masala, Paneer, Chicken Tikka Masla, samosas, butter chicken and goat curry (clockwise)
So many options! The turnover was pretty high as well since there were so many people, so food just kept coming out.  Some of the items were too spicy for me, but some were the perfect level of heat and flavour. 

Round 2:
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Fried Fish, potatos, goat curry, pakora and eggplant
Definitely starting to fill up from the heavy and rich sauces - so yummy! 

Overall: The restaurant was pretty busy so we saw a lot of food come out (making it fresher) and there were so many options! I was tempted by the sweets counter when I was paying for my meal at the front cash - but I really couldn't eat anymore. 

Friday, 18 March 2016

Spacco

We bought a $40 Groupon for a three-course meal for 2 people at Spacco.  Walking up from Eglinton Station, Spacco isn't very noticeable on Yonge since it's actually being Alleycatz Jazz Bar. 
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Our Menu
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Fried Calamari and Arancini 
The calamari was a little soggy for a "fried calamari" dish, but the lemon aioli sauce was good. 
The arancini or rice balls were a little on the small side, but they were pretty good with the marinara sauce. 

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Seafood Spaghetti
The appetizer round may have been slightly disappointing, but the pasta dishes were great! The sauce was full of flavour and there was a lot of seafood tossed into the dish.  

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Penne Trecolore
Another example of a great pasta sauce - it just tied the dish all together and it was so tasty. 
The pasta was also perfectly al dente and there were huge chunks of chicken throughout the dish. 

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Tuxedo Truffle Mousse Cake
I felt like this was like the Costco Tuxedo cake since it tasted remarkably similar but with cocoa on top. It was still good, but nothing really special. 

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Brownie with ice cream
Rather dense brownie and richly flavoured. 

Overall: Good pastas at Spacco! It was definitely more of a bar than a restaurant since the bigger space was the bar and pool tables with a smaller portion near the front for restaurant seating.  It was super loud in the restaurant because of the noise from the other side. 

Thursday, 17 March 2016

Starbucks Canada Menu options

March 17, 2016
My Starbucks rewards were adding up faster with my Gold Status.  I earned enough points to get another freebie and my coworker recommended that I try the Zesty Chicken and Black Bean Salad. 
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I still can't believe this retails for about $10 (with tax)
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My tossed salad
I loved the zesty marinara dressing and the quinoa. Quinoa is delicious and it's a filling grain. The chicken was a little harder to pick out from this salad (but I found out that all the tiny chicken pieces fell to the bottom of the salad when I was tossing it).  The salad is on the tinier side (the bigger box is deceiving), but it can fill you up for a while and it's probably the best freebie you can get at Starbucks!

February 18, 2016
When I was purchasing this, a few things crossed my mind: 
1) They're not so good at the savoury items...maybe their pastries will be better
2) What's the biggest pastry I can get so I can fill up faster? 
3) Why is there so much sugar on this? (is this Diabetes waiting to happen?)
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Morning Bun
It's basically a bun with lots of sugar and cinnamon - the Starbucks version of a cinnamon bun  without the icing and without those doughy layers or a honey bun with cinnamon added in (since it was kinda fried). Super sweet - as I expected I guess. 

August 14, 2015
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Breakfast sandwich with double smoked bacon, cheddar and egg
I like the croissant bun, but again - a lot more bread than actual bacon, cheddar and egg.  The proportions are all wrong.  I had the ham, egg and Swiss cheese breakfast sandwich on another day and I liked that one a lot better.

August 7, 2015
Starbucks has been offering food for a while now, but I just haven't really gotten around to trying it even though I've reached Gold Star status for a while now. 
I decided to use my next freebie to check out the BBQ Brisket Sandwich:
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Unfortunately, the sandwich turned out a little sad...there was some beef brisket, but it was more bread than anything else.  I would definitely not pay $7 for this. 



Friday, 11 March 2016

Signs

Signs is the first Canadian restaurant with deaf staff and they promote the use of American Sign Language with helpful sign language cards at each table. I was a little worried at first that speaking out loud at Signs would be impolite, but the wait staff didn't try to quiet our table.  It was a novel experience learning basic ASL and it really makes you realize how much we take our hearing and communication for granted.
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Ravioli
Beautifully presented and actually quite filling. I liked the textures of the different types of mushrooms, panko crumble and soft ravioli pasta.

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Berry Cake
The berry cake was light and fluffy and it wasn't too sweet.  It looked really pretty too!

Overall: It was an interesting experience and it also made me appreciate eating with all my senses (the food was also a feast for the eyes).

Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Blackbird Baking Co.

When my favourite restaurants/cafes/take-out places close, I always regret that I didn't get an extra chance to savour and enjoy my favourite food before it was too late.
So after hearing that Clafouti closed, I went on a search to re-find a new favourite tart place in Toronto.  My search on Yelp led me to Kensington's Blackbird Baking Co. 
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Apple Tart
I was hoping for a pear-almond tart or something along those lines, but I was kinda happy that this tart resembled the Clafouti tarts.  I loved the crust - that cookie crust is my favourite pie crust.  However, the Isimple and straightforward apple tart fell a little flat for me - it just didn't excite my tastebuds the same way Clafouti's tarts used to.
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Chocolate Hazelnut Cake
It sounds pretty interesting - it ended up being rather dry.  The chocolate hazelnut flavours were there and I liked the whole hazelnuts included in the cake, but it just wasn't moist enough.


Kaiju

After reading a lot about Kaiju, I decided to give it a try at lunch. The underground Shops at Aura mall was pretty empty (and a little sad) - it seemed a little pointless since the mall wasn't really connected to anything (I think the store owners were promised a link to the PATH system). 
I got the Chicken Katsu: 
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The chicken was pretty good with a crispy exterior and juicy meat inside.  I can't say I was a really big fan of the sauce though - it was a little watery for my liking and a little light on curry flavour (then again, I'm a fan of stronger curries like Indian or Thai curries).